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Monday, May 31, 2010

Singam


Medium : Tamil
Starring : Soorya, Anushka, Prakashraj, Vivek, Nasser
Director : Hari
Music : Devisree prasad


Most of us are aware about the tensed atmosphere existing in the malayalam cine industry
between different organizations related to the producers, distributors, technicians, actors etc. Some of the problems that came to the lime light are the high production cost of the films, issue of distributor's share from the theaters, theater's demand to cut short the entertainment tax, ban on a senior actor, ban on certain actors from doing shows in mini screens etc. In the middle, there is another serious issue that has been carelessly handled by them or avoided by most of us; It is regarding the release of other language films in our state. There exists an informal ban in the release of tamil-hindi films here, we will be able to watch such films only after two weeks from its original release date. Those who were responsible for this, were unable to control the arrival of films like 'Sura' and 'Kites', but succeeded in the case of the popular actor Soorya's new film 'Singam', even if it is produced by Reliance and distributed by Sun Pictures.

No such ban affects film-freaks like me and since I am lucky enough to be in the border district, I fulfilled my wish by traveling an hour to a theater situated in the neighboring state, watching the film on the third day of its release.

After doing stereo types roles in films like 'Ayan' and 'Aadhavan', Soorya has decided to do something different. He is in the police officer's role in his 25th film titled 'Singam', directed by Hari ('Saamy', 'Thamirabharani' fa
me). Both of them had done films like 'Aaru' and 'Vel' before. Anushka, who came as Vijay's pair in 'Vettaikkaran' is the heroine. The most valuable actor in the South, Prakashraj, also comes in a notable role.

Duraisingam (Soorya), who liv
es in the Nelloore village near Toothukkudi, joins the police force as per his father's (Radharavi) wish. The soft character Durai, who belongs to a big family, is being loved by all in the native. At this time, Kavya (Anushka), daughter of a rich man (Nasser), reaches her relative's house. As expected, she gets in touch with the hero through certain incidents and started loving him. At the same time, Mayilvahanam (Prakashraj), a gang leader who is involved in land mafia, is arrested as an accused in a murder case in Chennai and later let freed under bail. He came across Durai and there happens a tug of war between them. Durai gets promotion and is transferred to Chennai, the home city of his lover and the villain. The second half has got the fighting between the baddies and the police, how Durai got succeeded in winning the game is shown through a action packed climax.

The story of the film is not new, most of the scenes has got the flavor of the director's old films like 'Arul', 'Thamirabharani' etc. Soo
rya (with 'Thevar Makan' style mustache) has done well in the action oriented cop's role. The presence of an artist like Prakashraj opposite the hero makes the project rich, his performance is impressive as always. Anushka is glamorous, she got few scenes also to perform. Vivek is there in the constable character to do comedy scenes. Priyan's cinematography is excellent. Fast action scenes done by Rocky Rajesh & Anal Arasu is another area to be noted. The songs are presented colorfully, but the absence of much gimmicks on visuals and steps on that area is evident. Devisree Prasad had given some fast numbers, though it goes with the mood, most of them are not catchy enough to be remembered, the bg score also lacks punch here and there.

Don't expect a 'Kaakka Kaakka' magic here; 'Singam' is different one from Soorya, it is yet another action oriented entertainer made in the style of director's previous projects like 'Saamy', 'Aaru', 'Vel' etc only...


Rating : 7 / 10




Sunday, May 30, 2010

Athithi Tum Kab Jaaoge?

Medium : Hindi
Starring : Paresh Rawal, Ajay Devgan, Konkanasen Sharma

Director : Ashwini Dheer

Music : Pritam


The release of some of the hindi films in this period with around 1000s of prints globally, shows the increased popularity and the scope of business happening in the entertainment m
edia; Now international banners have started investing in the bollywood area. A film with the pakka hindi title, 'Athithi Tum Kab Jaaoge ?' is being produced by none other than Warner Bros. Don't forget that they have given many big films including 'Harry Potter', 'The Lord of the Rings' etc.

Director Ashwini Dheer, who came from the
mini screen is relatively a new name in the industry. He has written the film 'Krazzy 4' and has directed a film named 'One Two Three'. Ajay Devgan has done many action oriented roles in the first decade of his career, but films like 'Golmaal' series and 'All the Best', changed his serious image. Konkanasen Sharma is one such kind of actress who can handle any type of roles, films like 'Page 3', 'Mr and Mrs Iyer', 'Wake Up Sid' etc. are good examples. Paresh Rawal, who is also a notable character actor in bollywood these days, comes in the role of "Athithi" in the film.

The story is about a married couple (Ajay Devgan and Konkanasen Sharma), who lives with their kid in Mumbai. Ajay is a struggling writer, who is working on his first film script and Konkana is working in a private firm. One day, a distant relative (Paresh Rawal) of Ajay reaches their apartment. The guest stayed with them for a couple of days and later it was known that he is having no plans to leave them in the near future. The family is fed up, as they don't like the strict and unwanted habits followed by "Athithi" on the food, cleaning and other related purposes. Ajay tried his best to get the Athithi departed, but most of the time it ended in failure. Whether Ajay succeeded in keeping the uninvited guest out of their family, is shown in the climax of 'Athithi Tum Kab Jaaoge?'.

Though the film is filled with many realistic situations that created humor, some of the areas like the hotel raid and the associated incidents should have been avoided. The 'farting' of the Athithi character is repeated many times, which can lead to restlessness. The bombing scene at the shooting spot is an area where you are having an ultimate humor. The climax is also done well. Cinematography by Azeem Bajaj is good. Paresh Rawal is excellent in the lead role, like wise Ajay Devgan and Konkanasen Sharma also did well.


'Athithi Tum Kab Jaaoge?' is a simple family subject without much gimmicks, hence it is a watchable one.



Rating : 7 / 10

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Final Destination 4 (3D)

Medium : English
Starring : Bobby Campo, Shantel Vansanten, Mykelti Williamson

Director : David R. Ellis


We already discussed the advantage of making sequels of hit projects, now the latest one to join such
a group is from 'The Final Destination' series. The 3D version of most of the Hollywood films is also releasing these days along with the normal prints. Though the popularity is high, a very few theaters only has now started screening of such versions also. This is due to the heavy cost in setting the requirements for showing such films. In my native, a theater is set permanently to run the 3D prints. After the grand success of 'Avatar', then came 'Clash Of The Titans', a poor film in 3D. Now it is time for the 4th part of 'The Final Destination' series. As in the case of most of the English films, this one is also releasing here, late by many months.

The opening scene of the film is happening in a stadium where sports car racing happens. A group of four people is also among the heavy crowd watching it. One among them, Nick (Bobby Campo), began to sense a danger there, which is going to be happened in few minutes. He told about this to his companions and they all with a few others ran out of the stadium, soon the mishap happens and many were killed. Though his friends didn't believed his words in the beginning, now as the matter became serious, they became tensed. Now with in few days, another guy also died; he was the one who escaped from the accident in the stadium. Now it is clear that, all those people who survived then, are going to die soon. Nick, his girl friend (Shantel Vansanten) and their friends along with the security guard (Mykelti Williamson) are now aware of this and how they act to get out of the danger is shown here. Most of the time, they can't overcome the fate and thus goes the action packed incidents of the latest series in the 'The Final Destination'.

In 'Avatar', James Cameroon didn't tried to frighten the audiences, rather he gave a different visual experience using the new technology. 'Clash Of The Titans' was not good in every sense, but the haunting memories of old malayalam hit 'My Dear Kuttichathan', where long sticks, spear and skulls coming out of the screen, are still there as it was considered as the first of this kind and more over it happened in our childhood days also. But compared to all those, director of 'The Final Destination 4', David R. Ellis has tried to frighten the audiences to the maximum level and in the majority of the situations shown here he has succeeded. No human can sit simply straight, watching a sequences where screw driver flying to your eyes, the car tyre bursts and coming fast to you or a vehicle with the lightning speed coming towards you etc. It is a fact that I was shocked and afraid, seeing many shots which come under this genre. The circumstances created here which later lead to an accident in all situations, can be felt cinematic, but the director had executed it well in a professional way, giving no loop holes for questioning. The title sequences are also done well.

Watching a 3D film like this in a small theater like multiplexes might give ultimate effect and quality than watching it in big screens. what to do, we are forced to adjust with the kind of infrastructure, we are getting these days...


'The Final Destination 4 (3D)' is a action thriller with many shocking incidents. The 3D version is not recommended for weak-hearted peoples...


Rating : 8 / 10

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Kites

Medium : Hindi
Starring : Hrithik Roshan, Barbara Mori, Kangana Ranaut, Kabir Bedi, Nick Brown

Director : Anurag Basu

Music : Rajesh Roshan, Salim-Sulaiman (bg score)


After a small gap, doing notable movies like 'Jodha Akbar', 'Krish' and 'Dhoom 2', one of the most valuable bollywood stars, Hrithik Roshan's new movi
e named 'Kites' has released. It is shot entirely abroad and has got a Mexican actress named Barbara Mori as hero's pair. The film is directed by Anurag Basu, who came from the Mahesh Bhatt camp. He is the creator of some notable flicks like 'Murder', 'Life In Metro', 'Gangster' etc.

J (Hrithik Roshan) is an ambitious dancer trainer who lives in Las Vegas. To acquire the green cards in the country, many people takes him as their partners, he participates in such an illgeal marriage business to make money. He is being liked by a girl (Kangana Ranaut); th
ough he refuses her in the beginning, later he gave a positive response when he knew that she is the daughter of a multimillionaire (Kabir Bedi). While visiting the rich man's family, he came across Natasha (Barbara Mori). She was also eying on the extreme wealth and came to the family as the fiancee of the rich man's crooked son, Tony (Nick Brown). There started a romantic relationship between J and Natasha. At one occasion they both ran way, while Tony and his men chases the lovers. Who is the winner in the game is shown in the climax of 'Kites'.

The story of the movie is not extra ordinary; including Anurag Basu and Robin Bhatt, three names shares the credit for the script. The stylish way in which the director had presented it, make the output look like a Mexican type of movie. Hrithik Roshan is gorgeous and his astonishing appearance is the main attraction here. Barbara Mori also did well in the role of the lover. It is good to see that she also shares the same screen space with the hero. Though her character doesn't know hindi or english and her better part is illiterate in Spanish also, the communication happening between them is shown in a good way and the romantic scenes are neatly executed.

Rich visuals given by cinematographer Ayananka Bose needs special mention. The fast paced dancing sequences (choreography by Sandip Soparrkar) in the beginning song is attractive. Here you can't see many dance and duet scenes, which we usually witness in the bollywood films. Songs by Rajesh Roshan, are not memorable ones, though they are only in few lines. Salim-Sulaiman gave the fast paced bg score. The comedy scene created using 'ullu ki patti..' dialogue is an old one only. The revenge action scenes happens all of a sudden and ends soon, a more drama should have been done there. The under water shot in the end felt cinematic.


'Kites' is a love story told in a stylish way. A die hard fan of Hrithik Roshan should watch this one; the mexican heroine and the location used in it, gave a foreign flavor to this project.

Rating : 6.5 / 10


Mummy & Me

Medium : Malayalam
Starring : Urvashi, Archana Kavi, Mukesh, Kunjakko Boban, Lalu Alex

Director : Jithu Joseph

Music : Sijo John, Gopi Sundar (bg score)

'Mummy & Me', don't you feel, such a title for the new family subject is interesting, as it is in malayalam. Here Urvashi comes in the mother's role and Archana Kavi, who did the lead character in 'Neelathaamra', is in the role of the daughter. Mukesh comes as the pair to Urvashi (may be this is happening after a gap of around 20years, if i am right, they acted as pairs in the film 'Souhridham' by Shaji Kailas, before). Jithu Joseph, the director of the film had given a notable investigative film before, 'Detective'. Though that film with Suresh Gopi in double role, didn't do well, the output was good enough to evaluate the caliber of a creator. More over, the new film is distributed by Mohanlal's banner Max Laab and it was also heard that the actor himself was planning to do a guest role in the film, any way it is changed and the responsibility now came to the hands of the director's previous hero, Suresh Gopi. The cinematographer of maximum number of family subjects, Vipin Mohan is also in the team, as a good support for the director.

The story focuses mainly on the happenings in the family between Clara (Urvashi) and her daughter, Jewel (Archana Kavi). The mother is too possessive about her teen aged girl and she is very strict also. This is not liked by Jewel, which causes a break in relationship between the two, many times. The girl is also attached more to her father, Joseph (Mukesh), a bonding character between Clara and Jewel. His diplomatic approach has helped to maintain a tension free atmosphere. Jewel was comfortable with his best friend and college mate, Rahul ( Kunjakko Boban). While spending at the internet, Jewel got a chat friend, Ameer, with whom she always shares the problems. Their relationship had grown and her aggressive attitude gradually changed. Rahul wants to express his love to Clara, on the other side Clara was having some other plans. Thus goes the incidents of 'Mummy & Me'.

The writer-
director had chosen a subject which is common in many families, these days. The relationship between each and every members in the family, felt real, especially the younger brother of Clara creates laughter in many areas. Urvashi has done excellent with all her experience. Archana Kavi was good in her debut film, but here, in the modern outfits, she is not looking stable and also felt awkward in few angles. Mukesh has also done well to create the lighter mood. Master Jeevan, as the younger brother, is also suited well for the role. Kunjakko Boban doesn't have much to perform.

The chat friend
and the associated scenes reminds us of the film 'Mitr - My Friend', by Revathi. The problem in using a familiar voice without showing the character has happened here, while showing the chat friend from back and side views, it was clearly evident that it was not the owner of this voice (either that portions or the climax part should have been avoided). The visuals of films like 'Aniyathipravu', 'Nakshatratharattu', 'Niram' etc came to mind when scenes involving Kunjakko Boban are shown. Sudheesh, nearing his age of 40, is still placed as a college student and Arun as the negative character is also a cliche. The scene in which mother and the son dancing, felt cinematic. Songs by debutant music director Sijo John goes with the mood, bg score by Gopi Sundar is ok, it got some english songs also, might have been incorporated to register the attitude of the daughter role. Cinematographer Vipin Mohan gave colorful visuals, editing by V.Saajan is also good.

I don't know, why the creators are still practicing the idea of using voice overs for the introduction of each and every characters in the beginning; no need to under estimate the audiences as they are brilliant enough to understand the nature of each role, when story goes on. By placing a doctor (Anoop Menon) on the mother's side and a chat friend through Suresh Gopi's voice on the other side, the director had delivered too many messages at a time, even the character of Lalu Alex tried some...

Dont expect big from 'Mummy & Me'; It is a true family film which doesn't have much un realistic situations or wasted comedies, as witnessed in these day subjects.


Rating : 7 / 10


Friday, May 21, 2010

The Book Of Eli

Medium : English
Starring : Densel Washington, Mila Kunis, Gary Oldman
Director : Hughes Brothers

It is a fact that, only a very few number of English films are releasing here, compared to film from other regional languages in the cou
ntry. We assumes that even though they are fewer in mumbers, those types of releases are good films. Seeing Densel Washington ('De-Javu', 'Taking Of Pelham 123' fame), as hero in the posters of 'The Book Of Eli', I decided to watch it (His excellent performance in the thriller 'Taking Of Pelham 123' was an added advantage for me). Anyway, I clarified about the post-release reports (as it is released world wide months before) of the new film with a friend of mine, who is a great fan of English films and the result obtained was positive which gave me the extra energy to watch it.


Hollywood is practicing a new trend these days, most of
their subjects are happening in the future period, as there is more scope for fantasy and unrealsitic situations. Here, the story happnes in the barren muddy land of interior US region, where Eli (Densel Washington) lives alone. You can see empty cities, broken roads, destroyed vehicles etc. The place looks like an un civilized one and there are few decoits and robbers here and there. Killing others for water, money, a pair of shoes etc were not a tough task there. Eli fights against them and is succeeded most of the time. He reaches a near by town , the cruel gang leader (Gary Oldman) keeps Eli in custody. Eli escapes from there, the gang leader's daughter (Mila Kunis) also follows him. The gang leader knows that Eli had the copy the only bible left in the world now. Thus the former one and his group attacks Eli and takes the book from him. The villain is not able to read or recollect the topics included in the book, as it is written in a different langauge.


The main attraction of the film lies in its presentation. The greyish tone given for the visuals and choosing of a deserted location gives a serious mood. The notable area lies in its fast paced action sequences and the visual effects used in them. As expected, Densel Washington is brilliant here. All the artists had done well. Cinematography by Don Burgess and Bg score by Atticus Ross are also in its high standards, under the guidance of Hughes Brothers, who directed the movie in a stylish way. May be, one can argue about the kind of the theme based on a particular community here, but it is the freedom of the creator to select the subject.

'The Book Of Eli' is an action film, where heroism is shown differently in the back drop of an unusual environment.

Rating : 7 / 10

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Bumm Bumm Bole

Medium : Hindi
Starring : Darsheel Safary, Ziya Vastani, Atul Kulkarni, Rituparnasen Gupta
Director : Priyadarshan

Music : M.G.Sreekumar, Ouseppachan (bg score)

Priyadarshan has once again come out with a remake subject, this time he has not lifted anything from the south, his new film 'Bum Bum Bole' is based on the Iranian classic 'Children Of Heaven', directed by Majidi Majidi. The ne
w film caught attention recently as it is the second film for notable child artist Darsheel Safary after 'Taare Zameen Par'; there were rumors that the young 'star has been paid around a crore rupee for this project. Notable cinematographer Azhagappan ('Kazhcha', 'Manassinakkare' fame) joined hands with the director for the first time through this film. Arunkumar is the editor, M.G.Sreekumar gave music for a couple of numbers and Ouseppachan handles the bg score section, Sabu Cyril is the art director; thus 'Bum Bum Bole' has got the support of many malayalee technicians.

The story happens in the terror-hit hilly surroundings of Assam. The two kids (Darsheel
Safary and Ziya Vastani) lives with their father (Atul Kulkarni) and mother (Rituparnasen Gupta). The father tried many jobs to make the both ends meet with the poor family. One day, Darsheel loses the pair of shoes owned by her younger sister. He is aware of the fact that his poor father can't afford to buy a new pair of shoes. Thus Darsheel gave an idea, his sister will go to school wearing his shoes, when she comes back he will take it. Without informing the parents, they continued the process. How they over come the situation and whether their immense wish to get a new pair of shoes got succeeded is shown towards the end.

As I have watched 'Children Of Heaven' also, it is too difficult to leave the place without c
omparing the new version with the original. 'Bumm Bumm Bole' doesn't have the simplicity and attraction, holds by the foreign film that got released almost 13years back. The inclusion of the terror attacks, the boss trying to molesting the mother character etc are the creativity happened from the director, which is not good for such a subject. The fishes in the small pool in front of the house has got its own relevance in the original version, which is not conveyed here properly. The scenes in which the young girl losing the shoes in the canal, the boy giving excuses for late entry to the headmistress etc are also not created professionally. The director has also maintained the school uniform costume and the electronic calling bells, as it is from the original version. The musical theme 'bumm bumm bole...' used by Ouseppachan (for the running scenes) is not good. The one song in the film is also not needed.

The main attraction of 'Bum Bum Bole' is the excellent performance by the child artist, Baby Ziya Vastani. The innocence and cuteness of the character is neatly portrayed by her. Notable 'star' Darsheel Safary, who did the central character, has not delivered his best, his lack of confidence is evident in some scenes, in some areas he is over acting also. Atul Kulkarni has also done well as the frustrated person. Azhagappan had given some colorful visuals.

To choose a subject based on the intimacy in relationship between the young siblings is a good thing; but if you have watched the foreign classic film 'Children Of Heaven', then no need to try your luck on 'Bumm Bumm Bole'...


Rating : 6.5 / 10


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Badmaash Company

Medium : Hindi
Starring : Shahid Kapoor, Anushka Sharma, Vir Das, Meiyang Chang, Anupam Kher

Direction : Parmeet Sethi

Music : Pritam


After flop films like 'Dil Bole Hadippa' and 'Chance Pe Dance', Shahid Kapoor has tried his luck under Yash Raj Productions, directed by new comer Parmeet Sethi, the film i
s 'Badmaash Company'. Anushka Sharma, who has acted in 'Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi', is the heroine. Music is by Pritam.

The story happens in Bombay in the early 1990's (pre-globalization period), where
mobile phones, internet, foreign goods etc were not so popular as the current period. The four youngsters, Karan (Shahid Kapoor), Bulbul (Anushka Sharma), and two others (Vir Das and Meiyang Chang), wished to make money by doing the import business. Thus they planned to cheat the customs by not paying the tax for importing shoes and got succeeded in it. When a bulk amount of money is seen in Karan's room, his father (Anupam Kher) warned his son to stop the business. Karan left the house, the gang repeated the same cheating business in many places and when the govt reduced the customs duty, they were forced to stop such things in India and reached US.

By the help of Karan's uncle, they borrowed some money and did the same activities, abroad also. This time, they cheated a big business man by doing the import business of gloves. In between, the love affair between Karan and Bulbul also happens. By making lot of money, the attitude of each one in the group changed. This got affected badly in their friendship also. They all got separated and K
aran was sent to jail for cheating. He is sad due to the lack of unity of his friends and the attitude of his family. After few months, when came out of the jail, Karan found that his uncle is in a big financial crisis. He made a master plan and asked the help of his old companions. This time it was not a cheating business, everything was straight and whether they got succeeded in it or not is shown towards the climax of 'Badmaash Company'.

Music director Pritam gave some fast numbers. Julius Packiam gave the high voltage bg score, relevant for the mood. Cinematography by Sanjay Kapoor is colorful. Shahid Kapoor and Anushka Sharma did well in their roles. The guys who came in the role of friends, also gave their best. Though there is a cinematic style, the trick used by the team in the garments business is good.

Most of the sequences used in the film are predictable. The cheating technique used by the gang for the first time in the case of shoes import is fine; but when the same is repeated in the case of gloves business and the cheating episode of the rental house also, the freshness is gone. The problem happened between the friends are not neatly communicated. The scene in which the hero lying down on knee, begging to his yet to be born baby, felt dramatic.


'Badmaash Company' has got a good story line, the lack of experience in conceiving it, happens to be the main problem here.



Rating : 5.5 / 10

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Iron Man 2

Medium : English
Starring : Robert Downey Jr, Sam Rockwell, Don Cheadle, Gwyneth Paltrow
Director : Jon Favreau


Another Hollywood film, featuring the super hero has got released. It is called as 'Iron Man
2', the sequel releasing after a gap of 2years. Usually, the films involving super hero themes had got a similar story line. The villain character in the subject will also be having the super powers like the hero does. The former uses it for doing negative things, while the latter uses his powers for saving the world from enemies. Anyway, we usually like to watch these kind of subjects as high end action sequences and good visual effects sequences holds the key in such films.

Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr), the CEO of St
ark Industries, is the super hero Iron Man had a meeting with the US govt officials. They want him to share the technology behind the Iron Man mechanism for the benefit of the Army. Stark refuses the demand saying that the extra power has always helped him to maintain the world peace and he assured that he won't use it carelessly and also told that he is afraid that if it is revealed then there might be a chance that it will go to the wrong hands. In a car race competition, when Stark and his vehicle was attacked brutally by Vango, he was forced to use his Iron Man jacket. While in jail, Vango told the reason for his personal grudge with Stark's family.

On a day at his house, when drunken unlimited, Stark used his jacket and it was objected by his friend (Don Cheadle), who works in the defense wing. There happened a fight between the two, which leaded to a massive destruction of the building. The o
fficer has forcibly took the jacket box and handed over to the military. A higher official (Sam Rockwell) had asked the help of Vango to create the models of the jacket. Now Stark is removed from the CEO post, but he is busy in creating the new jacket by following his father's documents. At last he is successful, He reached the launching ceremony of the Army's newly created super heroes wearing jackets. Now Vango, who is the administrator of the controlling section of the models, tried to take revenge on the Iron Man using other models, which lead to a war like atmosphere. Iron Man kills the villain and saves the people from the enemies are shown in the climax of 'Iron Man 2'.

Robe
rt Downey Jr, who did the title role of 'Sherlock Holmes' had done well in Iron Man character. The film had got the visual effects sequences in its ultimate. The working atmosphere at the Stark's house filled with the technology of virtual reality is good. Even if this is a super hero subject, you don't have many action oriented situations in it. The sequences at the car racing ground, the fight between the hero and his friend in the Iron Man outfits and the lengthy climax featuring all the characters in the jackets are the major scenes involving actions. The climax area involving the total destroyer of the region and the hero succeeded in killing the baddie,looks like an expected one only.


A regular viewer of Hollywood films, can watch 'Iron Man 2' also; people who are selective, can wait for some notable projects to arrive...



Rating : 7 / 10

Monday, May 10, 2010

Kadha Thudarunnu

Medium : Malayalam
Starring : Jayaram, Asif Ali, Innocent, Mamta Mohandas, KPAC Lalitha, Lakshmi Priya

Director : Satyan Anthikkad

Music : Ilayaraja


In the cine field, usually a film will be a commercial hit and makes business under the credit of notable heroes or stars acted in it. On the other side, very few directors has also got the luck to promote a movie under their label.
The senior technician in the field, Satyan Anthikkad is one such person. The director of maximum number of family movies has now done his 50th film, 'Kadha Thudarunnu'. Like the previous few films, this one is also scripted by the director himself, targeting his usual family audiences. Cinematographer Venu, Editor Rajagopal and Ilayaraja, the director's favorite musician are also there in the crew.

The film opens by showing the lovers from different religion, Shanavaz (Asif Ali, 'Ritu' fame) and Vidya Lakshmi (Mamta Mohandas) getting married even after their relatives acted against it. They got a little daughter now. One day, by mistake, a quotation gang kills Shanavaz. As days passed, Vidya finds it difficult to adjust the both ends of her
life. She meets an auto driver Preman (Jayaram). When knew about her problems, he take Vidya and her daughter (Baby Ankitha) to his colony. She soon became closer to every one and thus becoming a member of the colony. The lady owner (KPAC Lalitha) of the auto, a lottery sales man (Innocent), a local thief (Chembil Asokan), the crowd supplying agent (Maamukkoya) for union meetings, a self dependent girl (Lakshmi Priya) etc are some of the people living there. As per the advice of her friend (Shruthi Menon) and help of other well wishers in the locality, Vidya decided to re-join the MBBS course, which that got discontinued in the middle. At this time, the relatives of Shanavaz comes there, claiming the responsibility of her daughter. How the situation is solved is shown in the later areas of 'Kadha Thudarunnu'.

Mamta Mohandas has done well in the central character. Jayaram gave a good support in his usual style. Asif Ali, as the key board player, is only there in the few scenes, but his character is
registered well through the romantic song 'Aaro Paadunnu...' Baby Ankitha is also good and her innocence in the voice is also attractive. The crowd supplying agent and the local thief are some of the realistic characters which can be seen in any villages. The way in which the mother character telling different reasons to her daughter's doubts, without revealing their pathetic situation is treated well. The participant in the reality show, the life of the lottery sales man etc are also borrowed from the real life. The story of the film goes through a predictable way only. The director has once again successful in presenting the film for the family audiences.

Though the songs, 'Aaro Paadunnu...' and 'Kizhakkumala...' are not the best from Ilayaraja, it goes well with the mood, especially the humming in the first song is used well in the bg score also. It is time for Satyan Anthikkad to stop situations like the one happened in the 'Mazha Megham...' song. The song itself
and its visuals are below average only. If song is a must, then it will be good if the musical genius can remake any of his (non popular) hit numbers in the 80's. The lyrical side of Sarath Vayalar in the film is also not strong. The scenes in which the educated lady spending night with her daughter at the railway station cannot be treated as a realistic one.

Few months before, in a discussion regarding the movies and its outcome, one among the group asked others, who is most successful business man in the industry without taking any risks ? The names of many actors, producers and distributors came there in reply, none was right; No need for an explanation, the correct answer was Satyan Anthikkad. We all agreed, hope you also...


'Kadha Thudarunnu' is a positive subject targeting family audiences. It has got yet another signature of the star director.


Rating : 7.5 / 10

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Alexander The Great

Medium : Malayalam
Starring : Mohanlal, Bala, Sidhiq, Jagadeesh, Meenakshi Dixit, Sudha Chandran

Director : Murali Nagavally

Music : M.G.Sreekumar


A couple of weeks back, a friend of mine, who is aware of my creziness in the movies, asked me, which is the new project of Mohanlal ? When I told about 'Alexander The Great', he immediately replied that it will be a disaster. He don't know anything about the st
ory or the director or the technical crew or any details connected with the movie, but he told the reason that the hair style of Mohanlal reminds him the films like 'Flash', 'Angel John' etc. Anyway, I didn't argued as I was also having doubts about such a film written by new comer C.Balachandran and directed by Murali Nagavally (former associate of Priyadarshan and director of the film 'Wanted'). Thus without much expectation, I decided to watch the film, produced by V.B.K.Menon.

The story happens in the backdrop of Dubai. Prathap Varma (Saikumar) is a rich business man. He has got some relatives (Sidhiq, Ganesh Kumar, T.P.Madhavan, Fathima Babu etc) who is awaiting eagerly to get the s
hare of his immense amount of wealth. Varma's relationship with his wife (Sudha Chandran) and son Manu (Bala) is not healthy and they are living separately. After the unexpected death of Varma, the relatives came to know that the majority of the property is being written in the name of Alexander Varma (Mohanlal), in Mumbai. Thus Manu, who is facing some financial problems, goes in search of Alexander, with his lover (Meenakshi Dixit) and his uncle (Jagadeesh). They came to know that Alexander is living in a mental asylum; he is brilliant but an abnormal personality. The group tries their best to get the signature from the peculiar character, at the same time another gang is trying to kill Alexander. With the permission of the doctor (Nedumudi Venu), they took Alexander to Dubai and whether Alexander agreed to give back the wealth to his younger brother, is shown later.

The highlight of 'Alexander The Great' is the excellent performance by Mohanlal. His body language and
dialogue delivery are suited well for such a character, it also creates laughing in many situations. It had got the shades of Sharukh Khan's role in 'My Name Is Khan'. The visuals are colorful and rich, as the majority of the scenes are happening in Dubai. Cinematography by Kannan is good. The bg score done by M.G.Sreekumar goes with the mood.

The film had got a good story line, but it looks like the creators had done some compromises on the presentation side in few areas, especially
the climax. The suspense in the particular portion is also not done in a notable way. The situations involving the villain gang (headed by Kalabhavan Shajon) working for Sidhiq, should have been done in a more clear way, a mixture of comedy and serious mannerisms are not good. The discussions involving the relatives are done at the same locations most of the time, inside the room or at the roof top. Dubbing artist Anandavalli's voice is too dominating for Sudha Chandran's character. As in the case of 'Inn Ghost House Inn', 'T.D.Daasan Std VI B', Jagadeesh is overacting most of the time. The scene in which Alexander doing surgery in the hospital can felt cinematic, but we watched and accepted similar situation in 'Three Idiots' and 'My Name Is Khan' also, so no need to be irritated.


Films by Mohanlal and Mammootty got released on the same day after a gap and it is a rare coincidence that in both these stories, hero goes to jail for the crime committed by his father; none of the two stars are having their heroine in these movies...


With such a story, 'Alexander The Great' should have been made better. But, it is not that bad to be avoided, you can watch it once to see Mohanlal in a totally different role.



Rating : 7 / 10
(revised)

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Pokkiri Raaja

Medium : Malayalam
Starring : Mammootty, Prithviraj, Shriya Saran, Sidhiq, Suraaj Venjarammood, Salim Kumar
Director : Vysakh
Music : Jassie Gift, Rajamani (bg score)

The grand success of films like 'Twenty 20' and 'Happy Husbands',
provoked the creators to come up with multi-star projects. Though 'Twenty 20' had got a big star cast, the main stars of the particular film might be none other than the script writers duo, Uday Krishna and Sibi K.Thomas. To write such a big project, incorporating all the ingredients necessary for an entertainer by giving all of them equal importance, should be a commentable thing. We shouldn't forget that they are also the writers of the mega budget film by Joshi named 'Christian Brothers', which is under production. Now their new film 'Pokkiri Raaja' had got Mammootty and Prithviraj in lead roles. They are coming together after the unsuccessful film 'One Way Ticket', where the former did the guest role only. The new project is directed by debutant Vysakh, a former associate of Johny Antony and Joshi. Heroine Shriya Saran ('Sivaji' and 'Azhagiya Tamil Makan' fame) comes to malayalam for the first time.

Raja (Mammootty) and Soorya (Prithviraj) are brothers. In the childhood days, due to the quarreling betw
een the two families in the village, Raja went to jail, after being involved in a murder incident. When returns, he is not welcomed by his father (Nedumudi Venu) and he is forced to leave them and reaches Madhurai, where he met a rich man (Charan Raj) and started working for him. When grown up, Soorya reaches the city to live with his sister (Bindu Panicker) and her husband, a coward inspector (Suraaj Venjarammood). Soorya gets in touch with the daughter (Shriya Saran) of the police commissioner (Sidhiq) ans started loving her. This was not liked by his father, as his daughter's marriage was already fixed to the home minister's son (Riyaz Khan). Though both of them tried to destroy Soorya, they were not succeeded. Now the police officer takes the help of Raaja, a 'don' from Madhurai. At the same time, Soorya's father asked his elder son (the same Raaja) to save Soorya from the cruel police officer. How Raaja reacts to such a situation, is told in the second half portions.

'Pokkiri Raaja' is made in a masala entertainer format, where you have got three songs and six fights mixed with some comedy sequences. Jassie Gift gave some good fast numbers, as per the mood (they reminds us of the hit tamil songs from 'Pokkiri', 'Dhool', 'Ayya' etc). The hit duet song 'Manikkinaavin...' by Yesudas-Sujatha must have been included in the film. Songs have been neatly choreographed by Shobi ('Priyanu Mathram... fame). He has been successful in making Mammootty dancing (without vulgarity) in the club song. Swetha Menon finds very difficult to dance in the first song with her 'heavy' body language. Rajamani gave the bg score in his usual style only (he might be fast in delivering the output, but his work is not attractive most of the times). Fights by Kanal Kannan and Mafia Sasi are good. In some shots, the carpets on the floor, for the fighters to fall, are evident; i don't know who among the two stunt masters, is the culprit.

The father character done by Nedumudi Venu and the dialogues by him in many parts felt like a cliche. Just before the introduction of Prithviraj, his uncle (Vijayaraghavan) makes a big 'dramatic' laughing, to praise the former character, which should have been avoided. The childhood scenes of the heroes had got resemblance with films written by Benny P.Nayarambalam, like 'Raajamaanikyam' and 'Annan Thambi'. The character of Sidhiq has got the shades of his own role in the film 'July 4', by Joshi with the same wri
ters. The comedy scenes of Suraaj Venjaramood is repetitive, Salim Kumar's character is having more scope to create laughing situations, which is not done well. The introduction of hero's god father character (Charan Raaj), 'coming out of a luxury car with a gun in white outfits', is not an attractive sight. As the story tells, when calculated the age, Mammootty is in his late 30's; it should have been avoided by generalizing the period, in place of specifying the correct year count !

Mammootty's dialogue delivery using 'negative' English dialogues are good. Though Prithviraj got a chance to show his heroism in the first half, he is being dominated by the title character to a great extend, in the later portions. Dialogues in the combination scenes of both the heroes are also done well. The new direc
tor Vysakh had made his debut in a notable way by placing the most valuable stars in the industry, in an attractive manner.


We usually welcome many entertainers from other languages, so no need to hesitate in the case of 'Pokkiri Raaja', which can be a good time pass for this vacation days. Enjoy it with the same mentality, as if you are watching a movie with Rajnikanth & Vijay combination...



Rating : 7.5 / 10

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Housefull

Medium : Hindi
Starring : Akshay Kumar, Ritesh Deshmukh, Arjun Rampal, Bomman Irani, Deepika Padukone, Lara Dutta, Jiah Khan
Director : Sajid Khan
Music : Shankar Ehsaan Loy, Sandep Chowta (bg)


Akshay Kumar is not enjoying successful days, as some of his recent projects like 'Blue', 'De Dena Dun', 'Kambaqt Is
hq', '8 X 10 Tasweer', 'Chandni Chauk To China' etc bombed at the box office. Now he has once again chosen a comedy subject (with Ritesh Deshmukh as his partner), named 'Housefull'. It is directed by Sajid Khan ('Hey Baby' fame), the younger brother of choreographer turned director Farah Khan. Sajid Nadiadwala, the producer has also got the credit of the story of this film. It is shot in the foreign locations of London and Italy.

Aarush (Akshay Kumar), finds himself as an unlucky person. Due to this, his lover leaves him. Being frustrated, he
reaches the house of his friend Bob (Ritesh Deshmukh), who stays with his wife (Lara Dutta). Bob took his friend to his work place and met the owner (Randhir Kapoor). Aarush is being impressed by the rich man and he decided to arrange his daughter's (Jiah Khan) marriage with the former. Marriage happens, but his wife went to her old lover soon, leaving Aarush. At this time, Sandy (Deepika Padukone) arrives, hearing the tragic story of Aarush, she started loving him. Bob's father-in-law (Bomman Irani) reaches abroad to see his daughter's baby. He misunderstands Aarush as his son-in-law. At the same time, Sandy's brother (Arjun Rampal) visited them to arrange her sister's marriage with Aarush. The first lover of Aarush, who left him, happened to be the elder sister of Sandy. There starts the cat and mouse game and how Aarush and Bob manages the situation, is the theme of 'Housefull'.

Though 'House
full' is shown as a comedy subject, you don't experience big laughing here. The similar situations has been told many times in the past through films like 'All The Best', 'Hey Baby', 'No Entry', 'Garam Masala', 'De Dena Dun', 'Kaathala Kaathala' (T) etc. The confusions and misunderstandings along with the hiring of house, baby, lovers etc are the same in almost all the projects.

The first half of 'Housefull' contains many intolerable and amateur scenes. The confusions and the comic scene happening in the road in the beginning, as a result of the lover leaving the hero is not created realistically (It is shown well by Priyadarshan many times), The way in which the hero destroying the whole room using vacuum cleaner and the behavior of the the friends, affected by electric shock, shows the non professionalism of the creator. Bob's father-in-law being beaten by his mother is another area of childishness. The relevance of tiger inside the house is not communicated properly. Chunkey Pandey, who comes as the hotel owner gave a horrible performance and the scene in which he invites the media to watch the suicide of the hero is another area of wastage of time. The reason told for telling lies by all the characters are too repetitive. The lie detector equipment used by the military officer looks like a toy only and last but not the least, the climax created in Buckingham palace, where the crowd along with the Queen laughing as an effect of the nitrous oxide gas, exceeds the limit of tolerance.

Akshay Kum
ar did his role in his style. Ritesh Deshmukh is over acting in many areas. Arjun Rampal is serious. Deepika Padukone and Lara Dutta are charming in their outfits. Music directors Shankar Ehsaan Loy gave some fast songs. Cinematography by Vikas Sivaraman is colorful. Songs has been glamorously choreographed by Fara Khan.

The movie 'Housefull' is colorful, but it can't create a house full environment in the theaters as it is not having that much realistic laughing situations as you expect.


Rating : 4.5 / 10