Category Archives: My Fillum Chillum

How Ray Kroc (McDonalds owner) became an overnight success

Don’t desist to persist #MondayMorningWakeUpCall

I watched the movie ‘The Founder’ over the weekend. It’s the story of Ray Kroc, the person credited to making McDonalds an empire from a single store and ‘the most successful fast food operation in the world’.

Ray Kroc was a travelling salesman. He sold paper cups, pianos and milk-shake mixer machines door-to-door, till he chanced upon McDonalds at the age of… wait for it…wait for it…wait for it… 52!

There are a whole bunch of business lessons in the movie for entrepreneurs, founders and aliens alike but the one that probably is at the core and resonates throughout the movie (and his career) comes best from this dialogue at the end of the movie where he’s preparing for a speech.

Ray Kroc says: “I know what you’re thinking. How the heck does a fifty two year old, over the hill, milkshake machine salesman build a fast food empire with 1600 restaurants and an annual revenue of seven hundred million dollars?

One word: Persistence!”

It reminded me of a same same but different Steve Jobs quote, “I’m convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.”

I think they might be bonding well in the after-life.

20 movies that weren’t invited by Mr. Oscar for the 2016 Oscar ceremony

“Wake up, wake up, it’s the Oscars” #MondayMorningWakeUpCall

A day when imagination and make-believe is celebrated. When awards are given to those who best blur the lines between fantasy and reality. Let’s celebrate it… after all, movies have been one of my greatest sources of learnings about life, love and laughter, if one chooses to learn from it.

It’s also a day when many memorable movies get lost into oblivion simply because they couldn’t make it to the guest list, let alone get an opportunity to prepare a forgettable speech (well how many dad/moms/dogs who were thanked can we remember).

But we can’t really blame Mr. Oscar for not inviting the many more debatably deserving ones. He does have a limited seating arrangement. And he is known to be snooty. You may not agree with his guest list, but then, it is his party.

So, thought I’d put out an extended list for an extended party. Inviting those who have been snubbed by Mr. Oscar (no Oscar nominations) but they have either entertained me, inspired me or made me humanely richer, if not all three.

Here’s my extended list of the 20 movies that I think deserve a party as much as any of the nominees along with a tweet description of the imprint it left with me.

  1. Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation – It’s impossible not to love Ethan Hunt’s 5th impossible mission incarnation #moviesilove

  1. Ant Man – Thank God I didn’t judge a super hero by size #moviesilove

  1. Avengers: Age of Ultron – Avenger or not, it’s an ultron fun age to be in #moviesilove

  1. Kingsman: The Secret Service – There’s no way this kind of service should be kept a secret #moviesilove

  1. Pawn Sacrifice – Tobey (The Grandmaster) plays chess better than Tobey (The Spidey) can spin a web #moviesilike

  1. The Walk – Now this is how one should ‘walk the talk’ #moviesilove

  1. Entourage – Always fun to hang out with the boys #moviesilike (Warning: The bigger the fan the greater the fun)

  1. The Gift – It’s not the gift, but the movie behind the gift that matters. Dark & disturbing, chilling & nail biting story telling #moviesilike

  1. Minions – A minion minions. Each 1 in a minion & I can watch them a minion times. Verdict: A minion stars #moviesilike (Disclaimer: I’m biased)

  1. Spy – She’s no Bond or Bourne. But she will crack up criminals (and you), if not through her moves, then definitely through her laughs #moviesilike

  1. The Visit – After a long time a Manoj N. Shyamalal movie worth paying a visit #moviesilike

  1. Furious 7 – While the chases are 7 times more daring than the original, what stays with this one is that it has 7 times more heart. An ode to Paul Walker #moviesilike

Warning: The following are the arty kind that I thought wasn’t farty but still might not be everybody’s bowl of breakfast. Recommended for the eclectic movie buffs.

  1. Anomolisa – I’m cheating a bit out here. Charlie Kaufman’s (one of my favourite film makers) stop-motion picture has been nominated for best animated feature. I loved this deeply moving existential tale so much that I’m giving it a double shout out so that I do my bit to make sure it doesn’t go unnoticed #moviesilove

  1. What We Do In The Shadows – Who knew vampires could be so hilarious #moviesilove

  1. Lobster – To many I suspect this might taste a bit bizarre. But for those who have an appetite for offbeat story-telling packaged with the dark, the amusing, the poignant, the deep, might just find that the after-taste pleasantly lingers on for quite a while #moviesilove

  1. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl – And in it is hidden a gem of a pearl #moviesilove

  1. The Tribe – A bold and intriguing film that left me speechless #moviesilike

  1. Clouds of Sils Maria – The understated and layered emotions of holding on to the past, change and youth vs maturity tend to hide behind the clouds. If you can see past the clouds then maybe you’ll spot a silver lining #moviesilike

  1. Diary of A Teenage Girl – Maybe this is why it’s bad manners to read someone else’s diary. Not an easy consumption but then diaries rarely are #moviesilike

  1. Tangerine – Makes the list mostly cos it’s an illustration of a movie shot ONLY on iPhone. That it’s high energy story telling that gives a reality take into the lives of transgenders is a bonus #moviesilike

And a special shout out to 2 of my favourites from the year (and possibly this decade so far)… Mad Max: Fury Road and Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Here’s 20 more from last year in case you’re playing catch up or just movie binging.

Which ones were your favourites that got snubbed by Mr. Oscar?


9 Jedi mind tricks you can use in your life to trick the Dark side

Awaken the Force within you #MondayMorningWakeUpCall

Jedi Knight quotes

May the Force be with you

  1. “Try not. Do—or do not. There is no try.”

Yoda to Luke in response to Luke’s half-hearted reaction to levitate his Star Fighter plane by using the Force.

After all, if you are gonna try, then give it your best shot, else do not. Why waste your time and energy otherwise?

2.   “Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose.”

Yoda to Anakin when Anakin comes to Yoda for advice about the premonitions he is having about losing Padme Amadila cos as Yoda also says, “Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering.”

3.  “[Luke:] I can’t believe it. [Yoda:] That is why you fail.”

Yoda to Luke when Luke couldn’t believe his eyes when he saw Yoda lift the massive fighter plane by using just the Force (while all the while Luke was struggling to lift a rock).

Believe you must!

4. “You will know (the good from the bad) when you are calm, at peace. Passive.”

Yoda’s response to Luke during his training when Luke asks how he will know the good side from the bad side. ‘Passive’ however methinks should not be misconstrued as ‘inert’ or ‘inactive’ but rather as ‘actively passive’ or ‘consciously passive’

5.  “Patience you must have my young padawan”

Yoda tells an impatient Luke at the start of his training when like all one minds one wants to leap frog to the glory without the hard work.

  1. “Truly wonderful, the mind of a child is.”

When Obi-Wan comes to Yoda to seek help to find what he thinks is an impossible puzzle to solve, Yoda puts forth the puzzle to a group of young children who he is training to become Jedi knights. One of the young ones comes up with an answer which was the most obvious but was uncharacteristically overlooked.

Yoda indirectly reminds Obi-Wan (and us) to not lose the beauty of simplistic and innocent thinking, to continually unlearn what we learn.

  1. “You will find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.”

Obi-Wan tells Luke when Luke finds it hard to believe that Darth Vader was earlier Anakin Skywalker and now they are not the same person, despite occupying the same body.

Moral: Wear glares that don’t colour your judgement.

  1. “Keep your concentration here and now where it belongs.”

Qui-Gon dispersing pearls of Jedi to his apprentice when Obi-Wan expresses anxieties about the future. Obi-Wan goes on to retort that “Master Yoda says I should be mindful of the future” but Qui-Gon replies saying “But not at the expense of the moment.”

Plan the future, but stay in the present moment.

  1. “Your eyes can deceive you, don’t trust them”

Obi-Wan while training Luke in the Force, aboard the Millenium Falcon. Instead of the senses, Obi-Wan tells Luke later to “Trust your feelings, Luke.” A philosophy oft repeated throughout the saga in different forms by different Jedi Knights including Master Yoda instructing Obi-Wan to “Use your feelings, you must” and Shmi Skywalker asking young Anakin “What does your heart tell you?” when he is torn between staying with his mom or leaving to train as a Jedi.

These are some of my favourite Jedi mind tricks, tricks that could probably transgress from the make-believe world of the galaxy far far away and be used in the not so make-believe world of drama and deadlines.

But for the tricks to overpower the dark side, believe in the Force you must!

What are some of your Yoda favourite philosophies that you can use in life?

Brothers in Arms

Oh what a day, what a lovely day, to start off with ‘Brothers in Arms’ I say #MondayMorningWakeUpCall

Mad Max: Fury Road blew my mind. The scenes along with the soundtrack is still playing in my head. At a surface level, it’s just a 2 hour relentless chase movie that doesn’t take its foot off the accelerator. The choreography, the energy and the visual spectacle of post apocalyptic dystopia is something that I haven’t seen or experienced before and am unlikely to for a while.

At a ‘reading in between the non-existent dialogues level’ it’s also about a couple of unlikely ‘Brothers in Arms’ fighting their way through ‘Fury Road’ and giving it a shot at redemption. It’s not much unlike life or even a startup, where it becomes easier, and dare I say, fun, to overcome obstacles and bury all ‘fury’, when done with ‘Brothers in Arms’.

Bonus: The music track of Brothers in Arms from the movie to start the day. It’s sure to drive away the Monday morning blues and get your energy levels revved up for the week.

20 movies with no love from Mr. Oscar 2015

“To get an Oscar would be an incredible moment in my career, there is no doubt about that. But I don’t make films for Oscars, I make them for the audience.” – Peter Jackson

In the midst of the Birdman flying high with the big Oscars, here’s a compile of movies (my favourites) that never stood a chance of getting any love from Mr. Oscar last year. I am in fact getting more and more inclined to agree with some who say that Oscar movies are pre-dominantly the arty farty types. Which is not to say that I don’t love most of them and I would be hard pressed to label them such, I am failing to find reason in Mr. Oscar’s prejudice against ‘Blockbuster Entertainers’

Anyway, I digress. This topic shall be broached another sunny night. I’ve picked 20 movies that I thoroughly enjoyed from last year. They aren’t ranked strictly in order of favourites, but higher up in the order would mean that I’m showing it a bit more love than the long tail. I’m also throwing in my tweet from after the movie to get you to follow me in case you like them – @sandy00014

1. Fury – A 5 man crew, including a rookie soldier, in a tank, behind enemy lines, against an              entire army.                                                                                                                                                      (‘Tank’ you Brad Pitt for your Fury is all I want to say. #iLikeMuch)

2. Lone Survivor – Story of four Navy SEALs on an ill-fated covert mission to neutralize a high-         level Taliban operative who are ambushed by enemy forces in the Hindu Kush region of               Afghanistan.                                                                                                                                                   (At times it’s best not to be alone #iLikeMuch)

  1. Edge of Tomorrow – It’s Groundhog Day in an action movie avatar starring Tom Cruise & Emily Blunt… and if you haven’t watched Groundhog Day then I’d rather you watch that first before you even read the rest of this post.                                                                                     (I’m still on the edge. Go watch, enjoy, repeat. #iLikeMuch)
  1. The Fault in our Stars – Two teens who have cancer fall in love. (Don’t start thinking ‘mush mush’).                                                                                                                                               (Didn’t find much fault with these stars. #iLikeMuch)                                                                   Bonus Tip: My favourite music album from last year.
  1. Chef – A chef who loses his restaurant job starts up a food truck in an effort to reclaim his creative promise, while piecing back together his estranged family.                                              (I’m still smacking my lips, second helpings banta hai #iLikeMuch)
  1. The Lego Movie – An ordinary Lego construction worker saves the world (Lego World) from an evil tyrant.                                                                                                                                        (All I can say is ‘Everything is Awesome’ #iLikeMuch) 
  1. X-Men: Days of the Future Past – Wolverine goes back in time to change history to prevent.                                                                                                                                                     (I had a blast, tip, go watch it fast #iLikeMuch)
  1. Guardians of the Galaxy – A group of intergalactic criminals are forced to get together to save the world.                                                                                                                                      (All I can say is ooga chaka ooga chaka ooga ooga chaka #iLikeMuch)
  1. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies – Finale of The Hobbit trilogy.                                 (If all battles were so beautiful, poets would write about war & not love. #iLikeMuch. Action Jackson, please learn from Peter Jackson).
  1. Begin Again – A young singer-songwriter’s (Keira Knightley) love for music, love for her estranged musician turned celebrity boyfriend and the discovery of her talent by a washed out record label executive.                                                                                                                    (I won’t mind watching this again #iLikeMuch)
  1. Maze Runner – First part of a three book trilogy. Trapped in an unknown place with memory wiped out and a maze that changes every night, stands in the way of their escape. (I wasn’t a-mazed. But I didn’t mind the run while my popcorn was done #iLike) 
  1. Oculus – A psychological super-natural horror film in which a young woman is convinced that an antique mirror is responsible for the deaths in her family.                                        (Mirror mirror on the wall, this is the deadliest mirror of them all #iLike #scary)
  1. Captain America: The Winter Soldier – The second installment of the superhero dedicated to defending America’s ideals.                                                                                                               (I won’t end up reciting “O Captain My Captain’ for him, but I’ll give him a feather to put on his captain #iLike)
  1. Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 – The first part of the last part of the series.                    (It’s darker, less action, more brooding, still gripping #iLike)
  1. The Amazing Spider-man 2 – Superhero saves the world (New York city) from evil villain.      (I guess I won’t grow up #iLike)
  1. The Raid 2 – Picks up directly from part 1. Rama goes undercover to bring down the syndicate and uncover the corruption within his police force.                                               (Action choreography that rivals the grace of ballet dancers #iLike)
  1. Pride – U.K. gay activists work to raise money for the miners despite the prejudices they faced from the miners during their strike in 1984.                                                                           (If you thought gays had it hard but never quite comprehended how hard watch hard, watch this. #iLike)
  1. Big Eyes – A true story about painter Margaret Keane life as an oppressed wife and her journey to freedom.                                                                                                                              (A look at art with fresh eyes and a marriage with unfiltered lens #iLike)
  1. Skeleton Twins – Reunion of estranged twins.                                                                      (Phoolon ke taron ka sabka kehna hai, ek hazaaron mein meri behna hai #iLike)
  1. Nightcrawler – A driven man desperate to excel in his work as a crime reporter blurs the line between what can be crossed and what should not.                                                            (The twisted thriller trend continues #iLike Gyllenhaal crawls and creeps under the skin. Think he’ll stay there 4 a bit)

Any movies you enjoyed that didn’t get any Oscar love and isn’t on this list?