Thursday, January 31, 2008


After making an actioner Zameen and comedy Golmaal, Rohit Shetty is back with a star studded ‘Sunday’, comprising of names like Ajay Devgan, Ayesha Takia, Arshad Warsi and Irrfan Khan in pivotal roles.
A dead body found floating in a lake. Unexplained scratch marks on her neck. Supari killers out to kill her. A taxi driver who yells 'bhoot, bhoot' every time he sees her.
Sehar's (Ayesha Takia) world turns topsy-turvy when she gets a clue about the missing Sunday of her life, which points to a possible violent attack on her. A.C.P Rajvir (Ajay Devgan) takes up the case to sort out the complicated and jumbled up threads of Sehar's life. In the process of solving Sehar's case it comes to light that on Sunday, different people interacted with her and amongst them, one could be the accused.
Then another dead body is found. And the bracelet found near the corpse belongs to Seher. The evidence is mounting and all dingers point ay Seher. And still, Seher does not remember anything. Is Seher really as innocent as she claims to be? A dubbing artiste by day, is she also a serial killer by night? Is her bubbly charm but a mask that hides her darker, menacing self? As Seher desperately fights the fog that clouds her treacherous memory, ACP Rajvir has to fight the fact that the woman he wants to marry may well be a murderer and worse...

Monday, January 21, 2008

Lost often? Your 'brain GPS' at fault

Do you often get disoriented or lost while trying to find a way through the city streets? Well simply blame it on your brain.

Researchers in Britain have found that two key parts of the brain "talk" to each other and allow people to remember routes as well as plan new ones, but if either of these is not working, the ability to find the way around gets impaired.

While the first part called the hippocampus stores memories about key locations and landmarks, the other brain cells, known as grid cells, provide the internal sense of space and distance, like a GPS system.

According to the researchers, in those people who get lost easily, navigation cells are less efficient at talking to each other, so they get lost. "People who get lost easily don't make good use of their grid cells. These provide us with information about distance, movement and direction while linking to memories about specific landmarks. For each location a specific pattern of cells will send signals to trigger a particular memory.

"For example the entrance to Top Shop on your local high street will have one pattern while another will trigger a memory of St Pancras station. By talking to each other in this way, the cells allow the brain to produce a route it has to follow," lead researcher Dr Hugo Spiers of University College London was quoted by The Sunday Telegraph as saying.

According to them, training the cells can help people navigate more easily and it may explain how a city's cabbies gain the encyclopedic "knowledge" of the roads.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Stuffed toys ease kids' stress

Caring for a stuffed animal appears to alleviate stress signs in young children exposed to traumatic or stressful life events, Israeli researchers report.

"Shifting attention from oneself to others can be very healthy for individuals under stressful times," Dr Avi Sadeh of Tel Aviv University said.

Sadeh and colleagues tested whether giving war-stressed children a toy to care for would ease the stress reactions from their exposure to the month-long 2006 conflict between the Israeli Defense Forces and Hezbollah in northern Israel and southern Lebanon.

During the last three days of this conflict, the investigators provided 40 boys and 34 girls, who were about five years old on average, with a stuffed, cocker spaniel-type toy, called the Huggy-Puppy, with long legs that enabled the children to wrap the toy around their arms or legs.

The children, who were living with their families in a shelter camp, were told the puppy was sad because he was far from home, didn't have friends, and needed a care from a buddy. Their parents were encouraged to remind them of this responsibility.

Parental reports indicated that nearly 83% of these children had experienced one or more symptom of severe stress, such as separation fears; nervousness or aggression, , the researchers report in the journal Pediatrics.
In assessments three weeks after receiving their puppy, the children with the strongest attachment to their toy had lower stress levels.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Hanuman Returns (animation)

Okay. We're learning, we're learning. On the one hand, desi animation is getting better, replete with desi monsters and green goblins who are somewhat stylish and Hollywood-like. And on the other, there's that delightful humorous touch which is the essence of Hollywood animation films. For starters, you have a Hanuman as a mischievous little kid who pledges to come back to his earthly mom whenever she needs him, because he's confident he can ‘manipulate' Bhagwan for a trip to Dharti . And if that's not cheeky enough, there's a chimp who talks like Shah Rukh, a bad guy who guffaws like Gabbar and a snake wand that seems to know some of Harry Potter's tricks. Engaging stuff. Of course, the final product is a complete kichdi , partly Hollywood, partly Bollywood, shaken and stirred with dribbles of Indian mythology. But the smartest trick of them all is that Al Gorian twist in the end where doomsday becomes a synonym for global warming and environmental pollution and Hanuman descends in his kid avtar to save Planet Earth from all the plastic and the greenhouse gases that have turned it into a furnace. The desi version of D-Day being a demonic Rahu-Ketu who are swallowing all the fresh air and letting the earth burn up like a volcano. Hanuman, when he's not taming the village bullies, takes on the demons and becomes a hardcore climate warrior, telling all the kids to go green, keep the earth clean. After the Kafkaesque No Smoking, director Anurag Kashyap goes in for a bit of detox and gives the bachchalog a fitting sequel to Hanuman. Are we seeing the emergence of an Indian Superman series?

Friday, January 4, 2008

Looking like what?

Snow forms a face on a car .........

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Happy marriage cuts stress for women

One of the biggest stressors in a woman's life is a bumpy marriage - the worse the marriage, the higher the stress level but "the better the wedding, the lower the stress level". Yes, according to a study carried out by researchers, a happy marriage cuts stress for working women as they have lower levels of a stress hormone than those in miserable relationships, the Daily Mail reported here on Wednesday. However, it does not make any difference in case of their husbands as men's stress levels are determined mainly by how busy they are at work, not the state of their home life. According to lead researcher Darby Saxbe of University of California, "As far as women are concerned, being happily married appears to bolster physiological recovery from work." "Women in unhappy marriages are coming home from a busy day and, instead of having some time to relax and have a spouse picking up the load of setting the table, getting dinner going, signing forms for the kids, these women may have immediately to launch back into another stressful routine," he said. "Perhaps in happily married couples the demands of domestic life are being shared more equitably between men and women, or at least that may be the case when wives return home from a demanding day at work," Darby added. The researchers came to the conclusion after analysing a data of 60 married parents who were asked how satisfied they were with their marriage and how busy they were at work. They also collected saliva samples from participants in the early morning, afternoon and evening to measure cortisol levels. Women in happy marriages were found to have stronger declines of the hormone than those in less blissful unions while in men, the state of their relationship with their wife appeared to have little influence on levels of cortisol, which were affected far more by how busy they felt at work.