Moondru Mugam, Kaaki Sattai, Vettaiyadu Vilayadu, Pokkiri, Mankatha, Saamy, Kaakha Kaakha, Singham, Siruthai, Thani Oruvan… You can see where I’m going with this. They are all cop films, yes. They are all blockbusters, yes. Most interestingly, they are all films that boosted star appeal. It’s probably why several of our stars don the khaki with as much eagerness. Vijay did it again with Theri, Ajith with Yennai Arindhal, and this week, Vikram is now putting it to test with Saamy Square. What is it about the force that so fascinates our heroes? Is it the legitimacy the force provides to their actions? Is it perhaps the saviour, do-gooder image? Or is it just plain old commercial success? Continue reading “Fifty shades of khaki”
Would you believe me if I say there is a connection between Alfred Hitchcock, Sridevi, Rajinikanth, Kamal Haasan, Sashi Kapoor, Waheeda Rehman, Nutan, Padmini and that it is hidden away in plain sight in one of Chennai’s busy lanes? Well, there is. The tad bizarre assortment of stars, amid multitudes of others, are all part of the massive collection of books and articles with 82-year-old Govindaraju. With a 50-year assortment, stars and cinema are just a humble part of this octogenarian’s wares. If you’re a bibliophile, cinephile or just an anachronistic soul, Govindaraju’s stories and his collections are a source of delight that you wouldn’t want to miss. Continue reading “This rare book store in Chennai is a paradise for the bookworms and cinephiles”
The logjam between Tamil Film Producers’ Council and the Film Employees Federation of South India (FEFSI) has seen no improvement after the latter instructed their members to not work from Monday until their wage demands are met by the former.
The move follows TFPC’s recent decision to work with both FEFSI and non-FEFSI members.
More than 20 film shoots including Superstar Rajinikanth’s Kaala have been affected, according to IANS. However, the shooting of TFPC president’s Thupparivalan is underway in Chidambaram. A video from the sets of the same was released by the film’s publicist on Twitter. Continue reading “Tamil Film Producer Council vs FEFSI: What is happening and why is it important?”
The first few scenes of Maheshinte Prathikaram and Nimir are the same on paper. We are introduced to a pair of fairly used slippers that are being cleaned meticulously. While Mahesh (Fahadh Faasil who plays the lead in the original) just places it on the banks, a cinematic moment is created around Udhaynidhi. Selvam (Udhay) lifts the pair of slippers high above his head like a trophy in a gesture that feels close to triumph. After an unassuming introduction, Maheshinte Prathikaram gives us “Idukki” — a song that is vibrant and rich in culture. Here we get an equally flavoursome “Poovuku”, that showers us in nostalgia from the villages we used to see on screen in the 80s. However, the effect is a bit marred when the song is partly used as a dance number. Probably the most commercial trope ever, we have random women dancing around the fields with bare midriffs. Nimir is a fairly faithful remake that quite serves its purpose except for the times it plays to the gallery. Continue reading “Nimir movie review: This Udhayanidhi Stalin film is a faithful remake”
About five minutes into Sketch, you get Vikram’s intro and the song “Atchi Butchi”. As the song was playing, I looked around the theater twice just to ensure that I hadn’t travelled back in time and was watching Gemini. The song feels dangerously close to “O Podu” — a grungy looking Vikram dancing in the streets with a supposedly cool hand gesture. If ‘oh podu’ was finding a view using both hands, the Sketch symbol is comparatively easier. You just need one hand and is an incredibly convenient way to focus on something. But I couldn’t find one engaging element in the chaos that is Sketch, even after using the focus the hand gesture gives. Continue reading “Sketch movie review: Just one question, why Vikram why?”
Time for an admission. I haven’t watched Special 26. But I don’t think Thaanaa Serndha Koottam and Special 26 are the same kind of films despite sharing the plot. So a fair warning as well — don’t walk in expecting a Special 26. With these disclaimers, I can say that Thaanaa Serndha Koottam does have it’s enjoyable moments but with a misplaced sense of righteousness that prevent it from the being the caper it could have been. Continue reading “Thaanaa Serndha Koottam movie review: The Suriya and Keerthy Suresh starrer is a fairly entertaining film”
Gulaebaghavali is encompassing when it comes to reactions — not the reaction of characters on screen, our reactions. It generates an entire gamut of moments. There are the genuine laugh-worthy moments, absolute cringe-worthy ones, moments where you laugh and judge yourself a second later and moments where you judge other people for laughing. The best metaphor to describe Gulaebaghavali is an ECG — amid the drops and flatlines, there are few highs as well. Continue reading “Gulaebaghavali movie review: This Hansika Motwani-Prabhudheva starrer is inconsistent”
To be fair, the opening credits of Balloon does start with a list of movies the film is ‘inspired’ from. But I felt a faint trace of involuntary outrage as a scene from ‘It’ is almost recreated and this is even before the name of the film appears. It felt like a warning — a signal to lower our expectations as the movie progresses. Balloon’s story or scares aren’t novel but the laughs are. The humour and the one-liners are the saving grace in this film that is a predictable mish-mash of some memorable horror moments from the past. Continue reading “Balloon movie review: This Jai and Anjali starrer is a mosaic of horror moments from yore”
Velaikkaran has several things that are fresh. The concept of a community radio in a slum, for example. Right from the name (Kuppam FM), the idea is new and also well presented. There is an ‘aha moment’ when Sivakarthikeyan uses it to report a gang fight live to his community. Asking Charlie, a welder, to cut an iron rod instead of a ribbon to open Siva’s studio is another such moment. Velaikkaran has several such moments buried under pages of well-intended dialogue. Continue reading “Velaikkaran movie review: This Sivakarthikeyan and Nayanthara starrer has its heart in the right place”
I am still trying to figure why Santhanam made this movie. During the entire duration of the movie, I was hoping for someone to pop up and scream ‘Surprise you are watching a spoof movie’; I was reminded of Tamizh Padam multiple times. You might ask me how that makes any sense, but that is probably the only way Sakka Podu Podu Raja could be salvaged. Nothing else makes sense anyway. Continue reading “Sakka Podu Podu Raja movie review: Santhanam offers a string of tired cliches”