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.


Suresh said...

The joke-tongue was valid metaphor. That's something quite a few people have been able to pick up - the contrivance and dishonesty inherent in many scenes and the entire stretch of last 40 minutes.

But I was wondering if you'll notice what I thought was the main problem with the movie - the ambiguous "nativity." It's highly problematic in that that's what is used as the keel for the whole movie. Even for someone brought up in the city, you could see there are two streams running parallel. Actors who are acting and people who are just being. They just don't gel together, ever.

The movie has some scenes that are really good. That's how far I'm willing to go. No matter what my expectation is, it falls short of being a half-decent movie in all respects. But yeah, it's way better than the nonsense barfed out by Cheran and Veyyil.

Escape.... Great Escape said...

A few key parts were miscast. Priya's english souded too conventish. Her father reminded me of thamizh serials. The guy with the awesome voice you mention in your rant... was a nice cover though.

Saravanan to me was a big mistake in the cast. The poor guy cannot act. Yet he is made to act. Someoen put him out of his misery.

And why was so much importance given to eunuchs?

Suresh said...

Casting Saravanan is a stunt similar to that of what Bala did with Sangeetha in Pitha Magan (that's her name, right?). It's become some kind of a fashion to "revive" marginalized actors by giving them new roles. Actually, Bala does that all the time. Raj Kiran in Nanda was one too. For some reason people end up fooling themselves that these stupid actors have become better - well, they're better than their "naan dhan indha padadhu hero so kiss my bushy face" roles. But, you know..

Eunuchs, yeah that's another mighty irritating nonsense. It was meant to evoke crass humour. The movie is extremely sexist in many ways but you think you should let it slide because of the nature of the setting itself. But this aspect doesn't stand that excuse. Eunuchs have no business to roam around in hoards in a Southern village. They aren't the most welcome there. another contrivance (like Cheran's bell botton pants in Autograph).

Escape.... Great Escape said...

There are a few such cases like Saravana, who I feel are just chosen for call sheet availability than anything else. But sometimes they score big, like RajKiran... his Muni would be my next watch.

Eunuchs are thrown in just to irritate.

iyengarkatz said...


from reviews and clips i saw on sun tv, this movie seems to be an updated version of virumandi. so how come this gets all glowing praise from you when the other movie garnered none? was it all because of expectations or lack of it?? ;-)


Escape.... Great Escape said...

Boss.. Karthi is called sandiyar... in the movie and "Spoiler Alert"

The heroine gets raped and dies at the end. There is a similarity because they attempt to run away from their problems.... and alls fucked and ends pretty fcuked up too.

About Virumandi being reviewed badly.. :-). Thanks for reminding me about that review... :-).

Yes here goes... Virumandi was PSEUDO !!! He marketed the movie as though he was against the death penalty... hahaha while all the movie did was expose the idiocy of rural judicial system.. (the judge who cleans hsi ears with a HB pencil... while the hearing is going on). That does not create ANY case against the death penalty.

Plus, no1 form the "PV camp" made bombastic statements like "I made the movie for three kinds of audiences... " and "this movie has to be disected, taxidermatized and showcased..." kind of comments.

Kamal shot his mouth about the movie and it deserved the review I gave it.

Also... PV did not have idiotic maudlin moments as in VVV... "Naayeeee.. podeee naayeee.. " crying over his dead grandmom.

Boss. I reiterate, I like KH in most of his light hearted movies. But not in the other kind.

Viji said...

I am not sure what is so great about this movie. First the movie potray as if PV was a warrior type of person. In a simple definition, a warrior is a person who fights because of some reason like war or someone that fight for social injustice or similar things. But in this movie PV character who is a stupid uneducated with no respect of law. So he being a "warrior" does not make sense and it is not difficult because he has nothing to lose if he die - no family, no assets, no attachments etc.

Then suddenly the movie got a twist - now as though it is something to do with caste problem, perhaps because the director is struggling to move the movie to the next lousy one hour.

If not doing any good to the society at least do not make such low level movies. Only low minds will make such movies. The movie is full of vulgar and double meaning dialogues, prostituition attempting to disrespect law abiding and peace loving citizens. Even not suitable for adults.

This movie and movies like Pokkiri has pushed the tamil industry back 5 years.

I do not want to blindly give credit because of Surya's bro, or Vijay because of his dance or whatever silly reasons. Sorry guys - these movies really sucks.

I prefer movies like Veyyil, Em Magan or Pachakili Muthucharam - at least it has some good message and some how related to normal emotions and relationship of human beings.

Escape.... Great Escape said...

A movie can be enjoyed for things other than the message.

Movies reflect society. Society rarely follow movies. If not, we would have had a local hydro electric plant in every village after Swades.

Do you think this movie could depict a village naturally without showing some obscenity? From my limited exposure to villages, I had a feeling it was pretty close to teh truth.

iyengarkatz said...


the segmented flashback thingy that you praised seems like a re-take of virumandi's flashback thing with each one's perspective coming out to the fore???

so basically from your view point, kamal's take on the movie + a scene or couple of scenes made virumandi, the movie as a whole a bad movie.

is pv a flawless movie then? or are the flaws overlooked by concentration of positive aspects that are aided by a lack of bias?

if an unique movie + worth a watch + not to be hated = commendable movie, i would think virumandi also fits the bill. so why the difference in rating?

Escape.... Great Escape said...

In my perspective, Kamal's take on the movie, which highlighted 'capital punishment'... was way off target. Plus, I do not like Kamal in maudlin roles. Hence the bias.

I would not go the extent to saying PV is flawless, but is a well made movie worth a watch. Virumandi did not warrant that mainly because of the reasons you pointed out.

THe flashback thing by perspective was Virumandi. It was supposed to do and each character justified his actions through it. In this movie, that does not happen. No justifications.

iyengarkatz said...

okay then, a general q:

do you review movies as a whole, or some movie as a whole and some in parts? and to what extent does your personal bias affect the objectivity of the review?

or is there anything as an objective review?

Escape.... Great Escape said...

I watch thamizh movies like Deepavali and rant abotu them in 10 minutes. And you are talking about 'Objectivity' ?

I think you are taking all this too seriously :-).

And yes I am biased against KH. I do not like him in non comedic-roles.

Karthik said...

im not thinking abt pv or virumandi etc...i was thinking aloud in general, does the tag movie critic hold any meaning in today's world of blogs?

how come i dint see ure take on pokkiri and the ilk that ran together?

Escape.... Great Escape said...

I had no time to write anything on Pokkiri. yes. you read tight. i had no time. And frankly, I watched pokkiri half asleep and I dod not remember anything form the movie.

Dei.. what is 'today's world' ? I do not think even Roger Ebert is biasless. He has his pet likes and hates.

And talking about objectivity and reviewing Thamizh movies is like putting tabasco sauce and jelly doughnuts together.