articles by Aditya Mani Jha

India

As TN uni drops 'Walking with the Comrades' on ABVP plaint, why Arundhati Roy's 2011 book is a must-read

In Walking with the Comrades, Arundhati Roy blends reportage with her signature polemic style to indict the Indian state for crimes against some of its most vulnerable citizens, the adivasis living in the forests of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Andhra Pradesh, Orissa and so on.

Entertainment

Saloni Gaur on a showbiz career at 20, and how Uncommon Sense is reminiscent of Jaspal Bhatti's Flop Show

Structured like an old-fashioned ‘variety show’, Saloni Gaut's Uncommon Sense combines stand-up, sketches and other assorted comedic attractions.

Entertainment

Sean Connery's James Bond portrayal remains the gold standard; nobody else comes close

No matter his other films, Sean Connery will, inevitably, be remembered for the Bond years first and foremost.

Entertainment

With OTT platforms rapidly diversifying their content catalogue, genre enthusiasts are the priority

Genre content is about so much more than a loose set of interconnected tropes and visuals — it’s a way of engaging with the world on your own terms.

Entertainment

Chadwick Boseman passes away: The Black Panther star was an antidote to apolitical actors

Chadwick Boseman received his big breakthrough with Brian Helgeland’s 42 (2013), where he played Jackie Robinson, the first-ever African-American Major League Baseball professional.

India

What the Bloomsbury India-Delhi Riots 2020 fracas highlights about the pernicious cynicism in Indian publishing

It’s true enough that Bloomsbury has a track record of publishing Hindutva propaganda. Here’s the thing, though — so does literally every other big player in English-language publishing.

Arts & Culture

Rahat Indori passes away: Power, pathos of poet's verses illuminate his incomparable mind and personality

A garrulous, self-effacing performer with a powerful voice, he would often regale gatherings with anecdotes from his Indore childhood — the idiosyncrasies of Indori diction, plus the signature hyperbolic Indori storytelling style informed his work.

Entertainment

Bobby, Silk Smitha, Shakuntala: Vidya Balan and her unapologetic celebration of female genius

Shakuntala Devi feels like a watershed moment. Vidya Balan is arguably the most gifted actress working in mainstream Bollywood right now, and Shakuntala Devi is her finest role till date.

Entertainment

To Harry Potter on his 40th birthday, with best wishes from a fellow millennial

You’re 40 today, which makes you part of the first-ever batch of millennials to hit the big four-oh. This generation grew up with you. And you of all people know that as a generation, we just can’t seem to catch a break.

Entertainment

Warrior Nun, The Old Guard and the (much-needed) evolution of the 'strong woman' trope in Hollywood

Warrior Nun represents a new direction for Hollywood’s female superheroes, alongside Gina Price-Bythewood’s The Old Guard, Captain Marvel and Salim Akil’s CW show Black Lightning.

Lifestyle

As an atheist, why I'm running scared of the God-fearing lot during the coronavirus pandemic

After massive swarms of locusts hit Gurgaon and parts of Delhi last month, in the middle of the pandemic, I couldn’t stop myself from going down this rabbit-hole, despite being an atheist all my adult life: what if there really is a God?

Entertainment

Exploring the portrayal of reproductive rights in mainstream TV shows, from The Witcher to Jane The Virgin

When it comes to reproductive rights, modern-day TV tends to favour the straightforward, plain-speaking approach.

Entertainment

Jordan Peele’s The Twilight Zone reboot, currently on Voot, captures the essence of Rod Serling’s original series

The new Twilight Zone succeeds far more often than it doesn’t, and Peele is clearly having a lot of fun delivering his staccato monologues.

Entertainment

Bulbbul and the 21st century global Gothic: How the Netflix Original imbibes the genre's characteristic tropes

Throughout its 90-minute runtime, Bulbbul engages with many different tropes of the Gothic genre.

Lifestyle

Megha Majumdar’s A Burning is a no-nonsense portrait of contemporary India that refuses to avert its eyes

It’s really tough to create something that has both the gut-punch impact of good literary fiction, and the sheer kinetic energy associated with genre masters. Megha Majumdar’s A Burning is that rare debut.

Entertainment

Sushant Singh Rajput passes away: An 'outsider twice over' who found a unique place for himself in Bollywood

In recent years, Rajput did smaller, much more thoughtful films like Sonchiriya (2018) and to a lesser extent, Chhichhore (2019).

Entertainment

Decoding Amazon Prime Video's indie sci-fi film The Vast of Night, and the politics of alien invasion dramas

The Vast of Night is a notably low-key entrant in an old, politically contentions Hollywood genre; the alien invasion drama

Entertainment

In Netflix documentary Have a Good Trip, celebs share their wild experiences, do's and don'ts of taking LSD

Have a Good Trip interviews an impressive lineup of actors, musicians, comedians and so on — Sting, Carrie Fisher, the late Anthony Bourdain, Natasha Lyonne, Ben Stiller, Sarah Silverman, Will Forte, ASAP Rocky, and so on — talking about their memorable LSD trips

Entertainment

Blow the Man Down movie review: Bridgette Savage Cole, Danielle Trudy establish themselves as major new talents

Blow the Man Down is a delectable small-town noir that gradually establishes its unique voice, and delivers a stunning finale marked by poetic justice.

Lifestyle

Dystopia is here: The world of Samit Basu's new speculative fiction book, Chosen Spirits, feels all too close

The world of Samit Basu's novel 'Chosen Spirits' runs on nearly untrammeled surveillance (enforced via next-generation tattoos called ‘Smartatts’), absolute compliance with government values — and an unhealthy obsession with social media influencers, called ‘Flowstars’ here.