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9780786267538I am an arrogant person. Most people who know me really well would testify to that. Maybe it’s my presumption that I am more perceptive than almost everyone else or perhaps it has something to do with how monstrous my ego can be. Whatever it is, it seriously inhibits me from appreciating new forms of art that my fellow brethren (and soul sistas!) have discovered before I did.

But I’m thinking that it’s not entirely my fault; especially with respect to movies. I have been exposed to a plethora of horrid films over the years that came with very high recommendations from friends. Citizen Kane, Unforgiven, Cold Creek Manor, The Air I Breathe, As Good As It Gets, and pretty much any film by Akira Kurosawa – each of them came with a recommendation tag but ended up being thoroughly disappointing. Jerry comes with some decent recommendations every now and then, as the ninja from Darjeeling once did. But it was never enough to become a habit.

During my yearlong stint in one of those online marketing firms in Bangalore, I met Vivek Pinto – a mild-mannered Manglorean, quiz master, blogger, film enthusiast and probably the most versatile writer I have worked with. During the first few weeks, I gave him a really difficult time with my alarming lack of understanding of the industry and terms such as “data warehousing” and “enterprise application management.” Like the workhorse that he is, Pinto even picked away at my brain until I stopped being stubborn about getting Jack Kerouac to sell Wipro’s IT solutions and started using words like “best-in-breed”, “cost-effectiveness” and whatnot. Soon enough, we recognized each other’s undeniable qualities as film geeks, which eventually led to the very first time I had a thorough discussion about David Cronenberg without the other person looking quizzically at me in utter dread.

For the next 11 months, from Monday to Friday, we talked about films. Our favourite thread of discussion often centered on Werner Herzog, Roger Ebert and American Indie culture. The geekdom further gained credibility with the inclusion of D – Bangalore’s version of The Talented Mr Ripley – in our morning discussions.

7184pngSo a month ago, Pinto calls me frantically in one of his “dude, you have to watch this or you will suffer a terrible death that even Beelzebub wouldn’t wish upon his enemies” tones. He told in length about this television drama series called Dexter. Based on Jeff Lindsay’s Darkly Dreaming Dexter, the series chronicled the life and times of Dexter Morgan, a blood splatter analyst working for the Miami Police Department. But what he really does is track down serial killers and wreak bloody havoc on them. Despite it’s outwardly quasi-Seventies film noir vibe, Pinto assured me that it was anything but that.

I think I’ll take a rain check on elaborating further on Dexter since Pinto’s alter ego – Papa Bear – would do a better job at that. In fact, he already has. Read his review here. He was also nice enough to send me copies of Season 1 and 2 and after seeing the debut episode, well, I can safely say that I am thoroughly intrigued. It seems to have everything that made Six Feet Under fantastic…melancholy, claustrophobia, great music and actors who know when they have to take themselves seriously.

To paraphrase Ebert…Thumbs way, way up.

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