Saturday, February 24, 2007

Concert Review - Hitesvara

I think I am too dumb to understand music. Apparently if there are a few seconds of silence during music, it is absolutely the highest point in a concert, and the audience is expected to break into rapturous applause. Be it Shivamani producing an instrument that makes the sound of a chimp's arm pit fart, or Zakhir Hussein making his tabla cry for some respite, or Shankar Mahadevan trying to simulate Saaruggaan trying to imitate Sonu Nigam with a speech impediment. Seriously. The Chennai crowd really appreciated only 2 things. One were those breaks in noises (silence as it is called) and ofcourse those saavu molam sounds... which Sivamani produced periodically.

That having said, 4 geniuses entertained us for 2.5 hours on Saturday evening. The collective IQ on the stage was close to 1000... among the 4 guys, and the collective IQ of the audience was around 40 on the negative scale. It would have been lower but for the presence of John Mc Laughlin among the audience.

The concert started with Shankar Mahadevan and U Srinivas singing a song aptly named "Gamapa". Shankar was intent on making us understand what it meant but to no avail. Ultimately he threw his hands in the air and good ol Zhakhir took over. Man did the tabla make us weep... and moan... how does it make those sounds? It was as though Zhakhir could make ALL the sounds that Shivamani creates from his hotel kitchen... with just that mridangam broken into two. The tabla finally gave up.. amidst tremendous applause.. we still do not know what Gamapa means.

The next was SaNiRi oooooohhm... sung by Shankar Mahadevan. This time U Srinivas tried his hand... and fingers... at making us understand the song. I have heard those American rock greats stretch a note for a few seconds... but U Srinivas I think would scoff at thos things. I think during the entire song (that lasted a about 20 minuets), he struck his mandolin chord maybe twice... or thrice... he made those few notes sustain for the rest of the song. Amazing.

This was followed by a 10 minute competition between Srinivas and Sivamani on who can strike the maximum notes in one second. Sivamani won this round with a 35... with Srinivas following close behind at 34.5. I concluded that Srinivas has around 120 fingers on his left hand alone and Sivamani can drum with his teeth too (aaah if only he had hair... the strands would drum too).

Shankar came back... and restarted his stuff. It was like he was trying to catch a few loose notes in the air and trying to weave them into a lovely aalaap or oothap... whatever they call it in music speak. It was just beautifull. I was beginning to wonder how structureless compositions could be so pleasurable but then Sivamani came back on.

He is as though behind a steel cage... and yes.. the sounds are similar to what you hear in a zoo, but there is something unique about it. Granted he has more hands than all Hindu gods put together, but there seems to be some 'higher' intelligence guiding his music. There is flow in it but there is absolutely no coherance. He has around 50 instruments around him, but apart from those obvious koothu bits, none of his other gimmicks were appealing to me. Maybe I am just too dumb to understand and follow his 'rhythm'.

In stark contrast, when Zhakir started playing his solo piece, there was an underlying structure to it. He changed tempo, changed the beat, created some amazing sounds... but you never lost him. You could follow the music and enjoy it. Not so with Sivamani. He gets so ahead of you and even himself at times... that unless he bangs his drumsticks a few times at a really loud drum, and start out on a fresh loop, you lose him and he remains lost.

The concert ended with the students of Shankara School singing "Heal the world"... I went out singing "isnt it ironic"... that small children sing a song sung by a child molester to end such a fine concert that supports such a noble cause.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Movie Review - Eklavya

One rule. Which is being interpreted in different ways with different results. Its been a long time since I have watched a pretty logical movie. It is a pity I could not understand Hindi... otherwise I will be able to write a much better review. Anyway I will give you an idea about the storyline.

Dharma is following what just the heart says. And each character just does what he or she feels is right. What is impressive in the movie is the character development. They are these very normal Hindi cinema characters, but with slight deviations from normality. Where are these deviations? Who is the most deviated from the norm? That is for you to find out.

As the movie progresses, I would advice you to try to work things out yourself. It is an interesting movie in that sense, because you can start guessing what each character is going to do at any point. The movie plot is a macabre murder mystery and since there are not too many characters, it does not confuse you. During the movie, you should start thinking about who would have done it? Even if that is obvious at one point of time, the more interesting question to answer would be, What is his/her dharma or reasoning to have done what he/she did?

Well apart from the story which is above average for a Hindi movie, the visuals are spectacular... the palace, the interior designing and ofcourse the desert. Fantabulous. Amitabh runs uphill!!! and he is almost 70 !!! Could not imagine that. Saif has impressive screen presence. I have always been partial against the female lead and this movie is no different. Vidhya Balan does not seem to fit the role... she has a few stock expressions and increasingly reminds you of Aishwarya in her 'monotonicity'. Mediocre.

Jackie Shroff plays his part, his voice adds depth to his character (seriously... nothign else in it ;-)). And Boman Irani! I have watched him only in humourous roles. In this movie, he plays a very serious, depressed and weak Rana. Acceptable. Parikshit Sahni... am seeing him after a really long time. The last time I saw him I tink was some DD serial. Unrecognizable. Sanjay Dutt... (Brilliant cameo... like Robin Singh... crowd pleasing. How can people support a known terrorist?).

I would advice you to not watch the movie in any theatre in Chennai. I do not know if it was the timing of the show, but most of the public did not understand the movie. There was lots of moaning groaning and laughing at all the wrong times. (When Boman Irani removes his headpiece and shows you his bald head, it pretty poignant situation... but most of the guys and girls laughed at his hair... or lack of it). When Saif and Vidya have a really intersting scene at the end of the movie, the whole theatre goes into raptures because they are about to kiss. Juveniles.

And, please stop the DVD or leave the theatre atleast 5 minutes before the end credits. Because if you really enjoyed the movie, the ending is such a big let down. If you hated the movie, probably you would like the ending. It has a few crowd pleasing moments... (No. Vidya Balan does not flash... you dirty minds).

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Veerasamy - Part 8

So problem solved? Teeyar emerges victorious from the bloodbath. Mysteriously he is unharmed. Like a tiger tank. He is unscathed and proceeds to teh marraige hall, where he completes his sister's wedding with great aplomb.

Mummu is present.. bloody hands and all since she ends up killing the fat politician also. She says... one murder means hanging two murders also means hanging. They cannot hang me twice no? So she kills the remaining few villains. Queenbitch escapes and is conspicuously absent in the wedding of her younger brother. (Veerasamy 2? you would think? NO teeyar lays those mortal fear to rest...)

Teeyar is relaxed looking forward to Kalyana Saapad. and OHHHHHHHHHHHHH... the ORIGINAL bride groom and parents turn up!!! If you had happened to miss it while the story is moving at a frantic pace, Veera had already fixed hsi sister's wedding to another guy... the doctor. Where were they all this while ? OK logic has always been under heavy sedation... so well... there are more dialogues.

Grooms father:
Veera. What you are doing ya. You said ki my son can able to marry yuvar sister. You said Yuvar sister will not cross even railway line. How she line cross drawn by you. I was thinking you are selfprideman, never miss your own words and now you .. Veera you have destroyed my son's life. Now he will marry him? What you have for answer?

Veera for the second time is tongue tied in the movie. His mouth does not open. He is too tired. He has to sleep. He has lost everything in life. Pride, Sister, Villains, Love. He has no more tears and he is broken. He sits down heavily on the chair. We expect a tirade but nothing comes out.

People around him talk. They say:
Veera such great man. He sacrificialized everything for sister. Love, pride, blood, sweat, gore... even those two chicken leg pieces yesterday during dinner. But what he get in return? Shame, shame and Puppy shame. You come Veera, we will go. These people and all will always talk like this only. They have no heart. They have no colon also.. cos they blow so much. Let us go Veera... Veera... Veera ? Veeraaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!! Veeraaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!! I cannot able to believe... Veeraaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!

Mummu is shell shocked. So are we! Mummu bangs her head at Veeras stone dead feet.. and Mummu ! Mummu !! Mummuuuuuuuuuu !!!!!!!! Mummuuuuuuuuuuu !!!!!!!!!!!

Two people... dead as two dodos and and take my words seriously, both of them were even rarer than dodos when they were alive! Mummu and Veera... a tale of unrequited love... a tale of two people who were so perfectly matched (even in height and weight) and inspite of extremely low probability... ended up dying within seconds of each other... Why? Because all the king's horsemen could not but humpty dumpty together ever again...

The single remaining brain cell in my head thought about how ultimately Queenbitch Whorelady is the winner, she gets away with all her money and her life. There is nothing more I can add to this review. I think I will save my remaining braincell now. I have the image there as my desktop image. Strangely rejuevnating.

Veerasamy - Part 7

Jump Cut. Mummu's new house. Villain number one is hosting fat politicain and fat politician out of the blue suggests something. He asks if he could own mummumatha and puts forward a flawless logic for that proposition. He says since mummu cannot able to sleep with legal husband she is probably a whore, and needs to be treated like one. So he offers his services in the matter.
Hubby dear gleefully accepts. I think i will rip off my eyeballs and pull out all my nails for writing this paragraph.... but yes that is what happened in the movie. It made my toes cringe and my hair retract into my arms. I despise Teeyar for this sequence alone. I want him to read what I wrote and I want him to die after pulling out his tongue. Please if you know his email ID forward all parts of this review to him.

Jumpcut Teeyar's house. Teeyar fixes up wedding with doctor for thamizhponnu. Heavy heart and teary eyed ponnu accepts because by then she believes the Meghna Naidu's 'refreshing' new twist that loverboy had slept with her and was arrested by the police for the same.

Jumpcut Mummu's house. Hubby persuading mummu to do the unmentionable. He says mummumummu... anyway you can do nothing... you cannot even stab me with this knife... you do not have the guts.. you are anyway going to sleep with fat politician... you cannot do anything else. So mummu gets angry and makes him eat steal. Only it is not through the mouth but through the belly. There is a lot of blood and very little struggle. Hubby dies peacefully and mummu cries her heart out.

Jumpcut Teeyar's house. She has nowhere else to go.. and so what does she do? She runs to Teeyar. This time when she slips he catches her. The first time he has touched a lady other than his sister. We see a few sparks fly but no they do not instantaneously combust into another song. They have bigger things at hand. (yellow yellow dirty fellow...)

Jumpcut fat politicians house. Unaware that her father is medlling with mummu's wares, Meghna suddenly has guilt pangs, and wants to confess to thamizhponnu that she was the cruel witch that created false propaganda about loverboy.

Jumpcut Teeyar's house. Meghna Naidu... incidentally who suddenly starts wearing sarees propounds the logic that since loverboy had never danced with her in songs... and since all those songs were only her own dreams.. and since the butler is almost always lefthanded and since daylight saving's time had not been accounted for, loverboy is innocent of all crimes he will commit in the future. Everyone believes that and...

Jumpcut to the streets.
Why streets? Isn't final fight sequences happening in marriage halls sucha cliche'? And since this movie has faithfully avoided every single character stereotype and script cliche', we see the final showdown on the street outside Veera's house.

And what a fight it is! It is only the second fight in the movie and Teeyar is at his athletic best. He is Rajkiran and Kulla Mani combined in strength, valour, height and hair density. I mean if VJkanth with his minuscule moustache can kill guys in Gajendhra, just imagine what is possible with a chin full of beard. Its a bloodfest and guys die by the dozens. Its like one punch by Teeyar and every bone in that other guy's body is shattered.

If you ask me, all he had to do was shave his beard off, and every single strand of hair would have done the fighting for him. Anyway he would use that tactic in his next movie. I am now raving I know but I have to finish this review... and I am still keeping the surprise from you. I am evil like that.

Veerasamy - Part 6

Jump Cut. We are now back in Teeyar's house. Teeyar suddenly realizes that about 30 hours of the movie is already over and if he did not wrap things up pretty quickly in the next 30 minutes, the first show would result in the theatre being burnt down. But WAIT... not before the thangachi sentiment song !!! Teeyar crying , sister crying, growthing mother crying, sidekick one crying, plant crying, pillar crying, neighbor dog crying and the song goes on...

Teeyar sitting on a rocking chair... totally unnecessary. He himself is a sphere. All he needs is to load his bottom.. and he will continue rocking for ages. Talking about loaded bottoms... the song that ensues is a very good example of the thing that loads Teeyar's bottom. It is incredibly malodourous and drives even his ardent fanatic to the ciggie stands. Well I do not have the energy to write what the song was about, but then I guess you get the drift. I unfortunately did and it damaged my nostrils permanently and killed a few million brain cells.

Meanwhile... jump cut. Jump cut to villain's den. New plans being hatched to hurt Teeyar again. New villain plan astounds as usual. The plan is to get Teeyar's lady love to marry queenbitch's elder brother thus cutting Teeyar out of what is legally his... (ie) 300 pounds of flesh.

Why would Mummumaatha accept to this? Well obviosuly she has to get married to the other guy because Teeyar is refusing to marry her. Why is Teeyar refusing to marry her? Because thamizhponnu wants to be non-hymen-rubbed. Why does thamizhponnu want to be non-hymen-rubbed? Because queenbitch wants Teeyar to fall at her feet. Why is Teeyar refusing to fall? Because he is humpty dumpty... and if he falls down.. all the king's horsemen cannot put him back together again! Simple logic.. If only the horsemen were better equipped with feviquik, the movie was over in its first frame!

Mummumaatha gets married to queenbitch's elder brother. Teeyar cannot resist the temptation. No he cannot... ofcourse.. aaah there is ONE MORE SONG!!!! If the first maudlin song takes place in Teeyar's house this song of unrequited love takes place outside. I mean on the street outside his house which BTW is bang opposite Mummumaatha's house. She walks into the house and slips... Teeyar tries to catch her.. but stops because she cannot be touched now... Mummumaatha had slept on Teeyar's poster... but no longer possible. So she never gets any sleep. Teeyar does not like food so he washes his hands on the food plate. (Why do they do it?). He cannot sleep so he wears his vesti and roams the streets. By now I was brain dead to recollect the lyrics. But there was a lot of crying and headbanging. Teeyar bares his lower row of teeth and gives an expression like that of a rabid grizzly bear for the entire song. Why do all his songs have 4 charanams and 16 pallavis?

To get the answer wait for the next spisode coming in.... 10 minutes. Infact that is all it takes to write each one of these :-). Think about Teeyar... and crap flows automatically.

Veerasamy - Part 5

HAHAHA fooled you!!! Do you really think there is going to be story in a T Rajendhar movie ? If at all I want you to go for a T rajendhar movie for the story.. you are in really bad shape buddy. So.... Teeyar dresses himself up well for the fateful day, slicks his hair back and wears his luminous black tight T shirt and goes Payyan keatufy in Queenbitch's house. Thankfully there is no song and the trip is uneventful. But the peachuvarthai isn't!!!
QB starts out on a tangent.
She says:
Aah.. now I have you Mr Veera. You said no? I cannot able to make you come to me.. but kekekeke!!! You have camed here and you are in front of me, you have to sit. In the weddinghall, if loverboy has to tie thali around thamizhponnus neck, you have to sit under my feet and grip my legs. Only then Chennai city know who is Queenbitch. And only then sister wedding can walkable. Hahahaha.

Teeyar gives a look that would make a lump of cow dung cringe. Down in the dark jungle something stirs... Teeyar tries to speak but no words come out. But no need !!! The female panther that Thamizhponnu had turned into suddenly bursts into frenzied activity.

She says:
What you are saying ya? If my wedding taking place only after my brother humilate by you queenbitch mother... then no need my marriage. Why marriage under all such problematics? I will be without hymen rubbing. What is there? For me, everything is my brother and my brother is everything. You and your loverboy please get out and goto hell. I cannot able to marry and all. I will be lifelong unmarried.

Teeyar is touched. Leaves for home but not without mouthing some killer dialogue to thamizhponnu.
He says:
Yes ma yes. I grew you up only for you not being hymen rubbed. Yes ma.. I am only poor brother no? Who listening to me and all? I am so paavam.... and what sin I did to be like this? Why my sister also not understanding me? Why everything in this movie is so f'ed up beyond all recognition? Why some jobless idiot and all writing 7 reviews about my movie? Why George W Bush being such an asshole? Everything head fate only. Head Fate maaaa head fate.

He starts crying and further fertilizes his beard.... which grows an alarming 2 inches during that dialogue alone.

Well. Ok what next? See.. I have already told you every single female except Teeyar's lover and sister are whores. He never has had a mother in any of his movies and he is the person who raised his own sister ever since he himself was an infant. Fans correct me if I am wrong... but I have a feeling both Simbhu and Kural had made appearances as junior Teeyar raising the female chipmunk sister in ALL of his earlier movies. That must be a record of sorts.

Anyway Meghna... fresh out of her dream song in knitted underwear, also dreams up a Swatch of a plan to separate loverboy and thamizhponnu. Time honoured tradition of faking a rape and calling in police to arrest the hero too. We have seen this strategy in just 15,826 earlier movies but the refreshing way it was done in this movie.. was really refreshing. Did I mention refreshing ? Yes... refreshingly, green was the colour of the room walls and the bed that was used in the scene. Ha. You cannot blame Teeyar for not trying the unbeaten path... He is a maverick when it comes to choosing wall colours. Remember this refreshing statement because I will use it again in the rant.

Now events start happening at breakneck speed ebcause we have less than 10 minutes to end the 4 hour movie and not even half of the shit pile has been digested.

Coming up next.. Teeyars last songs... a few weddings and quite a few funerals. Wait and watch this space for more.

Veerasamy - Part 4

Considering all that has happened so far.. and the story yet to begin, exactly when we are expecting something to happen, we are treated to... you guessed it... one more song!!! This time it is once again between Mummumaatha and Teeyar. I am unable to recollect the reason behind the song unless Teeyar wanted you to see unused colours in Pothy's 16 million colour saree. Teeyar graces the complete song in a lungi which he periodically puts over his head and jumps about like a retarded chipmunk. The lesser mentioned about Mummumaatha the better. Yes... lesser is better for a few. The theatre was in raptures.

Now back to serious stuff. Queenbitch whorelady now understands the extent of love between loverboy and thamizh ponnu, realizes it is an amazing opportunity to use Teeyars face as a doormat... asks the Teeyar to payyankeatufy. This is one great scene. Not to be missed where the villains are discussing their plans.

We are treated to some great self deprecating stuff by the villains. These sequences are some of the most hilarious in the movie. The villains talk badly about themselves. Teeyar movies are famous for two things.. villains talking highly about the hero and villains talking really badly about themselves. Coming to think of it, you must already be a loser to become a villain in a Teeyar movie.

Villain 1 : Oh this Veera is getting on my nerves. Can you able to kill him?
Villain 2 : Yes ofcourse. Isnt that too obvious ? we have only tried doing it 342 times before.
Villain 1 : Yes and I want everyone in Chennai to know it was we who did it... anyway the
police constable is on our payroll.
Villain 2 : Ofcourse with that we have all holes covered. Who do you want to do the job.
Villi : How about my regular customer from korukkupettai? (she is a whore.. and she needs to point it out herself)
Villain 1 : Oh you have not killed him yet? I thought you had upped him a long time ago.
Villi : No how would I kill of a cash cow?
Villain 2 : Oh I thought you were the cow here...

Sidekick1 : Are you talking about killing Teeyar ? Do you think it is possible... ordinary people cannot even go near him. He is so great and powerful and extremely talented.
Villi : Ayyyy shut up yuvar mouth ya. With sa satti paanai Kavuth.
Sidekick1 : Ummmmmmmmmmm..
Villi : You just see how I up him.... and it will happen this Friday at 11 in the a.m.
Sidekick2 : Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm
Villi : Yes... and it will be done outside our house when he comes to payyankeatufy.
Sidekick2 : And BTW do you relaize you are live on air on Simbhu FM?
Villi : So what.. I really dont care... I am out of control anyway...

And the dialogue goes on...

Meanwhile Meghna Naidu (lest we forget her thighs) gets jiggy with loverboy, and there is one more song. Meghna Nadiu suddenly seems to have learnt mud wrestling and has only loverboy to practice her moves. The song goes on and on and on... and it only reminds you that the movie has not yet started. Teeyar has just introduced, reintroduced, and re-re introduced his cast... and well to give him credit, we now know every inch of atleast the female cast. Loverboy particiaptes enthusiastically because the songs are only in Meghna's dreams... wonder what Freud would interpret her dreams as.. Maybe he would say Meghna is a frog who yearns to be a fish with a severe allergy to cotton or polyester. She apparently has no problems with crochet or thin muslin.

We come to the end of one more important segment of the story. I have described 7 songs so far... 3 with mummumaatha and teeyar and 3 with loverboy playing a pivotal role and one magnificent intro song where everythign explodes... even explosions !!!. All the characters have been introduced, and you seem to think OK now we are ready for the story to begin. Stage set.

Coming up next.... The story...

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Veerasamy - Part 3

Just when we seem to think the story is moving in one direction... we are reminded of the other immense star presence... that of Mumtaj (Salt kottai sarasu... premier black ticket vendor for Simbhu movies, militant swadesi and destroyer of English movies). She makes a very strong swadesi satement... by... NOT SELLING black tickets for English movies. Hehe. She also has the hots for Teeyar... cannot blame her... irresistable as he is. Pretty much like how cow dung is irresistable to dengue flies... (don't ask me who the fly is now).

So what better way to remind people of Mumtaj's presence than to have a song with her bathing in a huge milk tub? So Teeyar and Mumtaj roll about in a huge milktub for 5 whole minutes. Teeyar... is at his creative best. Song ensues in her dreams. Lyrics astound.

Eureaka AkkaAkka
Nee irukka soakka
Varen paru knacka

Silli sickkan tikka...

But but but but but.. Teeyar.... he has no interest in Mumtaj. He feels his sister has to feel wedded bliss first before he too takes the plunge ... so to speak... So he does not profess his love and there are these really hilarious scenes. Where Teeyar tries to pull a Gaptan.. (remember the 'aang' scenes? and scenes where Gaptan runs away from the girl? if you think those were funny..wait till you watch this.) The dialogues go something like this.

Mumtaj : Enna kadhalikkareengala ?
Teeyar : Aangggg !!!! Ayyayyyoooooooo !!!!!
(Teeyar opens his eyes wide... bigger than his mouth and bares his teeth. The movie got an A certificate just for that expression. Small children and pregnant ladies beware.)

Mumtaj : Unga daadi enna kuthanum...

Teeyar : Enna vitru maaaaa...
(Teeyar hugs a nearby pillar and tries to climb it.. escaping Mumtaj's outstretched arms... His expression is as if a pig had just farted in his face)... but Mumtaj persists.

What now ? Ofcourse another song. The second song in 3 minutes. At one point in the movie, the inter song space is shorter than the song duration. It is like sitting in a remastered Ouvayyar.. but Ouvvayyar is suddenly 50 years younger and wears blouses and skirts stitched out of a handkerchief and dances only in very wet places.

This time we are treated to Teeyar in 3 different get - ups.. each one outdoing the other. Teeyar should think about starting his own fashion line for people whose circuimference is bigger than their height. I mean he is like a carrom board coin sliding about... imagine humpty dumpty wearing a sherwani with that red cloth sweeping the grass behind. Imagine TR with gelled hair swept back like Don Corleone. Imagine a tar black sphere wearing a tuxedo trying to lift his leg above his head. Now imagine you poking your eyes with blunt needles while standing on hot coals and drinkign acid. I think you would prefer the latter.

Anyway Mummumaatha does not get Teeyar's attention and leaves in a huff. Teeyaar heaves a sigh of relief and we are all awarded with a whiff of whatever they were eating 'before back'.

We now move to the other love pair in the movie. Shiela and Loverboy. They are in their respective beds and talking on the phone to each other. Ever wonder why rich people either wear those jigina housecoats and slippers or just goto bed wearing cowboy boots? I don't know but loverboy does the latter. I think he wears those clothes to be prepared to have dream sequences in Texas. Wonder why he did not sleep with a raincoat... cos he dreams of a song near an achored ship while it is raining... needless to say everyone wears white. Third song in 15 minutes flat. Vijaya Teeyar on a roll... his sets are a movie phenom.

We are taken to differect corners of Simbhu gardens in the song. One resembling a ship, the other the Andes (a rather emasciated masticated papier mache version). There is one modern art masterpiece that resembles two trees that have been cut down in the middle of a marsh while it is raining. Oh wait that is NOT a set !!! He has actually gone to the Couum to shoot that ! Sort of suits our mood too.

Hmmm that concludes the third part of my seven part trilogy... obviously. Not even a book would do justice to this movie. Officially I have spent more time on this movie than all of the Veerasamy artists put together. I am yet not ashamed of this endeavour.

About the story.. well.. after introduction of all the characters in about 1.5 hours, we have had 3 songs in quick succession.. before that we had one intro song to humpty dumpty. We are halfway through the movie... The plot has not yet thickened... unlike TR's brain which is also addled BTW. See you int he next.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Veerasamy - Part 2

Now the movie takes a strange turn. This is expected to happen many times in the movie... you must not be surprised. This movie does not have an editor. (TR can do 8 things... but editing is not one of them... and the other Kollywood editors died after watching the first shot)... The scenes have been shot in a pseudo random sequence. So you will just see the storyline jumping from one garbage lot to another completely randomly and without warning or reason.

So now that we know everythign there is to know abotu Veera, we now follow the life of Veera's sister. 'Thamizh' who wears 'chudi' and tells Veera that she wanted jeans fant and have a boph cut. It is a curious thing about Veera... maybe because of the hair growing from his eyeballs... Veera starts crying everytime he sees his sister... you recognize the time has come for one more of Teeyaaar's 'adukkumozhis'... you close your ears but not before he starts out with....

Ammmaaaaaaa..... naan oru muttal ma...
You small girl beinged ... I big boy

I kept food and all into your mouth

You bited my hand also then but no painings

But now your words... painings painings painings

Why I "Thamizh" name kept... you know?
Thamizh very nice. Thamizh very sweet.

Thamizh very culture and Thamizh culture no Jeans fant

Thamizh culture nono Boph cut. Thamizh no English say

And the whole family starts crying because the sister said she wanted Jeans fant and have boph cut. We hear the starting verses of a new song but mercifully Teeyar decides to move on.

So Thamizh goes to college. Apparently some colleges have no 'classes'. All students carry two books close to their chest... and walk about in gardens. All the girls in college appear to be well endowed (that incidentally is what the books are for)... and are leched on by all the guys. This college has all the guys sporting tatoos on all parts of the body including the forehead... and they all have ear piercings the size of small missiles. Our hero falls insanely in love... ready to lose life types... on first sight and because of that refuses to even look at any other girl. Even if other girls come in the form of Meghna Naidu who walk about moaning... "Nee enakku veaanum daaaaaaaaaaaaa"... I took a quick restroom break here... cleared my tummy off yesterdays paniyaaram... and came back to endure the rest of the movie.

So the story now obviously follows loverboy... who (borrowing an expression from Arun Lal...) 'extremely obviously' is the younger brother of queenbitch whorelady introduced in the first scene. Meghna Naidu is the daughter of the politician in cohoots with queenbitch.... (BTW politician and queenbitch are sleeping together. T Rajendhar suddenly jumps on top of them through the roof... apparently he was peeking in on them (the little voyeur) and was ready to join them in any kinky game they were playing... for he was wearing a red sleevless track suit. Ahh my eyesssssssssss where is the bleach ???

So now what do we have? Teeyar... his sister in love with loverboy who is the brother of queen bitch who is sleeping with fat politician whose daughter is in love with loverboy too, who in her own words... WANTSSSSSSSSSSSSS him. So this after all a love movie? Correct?

WRONG !There is more... Queenbitch apparently wants to make more money and the only person who is standing in her way... iS Teeyaarrrr (Actually he is only standing on the side but his immense girth makes it impossible for them to avoid him. No1 knows why she wants to destroy Teeyar.. but she wants to.. and so she rambles on about how she wants him squashed like a common fly. Teeyar rebounds by likening himself to Sachin Tendulkar in one of the most hilarious re-enactments of King Kong uttering his first words. TR says...

Ok Sachin one match not hit it means no match no hit ??
NO !Sachin next match hit hit hit hit very much hit.
And shakes his head like a bear which was just stung by a scorpion... and begins to go on teh rampage.

What is going to happen next? WIll TR prevail? WIll true love ultimately suceed? Will the villis gett heir 'comeupance'... wait and watch. This ends the next edition of the rant. I think i will take one more break here... will be back with more.

Veerasamy - Part 1

Let me recount the movie for those unfortunate enough to have missed this masterpiece.

The movie starts with the introduction of the Villi... it is still a mystery as to why all TR movies have villis instead of villains. I think that entire family has something against the fairer sex... (all women other than sisters and mothers are whores) ... look at Manmadhan... classic example... and TR choosing the fattest and ugliest Piec O Shi to play the villis in every one of his movies... I think the logic is that the villain definitely has to look uglier than Teeyaarr... and automatically the sample set among men reduces to just this dead guy in The Ring :-). So it obviosuly has to be women...

Who is this Villi? Obviosly she is a whore who controls politicians, policemen and goondas and who is a VC for brothels, distilleries and ganja farms in the area. She has a 50 inch waist line and a bigger bustline and wears fake jewellery and little else. And ofcourse.!!!! she calls our Veera... "Dhaadi" (If THAT is supposed to be a face... those bushes HAVE to be a Dhaadi right? I think TR can grow hair even from his eyeballs... what do you think?)

Ok. The Villi is someone who finishes crore sized deals while polishing her nails... but yet sees it necessary to claim 50,000 from a poor family in person. She badmouths everyone at home and drags the women folk to the brothel... warranting the magnificent entrance of Teeeyaarrr...

...Rather bombastically... a jeep flies 50 ft into the air... and Teeyarr mysteriously emerges from a godown after throwing 20 people out at the same time. He proceeds to bash everyone up with... wait for it.... a beam balance. He then mouths these killer dialogues... Vogons !!! you lose!!!. This puts the "Ode to the little piece of green putty in my ear"... to shame.

You born Saidapettai
You black ticket sold Vandhipettai

You Singapore minor covered Korukupetai

You upped and buried him Kannammapetai

You brothel open Pudhupettai
You MLA stood Vannarapetai

You ganja sold Kosapettai

You liqour boiled Paneerpettai

You first kill Vazhaipettai

and so it goes on and on with her resume... she gets embarassed... blushes and leaves the scene at once... opening the first song.

Veeramulla Samy
Maanamulla Samy

Dhaadi Valakkum Samy
Brandy adikkum Samy
Veera Veera Veera Veera Veerasaameeeeeeeeeeeee

with our man rolling around wearing tight flouroscent trousers and yellow shirt. This is when you notice he has almost lost 2 kilos for this roll... I guess he cannot hope to gather up anymoss later on...

Anyway back to serious stuff... Veerasamy is the local MLA. Revered, worshipped, respected by millions around the world... a guy born in a house that he himself built with his own hands... studied in a university he himself was the dean of, and someone who eats his own excreta to cure himself of cancer. Self made man, self made brother, self made son, self lover, self neighbour, dog owner and window washer par excellence. There is none in the world better than him... even when he attempts at being a narcissist....

Ok. I think i have to take a breather here. So far I have covered 10 percent of the movie. I am feelign sleepy now. I will continue with the movie review tomorrow... :-). I certainly had fun watchign this movie. I think I will have more fun writing about it.

Movie Review - Traffic Signal

Yes yes.. ofcourse i have to start with something trite... like those one line reviews of SUN TV...


The premise of the movie was interesting... but everything else is half baked. Madhur Bhandarkar is a really shallow film maker who makes a pretence of unearthing the 'truth' in a social circle. be it the seemingly insightful Page 3 or the compeltely idiotic Traffic Signal, he delivers in only one thing... a plethora or quirky characters... with almost half of them having their sexual quirks highlighted. Some people might call it 'realism'. But realisim to be entertaining has to be backed by strong characters and good acting. TS has really poor casting and most actors just cannot 'act naturally' enough. They are like the Indian cricket team. Good on paper but dunces while performing.

If you had not already guessed, the movie is about the kinds of characters that make a living at a traffic signal. A collection of beggars, madcaps, child beggars, paper sellers, car windshield cleaners, prostitutes, selling their wares to child molesters, the immoral rich, the gullible and the cruel. And surprise surprise !!! there are no 'earbud sellers !!!'. There is a thin storyline that ties them together... something that is once again expected but fails to incite neither interest nor sympathy.

The dialogues were artificial, and the acting straight out of a school play. The sidekick (who plays Sehwag's sidekick in those suiting ads)... has too proud an expression on his face for a beggar... The dress hawker looks and talks like a model. The children just over act all the time... be it those telephone booth scenes or those happy moments where they line up for a photo. Most of the children seem too well fed to be beggars... especially the kid who sells papers... that guy is almost corpulent. Just because people rub coal on their face.. doesnt make them look poor. They gotta have a lean mean look to them to pass off as beggars.

The movie reeked of staleness. There was this scene where all those beggars gathered around the traffic signal while it was beign uprooted. It was supposed to be a moving situation but the entire theatre burst out laughing. Makes you wonder how many traffic signals are there in Mumbai and whether each signal has such a community. All those guys have to do is split themselves equally among all the other traffic signals. Why are they gathering around like they have no place to go? And who is that jolna pai character ? And why is he picking up discarded Indian flags with Vande Mataram playing in the BG before the break? We all thought documentary features were played before the movie.. not during it.

Another crib is that the movie just introduces characters for the sake of it. The rich guy and his concubine in the Merc... they were just time and space fillers. The boytoy was another space filler. 'Tsunami'. Where did he go? None of the characters were enjoyable nor were they part of 'social satire'. And.. where were the ear bud selers ? How can a traffic signal be complete without them?

So... the movie wasted about 2.5 hours of my time... introduced about 40 characters easily... none of which are even remotely interesting... spins a contrived story which is logicless and baseless and ends in the most contrived situations in Hindi cinema. (So what if a traffic signal is uprooted because of a fly over ? Its not like the beggar jobs are going to be offshored is it ?).

Let me try once more to be SUN TV in reviewing..
Please avoid at any cost.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Movie review - Clerks 2

8 years ago, Kevin Smith created four characters... a completely dysfunctional and ambitionless convenience store clerk, an extremely vitriolic and obscene video store clerk... and 2 dope dealing friends. The movie went nowhere. Ended with one of the guys getting shot by an arbitrary thief... but it gave college guys conversation topics during binge parties... The movie was strangely appealing and was a surprise box office hit. It was excellent social commentary and milked the latent appeal of ennui in suburban living.

Clerks 2... carries on from there but with a slight twist. Both the two main characters have survived... no1 is shown how... but they have been working in the store for 10 years or so. The year is 2006 but they still have the same lack of ambition as in 1999 and are both extremely bored. The only change has been the degree of bitterness to the surroundings. The video store clerk's (Randal) bitterness has increased in exponential bounds. Dante still has two women running after him and is still unnable to decide what is good for him.

But, what was so appealing in Clerks 1 is sadly missing in the second part. Social Satire. Those excellent social commentaries about tobacco gum selling anti-tobacco activists, suburban home dwellers who commute ungodly hours to work... all those are missing. Clerks 2 is all about obscenity and seems like it is targetted at the 10 - 15 year range rather than the college crowd intended in Clerks 1.That is the biggest let down in the movie.

There are unnecessary STAR WARS vs LOTR arguments... Transformers flamewars... that shows how Randal has aged only in pop culture icons and not in maturity. Dante is still the more conservative of the two... (the ying to Randal's yang), Rosario Dawson is Dante's manager and love interest. The unnerving openness of these two's arguments makes us fidget at times but rarely does it make us think. Clerks 2 did not do well at the box office inspite of its record breaking predecessor because of one chief reason....

Kevin Smith did not factor in that the original fans of the movie would have also aged 10 years and also the fact that what college grads spoke about 10 years back are being spoken about by early teens now... which kind of makes this movie a 'wannabe' kind of cult classic. Pretty much like having a cartoon flick for children with animals parodying 1960s pop culture references... "Go ahead make my day... ", "They call me Mr Tibbs".. etc. There is no way such a movie is going to make big.

The movie is a paradise for trivia and connections buffs with scores of connects to earlier Kevin Smith movies... Jay wears a Buddy Jesus T shirt, the movie ends the way the first movie started.. a lady picking up milk cans, and "I assure you we are open" sign... What is good about the movie is that Kevin Smith has brought a logical ending to all the characters he created. Maybe next he would create better characters more in tune with the times.