Tandoori Texan Tales

 

 

Author:

Raj Dore

   

Genre:

Drama

   

Time Period:

1940 Ė 2005

   

Locations:

India and America

   

Budget:

Big

Target Market/Demographic Focus:

Indian film goers, mature American filmgoers 25-65.

 

Logline:

When Rohit falls in love for a movie star, his debate over whether to leave his arranged marriage gets some illumination from his fatherís story of survival back in India.

 

 

The Story:

Synopsis of ĎTandoori Texan Talesí

These six tales are filled with humor, passion, joys, sorrows and the whole gamut of human emotions that one encounters when two cultures meet. Whether you are from the Indian sub-continent or not, you will empathize with the characters. Having picked it up you will not put the book down until you have read it from cover to cover.

1. THE CELEBRITY

Rohit Sharma a computer scientist is caught in an imbroglio involving Archana Roy a movie star, traveling incognito in the same flight as his. This is just the beginning of a tempestuous love affair that will dominate his love life forever. Stuck at an American university with little hope for true love, Rohit is swept into a marriage of convenience by a corrupt Air Force Wing Commander and his wife. Their daughter Seema needs to be married off, but sheís actually in love with her first cousin Sandeep. Once the marriage is made, Rohitís green card and future are secure, but heís made to feel like heís the lucky one in the loveless bargain and realizes that heís got a long road ahead of him.

Briefly his love affair with Archana Roy is rekindled, but neither is interested in destroying Rohitís marriage so they agree to a long-term affair. Flattered as he is that Archana tries to engineer a new job for him in Seattle, Rohit takes his own path with a job in Raleigh North Carolina. Now his green card and his future are somewhat his own.

2. COMING TO AMERICA

Rohit describes the challenges and joys of integrating into the American society, felt by a new Immigrant, how things first appear and then how the process of assimilation transforms oneís attitude toward the country and its way of life. Before he knows it, several decades have gone by and he recognizes in the newcoming immigrant how things must seem to new eyes.

3. SOJOURN

In direct contrast is "Sojourn". All the decades in America have left India unobserved and it has changed so much. The first stage is around the mid 50s when New Delhi was still very much leftover from its British-built days. We finally get a glimpse of Rohitís upbringing in the little town called Udaipur in Rajasthan. In the late 60s, Rohit, now a yuppie, comes to live in New Delhi. Not only has the intervening decade brought great change to New Delhi, but Rohit has just spent a year in Europe. The third stage has Rohit visiting New Delhi again, this time after being a Texan for nearly 20 years.

4. POTSHOTS AT HOTSHOTS

"Pot Shots At Hot Shots" describes probing questions and their tongue-in-the-cheek responses from people who guide the destinies of the World. A thrilling experience at getting 5 minutes of fame. The hotshots include Dr. Christian Bernard, Edwin Newman, Henry Kissinger, Caspar Weinberger, Ed Heath, Eli Wiesel, Robert Bork.

5. TRYST WITH A MYSTERY WOMAN

"Tryst With A Mystery Woman" is a fiction of what it would be like to visit your great-grandma from 5 generations ago.

6. PARADISE LOST AND PARADISE REGAINED

"Paradise Lost & Paradise Regained" is a very emotional true saga of how a family lost all it had in a political turmoil and regained it with grit, determination and several heart aches. The Partition of India and Pakistan had a profound impact on the 1st and 2nd generation Dorés, especially the middle order of 8 siblings. These siblings were in their critical formative years of their lives and this Tornado played havoc. Rohit escaped with minor bruises but the rest of the family wasnít nearly as lucky.

First, Rohit almost isnít even born as his parents must decide whether to risk Akkaís life as sheís about to give birth during an appendicitis. The foreshadowing of coming difficulty is lost in the relative calm before the storm as Rohitís life is the peaceful upbringing of a male nanny, the chauffeur, maids and servants.

But as school closes for summer in 1947, real trouble is coming. Horror stories begin to trickle in about the conflicts between northern Punjab and its Hindus and Moslems. Eventually this cancer could spread to Sind where Rohitís family lives.

And spread it does. The peaceably life is shattered, and the only way to hang on to life itself to join the mass exodus for a path that goes between Hell and high water. Tens of thousands die as India is nearly laid waste in its rebirth into two countries. Ghandi brings some peace, but even he does not escape, assassinated in 1948.

When the smoke dies down, it seems that Sind is where they started, shouldnít they return Appanna wants to know. But Akka and others think its suicide for the family. But return they do, his father inaugurating the villageís first well since the war broke out. But the trials are hardly over. When Appanna gets diabetes and then injures his foot on rusty wire; agony and amputation seem like his only options. He later admits that the situation grew so dire that he even contemplated suicide. What rescued him? Opportunity in the form of a letter in the mail.

Rohitís father goes through hell to bring a power company back online. Again it is Hell or high water, but at least itís not war or amputation. After a Herculean effort, he manages to oust the bad, and bring some semblance of order. Rohit graduates from college with a Bachelor of Science. His siblings are all gone, graduated and married. Has it really only been ten years since their lives almost all ended? To him it seems that his parents are marathoners long overdue for the finish line. To them it is the joyous occasion to have survived with all their children seen through school.

In the tradition of "Avalon" and "Mississippi Masala" comes a modern tale of the immigrantís experience in America. Torn by 20th Century ideals amidst a family that lived through the centuryís worst upheaval, the hero has to find his own way to balance the values of his parentís past with his own future in this tale of a Tandoori Texan.

 

 

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