Kuselan – Review

Here is the Review that I posted as a comment here: http://www.cinereviews.in/kuselan/

A movie that most people will enjoy. Rajini appears in a few crucial scenes and excels in those.

Most people would probably know about the story, so I am not going to elaborate on that. In a few words; The Movies is about two friends, one Rich and famous, while the other poor and struggling and how they end up meeting each other after a long time.Especially enjoyed the first part of the movie.It was very funny and went very fast for me.

I enjoyed the Soundtracks, they were very pleasant. Tamil movies have come a long way in using Graphical Effects in movies and you can see that making a big impact in this movie. Especially, loved the vibrant color that was draping all the scenes. The way the scenes were shot was a bit different, from the many movies that I had seen recently, most scenes were close ups of the actors and emphasized the theme of the movie: it is all about the people/relationships, nothing fancy or complicated in the story-line.

Santhanam and Vadivelu were great in their roles as comedians. Nayanthara was looking good.Sadly no real role for her in the movie. Certainly at-least one song (Nayan dancing in the rain) could have been avoided.

Meena as Pasupathy’s was looking great!

Pasupathy did an excellent job in the movie and was able to extract a lot of empathy through his portrayal as a struggling, but, righteous Barber. It is definitely HIS movie.My only problem is that Pasupathy – in-spite of his wonderful portrayal – is not getting the coverage that he deserves and all the limelight seems to be on Rajini.

Oh, well, hope the mainstream media tones down the hype that they attach with Rajini and move the focus towards Pasupathy, even Rajini would agree with that!

 

Cinema times

Been watching a lot of movies and my thoughts:

  1. Dream Girls – Some amazing performances, a stunning Beyonce and some stupendous choreography. A friend of mine went there half-asleep and came out fully awake.
  2. GURU – For all the expectations, was disappointed. The story was not convincing enough, but have to give it to Abishek on a great performance, was it better than the short but groovy  performance by Mallika?, that I have no answer for!
  3. Blood Diamond – The more I watch Leonardo act, the more I start to like him as an actor. A story touching a very delicate subject, thank God I do not ever remember using the precious stone(s).
  4. The Pursuit of Happyness – Not mightily impressed, do not know why. The story was good and so was the performance of the actors, but, I felt that  the story was a bit too heavy, maybe it was because I was tired even before I started watching the movie, then again, can’t I expect the movie to invigorate me?

Beauty with brains

I remember an episode in Seinfield where Newman uses this expression: “Beauty with Brains”. I don’t know if Kim Van Kooten has brains (of course, she does), but she can definitely act like a pro and yeah she is a beauty.

If u have got the time, watch the movie Phileine says sorry, a nice movie about a young lady following her love to NY.If you don’t mind some suggestive erotic scenes and if subtitles don’t repel u, the movie is guaranteed to to entertain you.

Did I say, she was attractive, well that was the whole point of posting this on my blog.

Post No- Well, who cares?

Memories of a Murder

[img] courtesy: http://www.nexbase.net/

One of the perks of living in the western world is that you get to experience a lot of cultures. A few days ago I was casually surfing through the TV channels and was glad that I did, for I saw this very nice Korean thriller Salinui chueok.A very interesting thriller (based on true incidents). If I were to say the story is about a serial killer (?) whose victims are mainly attractive young females, most will feel that this is just another film about a psychopath. My impression was along those lines when I read the tag line on the screen.Nevertheless I decided to watch as I had the time and also wished I could see some beautiful Korean actors. Not many beautiful female actors but I was struck by the believable characters and good acting of the leads. The pace of the movie was ideal, with many twists that would keep you guessing.Brilliant soundtrack (a Japanese music director for a Korean film!). Unlike many Crime/Murder/Thriller movies this movie thankfully had some humorous moments-even though it wouldn’t make you pour your guts out- but definitely does blend in with the whole movie. No wonder it was big hit in South Korea.

Lock stock and two smoking barrels

Another wonderful movie I got to see recently. The story revolves around 4 friends who also happen to be thugs. The movie is about how these friend end up owing about a million pounds to a bigger thug and how they try to pay him back. Lots of goof-ups, dead guys, laced with some nice dialogues. Humorous to the hilt!

Kung Fu Hustle

A action movie that I hugely enjoyed. Thanks to Hemanth. Some wonderful background music, what can I say? Wonderful, wonderful Comedy.

City of God/ Mudhal Mariyadhai

City of God

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I can’t say I ever wanted to be a gangster, maybe a lawyer, a scientist, etc…but no not a gangster.Well I ask myself did I ever want to be what I am, I can’t tell.My father is a banker, his father was a temple priest and I guess my ancestors were all priests.It’s highly unlikely that any of them were gangsters.Now I might get into a different profession someday and my descendants probably do something different (for a living) from their antecedents. Probably one of them is going to b a gangster. Point is a normal middle class Indian has a very little probability of being a Gangster.I guess it can be applied to middle class families around the globe. Take for instance Brazil and the colorful Rio, fernando meirelles confirms the point.But I do seem to like gangster movies like Nayagan, Godfather, Good fellas, Pattiyal, Pulp fiction and yeah City of God. Not to mention the gangster/mafia novels like The Sicilian, Fourth K, Omerta and a few others. If I were given a list of people and asked to pick the gangsters out of the list, my first step would to eliminate anyone under the age of 20. I would have been terribly wrong, City of God is about Gangsters who are mostly Kids. In fact the main gangster in the movie is named ‘Kid’ until he got his name changed.I cannot read long passages on a computer and hence I tend to limit my posts to few 1000 words and I will briefly tell why I felt the movie was so good.

  • I watched the movie with subtitles (characters in the movie speak Portuguese) and after I watched the movie I read somewhere that one can follow the movie with the sound/subtitles turned off, I tried it and it worked.Credit to the director/ actors.
  • All the other gangster movies in some way glorified gangsters (if they form the main character(s)), this movie doesn’t.
  • Non linear nature of the movie, brilliant story telling.
  • Superb acting by mostly non professional actors.
  • Highly realistic,
  • and as the director says, the movie is about hope, in some way hoping that children born in slums/poor families need not have to become a gangster to survive.
  • and yeah some of what the director says in the interview here

Mudhal Mariyadhai

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I am mostly a very reserved person, I could go without speaking to anyone for a number of days without any problem. This movie is full of great songs/dialog’s.If I could watch the City of God without subtitles/sound, I wouldn’t do this with this film. Don’t watch this film if u don’t know Tamil, and if u do know the language, please watch it.

Kamal Hassan is a very talented Indian actor, in Devar magan he was Sivaji’s son, an excellent film with wonderful performance by Kamal.There was this particular scene just before Sivaji dies, when they r talking, the camera first shows sivaji expressing a feeling and then it shows kamal expressing the same (of, I guess father-son affection), and just that one scene made me realize that even a veteran/versatile actor like Kamal is not even close to the dizzying talent heights the late Sivaji had reached.Anyway, it is therefore assumed that Sivaji gave a splendid perfomance in the movie that is part of the title of the post. The move has some excellent songs and conversations that are lyrical and extremely enjoyable.Bharatiraja did a great job penning and directing this movie.Illayaraja proved why he is so well respected in music circles.At different stages in my life, I liked different female actors.Amala, Manisha, Kaishma and so on. I found them attractive, but Radha( one of the or the main female leads) of the movie is a class apart and that is how I will remember the movie- the movie that revealed to me a beauty named Radha.Maybe it is her character in the movie that I enjoyed, neverthless, the Aishwaryas, priety Zintas, madhuris and the rest do not make to k7’s list of eligible “saha dharmini’s”.

2 weeks of watching movies while doing other stuff

Been wanting to write this post for a long time and finally I found the time, am not going to spend hours on this post and so the quality is not going to be good ( as with most posts, I should add).So here is the list of movies that I managed to watch and nzoy:

Dum Dum Dum

DumDumDums

I am not a big fan of Jo (I in fact think she ‘Over’acts, might b a little ‘Over’weight and so on).Love stories, I find them boring not only because of the high density of Love based movies in tamil cinema, but also because I think they are so centered around 2 individuals, when there is many unfair things happening in the society ( I did watch V, thankfully).I do hate the unnecessary songs that we get to watch in Tamil cinema, but if there is one movie that I would watch just for the the background score and song music, this would b the one! Marvelous work by K Raja. Not to mention Madhavan’s/Viveks performance and yes Jo did do a fine job.A decent and enjoyable movie.

Pattiyal

Pattiyal

A film essentially about friendship/protection, a film also laced with killing.Halfway thru the movie I was compelled to stop watching the movie,but I persisted and thankfully did not miss watching the best part. The first half of the movie is ‘subtly’ violent, slowly getting romantic towards the middle.A beautiful ending (not because of what actually happened, but bcoz of the message it conveyed). I am not going to elaborate on the ending as it would b a spoiler.The director/writer according to me have turned what could have been an essentially violent movie into a meaningful one. The music, I found to be average.

Kand Naal Mudhal

Kanda-Naal-Mudhal

The background music is good.The performances of the leading artists are commendable. Once again a love story that is actually entertaining without the cliches associated with them.Laila is wonderful as R(T)amya. I hope Tamil Movie industry comes up with more movies like this (by that I am not referring to just Love stories, but to movies that actually have a good/believable stories with fine performances by artists).

Oru Thalai Raagam

oru-thalai-ragam

A movie set in the 80’s, actually made a year before I was born.Another good story revolving around youngsters.I haven’t seen much ‘old’ Tamil movies and hence this movie actually showed the different looks/getups of youngsters then.shows how jealousy/selfishness/indifference/smalltalk of a society ruins it’s own members when they should b njoying their “vaaliba vayasu” filled with love, affection and care.Nice story and a few good songs.

V for Vendetta

vendetta_1024

This is the kind of movie that I would greatly enjoy (and, I did). A movie that has clever/sharp dialogs, a great theme and a message that is conveyed not with pompous speeches but thru action.Not everyone would like a movie like this, and I would understand that, for it is not for them but is for those who actually want a future that is not filled with deceit/autocracy/barbarism.My language skills are inadequate to describe a movie like this one, so I stop here.

P.S: I watched the first few mins of 1984 and yeah they seem similar.


O Brother, Where Art thou

O-Brother%2C-Where-Art-Thou

Another beautiful film that I got to watch.Good ;story, perfomance and some wonderful music.Not to mention the characters ‘Big’ Dan and George Nelson.I was particularly drawn to the racy background music when the main characters meet George and are chased by the Cops.My inadequacy in writing a decent view on films means I shall have to stop here and I will with a full stop.

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Cheran’s ‘Own Signature’

Autograph – The Movie as I see it

— Ok, it’s 2:00 AM in the morning and hence forgive me if what I write is a meaningless blabber. –A great movie! Must view! 5 Stars! Makes you write about it when you would normally be sleeping!Cheran (the director and also the male lead in the movie) knows to direct a fine story, no kidding. The thing that I like about the movie is it is not a ‘typical’ tamil movie. By typical I mean: a movie with meaningless dance sequences with lightly clad women pretending to be horny or giving you the impression, a movie with unbelievable fight sequences, a movie that kind of raises the hero’s status to that of a demi-god, a movie about someone other than the common man, a movie that is made with the sole intention of making monetary profit. I forgot to mention that most tamil movies are sentimental and Autograph is no exception. I couldn’t take it after about watching 1/3 of the movie, but then I knew the sentiment part is actually a direct reflection of that experienced by a Common man and hence proceeded to watch the rest of the 2/3 and yeah, I am impressed.

The story is seen through the eyes of the male protagonist (no way will I call him a Hero, it would deprecate the movies image): Selva (a subtle and effective performance by Cheran). He is getting married and personally goes to the various cities that he grew up in to invite his friends to his wedding. Memories can hit you like a gale at any time – a long forgotten sound, a smell, a song, a book, a movie and so on – can trigger a series of chemical reactions in our body and the amazing brain recreates the past – as we saw it – in the present- sometimes painful, sometimes heartening. So yes the song Mudhal Mudhal which is peppered across the first half combined with the visual images tell us about Selva’s teenage years in a small town in Tamil Nadu. Enter Kamala his teenage heartthrob who -he later realises- is his first love. Again, no stupid songs with them running around, no sir, this movie a lot better than the masala crap that is full of these dances. Then they separate, later realizing that the untold love is still present ( in what way I don’t know).

Fast forward a few years and we are into Selva’s College life. Selva’s father is a Postmaster and as with most Government Employees (at least in India) gets transferred evey few years, now to a town in Kerala. Enter Lathika- Selva’s college mate- a sweet and charming girl who fills in the void created by his ‘separation’ from Kamala. I think this is the strongest part of the movie: the scenes in Kerala where he tries to win Lathika’s heart and succeeds in getting her to love him back. This part of the movie paces up the movie from the sentimental part preceding it. And yeah, no dancing around trees, actually while checking again, there is a song “Manasukulle” but I can live with it.Lathika’s family oppose her love for Selva and gets her married to someone else. In the process Selva is beaten up by men sent by Lathika’s father and there is also a fight sequence, I have to admit Cheran has enough guts and sense to make the fight look as realistic as possible and it’s a pity that films released long after this movie haven’t understood that the unrealistic fight sequences makes no sense to someone with even half a brain and they are mostly repelling to a person like me. And again separation hits Selva, he is taken aback by what has happened and becomes almost deranged-mentally- until a thoughtful and understanding father saves him from ruining himself.

Selva now is in Chennai, where he searches for a job, hear Divya (cute Sneha) sings an Inspiring song and I guess this motivates him not to lose hope in his job search and finally through his efforts and Divya’s help gets a job at Divya’s ad firm. Hard work brings him to a respectable position. In the meantime a strong friendship develops between him and Divya. As the story is narrated the suspense regarding Selva’s bride is very well executed. I for one thought that- Divya- was a strong candidate for being his final love.

Selva meets Lathika to invite her to his wedding and is shocked to see her as a widow. Selva is taken aback and wants to cancel his marriage, but a good friend as she was- Divya advises Selva to go ahead with his marriage and yes, in the picture above the three women are chatting with each other at his wedding.

Time is a big healer and Life (has to) moves on, that of course is the obvious conclusion. The movie also stresses the importance of friendship and healthy relationship with your family and also people outside it. This movie is as much about friendship as it is about cherishing it. An autograph that is inedible in your heart that just needs a slight trigger to be brought alive and Cheran has done that through this movie: he brings the emotion filled memories back to life. Well done, Master.

Fos pou svini, To and Malcom

Fos pou svini, To (2000) aka Fading light is the greek movie, I was talking abt in my earlier post and the actress i was referring to was Viki Volioti . i can sometimes push myself just too hard to remember things.the last two days,I had been fervently searching the web (googling mainly) to get these details.IMDB was pretty bad when it came to plot search.but finally googled SBS to get these details.after getting the movie title, i started diligently searching for Viki Volioti’s picture and couldn’t find anything on google, Yahoo helped me in finding that she is also known as Vicky Volioti and then i got to see some pics, she looked good but i was not impressed with those pics (not her).I read somewhere that yahoo’s search is getting better (than google’s), i would agree to an extent because when i search for kesavan on yahoo my 2 sites come in the first page, while in google they don’t should justify what i read abt yahoo, i suppose.

while searching for the greek movie, i was also trying to remember a very good aussie movie which i saw 6-7 months ago and i remembered it as Malcom (1986), a movie abt a very very likeable character, i remember that the soundtrack was also impressive.

the thing that surprised me was i found it extremely difficult to find these movies on the internet. i guess there is nothing like a human brain when it comes to processing and finding data hidden somewhere in the grey cells.

i am sitting here, typing this on a friday night after having pizza from ilianas, after a hard days work (my boss would not agree, but i am entitled to my opinions and for god’s sake it’s my site) and after meeting someone I really like and am unable to forget. am working tomorrow as well, so guess should get gud nights sleep, as i start early.c what is in store tomorrow.

some more movie stuff

just finished watching Malena on SBS and enjoyed watching it.the main characters in the film are a 13 year old boy and a very attractive women played by eminently endowed Monica Bellucci .showing the impact that a woman can have even on a young boy.it also shows how rumour and jealousy can play a big part in ruining peoples life and how time is a big healer.the film was gr8 to watch not only because of Bellucci, but also because I like seeing Italian architecture creating wonders in the streets of sicily.
i love seeing european films, most of them seem to have a soul in them, they are very realistic and people oriented, exploring the emotions of humans against the backdrop of beautiful architecture.some other films i enjoyed watching are Fabuleux destin d’Amélie Poulain, Le (Amélie, 2001)– the innocent screen charmer , Abre los ojos (1997) – the english version Vanilla Sky which i didnt like much.
One of the best films I had seen was a greek one, the title of which i am unable to remember, to my dismay.the film was abt this boy who is a gr8 violonist (misses his father who is divorced from his mother), tries to come in terms with his mother’s new lover and while losing his sight is helped by a very very beautiful teacher (i wud like to remember the name of the movie, just, so i can get more info on this actress) all in a picturesque greek island, just amazing.i shall leave the review to the people @ The Internet Movie Database, as they seem to know what they r doing, unlike me.
thanks SBS for showcasing these movies, i am not sure wheteher i would have been able to watch these movies back in India.
that’s it for now, not working 2morrow (semantically 2day), but wud love 2 get 2 bed, without having to worry abt getting up-to go to work.

a tamil film in Time’s Top 100

it is great to know that the Film Nayakan (1987) is in Time Magazines Top 100 movies.I like Kamal Hassan (the actor) and Mani Ratnam (the director), these guys are widely respected in the Indian film industry and also in abroad.

it is also interesting to note that most of the top 100 films are non hollywood based guess these films are recognised not only for the fine perfomance by the actors and great direction of the directors, but also because of the universality of the themes presented and also their relevance even today.

i am not the best person to tell abt the intricacies of moviemaking or the sometimes subtle meaning in movies, but the movies I enjoyed watching apart from Nayakan are Goodfellas (1990) and Pulp Fiction (1994).

i wud have included One flew over the cuckoos nest (1975) , if i had a chance, but who am i to include or exclude???