Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Movie Review - Sabari

Dr Sabhari Vasan MBBS MS FRCS DS and the leading cardio thoracic surgeon in the world, universe and beyond. He performs open-heart surgeries in the light of a cell phone (aaparaysun suxus), with his left arm tied behind his back, has performed 1000s of simultaneous heart operations, like Vishwanathan Anand plays rapid chess and has cured millions of the most dangerous disease on earth... boredom.

There are no big surprises in the movie, and it definitely pales in comparison to Gajendra and Vaanjinathan. This is more of a mellow Ramana without the thrills and minimal dialogues. The fights are more or less similar to his other movies, with each guy getting utmost 2 punches before he drops down in a heap of bones.

What stands out in this movie, are ofcourse his political innuendos. When he talks in favour of the 60,000 Sri Lankan tamils, he says there were so many aeroplanes sent to get Indians back from Lebanon... but not even basic amenities to these people. I was like hulo.. these are refugees, those are Indian citizens. There is a difference.

The paisa vasool moment, was Gaptain with bling. Imagine, Captains already weird dress sense... and he now wears bling and pimps his clothes up!!! Plus he raps inside a stretch limo with hoes around !!!! When he nods his head he resembles a boom boom maadu dressed up by a colour blind maatukkaran who just had too much to drink. Watch this movie for that alone. His Pimpiness The Gaptain.

He strikes a few B-Boy stances without the guns (remember those plastic guns in Alexander?)... and all of us swoon. Malavika's grace the occasion and they move about like bowling balls on a trampoline. The other love interest is Jyothirmayi. Her name is longer than her presence in the movie.

There are arbit characters... why do all indian girls want to become astronauts? Delhi Ganesh as Sabari's father, performs hsi own stunts when he flies about, and a truly ugly sister. She looks like Delhi Ganesh in drag. But she manages to look better than gaptain as a pimp.

This movie also has 2 climax sequences, one in flashback and the other real time, spaced 2 minutes apart. The movie ends with Sabari mourning over the people whom he kills... Apparently Vijayakanth had said the movie mainly showcases doctors and their problems. I don't know how many doctors have to fight pitched battles with real estate kingpins... But if you have to... you can learn from our Sabari.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Movie Review - Deepavali

I had the opportunity to witness this movie with one great friend:-). One of the few times... i have company for a movie. So, well I would have ended up enjoying even a Kashmiri art movie dubbed into Chinese.

Well... imagine this situation. You are working in an Irish town... for 6 months and for the 6 months, you end up eating mashed potatoes cos that is the only vegetarian dish that you get there. Suddenly someone gives you cabbage... how would you feel? I would devour it.. even if it had been left in the fridge for 6 months... Deepavali is just that. Refrigirated 6 month old cabbage. This cabbage curry is garnished with a pinch of Moondram Pirai, a smattering of Gilli and a motherload of bullshit. But apart from that the movie is pretty watchable.

'Billu'.. yes that his real name, is a New Washermanpet dogooder and son of Vijaykumar (who for a change does not resemble or behave like a retarded grizzly bear). Billu falls in love with a girl who switches her memory on and off whenever she boards a Tata Sumo or a Safari. Raghuvaran explains this remarkable medical phenomenon in a few sentences... he says,

"Sometimes when there is a head injury, you say... 'I dont remember what happened'. It is true. You really do not remember what happened. That is called loss of memory, or in law terms, the Clinton defense. "

He adds. "I tried this logic, when I hit my teacher once on the head... but they whipped me for that. Apparently the loss of memory is only for the person who gets hit".

Love blossoms and scatters seed (dirty dirty) inspite of this, and the girl extracts a promise from Billu. "Even if I forget you, will you continue to chase me and get married only to me?". Hahahaha.. only a guy could have thought up the logic... a girl... wants someone whom she does not even remember, to stalk her... She even says, if she gets married to someone else, she will die... Hehehe. Why do these directors try to think like women? They must just stick to the cliches. Why try to experiment?

Anyway, the girl loses memory yet again and moves to Bangalore. She roams near the KR Puram bridge, Forum Mall and that Kerala restaurant off Brigade road, where ourman time and again tries to convince her of his true intentions... like any stalker would. He gets stabbed, beaten, run over, stabbed again and hit on the head, for his efforts, but persists. This happens like 20 times in the second half and bores us to death.

By now we are approching the 160 minute mark, and there is no end in sight, the girl's marriage is fixed. Billu abducts the girl and brings her to Chennai. Goons follow her, and they try to bring her back. The movie ends with the titles.

There is soemthing that happens for 3 minutes between the time when the Goon's Sumos road into New WashermanPet and the titles which is best left to your imagination. Suffice to say, it does not salvage this stinking cabbage curry of a movie. It is going to stink even in the North pole. Take a good friend to the movie. Maybe you would enjoy it.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Movie Review - Muni

This is my dream movie. A telugu movie, made in Thamizh. Not like Maanbumigu Measthree which is nothing but half assed dubbing work. This is actually a Telugu movie, but made solely for Thamizh audiences. The dialogue has tinges of Gongura, the acting smells KoruveeKaaram and the action reeks of Avakka.

Ragava Larencce (The artist formerly known as Lawrence). Seriously that is how he spells his name... and talking about stretching superstitions to more than just a few extraaaa vowels, Muni is a movie about the ghost of Muniyandi, who, even though seems to have the power to kill a yak, at 200 yards, with mind bullets, (Wonderboy? What is the secret of your power?) requires the stairs to climb down from the first floor to scare people out of their senses. I have watched so many ghost movies, but not once has that mystery been explained. Why do ghosts use the stairs when everything else they do defies physics?

Muni is the ghost of Raj Kran (Raaj Kiran to the unitiated... you know where the extra vowels have gone), who now resides inside Larencce, who by the way resides in the villains house, where Muni was originally killed for reasons best left unmentioned. Oh what the heck... I will mention it anyway.

Muni is just too good a guy to continue living. He thinks good, acts good and eats good. He wants to get his daughter married so that he can have grandchildren. He wants to have grandchildren so that they will kick him on his chest. He wants them them to kick him there so that ... anyway you get the idea. He is a nice guy. So he has to be killed... pretty much like how any kung fu master is killed... it is one of the laws of nature.

The rest of the movie is about the ghost defining retribution to the 'evil doers' pretty much like BrickTop (Snatch?) would do, and Laarence, blue contacts, gutteral voice and all, bashes everyone to pulp. Interestingly, when posessed by the ghost, he does not bleed.

And before I forget, the famous photograph of Muni stuffing his face with food balls... you get to see it...., but you would have to wait till the end of the movie. How can there ever be a movie where Raj Kran does not eat? And yes he bites into the bones of the chicken in a few scenes. So take your vomit bag with you incase you feel the urge. Most importantly Muniyandi Vilas is thanked in the credits for the food... Sooooo unique. Incase you are wondering, these are the best pics I could find on GISing "Muni".

Monday, March 12, 2007

Movie Review - Paruthi Veeran

What makes a good movie? Hard to define. It has to be a mixture of, characterization that you can relate to, a believably unique storyline, actors who suit the roles, and ofcourse music that helps the story. If that is how a good movie is defined, then PV excels.

What if you want to define a movie this way? An experience that will leave you feeling happy, comfortable and not squeamish and shocked? A light hearted affair that entertains enough to make you laugh and only laugh? Well then Paruthi Veeran is not your kind of movie.

Unfortunately I belong to the latter. I like my movie to be light hearted and not too heavy on the senses. I want the characters to laugh, or either make us laugh when they cry like guys like Teeyar effortlessly do.

There are these directors who, in their quest for 'uniqueness', stretch the limits of palatability of the viewer. They try to pass of the macabre as that uniqueness. That is plain bogus. Imagine you are in a train, someone is telling you a joke, and suddenly he cuts his tongue and throws it out of the door. Is that unique? Yes. Is that entertaining ? NO!!! It just shocks you and after sometime you just dont want to think about it. That is PV in a nutshell. Elaborately designed for shock appeal.

Karthi looks comfortable and some of his mannerisms and body language tells me he is not in the film business for timepass. He is serious about his acting. I only hope he does not take the college hero who bashes local goons track, which seems to be the crux of any thamizh movie these days. He isnt the typical thamizh hero, and Ameer tries to break every single character cliche of the typical tamil hero in this movie. Part of the purported shock appeal.

Saravana is OK. Ameer once again brings in local colour through sepia tones, arid landscapes and wonderful locals. Less than 20 percent of the movie cast are qualified actors, but it works in imparting the much needed realism amidst Priya Mani's tweezed eyebrows and cultured english. (no film maker reads my review of Veyyil :-( )

I missed most of the dialogues because of my city upbringing. Makes me wonder how those guys understand each other. All of them keep talking all the time, yet they are able to communicate. Some scenes make you feel, you have to watch the movie again to get everything Ameer has said. Like the time when Priya gets out to school, catches herself in the mirror... goes in washes her face and then leaves. You wonder why... till she goes to see Paruthi in jail. I bet there are a million more such nuances I might have missed.

Another nice idea is the segmented flashback, with each character thinking only about what is relevant to him or her. But ultimately it is upto the viewer to piece the entire story together.

Paruthi Veeran is a commendable movie, worth a watch, and definitely not to be hated. An excellent launchpad for Karthi, and he is impressive. Ameer has delivered one more sure hit.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Movie Review - Pachai kili Muthu Charam

Sarath Kumar is a quintessential specimen of Chennia Bourgeounicus, characterized by a Nokia 1100, San Frisco trousers (you gotta look carefully) and daily hour long train rides. He has a son (with Juvenile Diabetes). Warning ladies... if your son/daughter has Juve Diab, then there is a high chance that your husband could stray. So please take care. Ok. that was the warning I wanted to add to all those people who searched for Juvenile Diabetes on google.

Andrea is the wife. Son has acted in a few other ads. As a family they have made enough money to live in a nice house. Have a Hero Honda bike... and as Arjun in Mudhalvan succintly puts it in Sujatha's words, "Saturday Titanic, Sunday beach" life...

The story in short. Sharath gets close to Jyothika, thinks he is in love... she says she already is, wants to escape atleast for a day, her abusive marriage. Gets raped by Milind Soman, who then blackmails the couple for money. To tell you the truth... i just cannot imagine someone who was callous enough to cheat on his wife, could dole out 8 laks to save another woman. A typical Thamizhian would fold all other fingers but his middle finger if someone asks him money. Anyway... Sarath later realizes that he has been swindled and all hell breaks loose in Hyderabad and Chennai. Hey. BTW. That was a spoiler.

The things that stood out for me are the dialogues. When Sarath confesses of his affair to his wife. And her reaction seemed outlandish... but then what do I know about human relationships? Anyway an attempt was made to bring in realism to the dialogues which is more than we can expect in a Thamizh movie.

Also Jyothika's seemingly innocuous efforts in seducing Sarath. Everytime she has the opportunity to go 3 inches she goes a mile... makes him feel guilty for a lot of things that he did naturally, makes him think she is a victim, and makes him take responsibility... well written.

Harris Jayraj either knows only two tunes, or has short term memory loss. This album is just Khaaka Khaaka and VV all over again. I dont know why people still flock to him.

The movie is watchable. Songs should be avoided. You see more of those wannabe dialogues along the lines of 'Freeze' and 'Raghavan instinct'... the "Make love to me" line I guess was used in Khaaka Khaaka too. I guess realism is not needed in a few things. I prefer bushes shaking and parrots kissing to this trash. Also, it made me think... would Andrea have watched HBO / STAR Movies? Chennai has CAS... and hers is a lower middle class family. Maybe she read Mills and Boone... I really don't know... Ok bye.

Music Review - Oram Po

After the first listen to the songs... the one thing that stands out is the percussion usage...just as in Veyyil. Really loud strong percussion sounds dominate all the songs. The choice of singers too does not redeem this album. Very ordinary album. Either that or I do not know about music.

Kozhi Kaalu
Jassi Gift and Kailash Kher lend their voices to this repeat of Veyyilodu Vilayadi. Loud, and upbeat with a toad with a gastric problem droning in the BG... this time it is not Jassi Gift that irritates you but the toad in the BG. The interlude with the base guitar and quasi Panjabi screaming only adds to the irritation.

Kan Ganapathi
T Rajendhar... doesn't he know that the mike can record his breathing too? Why does he sing with saliva in his throat? And asshole... the next time you speak about Thamizh, I am going to get medieval on your ass with a pair of pliers and a blowtorch. Doesn't the self professed 'son of Thamizh soil' know the difference between the Thamizh La and the the bigger LLA ? Why does he say Caaallllege.. Naalllllu (for four) and LLLIsans (for Licence)... Naanens. Anyway I dont know what to hate more, Teeyar or the song itself.

Idhu Enna?
Starts out with something similar to "Pogatheee Pogatheee" from Deepavali. (I meant the strumming). So why do these guys think if they add an echo to the male voice, it automatically becomes a melody?

Yaar Iravinil
Sivamani and Sunita Rao... with the toad making a surprise re-entry in this song. Its gastric problem is less muted but the reek is no different. This song sounds too wannabe.

Theme Music
Supposed to be a rap. Whats with the toad !!!??? WHy does it make an appearance again in this song? Shiva Shambo Shambo... AMBOOO.. this album is for the dogs. It ias just GV Prakash getting to know more about adding loops on Acid Music.

Sanjay. I wasted 50 MB of good memory space for this album. I might have to delete the "Azhagesan" folder. Sorry VJ.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Movie Review - Mozhi

Prithvi and Prakash are keyboard players. Bachelors. Eligible. Move into an upscale neighbourhood.... With a few pretty girls. Prithvi gets smitten first. Culprit. Jyothika.Bells ring, light flashes, and Jyothika shows a few karate moves on a hapless guy in front of a Tony Ja 'Mirattal Adi' poster. (Symbolism?)... but then Prithvi is in front of a poster that says '50 percent off'. Symbolism again ? Maybe not. Well thus begins the love story, between Prithvi a 'soft hearted', good intentioned, music composer and Jyothika, a deaf mute strong willed, talented and beautiful girl.

Promising start to a movie, that features for the first time in the annals of Thamizh cinema, direct lifts of Vivaldi's Summer overture and wonder of wonders... Harry Belafonte!!! (Hey Illayaraaja used quite a bit including "Bisathe Bisathe"... of the Banana boat song)... There were a few other familiar pieces in the BGM... I fail to recollect. There was this lift of a Summer in Bethlehem song too. (Both movies Vidhyasagar I think).

Story. Boy meets girl, they become thick friends. Politics because girl misuderstands boy's intentions... thinks too much and assumes nonsense. For a change the assumed nonsense is not sexual. As usual insecurities creep in. Insecurities addressed and resolved. Alls well that ends well.

Mentionable points? Humour. The characters are shown to be intelligent... not in a childish way but in an adult way. Some of the jokes are so simple that its spontaneousness appeals to us. Like the time the two guys make fun of Paramanandham in the hospital. Cockroaches could be fun too. Some of the songs are good but the BGM at times seems tooooo loud (If that was intentional, I fail to get the symbolism).

Negatives. The professor character. The teenage lover. Both were avoidable or could have been substituted by a few more interesting characters. Swarnamalya should dance more and try not to act in movies... would help in more ways than one. Jyothika trying to act makes us laugh partly because of so many close ups and partly beause by the time of those 'realizations' scenes, you had wanted the movie to end a few times over. The story did not warrant the length of the movie... around 2.5 hours.

Movie that you could safely watch without squirming. Apart from that, there is little else of interest.