Aaha Kalyanam (TAMIL)

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Starring: Nani, Vani Kapoor, Simran, Badava Gopi and many more
Editing: Bavan Sreekumar
Music : Dharan
Cinematography : Loganathan
Written by : Maneesh Sharma, Habib Faizal
Directed by: Gokul Krishna

One of the famous production house of North India, Yash Raj Films (YRF) spreads their wings towards the southern part by remaking their super hit Hindi film Band Baaja Baraat. How much the film has been tweaked to make sure it gels with our culture and with no bankable names associated with the project? Lets have a look.

Shruti (Vani) thinks of becoming a big wedding planner on the lines of Chandra (Simran), a big wedding planner of the country. On the other hand, Shakti’s (Nani) parents stay in a village, but Shakti doesn’t want to return to the village. One day, Shakti meets Shruti and listens to her business plans and urges her to allow him to join him as a partner. They work together and soon become popular and earn good money. Shruthi slowly falls in love with Shakthi and they both get intimate. However, things change and they both part ways. What happens next forms the crux of the story.

The chemistry between Vani and Nani is just great. In the original the heroine takes and attracts the entire film but here Nani overcomes that and provides a jolly environment for the film.  Nani performs very well as we have not seen him much even though his last film was a huge hit. He showed good ease comedy scenes and as well the romantic scenes. Vani Kapoor looks good. She mesmerises the audiences with her smile.

Simran makes a guest appearance as a wedding planner. All the supporting artistes did complete justice to their respective roles. Dharan has excelled in his work. All the tunes for the songs are good to listen. The background score was impressive and the re-recording gave good strength to the movie. Loganathan has enhanced the ambience of the film and the film is full of colors as per the theme. Gokul has not changed much from the original and he has made justice towards it.

On the whole, this is a refreshing film, clean entertainer, light-hearted entertainer with stunning visuals, memorable music, and brimming with fun, friendship and romance, very different from the usual romantic comedies we’re so used to. It is fun, enjoyment, celebration and happiness. Go for it!

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Idhu Kadhirvelan Kadhal (TAMIL)

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Starring: Udayanidhi, Nayanthara, Santhanam, Narain and many more
Editing: Don Bosco
Music : Harris Jayaraj
Cinematography : Balasubramaniam
Directed by: S.R.Prabhakaran

Both the hero and the director’s debut film was a grand success and they join together for their second which has ample casting and good music and nice pre-release talks. So what does the film gives us for the 120 plus minutes. Lets see

Kadhirvelan (Udayanidhi) is an ardent follower of Lord Hanuman. His sister (Chaya Singh) comes to their place after a fight with her hubby for which the hero tries to solve it and travels to her sisters house. Their he meets his college friend Mayil (Santhanam) and also the heroine, Pavithra (Nayanthara) and falls in love with her. Then mix some areas of comedy, villainism, family elements and shake it up and down then you will come and land to the climax. Even though the story seems to be simple the narration is smooth and enjoyable. Though the main focus of the film is the love story between Kadhir and Pavithra, the supporting cast has a substantial role to play.

Udayanidhi’s performance is better than his debut movie as we could see improvements in his acting and dancing skills. Nayanthara is as usual at her best with always giving her ever beauty smile but she has been used majorly for the songs. Santhanam works like a backbone of the film again. His one-liners makes us to smile. Naren is superb, Saranya and Jayaprakash have done justice to their roles. Dr.Bharath Reddy’s casting is very interesting as the mill owner and it looks apt as the pair for Chaya Singh.

Harris Jayaraj’s music is good but placing of them is very bad. BGM’s are nice and gels with the film. Balasubramaniam’s work is outstanding especially in the song sequences. Director SR Prabhakaran has kept the story exceedingly simple. Though there are several dramatic twists, nothing goes wrong or escalates into a major disaster – everything seems too perfect to be true. Even though the film is made in the template of a regular Tamil film style romcom, with the everyday love story, made special by its simplicity, the well-chosen characters, some good dialogues, commendable performances and excellent music, IKK is a decent family entertainer.

Pannaiyarum Padminiyum (TAMIL)

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Starring: Vijay Sethupathi, Jayaprakash, Thulasi, Iswarya, Bala and many more
Editing: Sreekar Prasad
Music : Justin Prabhakaran
Cinematography : Gokul Benoy
Directed by: Su Arun Kumar

Another short film which develops into a mainstream cinema. That too which is acted by none other than the short film start Vijay Sethupathi. Thats the frontline of this film. The short film has attracted many through its narration and the characters and their chemistry. Has it been re-portrayed well into film? Was there enough screenplay for 120 mins + film..? Check out..!!

Film is set in 80-90’s period where the villages were starting to get the new things for the first time, a la, radio, telephone, television, toilet(!) and car. One such village is headed by Pannaiyar (Jayaprakash) who introduces all these to his village people who can use them at whatever time they wish to. His wife is played by Thulasi. Like that way he comes across his friend’s car which he asks him to take care for some days till he returns back. Like that he gets a Premier Padmini car which attaches like a pet to him and his family and to his village. As he dont know to drive comes Murugesh (Vijay Sethupathi) who drives the car and feels that he should be only driving it. Pannaiyar also wishes to learn driving after which only his wife will get into the car. Will the car be with him and has he learnt driving in the meantime is what the film is about.

The film is majorly about the beautiful relationship that exists between many like Mr & Mrs Pannaiyar, Pannaiyar and Vijay, everyone and the car. Even the small kid who saves money just for sitting in the front seat of the car.! Such a mature yet playful romance hasn’t been shown in a more convincing manner in recent times when it comes to Jayaprakash and Thulasi. The events weaved around the car shows us the importance of the vehicle in the story.

Jayaprakash shows his diverse range as an actor and takes the center stage for a change, after donning support roles in most of his movies. Thulasi is establishing herself firmly as a superb onscreen emotional artist. Their love and camaraderie is adorable, funny and emotional from the get go. Vijay Sethupathi was at his usual best, playing the character of a driver with ease. He has a love angle with Iswarya. Bala who gets promotion from small screen gives his best and evokes laughter with his slapstick presentation. He is a man to look out for. Then there are Sneha and Attakathi Dinesh who does cameos.

Justin Prabhakaran’s soothing tunes breathe life into the emotional narrative while Gokul Benoy’s cinematography aptly presents the rich montage of rural background. Sreekar could have trimmed the film a bit but still the film is not boring. Arun Kumar has given a film which has no violence and which is a realistic story revolving around the lives of ordinary people and their simple desires. The film is an ultimate endearing journey which is well etched with mix of emotions and power packed charecterisation. Well done.! 🙂

Please find the links of the short film:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T217p9dOh-E (with subs)

Rummy (TAMIL)

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Starring: Vijay Sethupathi, Inigo Prabhakar, Gaythiri, Iswarya, Soori and many more
Editing: Raja Mohammad
Music : D. Imman
Cinematography : Premkumar
Directed by: Balakrishnan K

Vijay Sethupathi’s first movie of the year and he shares the screen with another upcoming hero. This is what the initial things were said about this film. So the normal audience did not have anything to expect from this venture. Anyhow its another film from the hatrick hero. So its something special always. Lets see what this film has in it.

Sakthi (Inigo), Joseph (Vijay) joins a college where they share the same room. Arunachalam (Soori) joins them in their class and soon they become friends. Sakthi has a love feeling on Gayathiri another student of his class who belongs to the native of Arunachalam. Sakthi and Joseph is thrown out of their hostel and comes to Arunachalam’s village and stays in a room. Joseph gets a girl for him (Iswarya) who is the daughter of the village head, whom is against love. What happens next is the usual old age movie type story.

The film is set in the 80’s period. The plots in first half of the film has been finely built though the narration lacks pace. Even though the story is realistic it might remind you of Subramaniapuram. But the second half becomes filmy and loses the grip by having scenes which has been seen over many years. Apart from that it has a usual songs-sentiment-comedy-violence (gore?) type of mode.

Vijay plays the role of a friend to the main lead Inigo , but he still has a excellent role which he has played well. Inigo has done a decent job. Gayathiri comes and goes as a normal village belle whereas Iswarya has a excellent role which has a twist over the climax. Soori reminds us of many of the previous comedians. All other supporting artists have done well. The one person who has hit a jackpot in the film is D.Imman. Be it in the melodious songs or the brilliant BGM’s this man excels. Well done.! Camera by Prem is neat and editing is ok. Debutant Balakrishnan has given an engaging film, let down by an average screenplay and the extremely slow pace. Old wine in a very sleak but old bottle..!! 😦

Drishyam (MALAYALAM)

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Starring: Mohanlal, Meena and many more
Direction: Jeethu Joseph

My first Malayalam movie in theatres and thats because of the huge reviews the film got from media and also from my friends and colleagues. To add more there was news that its going to be remade into all other Indian languages and Kamal is going to do in Tamil. So what this film has to make it a top grosser in the entire Malayalam film history till now. I saw the film with the help of the subtitles only. 🙂

The story revolves around Georgekutty (Mohanlal) and his family which consists of his wife Rani (Meena) and two daughters. George runs a cable TV network in a hill high town in Kerala and his only work to do daily is to sit and watch films at his office. Meanwhile one of his daughter gets into a trouble by the son of IG officer and he tries to blackmail her. The girl and her mom kills him and the rest of the film revolves around the family and how they try to hide the secret and the dead body from the police. I am not ready to give out anything else extra which may shatter the thrill of watching it.

The first half moves in a slow way with more dialogues which introduces the family and their neighbours and their middle class living. The film becomes racy towards the end of first half and the entire second. How Georgekutty schemes to save his family even as the police focus their investigation solely on him right from the beginning due to a moment of bad luck is a masterpiece of story-telling. Not even a literate he uses his street smartness and the ideas from the movies he watched he executes them very well during all the important situations.

Mohanlal his at his best in this film. To be frank I can say this is his film and he has carried it right from first scene till the end. Hats off to him. He plays as a poor man taking kicks, punches and verbal abuse for the sake of his children and also playing a very smart game with the police. Meena plays an efficient role of a wife and mother of two. The 2 daughters acting was to the T, especially the younger one. The constable has venom in his eyes. The supporting cast of the tea shop owner and Mohanlal’s in-laws are nice. The IG actress emotes well.

The nice part of the film is it just has only 2 songs which does not acts as a speed breaker to the thriller. Apt camerawork and editing. Even though the film is 160 minutes odd not even a single place it goes down. BGM’s are worthy to mention. The screenplay is the next hero after Mohanlal. Jeethu has penned nice story and added with all needed suspense elements which makes it as a thriller family drama which deserves a standing ovation to the director. Excellent Excellent Excellent..!! 🙂

Goli Soda (TAMIL)

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Starring: Kishore, Sri Ram, Pandi, Murugesh, Seetha, Sujatha, Imman Annachi and many more
Editing: Antony
Music Songs: Arunagiri    Music Background: Seelin
Written by : Vijay Milton, Pandiraj
Cinematography and Directed by: Vijay Milton

Different Title..!! This what this cameraman cum director has done in his first direction film. But that film went without a trace. Again he has taken the baton of direction that too with no heroes and heroines and just semi kids as the main characters. What different he can give with them is what we will think. But he has given us a terror as well interesting cocktail in the form of all of his characters.

The story is about four boys (Kishore, Sri Ram, Pandi, Murugesh) who works around Koyambedu wholesale vegetable and fruit market, situated in Chennai. The are mostly taken care by Aachi (Sujatha) a vegetable shop owner in the same market. Market is under the control of Naidu (Madhusudhan of Mounaguru fame) and his right hand Mayil. Guys along with Aachi asks for help to Naidu to develop their own life who gives one of his shop which they develop as eatery and earns good name in a short while. After this one incident happens which makes them and their shop to close down. What happened and what is the end is an absolute treat to watch.

The main plus of the film is its screenplay and the characters. That makes half of the film a huge success. Each and every scene and every character has done something to the film. Eventhough there is no big stars the film boasts of full commercial elements along with a splendid story. All the 4 boys who already stole with their performance in Pasanga comes back to give another interesting and matured performance. They dont feel like the heroes but they are the heroes without showing any fear in their eyes.

Seetha as ATM is brilliant, her looks, speech and firecracker energy is a big relief to her character. The supporting cast of actors like the Naidu oozes angry with his looks and voice (dubbed by Samuthirakani) and Aachi Sujatha, Imman Annachi and Mayil. The entire cast of Pasanga sans a few have been retained here too. Pandiraj’s dialogs are the best of the best which portrays and informs the reality of the truth in a just a casual manner. Songs doesnt bore you and sinks with the film whereas BGM’s are entertaining. 2 hours of film which has all elements proves the editing is excellent.

The film tells us that everyone needs an identity but the way it was said mixed with all essential elements of a commercial film starting with story makes it very entertaining right from the word go. Dont miss to taste this soda which might be looking same like rest from outside but the taste it gives will make you its better and better and best than anything. 🙂

Dedh Ishqiya (HINDI)

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Starring: Naseerudin Shah, Arshad Warsi, Madhuri Dixit, Huma Quereshi, Vijay Raaz and many more
Editing: Sreekar Prasad
Cinematography: Setu
Music : Vishal Bharadwaj
Written by : Vishal Bharadwaj, Abhishek Chaubey
Directed by: Abhishek Chaubey

Another sequel.? This what the thought goes once u heard about the film. But who can forget the men of criminals done along with wittiness.? Thats what the Naseerudin and Arshad showed us in part one. Join Madhuri Dixit with them and not so famous Huma, what we get is an interesting cast. But will the film will be able to handle them.??

The film opens in its similar way like how it was in part one. Babban (Arshad) being caught by his enemies and he starts saying a story. Khalujan/Iftekhar (Naseerudin) acts as a Nawab and steals a necklace along with Babban and later gets escaped alone and acts as a Nawab in a Poetry meeting headed by Begum Para (Madhuri). Muniya (Huma) plays as her assistant. What happens when Arshad comes there in search of Naseerudin is the part of story. There is also one cunning MLA Jaan (Vijay Raaz) who eyes to be the head. And there is one kidnap also. But all these parts makes the film more and more interesting.

Naseeruddin Shah captures the essence of the worldly wise Khalujaan with the kind of acuity that only an actor of his proven calibre could have. Arshad Warsi, as always, is a livewire who injects full-on fizz into the proceedings without breaking into a sweat. Madhuri plays a very well etched character and emotes well and her dancing is as usual great. Huma comes back as a star and portrays her part apt. The unforgettable performance is from Vijay Raaz, consummately comical as the blundering, loutish gangster.

Sreekar Prasad’s editing is crisp which is why its clear how he won so many national awards. Setu captures the beautiful palaces and the big entrances with clear frames on his camera. Vishal Bharadwaj is back again with his Ishqiya tunes and songs are more enjoyable when seen on screen. Chaubey’s dialogues written along with Vishal tickles the fun part of the film and the screenplay is not boring as one after other a tricky situation arises.

On the whole Dedh Ishqiya is a tough film together and keeps us engrossed throughout the movie with its surprise twists and turns. When there are many films which comes only to make a box office crores, this is one film which shows a kidnap involving two females at the background of literature and petty thieves. Dedh Ishqiya is a full Ishqiya. 🙂