Saturday, July 20, 2013

Mariyan = (Nee Dhaane En Pon Vasantham) ^ Kadal

Disclaimer: The dude who acts as the heroine's father. I think his character name is thomas but they call him thommai or bommai or some such shit. He needs to be given an Oscar or a BharathRatna for his emoting, diction, tamil and accent. Temples must be built for him for people to worship. Where did they find him?

Among the people who like the smell of their own fart, Bharathbala likes the smell of his own fart the most. This is quite an extraordinary achievement considering the fact that his competitors include Gautham Menon and Manirathnam who, with kadal, locked himself up in a closed air-locked chamber for 3 hours to smell his own fart. Which might've been alright if not for the fact that he locked in the audience with him as well. You can at least forgive Mani & Gautham as they've given us a few hits in the past. But Bharathbala! First movie and all this indulgence. Really?

There is a very bad song by A.R.Rahman early on in the movie called 'Sonapareeya'. If ever there was a badly done song that did not fit the situation or the movie. It is this song. That song is the point where you kinda begin to fear this movie may not be good. It kind of tells you that something is badly out of synch. And then its all downhill. There was so much time in the movie where nothing really ever happened that I had time to think what was exactly wrong with the movie.Firstly, Bharathbala does not have the skills to translate a thought on paper to images and sound on screen. Secondly, Bharathbala has a total about 3 ideas that would be worth about 45 movie of movie time. All 3 ideas are very uninteresting. But in Bharathbala's mind these ideas are like gold. So he shows us these ideas repeatedly. Each idea is shown in such a slow place that it loses any effect whatsoever. And then its repeated a couple of times again even more slowly.

Dhanush has acted well. But in this movie its like running a marathon in a treadmill. Lots of hardwork but you are still in the same place. AR.Rahman has done 1.5 good songs. Nenje Ezhu was good. Kadal Raasa was so-so (althought both arrive at a time when you are "chopping off your fingers with car keys" level bored). The other songs are all nonsense and don't fit the milieu. I don't think ARR is competent to handle fisherman subjects. Not just ARR - the entire crew seem to be unable to add any sort of native flavor or originality to the fisherman backdrop. Its like some rich Oxford, peter, guy trying to portray fishermen to us. Fish out of water.

The movie fails because, none of the events shown touch any sort of emotional chord with us. It doesn't matter. You are not engaged. The challenges to Dhanush's love story seem trivial if not nonsensical. The kidnappers look like circus clowns and you really can't take them seriously. The whole escape portion has no drama in it. Its all just a bunch of pretty images collated together.

Sunday, July 07, 2013


I wrote briefly about Kamban in the 4 part Ramayana series of posts. A couple of people have helped me learn more about Kamban in the past few days and I wanted to point them out. One is a blog on English translation of Kamba Ramayanam and the other is an audio "blog" in sound cloud.

Kamban, as many know, wrote his version of Ramayana based on his interpretation of Valmiki's text. I was told that when Kamban travelled to Srirangam requesting permission to start this work, he was first asked to compose "Satagopan Andhadhi", which would give him the sense to distinguish right and wrong. This "andhadhi" was in praise of the foremost of the 12 Aazhwars - Kaari MaaRan Satagopan, whose ThiruvaiMozhi is considered to be on par with Chandogya Upanishadh..The seers in Srirangam felt that writing this andhadhi would allow him to comprehend Ramayana in the appropriate context. Kamban wrote Kamba Ramayanam after composing "Satagopan andhadhi".

Chenthil writes the English translation of Kamba ramayanam (called அலகிலா விளையாட்டு – Endless Game )without being asked to compose something else. I recommend readers check out this blog on english translation of Kamba Ramayanam.

Sushima Shekar  aka amas32 and a few others have a series of audio posts on Kamban in SoundCloud. I have to say this (and my mother said the same thing as well :-) ). Amas32's voice resembles Jayalalitha's voice strongly.