Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Soodhu Kavvum; Bloody Awesome Movie

This is probably one of the best movies I have seen in a long time. What i found amazing was the fact that all characters keep a straight-face throughout the movie. It is the seriousness with which they go about this script is what makes it the most hilarious. My (biased) view of thamizhs as a culture leads me to believe that the spectrum of sarcasm -> நக்கல் and everything in-between is this civilization's strongest point. This movie is a great example of how that நக்கல் can be on your face but at the same time unstated. Take the first scene for instance where T.Rajendar posters adorn the walls in the house of a character. No one really talks about the poster or even shows it pointedly. But its there. The director has put it there. And this guy who has a T.Rajendar poster in his wall has the audacity to ask his friend as to why he didn't use 1.5 lacs on something more productive than ...well! I wont say what. Just see it for yourself. Its the most amazing display of self-pointed humor.

This movie is so layered that I couldn't place it in one genre as opposed to the other. There are many "Sigamani" (for those S. Ve. Sekhar fans) moments in the movie where one character says as a matter of fact "வெலை செய்யரா அளவுக்கு எங்களுக்கு வயசு ஆகலை சார்".  The four characters couldn't be more far apart. The IT guy is our anchor into this bizzaire world. He is the only real person we can hold on to. One guy, named Pagalavan,  walks through life without a care as if he has all the money and time in the world. Working or for that matter living is optional for him. He has managed to grow up and doesn't really have a purpose in life. One can place a considerable amount as a bet that he probably doesn't understand the concept of "purpose". My favorite character was Ramesh Thilak the ex-chaeuffer. He has that free-flowing x-factor about him that makes him adorable and unpredictable at the same time. 

Finally Das played by Vijay Sethupathi (who is growing in stature by the nano second) plays the most complex role in the movie. You actually dont know what drives him to do the stuff he does. He is mentally deranged. There is no doubt about that. His quest for perfection in a method he has found to make money is a fantastic contrast to his mental problems. The director doesn't keep the truth about Sanchita Shetty under wraps. We are clued in at the start. And from that moment on the movie adds a new dimension to the proceedings. Now the director is at a point where he has the license to play with her character any which way he wants. She could come in a monkey suit and we would still tear our stomachs in laughter. I could feel that at any moment she was going to show up in a Bikini. Her scenes build up to that hilarious payoff. In an English movie she would have appeared naked in the living room conversation between the 4 crooks. The director must've been severely restrained to have her in a swimming dress. Oh Damn you Thamizh sensibilities - there was an awesome potential for that scene. My only complaint was that I wish they had made Sanchita's situation a little less obvious than it was. And  left us to deduce the whole thing.

The new guy who plays the cop Brahma does not have a single line of dialog and his character perfectly builds the movie up for the final payoff.. He is probably more deranged than Das but just happens to be on the right side of the law. The nut case collection is complete with the MLA's son who manages to get kidnapped while he is getting kidnapped and still comes out as      a honorable man among thieves. These characters go on to create one of the most unique movies I have seen in Thamizh cinema. One could argue the end was a little bit stretched but that was okay. The last 30 minutes was about the director throwing a kitchen sink full of ideas at us. A few them are bound to not work. As a viewer I was glad to see some one deliver so much without even appearing to try. More importantly, I respect the fearlessness of director Nalan Kumaraswamy. Many directors mistake irreverence for courage and this movie is perfect example of someone who does not make that mistake. 

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the reco. Will watch.

amas said...

The cop Brahma is not a new guy, been in the field for long, also a director. His name is Yog Jappi. He acted as Jyothika's husband in வேட்டையாடு விளையாட்டு. I too loved the movie :-)

amas32

Anonymous said...

Jothika's husband in VV is same as Pandya's elder brother sethu in kaakha kaakha..

Krishnan said...

Immensely liked your review... loved the movie every bit.

CHVS CHAITANYA said...

it is my first movie which i watched twice in theatre, I don't know when will i do this feat for a telugu film.

gulgoongi said...

as long as you praise goutham menon's movies, everything you write will be deemed invalid.

Chenthil said...

Try "Neram" too. Not completely successful, but has its moments.

ANAMIKA said...

Very nice post . All the very best . You are writing very well.

mokka musketeer said...

That cop Brahma debuted in Kakha Kakha as Pandiya's brother. The movie oozes class and a non-chalant style of narration. Like you said, they shouldn't have come out and said that that Shalu character was imaginary. That guy "Arumai" showed amazing acting skills when he featured in these directors'(Nalan and Karthik Subburaj)short movies. Very happy to see these young directors doing great. Time to kick out formula directors like Sundar Pee and KS Sorikumar

Angel said...

u caught my mind voice in that review ... not surprising as it happens many times :D .... it was a bloody awesome movie ... i was so glad it was a tamil movie and first weekend in chennai theatres was a pure cinematic experience :D