The Other End of The Line

Yes I am talking about the movie by James Dodson released in 2008-The Other End Of The Line starring Jesse Metcalfe & Shriya Saran in the lead. What started out as a fun flick well, had me in tears. Yeah, odd since I am a girl rarely touched by books let alone a movie. So here is the synopsis-warning skip the following para if you like to keep the storyline a surprise.
The Other End of The Line
Jesse Metcalfe plays the role of an everyday American-with a girlfriend who is a perfect match for him, a good job in the advertisement sector where his recent project involves designing an ad for a chain of hotels & also with the inevitable credit card problems. That’s when Puja played by Shriya, steps in-she’s the voice of Citi Bank, that is assigned the job to solve Granger’s fraudulent credit card dealings. I won’t say its love-at-first-hello, it’s rather a slow sweet process with Jennifer David (Priya’s pseudo name) offering Granger advice on how to get rid of common cold. Soon they get talking on issues other than credit cards, sometimes about Granger’s personal life & sometimes about what the moon looks like. And then the moment arrives when Granger expresses his wish to meet Jennifer who is supposedly in San Francisco.

And you guessed it, Priya who is by the way engaged to a very kiddish mamma’s boy Vikram (or was it Virat? I really don’t remember) runs off to San Francisco to meet her crush. Ah but Indians being Indians, somehow the feeling creeps in to her that Granger might not like her after all. And so she hides from him leaving him disheartened. As fate would have it, they bump into each other(literally) & well, they had already kicked off hadn’t they? But the twist is, Priya doesn’t explain that she is the ‘voice at the other end of the line’. The rest of the story is quite predictable & obvious yet interesting.

The storyline isn’t all that original or surprising, it’s a merger with Bollywood ideas of course. But at least the call centre story is a lot different from and better than the disastrous Hello. It looks like a call centre here not some posh hotel’s reception area. Anupam Kher as Priya’s easily excitable & very Indian father is absolutely lovable. Her family provides the comic relief in the movie. There is this scene where they ask a group of gay prostitutes(I don’t know how Priya’s aunt finds them to be ‘nice gentlemen’) the address of the hotel & end up being invited for group sex! Even the would-be groom is kind of funny-blushing when telling Priya that his Mom has already selected a nice king-size bed for them!

The scene that touched my heart was when Priya’s father finally stands up for his daughter. Caught between her dreams and her family’s happiness Priya is at the doorstep of her in-laws, brought there with the purpose to apologise. Instead she claims that she is sorry but she can’t let go of her dreams. When her would-be in-laws start abusing her, Anupam Kher stands up and fondly claims that his daughter is a dreamer, someone charming enough to make people smile & pay attention to her when she speaks. And most of all Priya is his daughter & he is proud of her. Ah! If only all parents were as thoughtful & willing to accept their kids as they are instead of making excuses for their failings.

The Other End of The Line is a good pick- makes me wonder why I never hear of such movies & instead spend my time with pathetic excuses of a movie like Dabbang- seriously ‘wholesome’ entertainment? So go for it, it’s a good movie with the usual mirch-masala and no ‘item’ songs thankfully!

She’s A Jolly Good Fellow: A Review

I am no big shot critic to sit & review books. This is almost like an essay on which book you have read recently & liked. It’s just meant for bookworms like me who are looking for a good paperback to settle down with, in this heat any other outdoor activity is a pain & being an avid reader pays off!
She's a jolly good fellow
So to begin with, let me give you a brief glimpse into the plot. The story revolves around two officers in the army & their quest to settle in. Now what’s so unique in that? Only they are girls! And among the first ones to join the army. And it doesn’t end there. Deepa is an officer who is out to prove her mettle & in the process doesn’t mind compromising on her gender. She prefers being referred to as ‘Saahib’ by her juniors. And her buddy is her opposite if there ever was one. Mills & Boons rules her world. Anjali isn’t willing to shy away from the fact that she is a woman. She is lazy, a dreamer, a fashion diva & has an ever ready smile plastered on her face. Needless to say she is the centre of attention as well as ridicule.
She’s A Jolly Good Fellow revolves around their lives in the army, how each one reacts and adjusts to different situations. While Anju is more willing to take the easy route, Deepa is OG(Olive Green) to the core. Deepa’s determination earns her respect but at the cost of loss of her feminine identity. And of course when lady officers are involved, can love be far behind. But then again arises the question- is love more important than duty?

Sajita Nair explores a whole new world of adventure combined with romance. The book had me in splits at one time, morose and even scared at one point( bound to happen when you sit with a book till 2am). The story telling is good, I didn’t skip too many paras, only some when the description of the surroundings got a bit weary. This book reminded me of a TV serial that used to air in Doordarshan-about lady cadets training for the navy. She’s A Jolly Good Fellow is similar in content, as it would have you engrossed in the activities of these officers-when they end up saluting a junior by mistake or dance in the rain & the entire unit gets to know of it or when Deepa races on her bike and ends up in a cast.

But Sajita’s manner of presenting facts is well balanced. It doesn’t sound feminist when Deepa complains about the ‘special’ treatment meted out to them. Rather you would empathise with her(yes guys too). Other characters are well developed, though I would have liked the character of Major Sandeep Singh to last a bit longer. There are some crooks around too. Of course what’s a story without villains? And some ghosts as well.

My favourite character is the protagonist-Deepa Shekhar, though I don’t always agree with her views. Yet she achieves what she desired no matter what route it took. Anju on the other hand evokes sympathy in me. Yet Sajita does justification to her character towards the end of the story & I regain my respect for her. The men in the story have not been neglected & each has his own trademark –a flirt, an egoist, a chauvinist, you will find them all here.

All in all, this book make for a good read and is worth the 250 bucks. Girls will enjoy & nod their heads all through while guys may agree or disagree with Nair’s point of view. But enjoy you will, She’s A Jolly Good Fellow after all!