The Week
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DAWN TO DUSK
Kern's space
When he is not steering Mercedes-Benz India to greater heights, Eberhard Kern loves to ski, sail, cook or play golf with his wife
CELEB
From midfield to middle age
At 40, David Beckham continues to elude the trappings of celebrity. He is the quintessential family man—courteous, hardworking and devoted to his children
LUXURY
Write of passage
With the launch of its two new stores, Montegrappa hopes to capture the Indian luxury pen market in the next five years
BOOKS
Calming effect
It is May, and the heat in the capital is white hot and angry. Outside Maneka Gandhi's house—14, Ashoka Road—is a farmers' rally. Inside, Varun Gandhi is in the office. His assistant, a young girl, comes to ensure that no pictures will be taken. “I am not comfortable with that kind of thing,’’ he says. He is dressed in a white linen kurta; the buttons are...
BOOKS
Giving dads their due
Millions of stories have been written about the mother-child relationship but it is a fact that what a father feels on seeing his child is something equally divine and magical…. No one notices the birth of fathers. Every second, every wail signals two newborns. A baby. A father.— Ketan Bhagat in Child/GodKetan says this one's straight from his heart. “The mother’s...
BOOKS
Lessons from future
The year is 2029, and China is facing severe water shortage.The only solution, it decides, is to divert the water of the Yarlung Tsangpo river (the Brahmaputra) from Tibet to northern parts of China. India, however, opposes the plan as it would then lose a significant amount of water. This conflict of interest is at the core of General Sundararajan Padmanabhan's Next China-India War:...
WORDSWORTH
S/he, Shri, Shrimati and more
Well, yes, this is a wordplay blog. But, the current edition is a mix of the personal and the linguistic. The question this week is whether we must have an Indian honorific for transgenders. And, if yes, what are your suggestions?Two examples have been highlighted at the end of this piece: on the Oxford English Dictionary adding Mx to the list of honorifics and on the Swedish Academy adopting a...
FILM REVIEW
Coming of 'A'ge
Film: Avengers: Age of UltronLanguage: EnglishDirector: Joss WhedonCast: Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Downey Jr, Scarlett Johansson, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, James Spader and othersRating: 3/5What happens when superheroes need to introspect? When those who fight the world's fears, must grapple with their own? They are forced to evolve.Avengers: Age of Ultron, the sequel to the...
SOCIETY
Cheating disorder
From old-school answer chits to 007-style gadgets, cheating in the Indian education system has come a long way
MUSEUM
Museums are not just tourist spots
Richard Kurin, the Smithsonian’s under secretary for history, art and culture, is the author of several books on culture and folk life. He helped UNESCO draft an international treaty on safeguarding the world’s living cultural heritage. Kurin was in Delhi recently to explore possible collaborations. Excerpts from an interview:What is happening to the idea and culture of museums?Forty...
CINEMA
A(door) wide open
Is it a sojourn through the mind of one stalwart through the eyes of another or a conversation between two brilliant minds through “mind images” constructed over the past four decades? The 90-minute documentary on Dadasaheb Phalke awardee Adoor Gopalakrishnan titled Images and Reflections: A Journey into Adoor’s Imagery by Kannada filmmaker Girish Kasaravalli is a heady mix of...
FILM REVIEW
Good in spurts
Film: PikuLanguage: HindiDirector: Shoojit SircarCast: Amitabh Bachchan, Deepika Padukone, Irrfan KhanRating: 3.5/5Director Shoojit Sircar’s Piku is an odyssey through shit. No, I mean literally. Poop jokes, poop jokes, and then some more poop jokes. It is not for the squeamish (read: my mother would writhe in pain at the constant reminders of crap). The film, however, is far from crappy....
CINEMA
Free as Freida
It has been several years since we last saw Freida Pinto in a movie. She rose to fame with her debut in 2008's Oscar-winning Slumdog Millionaire, following which she went on to work with Woody Allen in You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger and the 2011 box office hits Rise of the Planet of the Apes and Immortals. Since then, she has devoted most of her time for women's rights causes,...
BOLLYWOOD
Shashi Kapoor conferred Dadasaheb Phalke Award
Mumbai: Bollywood's evergreen charmer Shashi Kapoor was on Sunday conferred the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, the highest honour in Indian cinema, by Information and Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley at the iconic Prithvi Theatre here.The 77-year-old was wheeled on to the stage by his son Kunal and daughter Sanjana before an august gathering.Shashi—the star of over 150 films in his over...
FASHION
Wonder fabric
Last summer, Karan Berry and Leon Vaz, designers and owners of the label Karleo, were working on a western bridal outfit when they found themselves in a fix: how to keep the price point and manufacturing time low without altering the original design. They were able to solve the problem by replacing the power mesh fabric with neoprene or scuba diving material in the corset. “While power mesh...
WORDSWORTH
Go on, masturdate!
The Sicilians say that every good Mafiosi has three guns. One would be with the police, one under his pillow at home and the third would be wrapped tight in a plastic sheet and buried under a tree in the woods. Isn’t that true of every man/woman? One has a public identity, a different identity on social media and a third identity that is kept under wraps. Who are you when you...
TELEVISION
King of glued times
Good writing, a labyrinthine plot and great characters keep viewers hooked on to Game of Thrones, season after season
BOOKS
Blast in the past
Vikram Seth will get one. Or maybe a few. So, will Amitav Ghosh—a big fat no-expense-spared kind of jamboree, like an Indian wedding. Ram Jethmalani had one; Amish won’t need it. Nor will Chetan Bhagat, but will do it deliberately in Delhi to make a point. And of course, Suhel Seth was likely not to settle for none. But for the most, the big fat publishing party—that sort of...
CINEMA
Coming soon...
FILM REVIEW
Not OK(K)!
Film: O Kadhal KanmaniLanguage: TamilDirector: Mani RatnamCast: Dulquer Salman, Nithya Menen, Prakash Raj, Leela SamsonRating: 2/5At Mani Ratnam's latest film O Kadhal Kanmani's music launch, his wife and acclaimed actor-director Suhasini Ratnam said that only qualified critics should review the film. Despite Mrs Ratnam's tall claims and an apparent talent overload in the crew, it is...
SPECIAL FEATURE
Mango mystique
The year was 1978. Nawab Jafar Mir Abdullah of the royal family of Lucknow was entertaining a few British guests at his palace when one of them made an unusual request. He told the nawab that another guest, a nurse from Morocco, had never plucked a mango from a tree and wished to do so.Lucknow prides itself for its mangoes, but 1978 was a bad year. The mango crop had failed badly. The nawab,...
BOOK REVIEWS
The sound of silence
BAFTA AWARDS
'Boyhood' wins top honours, 'The Lunchbox' misses award
BOOK REVIEWS
Off the beaten path
CBFC ROW
Nine Censor Board members resign
FOOD
Greener pastures
Vegetarians the world over have never had it so good. Gone are the days when salad stuffings, breads and sliced potatoes gaped out of a vegetarian’s plate while his carnivorous friends revelled in a hearty three-course meal. A culinary renaissance, which has inspired celebrities like Aamir Khan, Russell Brand and Mike Tyson to go green, has also inspired internationally acclaimed chefs to...
TRENDS
A tale of six yards
It began as a spontaneous banter between two friends in Bengaluru. But in no time, it turned into a culture revival movement, pleating in several women across continents. Ahalya (Ally) Matthan, a perfumer, and Anju Maudgal Kadam, a communications consultant, decided over a random phone conversation earlier this year to show their saris "more love" by wearing them at least 100 times in...
MOVIE WORLD
Indians out of the race for 87th Academy Awards
FILM ROW
Bollywood, young India defend 'PK', protests continue
WORDSWORTH
Petrichor, the summer scent
The summer rains are here, “…mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots….” And, an old noun is back in the news thanks to an Indian connection. Petrichor, the smell of rain in the air. The word is a portmanteau of two Greek words: petra (stone) and ichor (blood of the gods).Petrichor was coined by Isabel Bear and Richard Thomas, scientists at CSIRO, Australia’s...
MUSIC
Songs of refuge
PHOTO-FEATURE
The butterfly superhighway
Enthusiasts track the annual migration of Albatross butterflies in Kerala. Lack of official support does not deter them
FOOD
Non-perishable notion
If you call the Copenhagen restaurant Rub & Stub to reserve a table, you might hear some unusual things. “In principle, with pleasure,” founder Sophie Sales might say, “but we might not be able to serve you dinner.” Luckily, it doesn't happen often, but it is possible that the restaurant can't round up enough staff for the evening. “Then we can't...
CONTROVERSY
Messenger of mayhem
NEWSMAKER
Toast to the tee
As a teenager, he left behind the comforts of his home in Secunderabad, and shifted to a small house near the Eagleton Golf Course, about 30km from Bengaluru. At sunrise, he would cook and pack his tiffin, leave for the golf course. He would return home after sunset, and sit on the terrace with his earphones on. “Listening to music, he would stare at the stars and dream,” says his...
BOOK REVIEW
Nature's signature
Akshay Lall's journey to the world of wildlife photography began four years ago, when he joined 20 other enthusiasts on a trip to Bandhavgarh National Park in Madhya Pradesh. He did not have a great camera or even a confirmed train ticket as he started from Delhi. But that trip changed the 13-year-old boy's life forever. "Wildlife photography is extremely tedious, full of hardships,...
FILM REVIEW
Old wine, old bottle
Fast and Furious 7 may have grossed Rs 70 crore in India but there is nothing in it that we haven’t seen already in Bollywood
OBITUARY
John Lennon's first wife Cynthia dies at 75
Cynthia Lennon, first wife of late Beatle John Lennon, has died, her family said on Wednesday. She was 75."Cynthia Lennon passed away today at her home in Mallorca, Spain, following a short but brave battle with cancer," according to a statement on her son Julian's website."Her son Julian Lennon was at her bedside throughout. The family are thankful for your prayers," it...
FOLK ART
Gods must be stingy
It is an unusually hot day. At the Poluppil Bhagavati temple in Kadavankodu near Kannur, Kerala, a theyyam moves to frenzied drum beat. Through his 20-foot-high headdress, a concoction of cloth and wood, the glowing orb of the sun pirouettes and belly flops, as though it, too, has caught a touch of the noonday madness. As the dust settles and the last of the beats dies down, the petitioners start...
More Inside THE WEEK
Not at home
Failed plan
Vipassana connection
Guest column: Sangakkara
Soft yet tough
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chef's choice  |  Hemant Oberoi
Thou shalt not eat....
Mankind has seen so much change from BC to now. Adam and Eve lived on apples. Our ancestors lived on whatever was edible in the form of herbs, plants, vegetables, animals and fish to satisfy their appetite. Human ...  »
freewheeling  |  Derek O'Brien
Rooting for the Muffler Man
Watching Arvind Kejriwal’s speech at Delhi’s Ramlila Maidan shortly after he was sworn in as chief minister, I was glad he tempered the overenthusiasm and too-keen ambition of some of his Aam Aadmi Party ...  »
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