The Rushmore 5 – Okay, let’s go all Awwal Number then…

Awwal Number movies are not bad movies, because if they were, Victory (the Hurmaan Baweja starrer) would surely have been in. And there have been a lot of movies far worse that the ones in the Rushmore. In fact, a criteria is that the movie should be watchable (why, HHH is indeed better than watchable, it’s a nice movie) …. alternately Chain Khuli Ki Main Khuli is an honest attempt, but you cannot sit through the full movie. So what, then, are Awwal number movies? Awwal Number movies are basically …. hmm, ahem…… Awwal Number movies. Nope, cannot explain. Need to watch it to get it.

All Rounder, Patiala House , Hip Hip Hurray , Dil Bole Hadippa.

There you go.

Awwal Number is not even among the Rushmore of Awwal Number movies.
Poor Aamir.

The Rushmore 3 – Hindi (Bollywood) movies on Sports

And no, we won’t go all Awwal Number here, I promise. Or rather, I would not go all Awwal Number on you yet ….

So here’s the list:

Iqbal. Chak De! India. Lagaan. Saaheb.

Iqbal – is like a postcard from a faraway land. A beautiful, magical movie. And indeed, if Zaheer can, if Irfan Can, then Iqbal Khan. Heartwarming, joyous. This is Kukunoor’s zenith.

Chak De! India – The mother of all feel-good movies. And the mother of most Bollywood masala movies. And done without any sleaze or soap. Just taut, sharp storytelling. Shahrukh, in one of his best performances, is in his elements here; and the girls are excellent.

Lagaan: Once upon a time in India – If Shahrukh can, how can Aamir not? Chop an hour off the movie, chop two songs off, and this would be in everyone’s top three Bollywood movies of all time. Even as-is, it still is a super, super movie. I remember, in a movie hall in Bangalore a long long time back, half the hall was standing up an screaming ‘Maar Kachra, maar!’. That’s the magic of movies. That’s the magic of cricket.

Saaheb – Old-world Anil Kapoor movie about a footballer (a goalkeeper. How can you make a tragic movie on football with the protagonist being anything but a goalkeeper?) Beautiful songs (some standardfare Amrita Singh song-and-dance routines notwithstanding)… Kya khabar kya pata, one of Kishore Kumar’s best songs, if from this movie. And emotes well all through. However, like in all of her movies, Raakhi speaks in bangla for all her dialogues in this one as well.

What’s your list?

ps: idea inspired from an old facebook status message of Ayan’s.

Great Midfields – Guardian / Observer

This is from the Guardian SportsBlog (Click here)

Nice list. All six are credits to football; although I have not seen the Everton or Liverpool midfields and have seen only grainy footage of Didi and Garrincha…

If i were to make a list, it would surely include

The France Euro ’00 midfield

     Djorkaeff – Vieira – Deschamps – Zidane 

    (with a backup of Pires, Petit, Karembeu and Micoud)

The famous Arsenal midfield of the Invincible year 

   Ljungberg – Edu – Vieira – Pires 

(p.s. wonderful to see the Platini – Tigana – Giresse – Fernandez quartet, one of my first football memories…)

40 greatest players of the Open era

If you go look at Tennis Magazine’s (click here) top 40 of the Open era, you wonder about two big things

1. How different will it be today, and it has just been three years…

2. That it is a little biased towards the modern era, and a little biased towards American players.

Will try a redux sometime, but here’s the end statement…

The greatest player of the Open era, Male or Female, if OBVIOUSLY Steffi Graf. One is blind (or biased) if one does not see it.

And this is for all my Boris-fan Pete-admirer childhood and adolescence, and genuine admiration for Martina, Chris, Sabatini and Seles. This is coming from a never-supported-Graf-in-any-tournament tennis fan.

But isn’t it obvious?

Sudden realization…

Remember that team I made?

That team, if you look at the clubs these guys played in, will look like this

———– ManUre ———–

–Milan – Milan – Milan – Milan –

 ——–Inter – Milan ——

– Juve —————Juve –

———Napoli ——–

——–Sampdoria ——

One from English clubs and the rest all from Italy (and I could as well have put Buffon in place of Schmeichel, there’s hardly anything to choose between the two)!