Sunday, October 31, 2010

Crank : High Voltage

Medium : English
Starring : Jason Statham, Amy Smart
Directors : Mark Neveldine, Brian Taylor

Most of the hollywood actors who are notable by doing hero oriented roles are ready to do negative roles at the same time. Jason Statham, is one such actor. You will be seeing him as a hero in 'The Transporter' series and 'Death Race', he will be doing supporting characters in 'The Italian Job', 'The Expendables', 'The One', 'The Bank Job' etc and at the same time he comes in a negative appearance in 'Cellular'. He had got a new release in lead role, 'Crank : High Voltage'. This action thriller is the sequel of 'Crank', that got released almost 4 years ago. It was heard that the new movie opens at the same point where the old version ended.

In the beginning Chelios (Jason Statham) is shown falling to the top of a car from a helicopter at height. Soon he is being removed from the place by a Chinese team. He has been attended by a group of doctors and they conducts a surgery, his heart is removed and replaced with an artificial one with batteries and wires. When he came to know that the team is planning to remove some other organ from his body, he escapes from the scene. On an action sequence, Chelios lost his artificial charger setup, he is contacting his friend through phone, who is giving him the necessary advice to stay alive. Chelios is in the news now, police is also chasing him and how he finds the gang leader, forms the rest of the story, told in an action packed manner.

The way in which Chelios charging the body, reminds us of the similar sequence in the tamil movie 'Enthiran', which is now a massive hit around the world. Though Jason Statham did the role in his style, the theme of 'Crank : High Voltage' is not a convincing one. The hero touching the high voltage electrical line is getting charged, nothing happens to him, which is shown as a thing far from logic. Only thing that can attract you is the high voltage action sequence. The television news visuals never felt realistic. The majority of the dialogues are filled with double meaning and bad words. The scenes at the pub, health club, horse race etc are vulgar as per the situation and thus the movie is not advisable for kids. The cartoon type representation for the fight scene at the power house is not a good custom. The climax fight has got an utter chaos and confusion, such an end for the story is not an acceptable one; it looks like the team behind wants to make another sequel using this theme.

Those who have watched the first version 'Crank' or a hard core fan of Jason Statham can try 'Crank : High Voltage'; others don't waste your precious time for a movie that has got an unbelievable theme.

Rating : 4.5 / 10

Friday, October 29, 2010

Four Friends

Medium : Malayalam
Starring : Kamalhassan (guest role), Jayaram, Jayasurya, Kunjakko Boban, Meera Jasmin
Director : Saji Surendran
Music : M.Jayachandran

After a couple of hits like 'Ivar Vivahithaaraayal' and 'Happy Husbands', the same team (director Saji Surendran & his associates, script writer Krishna Poojappura, cinematographer Anil Nair, editor Manoj, art director Sujith Raghav, music director M.Jayachandran, choreographer Prasanna, still photographer Mahadevan Thambi etc), once again joined together for a new venture named 'Four Friends'. Jayaram, Kunjakko Boban and Meera Jasmin are doing the lead roles with Jayasurya who was also a common factor in the previous projects. The notable thing regarding this project is that 'Universal Hero' Kamalhassan did a special appearance in malayalam after 'Chaanakyan', breaking a gap of more than 20years.

The movie starts with a song, 'Yeh Dosti...' (remake from 'Sholay), showing the friendship of Roy (Jayaram), Soorya (Kunjakko Boban) and Ameer (Jayasurya). They are reaching airport for a trip to Malaysia. They are waiting for their another companion Gauri (Meera Jasmin) to arrive. In the mean time, their past, the way in which their friendship started, the motive of their journey etc are shown through a flashback. What happened to each of them and how they are prepared to face the life boldly forms the main theme of the story that are shown in the second half portions at abroad.

Unlike from the earlier movies, the presentation of the movie is different; Though 'Happy Husbands' was filled with humour oriented situations, here the story is more sentimental. In the beginning portions itself the problems are revealed, which later takes us to a sentimental journey till end. It shouldn't have done like that, there has to be a suspense element kept for the viewers to stay there. In this decade, you can't expect the people to enjoy a movie made like 'Thaniyavarthanam' or 'Aakashadoothu'. We can't blame the viewers, they are clever enough to identify that the incidents shown in the movies are real, but they don't want to see as it is through an entertainment medium. If the team behind is too particular about taking such a team, then they should tackle such a situation by presenting it differently, here the creators have failed on such a part.

I strongly argued with those people who says that the first two movies of Saji Surendran looks like a tele serial; but here I felt in many situations, such a view point must be right. The situations involving the doctor (Ganesh Kumar) and Soorya's parents (Lalu Alex and Seema) are too dramatic. Most of the time, the dialogues used in the movie felt like narrations or statements. The scenes showing affection between Roy and Gauri, the sudden start of the song after a tense behaviour by Gauri, Salim Kumar's comedy, the lengthy action scene in abroad, chasing done by Gauri's brother (Manikkuttan) , the doctor 's wig, the temple episode etc are few areas carelessly handled here. In general, the overdoze of sentiments creats laughing and humorous sequences are not upto its standards. The bg score given by M.Jayachandran is too loud most of the time. The remix song used in the movie won't make any change.

Jayasurya in the beard appearance is serious and humorous also. Jayaram and Kunjakko Boban did well. The character given to Meera Jasmin suits her well. The visuals given by cinematographer Anil Nair is colorful. If editor Manoj wants to trim certain sad situations, it would be confusing for him to decide, where should he started. It is good to see that Saji Surendran has handled the lengthy and motivating scene by Kamalhassan in an excellent manner, which is the only highlight of the movie.

'Four Friends' is a serious attempt targeting ladies. The presentation of the movie in such a way, won't gives you an attractive sight...

Rating : 3.5 / 10

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Jhootha Hi Sahi

Medium : Hindi
Starring : John Abraham, Madhavan, Pakhi
Director : Abbas Tyrewala
Music : A.R.Rahman

After the hit movie 'Jaane Tu Yaa Jaane Na', director Abbas Tyrewala is back with his new movie with a different title like 'Jhootha Hi Sahi'. This time John Abraham is the hero and the director's wife, Pakhi has done the lead role. Madhavan, who is a multi lingual actor, has done a special appearance here. This is A.R.Rahman's next release after 'the talk of the town' project 'Yenthiran'.

Sidharth (John Abraham) is living in London. His cell number is accidentally printed on a suicide help line advertisement and thus he has to attend calls that is done by those people who were about to commit suicide and his job is to defend them from it by counseling through phone. One day, he gets a call from Mishka (Pakhi), he had made her understood the importance of living. At the same time Sidharth amd Mishka meets, he didn't tell her that he is the same guy on phone, he started loving her. His friends also gave full support. Kabir (Madhavan) is Mishka's ex-lover and at Sidharth has got a lover also. What happens to the 'real' lovers, are shown in the end.

The situation in which the hero cheating the heroine through phone or vice versa, without revealing their identities has been told many times before, even in malayalam. The ending of such a scenario is always predictable. The friendship scenes and the combination involving the hero and his companions are shown humorously, many sequences has developed good laughing also. Such scenes which are filled with spontaneous jokes and the dialogues are most suitable for a multiplex movie or a television series. The situations involving the Chinese boy friend and his pregnant girl friend can felt too repetitive, their combination scene at the party hall should have been avoided. The way in which the hero saves a suicide is shown in an unbelievable way. The hero's cell number was printed by a mistake, but the organizers had not done anything to solve that, also the issue of suicide is shown as a common thing there (we don't know whether it is truly happening in London)!

The director who had created a good love story in his previous project, has failed completely on the scripting side, especially towards the end scenes. Mishka has left Kabir and reached Sidharth, while Sidharth has left Krithika to reach Mishka; On the second stage, Mishka left Sidharth to reach Kabir again and later she once again leaves Kabir to keep Sidharth, such confusions are shown seriously towards the end, which cannot be acceptable at any cost. The necessity for such a tension oriented oriented climax is also questionable.

John Abraham, with his minimum flexibility, tried to do the role well. Pakhi is not attractive. Madhavan has given an under rated character here. The artists who were coming as the companions of the hero, gave their best. The Songs by A.R.Rahman are below average only, the bg score is ok, after a good silence in the beginning portions.

Though 'Jhootha Hi Sahi' gives you small laughing situations here and there, the inclusion of many unrealistic incidents in the story line had polluted the whole environment.

Rating : 4 / 10

Monday, October 25, 2010

The Spy Next Door

Medium : English
Starring : Jackie Chan, Amber Valletta
Director : Brian Levant

In the childhood days itself, we were getting chance to watch English movies by Jackie Chan, most of of them being dubbed ones (from korean, chinese to english). Some of them will be releasing very late, may be by an year or two and a few of them will be coming with a different title. I still remember, on an occasion while watching a movie, a friend of mine shouted loudly that this is the same movie that got released before with a different title. Later such a situation changed when the distance between Hong Kong and Hollywood has been reduced to minimum and thus Asian stars like Jackie Chan started doing english movies also.

In the last decade, the big boom for the Jackie Chan projects are less and some of his movies like 'Myth', 'Around the World in 80 days' etc has not released here. In the modern technological period, the home videos of any world movies are available in our market and thus the viewers area able to watch a movie at the time of its release itself. The reason to tell such a fact is that Jackie Chan's new movie 'The Spy Next Door' got released in theaters this week. This has been released world wide around an year before and many months back itself I had watched it. It is to be noticed that the last movie by the hero, 'The Karate Kid' has caught attention here.

Bob (Jackie Chan) is a spy working for CIA, he is about to retire the official life. He wanted to lead a family life by marrying his neighbor (Amber Valletta). She has got three kids. They don't like her mother getting into an affair with Bob. Hence Bob is able to marry his girl friend only after getting an NOC from the kids. Bob is taking his last official mission to spy the Russian terrorist organization. Their leader is caught and now they are keen on taking revenge on Bob. At the mean time, Bob tries to get company with the kids and what happens to his family life and how he acts against the enemies are all told in the later portions of 'The Spy Next Door'.

The presentation of the movie had got an old look. It will feel like watching a movie in the 80's or early 90's. Jackie Chan movies are always notable for action and comedy sequences at its best, but here can't witness anything like that. The villain, his gang and their activities has never got a professional look. Most of the scenes shown on them are not new also. The kids have done well. Some of the combination scenes between the hero and the kid has got the flavor of the recent hindi movie 'We Are Family'. It is too sad to see that the presence of a legend like Jackie Chan has been wasted by the director and his crew.

No need to waste your time for 'The Spy Next Door', If you really want to see a Jackie Chan movie, please get a good dvd of any of his hits in the past and enjoy.

Rating : 4.5 / 10

Sunday, October 24, 2010


Medium : Malayalam
Starring : Suresh Gopi, Jagathi, Thilakan, P.Sreekumar, Navya Nair, Swetha Menon, Ambika
Director : Harikumar
Music : M.Jayachandran, Issac Kottukappally (bg score)

We have witnessed the controversies and the open fight that happened between directors Harikumar (jury member) and Sivan, after the announcement of national film awards recently. Harikumar, who is still notable as the director of 'Sukritham' (script by M.T.Vasudevan Nair), has come up with his latest movie, 'Sadhgamaya'. Shathrukhnan ('Niram', 'Ee Puzhayum Kadannu' fame) has written the script for the director's story. Sunny Joseph ('Piravi', 'Daya', 'Aanavaal Mothiram', 'Oru Cherupunchiri' fame) has handled the cinematography. Suresh Gopi comes in the lead role here; the previous movie by him for the same director, 'Paranju Theeratha Viseshangal', was not a hit. This is Navya Nair's last movie, before wearing her wedding ring.

The marriage of Yamuna (Navya Nair) is fixed and the arrangements has been started by her parents (P.Sreekumar, Ambika). One day she gets a letter from a known person requesting her to see him. Yamuna thus travels to that place, on the way she has got memories about her past. She was once a patient of Dr.Ravi Varman (Suresh Gopi), who helps her to get out of the mental disorder that happened in her life before. The flash back portions holds the majority of the story part and what happens to Ravi and Yamuna in their second meeting is shown towards the end of 'Sadhgamaya.

The story of the movie is good, but the incidents that covers the mental disorder portions won't be an attractive sight even if it is performed naturally, in any language. Navya Nair did well in such a role. Suresh Gopi's character is little bit eccentric and hence he took the liberty to over act in many portions. The dialogues in the beginning portions, especially the repetition of putting names in the wedding card, is not good. The behavior of the father, when the girl reaches her house with the doctor felt dramatic (it has got the flavor of a similar situation in the movie 'Sukritham'). The voice given to the lecturer at the class is not an apt one; the play portion shown as the continuation of the scene is a lengthy one. The finding of the root cause of the disease and its solution is not presented in a believable way. The romantic song featuring Ravi and his wife (Swetha Menon) must be placed to attract the crowd. The climax of the movie is ok.

As it has to be, no gimmicks has been done on the visual side by the cinematographer Sunny Joseph. Ajith Kumar is the editor. Songs by M.Jayachandran are not the best. Issac Kottukappally has given an excellent bg score in his style, the violin bit adapted from Ilayaraja's old musical album 'How To Name It', has suited the situation well.

The one line story of 'Sadhgamaya', that discusses the mind disorder and its impact, might be good; but the presentation of the movie is not good enough to attract you.

Rating : 3.5 / 10

Friday, October 22, 2010

Cock Tail

Medium : Malayalam
Starring : Jayasurya, Anoop Menon, Samvritha Sunil
Director : Arun Kumar
Music : Alphonse, Ratheesh Vega (bg score also)

We are usually hearing complaints regarding the non availability of new subjects, new technicians, new artists etc related to the malayalam movie industry. In the process of a much awaited youthful trend happening here, a new director has made his debut. After traveling as an editor companion with Priyadarshan for around 20 movies and also with the immense experience got through working for various projects like 'Ivar', 'Sound of Boot', 'Sesham', 'Seetha Kalyanam' etc, Arun Kumar has entered the direction field. The name of the movie is 'Cock Tail', It has got Jayasurya, Anoop Menon and Samvritha Sunil in lead roles. 'Cock Tail' is released with in a week's gap when Priyan's latest hindi movie 'Aakrosh' is also in the theaters; it is a coincidence that both movies were edited by Arun.

Pradeep Nair (former associate to Santhosh Sivan), who has worked for Jayasurya movie 'Nallavan', is the cinematographer. The story and screenplay is given by Shyam Menon. Anoop Menon, who has got experience as the script writer of 'Pakal Nakshatrangal', has written the dialogues for this movie. Alphonse gave a couple of songs and the duet number 'Neeyaam Thanalinu...' is composed by new comer Ratheesh Vega, who has also given the bg score for the movie. Milan Jaleel, who gave movies like 'Happy Husbands', 'Thuruppugulaan', 'Ben Johnson' etc is the producer.

Ravi Abraham (Anoop Menon) is working in a construction company. He has got a wife Parvathi (Samvritha Sunil) and kid. He is having ambitions about their family's future and is working hard for achieving it. On an usual day, the couple happened to meet Ambi (Jayasurya) which later lead to a series of incidents in their life and thus goes the thrilling journey of 'Cock Tail'.

The new director has presented the movie straightly, without much gimmicks and wasted comedies. Though some of the scenes in the beginning were slow paced with small dramatic shots, once the story starts rolling the required tempo is attained. An item song, though matching the situation, is apt for a bollywood culture. The story is happening in Cochin, but the foolishness of showing the board of a beverages shop with the Trivandrum address in a certain shot should have been avoided.

Pradeep Nair's camera work is good. Shyam Menon's screenplay based on some realistic incidents is good. Anoop Menon's dialogues felt realistic and he has performed well to fit the role. Jayasurya, with an unusual appearance has given a variety style of acting. Samvritha Sunil is good, but some where I doubted whether the role is heavy for her to handle. Music director Ratheesh Vega gave an immense support for the visuals with an excellent bg score, the song composed by him has got a different flavor. He had proved himself in editing area before, now 'Cock Tail', bearing an unusual theme showed that Arun Kumar is on the way to become a promising name in the direction side also. The story adapted from the foreign film 'Butterfly on a Wheel', is very relevant in the current period.

'Cock Tail' is a good suspense family thriller. We should welcome attempts like this, to encourage more productions with different themes in future...

Rating : 7.5 / 10

Monday, October 18, 2010


Medium : Hindi
Starring : Ajay Devgan, Akshay Khanna, Paresh Rawal, Bipasha Basu, Reema Sen
Director : Priyadarshan
Music : Pritam, Ouseppacham (bg score)

A couple of months ago, I happened to see an unusual promotional trailer of a hindi movie as a coming attraction. The visuals in the movie titled 'Aakrosh', showed that it is a village based action subject and seeing Priyadarshan's name in the creator's credit was also an unbelievable one. Also I didn't heard any malayalam project's name as the story base for this new venture. Ajay Devgan and Bipasha Basu comes to the Priyan camp for the first time. LIke last couple of movies, Ouseppachan did the bg score. Tiru is the cinematographer. The movie is based on a true incident which happened in a north indian village in the past, the movie was in the news before its release as the censor board has ordered for some cuts for the controversial dialogues. Robin Bhatt and Akash Khurrana has written the screenplay for the movie.

Three students from Delhi were missing, since two months as there is no information, the central government has ordered for an enquiry. The CBI officers Sidharth (Akshay Khanna) and Pratap (Ajay Devgan) reaches the Jhanjar town for an investigation. The local police and the government officials were not willing to support them. They came across the police officer (Paresh Rawal), the village lady (Reema Sen) and even happened to see Prathap's ex-lover (Bipasha Basu). How the officers solves the case in the middle of a tensed situation, is told in a serious manner in 'Aakrosh'.

Priyadarshan has given a different serious approach on the presentation side here. His boldness to take the issue of caste system that still exists in the north indian villages as the theme should be praised. The action mood necessary for such a story is given by cinematographer Tiru through his visuals and the grading style used is suited well. Ouseppachan gave a good backing with an excellent bg score. The action sequences, especially the chasing shots are neatly executed with the help of Thyagarajan and Yadav. The frames have been neatly edited by Arun Kumar (he is looking forward to the release of his debut directorial venture in malayalam, 'Cock Tail' this week). The art work done by Sabu Cyril is also good.

Ajay Devgan and Akshay Khanna have done their job well. Paresh Rawal, who is seen as a humorous person in the director's previous projects, has done his serious role in an attractive manner.

Some of the situations here has got the flavor of movies by directors like Prakash Jha and Vishal Bharadwaj. A couple of songs (including an item song by Sameera Reddy) has affected the flow of the story. The channel name is missing in the tv visuals shown in the beginning, which should have been noticed. The anti climax happening is good, but should have been more realistic.

'Aakrosh', based on some real incidents, is an investigation thriller by Priyadarshan presented in a different style.

Rating : 7.5 / 10

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Knock Out

Medium : Hindi
Starring : Sanjay Dutt, Irfan Khan, Gulshan Grover, Sushanth Singh, Kangana Ranaut
Director : Manishankar
Music : Gauravdas Gupta, Atul Raninga and Sanjay Wandrekar (bg score)

It is time for another remake subject in hindi. The new bollywood movie 'Knock Out' is adapted from the english movie 'Phone Booth' starring Colin Farrell, Kiefer Sutherland etc. The hindi version is directed by Manishankar, who gave movies like 'Rudraksh', '16 December', 'Tango Charlie' and 'Mukhbhiir'. Noen of them were hits and the director might have tried his luck this time, by remaking a psychological thriller from hollywood which happened in the beginning of this decade. It is produced by notable producer Ronnie Srewvala for UTV.

Tony Khosla (Irfan Khan) is an investment banker who lives with his wife and daughter. In a busy day, he reaches a public telephone booth to make some calls. As he was about to leave, the phone rings and the anonymous caller (Sanjay Dutt) on the other end tells him that he has got a gun which is right now pointed on Tony's head. To make belief, a couple of shots were even fired. The situation became tensed, thus a large crowd, police and the media gathered. The caller had told his demands and the situation forced Tony to act according to the instructions without leaving the phone booth. What were his demands and what Tony did are all shown in the rest of the portions.

A couple of months before, when I heard that 'Phone Booth' is going to be made in hindi as 'Knock Out', I doubted the possibility of a carbon copy happening here. The beauty and thrill of the english version is due to the fact that the caller is not shown till the end. In the remake, it all happened as I expected. In the beginning itself, the caller is shown as Sanjay Dutt and he is taking a revenge using Irfan Khan's character. Unlike from the original version, the character of Irfan khan is lacking a real identity. The impolite and dominating act by the person (Colin Farrell) just before entering the phone booth was good enough to justify the incidents that follows later, in the case of 'Phone Booth'.

The director had also not worked properly on the scripting side. Such a big incident that caused great media attention is only guarded by a small police team headed by an inspector (Sushanth Singh). The team is also shown as a watch men most of the time, such things should have been avoided. The transfer of an enormous amount of money while in the middle of a shoot-outs is not an unbelievable one. The happy reaction of the crowds hearing the good news through TV is also not an attractive sight. The continuity of the dialogue flow is broken at times. Some of the sequences involving Sanjay Dutt's character reminds us of the movie 'A Wednesday'.

Sanjay Dutt has done an excellent job, it is he who really drives the story which makes the audience in a curious mood. Irfan Khan and Kangan Ranaut, who are usually notable for stealing the shows, has not given their 100% on the performance side. Cinematographer Nataraj Subramanyam ('Love Aaj Kal', 'Jab We Met', 'Lafangey Parindey' fame) has given colorful visuals. Editor Chandan Arora has done his job well. The bg score given by Atul Raninga and Sanjay Wandrekar is good. Director Manishankar should have done more homework to make his job a prominet one.

Don't go for 'Knock Out' with an impression to see a thriller like 'Phone Booth'. It is good to get a dvd of the original version; if you can't, then you can try this remake version.

Rating : 6 / 10

Friday, October 15, 2010


Medium : Malayalam
Starring : Prithviraj, Prakash Raj, Lal, Salim Kumar, Mamta Mohandas
Director : Amal Neerad
Music : Gopi Sundar

First it was Mammootty who gave him the chance to direct a movie, thus 'Big B' happened; Later, Mohanlal decided to use his potential for a movie having the continuation his notable character Saagar (from 'Irupathaam Noottaandu'), through an action subject named 'Saagar Alias Jacky' and that too leaving K.Madhu, who directed the previous version. He is none other than Amal Neerad, a film institute product who began his career with Ram Gopal Varma (in 'James' and 'Siva') as a cinematographer. Though the movies he took were not super hits, the ace director was successful in proving his technical brilliance through the different presentation style. Now it is his turn to direct the young star Prithviraj in 'Anwar'. National award winner Prakash Raj is doing a role here, after 'Paandippada'. Mamta Mohandas, who is pairing with Prithvi for the first time, is the heroine. She has worked with the same director in 'Big B' before.

The movie opens with a bomb blast happening in Coimbatore. The investigation officer (Prakash Raj) has arrested many suspects, Kasim Bhai (Lal) and his gang were also among them. They were remanded and sent to jail. At the same time, Anwar (Prithviraj) who is caught by police in some other case, reached the same jail. It later lead to a good relationship between Anwar and Bhai, thus goes the story of 'Anwar'.

Different from the previous movies by Amal Neerad, here you have got a story to point out. But it is not a new one, it is same as every such stories based on terrorist attacks goes. The visuals are rich, but they are not colorful due to the yellowish tone used for the frames to give a hard feel. The over doze of color correction effects are evident in the climax. The director had added the dialogues and the incidents needed for such a theme in a realistic way, but they won't be an attractive sight for the audience. We have seen similar themes successfully done before in movies like 'Bombay', 'Fanaa', 'Kurbaan', 'Khadgam' (tel), 'Vedam' (tel) and in a different lovable manner in an excellent movie hindi like 'A Wenesday'. 'Anwar' can't be included in that group.

Prithviraj has done well; the dilaogue writers (Unni.R and Sajeevan) had even added some dialogues that points out the hero's original character. Prakash Raj is as usual rocking. Lal is also suited well in a notable character. Mamta doesn't have a big role to do.

Cinematographer Satheesh Kurup had done an excellent job, likewise editor Vivek Harshan. Music director Gopi Sundar had given some hit numbers, the bg score in his style also goes with the movie. The couple of hit songs in the movie happens in the second half, but within an interval of around 3-4 minutes, which should have been avoided. The visuals in the post climax song, sung by Prithvi and Mamta could have been made more attractive (but as the audience are not satisfied so far, the effort would be neglected). Anal Arasu had given some thrilling action scenes. But he should keep extra care while using floor mats for the extra artists to fell down, this is because in the slow motion shots, such carpets are clearly evident in many areas. The continuity of the hero's appearance is lost in some areas, which should have been noticed by the director's assistants.

'Anwar', that discusses the controversial subject of terror attacks and its after effects, is technically ok and the story is also acceptable; but as a whole, the atmosphere won't guarantee you an entertainment or give you a good satisfaction as expected.

Rating : 5.5 / 10

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Medium : Hindi
Starring : Imran Hashmi, Neha Sharma, Arjan Bajwa, Gulshan Grover
Director : Mohit Suri
Music : Pritam, Joash Mondal

Mukesh Bhatt, brother of director Mahesh Bhatt and producer of some of the bollywood movies like 'Murder', 'Gangster', 'Zeher', 'Footpath', 'Raaz', 'Criminal', 'Aashiqui' etc has come up with his latest movie, 'Crook'. Even in the middle of the romantic environment created in hindi by teams like Yash Chopra, Karan Johar etc; Bhatt's movies stands notable as most of them are romantic action thrillers. Since 'Crook' is directed by Mohit Suri ('Zeher', 'Kalyug', 'Woh Lamhe', 'Awarapan' and 'Raaz 2' fame) with the lover guy Imran Hashmi in the lead role, the interest will be more. Neha Sharma, who got introduced through the telugu movie 'Chirutha' by Ram Charan Teja (Chiranjeevi's son), has done the heroine role in 'Crook'.

The hero (Imran Hashmi), who was involved with some illegal activities like movie piracy business, reached Australia with a different name and identity as per request from his uncle, who is a police officer (Gulshan Grover). There he met a radio jockey (Neha Sharma) and soon their relationship developed into an affair. Her brother (Arjan Bajwa) doesn't like this. At this time, some of the issues of racism started there and as a result some attacks are happening on the Indians. The hero is not interfering in such activities and he is behaving as a spectator when such an incident is happening. What happens to all such characters are shown in the later portions.

Though the director had tried to show the critical issue of racism happened in Australia recently, he had failed badly on the presentation side. I can't believe that such a creativity comes from Mohit Suri who gave some notable movies in the past. The romance between the hero and heroine, the hero's positive approach towards the foreign girl, the attitude of the heroine's brother, the flash back portions and the cause of heroine's sister's death, the scene involving the racism, the rally and the protest talk on the controversial issue, the sequences of the bachelors house where hero stays, the 'goldie' character, the scene s involving the police officers, the climax etc are some of the areas that are done in an unprofessional and unrealistic way. The only good scene is the opening one in which the hero takes a pirated video of a movie in his mobile inside a theater. The songs are happening at unwanted situations. Imran Hashmi and Neha Sharma were also not impressive. Arjan Bajwa is over acting, it is a question whether his role is a villain or a positive one.

'Crook' is an example of a worst movie which happened in bollywood in the recent past. The promotional posters of the movie says 'It is good to be bad'; it gives us an impression that the creators were ready to accept the outcome, well in advance...

Rating : 2 / 10

Saturday, October 9, 2010


Medium : Malayalam
Starring : Indrajith, Kalabhavan Mani, Sreejith Ravi, Samvritha Sunil, Sarayoo
Director : Sajeevann
Music : Rahul Raj

Though Indrajith's previous venture in the hero role 'Naayakan' created a hype and has got a good responses, it was not a commercial hit. Now he has done another movie in the lead role, named 'Chekavar'. It is directed by Sajeevann (probably a new comer). Samvritha Sunil and Sarayoo ('Kappalu Muthalaali', 'Inganeyum Oraal' fame) are coming as heroines. Indrajith did the role of a Sub Inspector here. Sujith Vasudev, a former associate to Raajaratnam, is the cinematographer. Rahul Raj has given the music.

Kaasinathan (Indrajith), who belongs to a brahmin family is an honest soft-hearted cop. His sister (Sarayoo) is studying for MBBS. He is in love with his uncle's daughter (Samvritha Sunil). Due to a political case involved by his brother (Suraaj Venjarammood), he got transfer to a farther place. On the joining date itself, he has acted against Raghavan (Kalabhavan Mani), a highly influential gang leader who runs the city. At another occasion, Kaasi fighted against Rocky (Sreejith Ravi), a notorious criminal who in turn is Raghavan's brother.
Rocky decided to destroy Kaasi's family and how the latter one tackles such a situation is told in the remaining portions of 'Chekavar'.

The theme is n
ot new. the villainism and the associated things are told many times before. The smoothness in the story flow is affected when the second villain Sreejith Ravi's character is appeared. He is shown as a drug addict and rapist, who is willing to do such criminal activities even in the police station itself. It is considered as a cinematic thing only. The scenes involving Rocky especially the close up shots felt too lagging. Editor Samjith would have been helpless, as he don't want to trim such shots that can affect the current total duration of the movie too badly (as it is around 1hr30mnts only). More importance given to the villain character can sometimes make you restless. The family scenes in the first half felt dramatic in many areas, especially those involving female characters. The political meeting and Janardhanan's role as an old 'gandhian' (with such an appearance) felt unrealistic. The beginning few scenes needs more crisp editing as the separation between two camera angles are revealed in such portions. The relevance in giving such an end for the story is not good.

Indrajith is ok. Sarayoo is good. Samvritha doesn't have much to perform other than giving company for her co-artists. Suraaj Venjarammood comes in a serious role in the second half, but he tries to crack some jokes in his beginning scenes, which is not effective. Shobi Thilakan's voice felt too heavy for Sreejith Ravi sometimes. Cinematography by Sujith Vasudev is colorful. The 'sivarathri' day at Aluva is captured in a wide canvas, like never happened in any other movie before. Anal Arasu had given some fast action scenes. Rahul Raj's bg score is good. Though technically good, director Sajeevann's attempt won't be rated on top, as the base ingredients here are not the best.

An action subject executed in a neat way is good to watch, but 'Chekavar' can't be included in such a list.

Rating : 4 / 10

Friday, October 8, 2010

Oridathoru Postman

Medium : Malayalam
Starring : Kunjakko Boban, Sarath Kumar, Innocent, Kalabhavan Mani, Meera Nandan

Direction : Shaji Azeez

Music : Mohan Sitara

The 'Enthiran' hangover is still there, but after a gap of two weeks, a new malayalam movie got
released. The title is 'Oridathoru Postman'. Kunjakko Boban, who is enjoying the success in his second arrival through movies like 'Mummy & Me', 'Sakudumbam Shyamala', 'Elsamma Enna Aankutty', once again comes in the lead role. Innocent comes in a notable character as his father. After getting many positive responses in 'Kerala Varma Pazhassiraaja', Sarath Kumar once again did a special appearance. The director-duo Shaiju-Shaji who has done 'Shakespeare M.A. Malayalam' got separated and now Shaji Azeez has independently directed 'Oridathoru Postman'. His story is being scripted by Gireesh Kumar who has written many Jayaram projects like 'Veruthe Oru Bharya', 'Samastha Keralam P.O.', 'Alice In Wonderland', 'Amritham' etc in the past.

Raghu (Kunjakko Boban) is living with his father, who is a post man. Raghu's ambition is to get a government job. His father is too irregular and careless in the official activities. Most of the time, the son is trying the level best to mould his father as a disciplined personality. Raghu is teaching in a parallel college
, his student Usha (Meera Nandan) is in love with him. At one stage, his father got ill and is admitted to a hospital. Raghu came to know about Yasim Mubarak (Sarath Kumar), a wild life photographer, from his father. Raghu decided to go in search of Yasim as per his father's request, thus goes the story of 'Oridathoru Postman'.

The action sce
ne in the beginning scene is an unwanted one. The foot ball tournament scene and its dialogue featuring Innocent felt lengthy and boring. Ibrahimkutty is shown as a rich person who is addicted to lottery; his appearance in different vehicles felt too unrealistic. Salim Kumar is having good knowledge about the lucky draw procedure happening in the lottery, even then he is shown as an addict, which cannot be justified. Suraaj Venjarammood is placed to create laughing, the letter scene with the lady is the last way for that by the creators. Kalabhavan Mani is not suited well in the inspector role here. The hero finding out Yasim's character without any address should be treated as a cinematic magic. The script writer has not given a solution for the controversies regarding the Yasim's character and the associated incidents. The anti climax scenes are done in a cinematic way only. On some areas, the combination sequences between father and son reminds of the movie 'Ishtam'.

The three male solo songs, the first of its kind in a malayalam movie in the recent past, is only below average. The last songs and its visuals felt unnecessary. Mohan Sitara's bg score is repetitive in many areas, especially the title sequence. Run Ravi has given the action scenes in old style only. The title graphics on letters has go a colorful look. Director Shaji Azeez has got a long way to go, but he can be proud that he has raised the standard compared to the previous project 'Shakespeare M.A...' Though script writer Gireesh Kumar got problems in handling the hero's character in 'Veruthe Oru Bharya' during the second half, he got a victory there. It caused him to become more lazy in the case of 'Oridathoru Postman'. Anand Balakrishnan is the cinematographer and V.Saajan is the editor.

The hair style given to Kunjakko Boban is not good, it would have been natural, if the character is shown a person who has done hair fixing. Sarath Kumar's role (in Shobi Thilakan's voice) will help him to count one more malayalam movie to his credit and thus to get his admission to AMMA organization. Meera Nandan is coming on different occasions to show her deep affection towards the hero.

When got teased by Salim Kumar, a tamilian character in the movie says, malayalees are good for nothing, they are relying on tamil nadu for food, clothes, even for good movies and in the end they acts against them. It is good to see that the creators are aware of such a thing related to the movie industry...

'Oridathoru Postman' tried to discuss some story filled with many incidents; as the end product didn't reached the expected level, it is not a recommended one.

Rating : 4.5 / 10

Friday, October 1, 2010


Medium : Tamil
Starring : Rajinikanth, Aiswarya Rai, Danny Denzongpa, Santhanam, Karunaas

Director : Shankar

Music : A.R.Rahman

In the last two decades, the real super star of the Indian industry, Rajinikanth h
as given chance to very few technicians to direct his movies on more than one occasions, they are Suresh Krishna ('Annamalai', 'Veera, 'Basha', 'Baba'), P.Vasu ('Mannan', 'Chandramukhi') and K.S.Ravikumar ('Muthu', 'Padaiyappa'). Now director Shankar also joins them through the actor's previous venture 'Shivaji - The Boss' and 'Enthiran', the costliest movie ever made in the country. Mega distribution banner Sun Pictures has entered the production side through this movie which is made in a heavy budget of about 150crores and the shooting of the movie happened for about two and a half years.

'Enthiran' was titled 'Robo' previously and it was a project planned by Shankar with Kamalhassan in the lead role, after 'Indian'. It didn't worked out and later it was heard that the movie will be made with Shahrukh Khan in hindi. Any way after impressed by the results of 'Shivaji - The Boss', Rajinikanth has given hit maker Shankar, an immediate chance to work with him and thus came 'Yenthiran' (the change in title is done to as per the regionalism issue in giving names).

Since many years, Rajinikanth has been trying to make Aiswarya Rai as his heroine. Now only he is getting the chance to act opposite the former miss world. She worked with Shankar for 'Jeans' previously. As Amitabh Bachan didn't agreed to do a negative role, the director's search for a new face ended up in the hindi actor Danny Denzongpa. Different from the usual setup, Santhanam and Karunaas are given the option to maintain the comedy track. Rathnavelu, who gave an excellent work in movies like 'Vaaranam Aayiram', 'Nanda', 'Sethu', 'Jagadam' (telugu) and 'Cyanide' (kannada), is the cinematographer. Director's favorite editor Anthony is in charge of the cuts. Shankar's usual companion (except for 'Annyan'), A.R.Rahman, is the music director. Starting from 'Gentleman', this is director Shankar's 10th film in his career, along with him late writer Sujatha and Karky got credits in the writer's list. Oscar winner Resool Pookkutty, Arun Varma etc has worked in the sound designing team. Choreographers inculude Prabhu Deva, Raju Sundaram, Remo, Shobi etc.

Vaseegaran (Rajinikanth) is a scientist who is developing a robot, who is capable to do
anything. The robot is named Chitti (Rajinikanth). Chitti will be acting as per instructions of his boss. Sana (Aiswarya Rai) is Vaseegaran's lover. She is also impressed by the performance of Chitti, on one occasion he is helping her from a dangerous situation. Vaseegaran wants to use Chitti for the development of the human kind through the scientific and atomic research activities. The professor (Danny Denzongpa) is not ready to give a clean chit for the research on Chitti, as he was having some other plans. What happens to Vaseegaran and Chitti, forms the rest of the story.

'Enthiran' has got visual effects and computer graphics sequences in its extreme. The robotics and the motion capture techniques has been used in the best way it can. Shankar has done double role sequences effectively in 'Jeans', here it is shown in a more standard style. Legacy Effects, along with other companies who worked for many hollywood movies has done their part here in a first class way. Cinematographer Rathnavelu should be given good credits for showing visuals that requires the maximum chroma shots. Editor Anthony did his part well. Songs by A.R.Rahman are peppy, but it is not so attractive as Shankar's previous ventures, his bg score goes with the mood. The visuals in the songs are rich and colorful. Peter Heins and Yuen Wo Ping had given some fast and destructive action scenes. Sabu Cyril's art work, especially for interior lab portions has got a hollywood look.

This is an out and out Rajinikanth movie, without any punch dialogues. He is rocking in different roles in his style. Aiswarya Rai also did well. Shankar has tried something different on the story side. We can't see the usual political villains or the bribe issues here, but the movie has got the signature of 'S' in it. The first half is more interesting, the second half lags a little here and there, the mosquito episode is lengthy, the situation created for 'kilimanjaro...' song felt deliberate. The scenes leading to the climax is filled with computer graphics to its maximum and they are shown as a total destruction, it can be accepted as the theme demands it, the different style attacking techniques used there enhances the brilliance of the director and it must be the costliest part of the project.

We are ready to accept anything unbelievable, shown in hollywood movies. So, after watching 'Enthiran', please don't ask foolish questions like how is it possible, is that right, do that happen etc. It is a science fiction - fantasy subject and the hero Rajinikanth is a robot, anything is possible and more over the presentation is realistic using the modern technological methods...

'Enthiran' is an extravaganza entertainer by Rajinikanth in Shankar's style, made by the immense support of Sun Pictures. You should watch it (in theaters) to witness the extreme visual effects treat never happened in an Indian movie before.

Rating : 8 / 10