/* */ Hi Pal.. Film4thwall has been moved to PIXMONK - my new home :).: June 2009

Monday, June 22, 2009

No Man's Land - Universal issue.

No man's land.

" The war was never a good subject for a feature film. But frankly, my deepest opinion is it's not the subject that matters, it's the way you treat the subject that matters." - Director Danis Tanovic.

History always have specific pieces of land in dispute, where in two countries/states claim the ownership. There are so many examples like Kashmir, Kachatheevu, Sikkim, Belgaum [ inter states ]. This is common and every nation has its own no man's land. This film is based one such NML in Bosnian and Serb border. I would like to use the famous dialog of 'Flags of our fathers'

"Every jackass thinks he knows what war is.. Especially those who've never been in. We like things nice and simple, good and evil, heroes and villains. There are plenty of both. Most of the time, they are not who we think they are "

May be, whenever I come across any war based movies, I quote this dialog. Because the truth is war is just one more genre of movie for us. However, the movies make us to think more than when we read a news/book or going through a debate. There are 2 sets of people involved in the war. The authorities who decide when n where to attack and the other set of people who just follow the orders in the name of country/God/King.

The other important aspect f this film is land mine. [ தின‌த்த‌ந்தில‌ வ‌ருமே.. இளம் க‌வ‌ர்ச்சி க‌ன்னி வெடி ஸ்ரேயா‍‍ன்னு.. அதில்லை.. இது கண்ணி வெடி. :) ]. The total land mines planted in the world as per a reading are around 100 million. Don't worry, if you don't understand where Bosnia is and Why they fight with Serbs; it doesn't matter. You can think of any two fighting organizations and watch this movie. After all, we don't worry much about who dies at the end. Also, don't anticipate this as a documentary explaining why they fight and expect the fight to conclude at the end with 'Malarodu malar ingu' as in BOMBAY.

No Man's land/2001/Bosnian
Written & Directed by Danis Tanovic.
Music : Danis Tanovic


A group of Bosnians travelling to their other camp, miss thier way out and get trapped in their enemy territory. After a clash, one of the Bosnian [ Chiki ] of them escape and hide in a trench. To confirm the finish of intrusion,2 serbs are sent to the the trench. They find one another Bosnian [ Cera ] and capture him inthe trench. To play, the serb plants a 'bouncing mine' under Cera. The idea is if Cera moves or moved, then the mine will explode making an impact within a greater radius. This depicts a problem and the personnel hiding in the trench. 2 Bosians and 2 Serbs with guns. Each one of them believes that they are right. What do they do is the first part of the story.

The next part involves UNPROFOR [ United Nations Protection Force ] and a news channel's English reporter who anticipates for some breaking news or live event in the unmanned place. What happens is the story and to my surprise, it has the utmost turns and twists, maximum possible with this minimal scope of the story.

View :

It is very easy to turn this script into a commercial action thriller types with Will Smith or some hero successfully completes the mission [ in the end kissing the news reporter :) ]. That might have entertained us but never makes us to think or read further. The thin line diverting from action thriller makes this war drama a memorable one. The movie questions a lot. A good cinema makes the audience to think or refer something after watching the movie.

The director is from Bosnia and surprisingly this doesn't lead him to make a biased movie. Instead, he shows how UN works. He treated the subject with humor sprinkled in the movie. Every scene has an interesting twist or at least a lead to something else. The pain, pride, friendship, enmity among the soldiers are shown visually and with dialogues. Things which the Serbs do [ planting mine under Cera ], lead to many complications. The involvement of UN soldiers, their restrictions in unknown fields and their bureaocratic leaders sitting in high command offices, making their spontaneous decisions [ passing the buck ! ] are subtly inserted in the story.

The Global News channel reporter is fantastically captured [ couldn't resist thinking of our NDTV/IBN/Times reporters anticipating breaking news or live events ]. As a news machine, she wants to tape everything on the war ground. For media, it's just the news. The involvement of layers like army superiors, UN army, UN superiors, news reporters change the course of action. So whatever we see or read as the news is definitely not the truth or as it is exactly happened. It is applicable right from the life of Kings to the recent happening in Srilanka. We assume that we know the truth which actually may not be.

Though the movie depicts this situation with humor, I would not want to divert the readers that this as a lighter movie. It's a kind of black comedy [ Ex : enna elavu kazhuvara keiyila thinganum.. avlo dhaan - Esakki in Devar Mahan ]. The Bosnian and Serb soldier confront in many places and sometimes find common things between them.

The arguments the soldiers have, the problems of Cera lying on the mine, their wish to smoke, Cera trying to take a leak, cold-blooded UN operations, inhuman hunger for news by the media and so many other aspects leave us stunned. Cinematography and sound editing are the notable work in this movie. Sudden gun shots, bombing walking on gravel - all such minute sounds are perfectly used.


This movie won the academy award for the best foreign language film in 2001. As I mentioned, the war concept shown is universally true and people from any part of the globe can relate the story with the war, they know - this can range anything from Hogenakkal water issue to Israel-Palestenian conflict.[ Pazham vere.. aana prachnai onnu dhaan :) ].

A wonderful war drama which has to be defintely in your list of movies.

"கொலை குத்த‌ம்னா.. யுத்த‌மும் குத்த‌ம். Isn't it ?!" - Sriram Abhayankar. [ If you ask me who's this, I'll better stop writing about cinema !!! ].


Sunday, June 14, 2009

Kikujiro - A touching travel.

Kikujiro na natsu [ Summer of Kikujiro ]

Play this music in the background while reading this blog [ Oru effect dhaan ! ]. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pa0JAvjx05c

" After 'Hana-Bi', I couldn't help feeling that my films were being stereotyped: So I decided to try and make a film no one would expect from me " - Takeshi Kitano.

Once a creator reaches this idea, the next project would be one of his best. A creator has to disconnect from his previous work and the next one [ Remember Minnale and Kaaka kaaka; Nayagan, Agni Natchathiram, Geetanjali and Anjali ]. Variety keeps the art live.

Few things about the director.. Takeshi Kitano is an all-rounder; he started his career as a standup comedian as two beats in Japan [ reason for his other name Beat Takeshi ]. He is a multi-skilled personality; actor, script writer, director, editor, painter and has good knowledge in music. Due to a conflict while acting in a film 'Violent cop', he turned as the director for the movie, accidentally. Till Hana-bi, he worked with the same type of gangster stories with enormous violence and different method of storytelling. Kikujiro is a different craft from his shop. After a fatal accident in 1989, Takesh started working more extensively [ realising 'Life is beautiful' ! ]. He's also a visiting professor in one of the Japanese universities.

Kikujiro : This film needed 4 important elements. Masao [ 9 yrs old boy ], Joe Hisaishi [ Music director ], Yanagishima [ cinematographer ] and Takeshi Kitano [ Editor & Director ]. All of them blended well and the final product is just awesome.

Kikujiro na natsu [ Kikujio's summer ] - 1999/Drama/Japan
Cast : Yusuke Sekiguchi, Takeshi Kitano
Music : Joe Hisaishi
Cinematography : Katsumi Yanagishima
Edited & Directed by : Takeshi Kitano.

Plot :

Masao, 9 years old n sensitive boy lives with his working grandma in the sub-urban of Tokyo. He doesn't have a father and mother stays in a far away town, whom he never met. Summer vacation starts and all the friends of Masoe leave the town for holidays. Masoe is left alone. He finds his mother's photo and address while searching for a stamp. With little money and little knowledge on directions, he walks out of the home and heads towards the address. Takeshi is an irresponsible, loud mouthed person and his wife was a neighbor once to Masoe's family. They find this boy on his way, to go out of the town. Thinking about the risk, she asks her husband Takeshi to accompany the kid to his mother's place and gives some money. The highly mismatched friends start the journey. Takeshi's wife later convinces Masao's grandma that they are taking him to the seaside.

Takeshi has the least interest in taking the boy to the address and starts spending his money in useless ways. The film is all about their journey and the colorful characters they meet, the strange circumstances they undergo which comes out as a wonderful experience. Both end up their search, in a different and unforgettable way.

View :

- It's an elliptical style narration. I mean, the film starts and ends with the same shot [ Masao running in a bridge ]. Watch out for the first 7 minutes titling and theme music [ Fabulous one from Joe Hisaishi ]. Look for the bell sounds in between and it has a meaning. [ Mani sathathula ennadaa meaning.. Unnai keppaare illaiyaa :) ]

- The characters are introduced very rapidly with fewer dialogues. For ex., Takeshi's wife says 'we were neighbors’ to justify her concern for the boy. Takeshi is introduced with his brash attitude and his wish to grab easy money. Masao talks less and filled up with unknown sadness. The alienation of Masao is picturized by a long shot in a soccer field with him, a ball and an empty ground. Class !

- The journey begins with an irresponsible Takeshi and a sad n eager boy, where the chemistry between them doesn't work out at all. The friction is carried out through out their journey and events slowly change the relation.

- The story focuses on the alienation and the nuclear family structure in Japan. The story is narrated with different headings as found in the Masao's diary.

- In a highway motel, Takeshi breaks the glass window of a truck for not getting a lift. That follows a fight sequence. The entire fight sequence is shown in a long shot without any music. A simple and ideal fight which is never shown in that angle. Takeshi never shows the actual fight but he shows the consequences [ Remember the hospital fight in Anjathey :) ].

- The characters : a juggler, her boy friend, a story writer, 2 bikers get introduced and mingles with the story fluidly. Takeshi's comic acts balance the kid's sadness.

- The camp they setup in a riverside and the games they play were really touching one. All the grown-ups just return to their childhood and entertain Masao. Those sequences are interesting and I couldn't accept when they depart. Also, when Masao runs in the end with joy, it leaves an emotional feeling about that kid. The emotion we get when we finish the vacation - a strange feeling which I undergone after the news break in the Sunday evening TV films [ next day school-la enna nadakumo :) ]. Like the feeling during the return journey after a get-together [ ம‌ச்சான்.. நான் அடையார்‍ல‌ இற‌ங்கிக்க‌றேன்டா.. அதான் கிட்ட‌ :) ].

- Takeshi, meanwhile remembers his mother and that sub-plot is a poem by itself. The cello music used in this episode [ The track is named 'Mother' in the soundtrack of this film ] is directly used in the movie "Anjathey"'s climax :) . In Nandalala, it comes with a song, I guess.. [ அம்மா ஒன்ன‌ப் பாத்தா.. வார்த்தை வ‌ல்ல‌ மேல‌.. -Check the song 'Thaalatu Ketka naanum' by IR ]

- Joe Hisaishi - The music director is basically a pianist who has done his part extremely well. The theme music is used in various part of the movies with various instruments [once in violin, cello, just piano etc., ].

- The visuals/lighting elevates the movie to another level. The colors used in the journey are excellent.

Conclusion :

I would recommend this movie for the entire family. Similar to 'In the mood for love', this film also talks about the loneliness and alienation in life. It's a delightful story with an intelligent script, brilliant cinematography and an enchanting score. No wonder Mysskin's office contains only one portrait, where Takeshi Kitano smiles.

Looking forward eagerly for the Tamil movie Nandalala, inspired from Kikujiro.


Friday, June 12, 2009

Paradise now & RONIN.

RUSH Films.
Endorphin rush - PARADISE NOW.

Of late, I came across the term 'Endorphin rush', which is induced by physical exercise and it leads to the state 'sense of accomplishment'. Why do I attach endorphin rush to a film ? [ ippadi dhideernu kettaa eppadinga.. Eppadiyum link panniduven :) ].

Though I am film freak, I used to know about history/life. more through films. 'Hotel Rwanda' showed me the recent Rwandan genocide [ 1994 ], the fights between Hutu and tsotsi. 'Road to Guantanamo' documentary helped me to understand the way Gitmo works. 'The Pianist' painfully registered the holocaust in Poland. Similarly, we have this 'Israel-Palestine' conflict. If a film can get a bit of pain, what they undergo there, I think it's the success of the creator.

Paradise now - 2005/Arab
Written & Directed by : Hany Abu-Assad

Said and Khalid are friends working in a Palestinian city Nablus. Said has a girl friend 'Suha' and her father was a martyr. Said and Khalid are selected as suicide bombers to plan an attack in Tel Aviv, by their friend Jamal. Before that night, Said meets Suha to return her car keys, and has a chat with her about her father's religious death, and what options the Palestinians have in their handling with Israel.

Next day, they speak about their mission to their family and gets the bombs strapped to their body. Either they have to die or come back to the camp to defuse the bombs by the expert. They get into Israel.. What happens then is the emotional story of these 2 'human' bombs. I used the word 'human' because they think about the impact and their act.

The film easily conveys the message of the story. The characters are very few in the movie and it shows the bigger picture of the missions they carry out.

I was touched by the final speech given by the victims. He says after the speech to his mother to buy something, revealing beyond country, religion and others, they love the family.

The arguments made by Suha are worthy to watch. Of course, her dialogue justifies the title. 'Paradise is myth.. it's here.. it's now and there's no paradise up in the sky'.

The film ends with a shot leaving the imagination to the audience.. What happened is up to the audience. I remember 'Terrorist by Santhosh Sivan and 'Uyire' by Manirathnam Sir are of the same category.

This is the first Palestinian film nominated for the academy award. There are around 40 other films made on this Arab Israeli conflict. [ Remember Spielberg's MUNICH ]. This film gave the sense of satisfaction that I didn't miss a nice drama.
We come across one more rush called 'Adrenaline rush' in life reacting to stress. It secretes when we are excited, riding in roller coaster etc., I watch action movies to change the mood from the classics - I appreciate any good movie of any genre.

Seven Samurai - a Japanese movie came in 1954 and this movie made an tremendous impact in the west [Magnificent seven, etc., are based on 7 samurai]. Ronin is one such movie. Different talented and unrelated guys form a team for a common mission. Ronin means a Samurai without lord or master. The interesting thing in this film is the body language of the ronin - they don't get into action just for heroism. The masters do it with less words spoken.

Film : RONIN [ 1998/Action ]
Cast : Robert de niro, Jean Reno, Natascha McElhone
Direction : John Frankenheimer

- The story is simple. A team of different experts formed to steal a mysterious suitcase from another gang with all possible twists and turns [ both in story and in locations :) ]. The first 25 mins prepares you for the 'adrenaline rush' later.

- This movie is meant for the deadly car chases in the narrow roads of Europe [ Paris, Nice, Arles ].

- The other important characters are the cars.. Audi S8, Peugeot 406, a Citroën Xantia, a BMW M5 and Mercedes-Benz 450SEL 6.9 . :)
- Robert de niro is like Kamalhassan - he justifies whatever the role he plays. You believe him as an ex agent ; that's the power of his performance. For his best, watch 'RAGING BULL'.

Just chill out with RONIN. Action oriented entertainment guaranteed.


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Killing.. Shining.. Thrilling.

Shining Stanley.. Killing Kubrick [ What a sensational title :) ]

If it can be written, or thought, it can be filmed. - Stanley Kubrick

The Killing/1956/Action-thriller
Photographed and directed by : Stanley Kubrick.

To introduce Stanley Kubrick [ SK ], Quentin Tarantino is a great fan of SK [ Suththam :) ]. The killing is a film about a big plan connected with a busy race-track on a specific day.. An ex criminal released from the jail plans for a big-time heist with picking up people of various occupations with one need in life - money. A group of different personalities are formed without revealing their exact part. An ex criminal, his old friend, a bar tender, a counter officer, corrupted policeman, shooter and a wrestler [ and a gravel-voiced narrator - may be thought as GOD ! ]. Confusing right ? Definitely not when you see the final outcome of their plan. They form a time-table for the heist and what happens exactly is the film is all about. Of course, fate and morality are to be considered. :)

The film begins from the very first scene and the intelligence n non-linear narration keeps the audience busy in who's doing what and why ? The narration is just like joining various jigsaw puzzles to form the complete picture. Somewhere I read that 35 different segments happen together to form the final act.

It starts slowly with a hose race and haunting theme music. The narration talks about different timings of the day and happenings with respect to the characters. The drawback in non-linear narration is that shots are overlapped and repeated [ remember Virumandi ! ] but the top intelligent director gives a different meaning every time he repeats or overlaps a shot/scene. The non-linear structure makes the film more interesting. The hidden element of the movie is fate.

A must watch thriller which is 53 years old. It's listed in AOL's top 25 thrillers [ that's how I selected this movie.]

Shining/1980/Supernatural thriller [based on Stephen King's novel ]
Directed by : Stanley Kubrick.

"I am interested in giving my audience a real scare" - Stanley Kubrick

The psychology of horror film is not to show the ugly ghost, rather making the audience to anticipate it. The anxiety is the exact feeling about seeing a horror genre of films. I would simply say SHINING is the mother of all horror movies.

This movie is not the worst clichéd style of horror movies where in 4 pairs [ exactly :) ] go to a beach resort and getting killed one by one. Non-sense. Instead, an abandoned hotel with just 3 characters, is used as the centre point of the film.

Plot :

The film talks about the happenings of a story writer, Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson - his eye brows and vague smile adds value to his character ). He gets an offer to work as the winter caretaker at a hotel which gets almost abandoned by heavy snowfall in the winter season. Jack reaches the hotel with his wife and son Danny [ 6 yrs old ]. During the closing day [ beginning for the audience :) ], the psychic hotel chef identifies something unusual with Jack's son Danny. Danny has the ability to detect ghostly presences in the hotel. The chef calls this talent as "SHINING". Once the hotel becomes snowbound, Jack is occupied by the ghosts in the hotel and then the story begins :)

Brilliant story. Abandoned hotel.. Heavy snowfall.. [ No difference between day n nights ! ]. The film starts with an aerial shot of Jack driving in a small car to reach the hotel. The most important element in horror film is the music. The visual has to be backed up with appropriate n haunting score. Stanley Kubrick is the pioneer in using the steadicam in the film industry. A technology has to be used to enhance the story telling and improve the visuals. I couldn't resist recollecting the irritating time-slice cut used by Shankar in BOYS and 360 degree rotating shots in Vettaiyaadu vilayaadu [ Enna Kodumainga ! ].

Stanley Kubrick is an essential film maker in the film history. His other works are

2001 : A space odyssey
Clockwork orange
Eyes wide shut

I am yet to watch the above list.


Sunday, June 7, 2009

Uthirip Pookall - Bloomed only once !

"If I get anywhere near what Mahendran sir did in Uthirip pookkall, I’ll be a happy man."
- Director Manirathnam.

There are 2 types of directors. Director and director of directors. Tamil film industry possesses the richest chain of great directors. There are few who are predominantly portrayed in this category, starting from Sridhar to Ameer. Mahendran is one such GEM in the industry.

If literary works are properly used, it will turn into fine cinema. Uthirip pookkall is one such great example. Mahendran read the [ only ] short-novel of Pudumaipithan - Sitrannai and fascinated towards the children Raja and kunju. He then developed them into his own version of film. Mahendran had earlier worked with 28 different projects starting from his first movie 'Naam moovar' [ Story writer ]. This includes Thangap padakkam, Kali, adu puli attam etc., The 29th project is Mullum Malarum produced by Venu Chettiar of Anandi films, which was a grand success and fed fresh air in Tamil cinema. Mahendran worked initially in Thuglak for 3 years, writing cinema reviews in the section 'Post mortem' - a good friend of Cho.

This film is all about people, their nature, feelings and stubbornness in their stand. I admire the way the characters are etched, visual narration of story. He wrote pages of dialogues when he was a story writer and when started his direction career he implemented visual narration with bare minimum dialogues. To add, he was accompanied by the top talent of those times Ashokkumar, b.Lenin and Ilaiyaraja.

Uthirip Pookkall - Drama/1979/Tamil
Produced,written & Directed by : Mahendran.
Music : Ilaiyaraja
Cinematography : Ashokkumar

Plot :

Sundara vadivelu [ Vijayan as Su.va. ] is a rough natured school correspondent who has his physically weak and soft spoken wife Lakshmi and 2 kids Raja & Bhavani. Lakshmi's sister Shenbagam and their father live in the same village. Lakshmi's father owes a big sum to Su.Va. Also, Su.Va has an eye on Shenbagam. The entire village is unhappy with Su.Va's behaviour.

Prakash, a new teacher arrives to the village and later harassed by Su.Va. Prakash develops love with Shenbagam. Meanwhile, Sarath and his wife Premi, come to the same village to work in the health centre. Sarath is an old neighbor of Lakshmi [ before her marriage ] and even he proposes his wish to marry her, to her father. But it was late then as she was engaged with Su.Va. Su.Va. approaches his father-in-law for getting his second marriage with Shenbagam. Every one opposes this atrocious decision. He doubts his wife's relation with Sarath and keeps her separated. Sarath, feeling guilty for this, leaves the village.

The village people raise strongly against him this time but Su.Va. cares nobody.With his mother's support, he marries another girl from the next village. Prakash gets the permission from Shenbagam's father for their marriage. Meanwhile, something happens and that leads to the finest climax ever shot in Tamil films.

View :

- Mahendran meticulously developed his characters so that they look unique and stubborn till the end of the story. Even the local barber Samikannu has got one of the finest supporting character roles. Nobody looses their character in the flow of the story. Mahendran was so courteous to offer a sum to Pudhumai pithan's family though he was just inspired by the work.

- The film starts with the flutes music in title and a cliched folk song of IR [ Sentiment Sithravadhai :) GAmaran did the damaging lyrics]. The story starts from the health officer Sarath and the teacher Prakash reaching the village.

- Watch out for the brilliant and villainous performance of K.Vijayan. Though he delivers rationed dialogues, his looks and grim face expresses a lot more about what he thinks. He is one of the best villains portrayed in Dhoti/Jibba/Shirt [ My other favorites are G.Umapathy in agni Natchathiram and Thilagan in Chathriyan ]. Each and every word uttered by Vijayan carries his thoughts. His introduction shows his complete character [ Ennaya sattai pottirukke.. Cinemakaran maadiri ! ]. Sparkling dialogues and close expressions showing his complex, anger and vengance.

- Aswini as Lakshmi. The way Mahendran selected her was interesting. Mahendran was looking for Lakhmi's role and his friend in Bangalore was in a loss that time with a movie produced using Aswini as heroine. That sad face fascinated Mahendran and his Bangalore friend begged him not to use her as she is considered bad, sentimentally. Mahendran was adamant and he succeeded in finding the first homely lady portrayal in Tamil cinema [ even Shoba has the traces of cinema ]. Grim looked, rarely smiling and emotionally packed Aswini's performance was a major element in this movie.

- I can't easily leave other characters as just 'others' [ matrum palar ! ]. Chaaruhasan [ first film ], Sundar, Madhumalini, Charulatha, Master Raja, Baby Anju, Samikannu, Bhoopathy, Sarathbabu, Premi, Vijayan's mother [ few of them are from Kannada industry ] - every one of them was utilised fully. I was touched by the performance of the barber Samikannu and his dialogue 'Naan ambattanaa porandhadhu en paavamyaa' with tears in his eyes. The movie has fewer dialogues but they are as sharp as paper cutter. Charuhasan says after hearing the 2nd marriage proposal from Vijayan .. 'Naan nalla thagappanaa irukken.. brokeraa illai'.

- There's a scene where Prakash swims easily in the river and warned by the assistant of Su.Va. that periyavar doesn't like anybody swimming as he doesn't know swimming. This was used in the later part of the movie. In another scene, Su.Va warns Prakash not to roam behind Shenbagam. He asks Prakash to drink the tea before the dialogues and once he conveys his thoughts, he'll ask Prakash to keep the tea and go back to class.

- To convey his 2nd marriage thought to his wife, Vijayan does some unusual stuffs like buying flowers to her, taking her to cinema and hotel. She eagerly walks out and sees the sky. The director conveys the same with the local barber uttering the dialog 'Amma sandhoshamaa irukaanga.. Innaiku mazhai vara pogudhu'. Azhagiya kanne music is used in that situation and IR rules.

- There's fight scene between Sarath and Vijayan. Vijayan turns furiously towards Sarath and the visuals are shown for strong wind, furious river. The next shot shows Sarath washing his bloody lip in the river water and he collects his glasses/foot wear scattered in the bank. I really wonder the shock Mahendran created among the so called unrealistic fight sequences in Tamil films. ச‌ண்டையைக் கூட‌ க‌விதையா சொல்லி இருப்பார்.

- IR needs a special mention not only for the brilliant composition of 'Azhagiya Kanne' [ HINDU once mentioned this song as Monalisa of music :) ] but also his themes for various characters and sequences. He bridges the silences of the characters and audience with his music. He aptly uses the Azhagiya Kanne music in apt situations. Kannadasan wrote the stupendous lyrics and the song summarizes the entire story.

- Though Vijayan is shown as a villain, he has a soft corner for his kids. The dialogues he talk to his kids at the end was a disturbing one. The end title credit shows what is actually meant in the film title.

- B.Lenin [ his first film ] needs a special mention for his commitment in uplifting the goodness of a story teller. Before the first saranam of Azhagiya song, there's a flute music used where a flock of sheep is shown as visual - After that group of violins emerge and in parallel a single sheep jumps out in sync with the music. The editor described that piece of sync was appreciated in his editing. VT Vijayan assisted Lenin in this movie.

- Have you ever wondered when title card say 'DESIGNS : BHARANI' ? For example, before this film's release, the poster had a photo of aswini sadly sitting sadly with her 2 kids. This design promoted the movie as an unusual film and gave a good identity to the work. The same Bharani later spoiled the work called 'Johnny'. Though Johnny was a music based film, the promotions made the posters with Rajini angrily diving with an umbrella with multiple images in colours [ remember that ??!! ] - the poster set that it was an action film and Johnny suffered because of this. Mahendran told this. [ Dei.. Unaku mattum eppadaa sonnaru :) ].

- Mahendran was introduced as assistant director to kasilingam in Kanchi Thalaivan film by MGR. MGR watched Uthirip pookkall and became emotional, it seems. He said to Mahendran that 'I'll sleep peacefully today' which meant a lot to Mahendran.


Director Vasanth [ though I don't admire him ] said he would filter 1 in 1000, 1 in 100, 1 in 25, 1 in 10 and finally just 1 best Tamil film and that is Uthirip pookkall. The impact it made on Tamil directors and writers was tremendous. The same year 1979 opened the gate for Balu mahendra for Azhiyadha kolangall, his first Tamil venture.

Uthirip pookkall is highly considered par with any of the best films made in the wolrd cinema [ except the 2 junk songs in female voices .. poda poda bokkai and one more SPSailaja song ].

Mahendran once quoted that 'Even if I try out again, I can't reproduce what I have achieved in Uthirip pookkall'. Great ! I salute this 30 years old n fantastic film.


Saturday, June 6, 2009

25th BLOG :)

Friends.. Thanks for the sparkling n cheerful responses and support. I ve reached 25th blog !

Coming soon.

"If I get anywhere near what HE did in this Tamil film, I’ll be a happy man."

- Director Manirathnam.


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Adadaa vaa asathalaam - New good songs

1. Oru Vetkam varudhe
Film : Pasanga
Singers : Naresh Iyer/Shreya Goshal
MD : James Vasanthan

The song starts with the James's choir brand [:) ] and flows fluidly. The song slightly touches the humming in thendral vandhu ennai thodum song [ Tharadhath tharadhaa ] and Hishaisi's piano from Kikujiro [ Nallaa dhanadaa irundhe ! ]. The voices are fantastic in this song. I admire lyrics of Thamarai - a true n fabulous KAVITHAAYINI in Tamil cinema.

The picturisation was done extremely well so that you feel the rain when you see that song in theatre. The heroine got beautiful... [ irungappaa varen :) ] eyebrows. Mannil indha kaadhal song got a line called 'Villeriyum puruvam' - this heroine Vega got that.


2. Leysaa parakudhu
Film : Vennila Kabadi kuzhu
Singers : Karthik-Chinmayi
MD : V.Selvaganesh

Remember the old song 'Meham karukudhu.. mazhai vara paakudhu' from Anandha Ragam, Sivakumar movie. This song resembles that tune but the lines are as cute as Saranya Mohan [ Ennaikaavadhu hero pathi pesi irukkiyaa nee :) ]. The songs uses a melody base and the instrument gatam .. U know why.. yes.. The MD is the son of Vikku Vinayak ram. The other gatam based song is 'Narumugaiye' from the classic IRUVAR. I heard Chinmayi after a long time.

3. Adadaa vaa asathalaam
Film : Sarvam
Singers : Ilayaraja, Andria
MD : Yuvan Shankar Raja

What a song ! One need to hear this in a high end music system. A peppy number from IR voice. Thank God he stopped those extremely sad graveyard numbers. The voice of Andria resembles Destiny's child [ song : Jumpin Jumpin ]. It's short song and the flute bit is spectacular. All said and done, I love this song very much. It's long time since IR sang some peppy number. I like IR's punnagaiyil minsaaram from Bharathan.

4. Sirugugall
Film : Sarvam
Singers : Javeed ali, Madhushree
MD : Yuvan Shankar Raja

It's a simple number from YSR. Javeed ali uses his high pitch to elevate the song and as usual Madhusree is talking something [ Konjal :) ].

5. Un perai sollum

Film : Angaadi theru
Singers : Suresh Iyer [ Yaarmaa nee ! ], Shreya Goshal.
MD : GV Prakashkumar.

A folk like melody n good number from GV Prakashkumar with simple beat, flute and violin. Nice to hear.