Supriya Parulekar, Author, Soulful of Lie
I am currently reading The Museum of Innocence by Orhan Pamuk. He takes us on a virtual tour through the streets of Istanbul. The characters come alive, and every object tells us a story. A very gripping narrative, his intricate writing skills have inspired me and make for a wonderful reading experience.
Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China by Jung Chang
It traces China’s twentieth century tragic history. A breathtaking tale, intricately narrated over three generations. It’s a brave portrayal of survival against all odds, a description of China’s nightmare. It’s a grim reminder for those who take freedom for granted..
Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
I was swept by the narration and greedily read through the chapters. It takes us through Nigeria’s civil war and its horrors. Adichie is a compelling storyteller.
The Lost Life of Eva Braun by Anna Politkovskaya
It gives us a glimpse of the dictator Hitler in a different perspective; one that was afraid of intimacy and fatherhood. Eva stands out as a bold, modern girl with a mind of her own.
Nothing but the Truth by Anna Politkovskaya
It helps us understand post-Soviet Russia better. Anna was a fearless journalist who spoke her mind before she was shot dead.
Ram Sampath, Music Composer
I’m currently listening to the soundtrack of The Social Network (2010) by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. They have thrown out every cliché and have created binary magic through their music.
Orphans: Brawlers, Bawlers and Bastards (2006)
This album by Tom Waits is one of my favourites because he is an ingenious storyteller. It has 54 songs, and feels more like a novel. The three-CD set is a collection of some of the band’s rare as well as brand new songs. Infact, each CD is an amazing collection in itself.
RD Burman and Anand Bakshi have composed some killer music for this ambitious film. Only Panchamda could put Jhingalala hoo… in a ballad. He was a genius!
Specialist in all Styles (2004)
I love the music of Orchestra Baobab. They are a Senegalese band. And they have a great guitar player in Barthelemy Attiso. This particular album was nominated for the 2004 Grammy Award for Best Contemporary World Music Album.
Indian band Soulmate fills my thirst for the blues. Guitarist Rudy Wallang and vocalistt Tipriti Bangar are blues ustaads. Or shall I say ‘bluestaads’?
Penpa Tsering, Chef, Sampan - Novotel, Juhu
I have watched Sampan grow from being a new Chinese cuisine restaurant to the heights of culinary greatness for almost three decades now. Sampan is like my second home. Cha chu prawns and the mushroom pot rice is what I recommend and like the most.
China house, Grand Hyatt, Mumbai
What I like most about this place is the ambience. The cuisines are simple, yet imaginative. My favorite dish here is the peking duck with pancakes. Those who have not tried this place must visit it at least once.
China Gate, (Bandra)
I had been to China Gate for a friend’s promotion and the interiors of this place are really done well. Lobster chilli black bean sauce and shanghai chicken are a must have at China Gate. Do give this place a try if you wish to have an excellent meal at a reasonable rate.
Malwani Kalwan (Malad)
The seafood here is superb. Everything in the menu is very reasonably priced. The food is a moving experience for all the seafood lovers. Their prawn chilly fry and stuffed pomfret green sauce are delicious. The ambience is not as great as the food though.
Urban Tadka (Andheri)
A perennially crowded place. The food is amazing, service is decent, and it’s worth waiting for the food. Nothing can beat the rarah gosht and sarson ka saag with makki ki roti. The desserts are pretty decent.
Imaad Shah, Actor
I recently saw Gulaal (2009) again. I loved how the angle of ragging was incorporated in the story. It is hard hitting, and despite showing skin, it’s not vulgar. The racy and colloquial language used in the dialogues adds charm to the movie.
Amores Perros (2000)
It has a dark, grimy feel to it. I feel people should make such films in India as well. I love the way the three stories are connected by one horrific car accident, and how people involved in it deal with life’s harsh realities. Directed by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, it stars my favourite actors, Emilio Echevarria, Gael Garcia Bernal and Goya Toledo.
Fallen Angels (1995)
Directed by one of my favourite filmmakers Wong Kar Wai, it’s a brilliant film made in the backdrop of Hong Kong. The film projects a picturesque view of the urban landscape and urban alienation and is shot beautifully in the buzzing place with neon lights. Though the film is slotted as a psychological thriller and is quite dark in its own right, it has its comic moments.
Matrix was a real revelation for a lot of people when the film first released. However, after having watched this science fiction-action film so many times, I look for nuances in it.
Directed by Christopher Nolan, it delves into the mind and the way the mind works, mind games etc. My film 404, too, draws nuances from this film.