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Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Memorable movie going experiences..

After the recent Rang De Basanti movie, and being inspired by reading Visithra's post on her best blogs, I thought I would share with you my most memorable movie going experiences..

Just because these experiences are memorable, does not mean all the movies listed here are great, it could have been the people I watched it with. In another note, just because they are memorable, I dont recommend others to watch movies with the same people either, because it could have been a great movie (need to start wearing bulletproof vests now !!)

Kandhan Karunai : 1978 ? Kaamadhenu theater, Chennai (India) : First movie that I can remember watching with my dad and mom.

Yaar Payyan : 1979 ? Kapali theater, Chennai (India) : My dad and mom had a bad bad fight, so my mom wiped her tears, took me by the hand, lifted my baby brother on her hips and we went off to see this movie. I remember some vague details about a lost boy and the movie was also sad.. that was a double whammy.. The only bright side was that after the movie we went to church and prayed !! I never knew that my mom could actually kneel down and pray just like a Christian (she even knew the father and other people in the church!!). Was always confused till I found later that she had studied in St. Raphaels convent !! Guess that experience made me secular.

Mullum Malarum : 1980 -81 ? Kapali theater , Chennai (India) : My chittis (mom's younger sisters) decided to go for a movie together, I tagged along after throwing a tantrum. This was the first time I saw a Rajni movie. Of course I kept talking loudly and spoilt the experience for my aunts.

My dear Kuttichattan : 1984 ? Sathyam theater, Chennai : My Chittappa took me to this movie with my cousin who was only 3 or 4 at the time. This was the first 3D movie to hit India and I remember wearing 3D glasses and having a great time.

Beautiful People : 1984 ? My grandfather got tickets for this movie and took me and my brother to watch this. It was unbelievable. One of the best animal documentaries.

Police Story : 1986 , Alankar theater Chennai : another movie with my brother, chitappa and my cousin Sriram. Became a big Jackie Chan fan and watched almost all his movies (first show !!)

Inner space : 1988 , Pilot , Chennai : First movie I watched with my school friends. My parents took forever to give me permission. But granpa supported me all the way.
First time I saw such special effects. got me hooked to english movies.

Protector , Blue Star, Anna Nagar, Chennai 1988 : Usually Jackie chan movies come in Alankar theater. This one was playing in this god foresaken theater in Anna Nagar.(this was 1988 people, Anna Nagar wasnt what it is today) !!. Went there to find that we got seats only in the front row. We could either focus on Jackies feet or head but not both and boy was he moving fast.. both of us had such a headache.. that was the last time I saw a movie from the first row.

Tezaab : 1989 , Varanasi, India : First hindi movie I watched with college friends. It was very memorable, I liked the experience more than the movie. All that yelling, howling, throwing torn lottery tickets and soda bottle caps when the songs started.. college life, what can I tell you !

Sankarabaranam : 1990 , Sathyam theater, Chennai : The whole family went for this movie. Remembered great songs and the fact that someone in the movie burns camphor in his hands (I was always wondering why anyone would be that stupid for some time).

Name not important: 1991 Shilpi theater, Varanasi : Well, some crap movie with a few hot scenes. Went with a bunch of friends to satisfy some academic curiosities !! As for the story, It was a remake of Fatal Attraction in Hindi with Sarath Babu as the hero and Silk Smitha as the obsessed woman !! I also decided then and there that If I ever wanted to watch anything like this, I would do it in private..

Phool aur Kante : 1992 Lanka Gate , Varanasi : Watched it with all my classmates(it was a class event). Was so turned off that I swore I would never see another hindi movie in a theater. Kept this up too for almost 7 years. Finally my wife broke my Hindi movie fast in 1999 !!

Golden Eye : November 1995 , Rittenhouse Square , Philadelphia. Was going through my Ph.D qualifying exam. All my grad school buddies were waiting for me outside the room where the oral exam was going on. As soon as I came out and said "I passed !" they just whisked me off to see Goldeneye (first show)!! Will always remember David and Vagelis for the joy on their faces..

Good Will Hunting : 1998 Jan - Orlando Florida. My friend Alana pretty much forced me to watch this one just to check if Matt Damon resembled her boyfriend. We had gone for a dance competition in Orlando and had to kill a few hours..

Patch Adams : 1999 New years Eve - Saratoga , California. Came out of the theater at 12:30 with my friend Bryony. It was memorable because she was shipping off on some religious mission soon and that was the only time we had to say bye !!

Generals Daughter : 1999 July - Santa Clara , California. First movie San and me watched after she came to the US. We went 5 minutes late, she was sitting in the front, me in the back 4 rows behind and there was too much graphic sex and violence !! Talk of bad choices.. but the damn memory still lingers and every now and then it will be mentioned as a blackmark of my "Husbandness" !!

Alaipayudhe 2000 , Naz Cinema, Fremont, California : Wife finally broke my "no theater going for Indian movies" fast by taking me to this one. It was worth it and I changed my policy. In the next year, I practically caught up on all the movies I had missed in the last 7 years. She gladly watched all those movies with me !

Mujhe Kuch Kehna Hai, 2001, Bombay, India : My first movie experience with my in-laws and my first movie in Bombay. Watching a movie in Bombay is very different from watching a movie in Madras (Chennai).. that is a blog post in itself !!

Signs , 2002 , AMC, Santa clara , California : My wife was pregnant with our first one. Then our friend Ram came along and asked me if I would come watch the movie. It became a big issue, but wifey finally relented and let me go watch the movie. I will never forget the line . Ram counted we were 630 and 631 on the line to enter the movie theater. Have never seen a line that long for any movie in the US.

These days the movie theater trips are few and far between, especially after the first one was born. But I guess I will always have the memories !!


I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 2:27 PM, Blogger Krish wrote...

Sundar, nee cricket fan dhaan oththukkaren aanaa "Thalaivar" fans kitterndu dharma adi vaangamaa irukkanumnaa ozhungaa spelling mistake correct pannidu :-)

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 3:40 PM, Blogger Unknown wrote...

mudhalla un commente puriyale.. then i realized i spelled rajni as ranji.. thanks. corrected the mistake..


I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 5:01 PM, Blogger Balaji wrote...

andru peidha mazhaiyil :)

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 7:41 PM, Blogger Unknown wrote...

balaji, at first i didnt understand.. then i remembered.. that is the sarath kumar remake of fatal attraction !!


he he.. looks like you rememebered silk smitha too..

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 2:00 AM, Blogger Unknown wrote...

Wow your mum studied at St.Raphaels? That is the school next to Santhome Cathedral right? my mum studied there too and when she visited me in UK, she promptly went to the mass with my Irish neighbour one Sunday :)

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 2:29 AM, Blogger வேதா wrote...

hi mr.sundar,
the whole post gave the impression of watching a movie.nice one too. my movie experience along with my family is very less,since my dad hated tamil movies and was afraid of crowd.but me and my bro went on to seeing movies braving the crowd.we even got near to lathicharged during the release of "sethupathi ips" and then as we grew ,obviously we found out that no more cinemas together,but only with friends,that was some kind of mutual agreement,so that we can enjoy a lot and no one back in the family can find out our looties in the theatre. almost all of the movies i have seen till now were with the company of my friends only.

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 7:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous wrote...

what was the first hindi movie you saw with your wife?

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 8:52 AM, Blogger mitr_bayarea wrote...


Nicely written, reading the whole experience, made me think about the movies that i have been with my parents and friends back in India. Orre malarum ninaivugal thaan....

On another note, we are at last going to RDB tonight, didn't make it last week, as we weren't smart enough to buy online tix.

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 6:03 PM, Blogger Visithra wrote...

i inspire?? Good to know ;) enjoyed ur list - u had indian movie watching at the theater bans?? Awww thats sad - u should have just banned a few directors and actors ;)

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 10:47 PM, Blogger Unknown wrote...


i remembered why the name didnt strike me first. It had a Hindi title and was hindi dubbing when I saw that movie !!

wa, email me your moms name and when she went to that school. who knows my mom might know her...

veda, surprisingly i have not seen Sethupathy IPS. will try to rent it this weekend..

at first i thought anon was my wife testing me.. apparently not. anyways, the first movie she forced me to watch was Taal (we saw it on vcr). but i loved it .. and that helped change the perception.

mitr, you will definitely enjoy it.I know mr. k will

visithra, ungalukku oru pudhu pattame sooti irukken..

selangor silambarasi .. eppidi irukku ?

ha ha ..

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 3:26 AM, Blogger வேதா wrote...

i am sorry i gave the wrong name, it was not sethupathy ips, it was "walter vettrivel" starring satyaraj.

I am not responsible for comments posted by others... At 3:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous wrote...

The silk smitha films is "Andru peyitha mazhayil". It was dubbed into hindi.


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