Oru Kidayin Karunai Manu (TAMIL)

Starring: Vidharth, Raveena and many more
Editing : KL Praveen
Music: Raghuram
Cinematography: RV Saran
Directed by: Suresh Sangaiah

Ooph..!! Yes a very long break indeed from writing the reviews. Sorry for the break. In the meanwhile I have just watched 5 movies which is very rare in case of me. Changes are always good and should be accepted. Let me start with the review of this award-winning movie and will slowly catch up the speed and be back to the current form and then resume the review with the latest movie which I watch. Here I go..!!

People of Naduvampatti go on a road trip to worship their family deity temple in a lorry to sacrifice a goat for the well-being of the newly wed couple Ramamurthy (Vidharth) and Seetha (Raveena). To impress Seetha, Ramamurthy drives the lorry and in a freak accident, it hits something and there they find a man dead with a bike. After the initial shock and heated argument, everyone tries to cover up the murder for the sake of the couple and a lawyer also reaches the spot. What happens next is an interesting tale which strongly portrays how people feel different for a loss of a human whereas they kill animals in the name of sacrifice and worship without any guilt.

Kudos to debutant writer-director Suresh Sangaiah for his hard work to study the characters of the villages, their lifestyle and behavior which has made this film which makes it close to heart for everyone. The film neither lauds nor demonize animal sacrifice at any instance throughout. Vidharth should be lauded for being part of good scripts. Here he pulls it off with utmost ease. Raveena – the dubbing artist turned actress – is not that great looking but she suited the role and has done her part well.

The second half is not as tight and engaging as the first half. But such things are unavoidable for a film that does not resort to any kind of commercial compromise. Music by debutant Raghuram has done a fantastic job by providing rural sounds and BGM that aptly supplements the narration. Saran’s cinematography has captured the rural life with its realistic beauty. Overall, the movie is a beautiful, moving experience. Big thumbs up for Suresh Sangaiah for giving such a sweet, simple story of life in a village and a small film with a big heart. Don’t miss it..!! 🙂


Rangoon (TAMIL)

Starring: Gautham Karthik, Sana, Lallu, Siddique and many more
Editing : GK Prasanna
Music Songs : RH Vikram, Vishal Chandrasekhar     Background Music : Vishal Chandrasekhar
Cinematography: Anish Tharun
Directed by: Rajkumar Periyasamy

After the ‘Baahubali 2‘ storm, there was no other film which was interesting to see. After a long gap we chose to see this film as it got some good word of mouth from public. Though I was not much interested to see it, made up my mind and went ahead. Lets see how this movie has fared.

Venkat (Gautham Karthik) is an Indian descendant born in Burma. Venkat’s family moves to Burma Nagar in Chennai in late 80’s. He loses his dad when he was a child and grows up with the support of his mother. As he grew he could not continue his education but he joins in the gold shop owned by Gunaseelan (Siddique). Only after saving Gunaseelan’s life from his business enemies, Venkat gets to know that his boss is involved in smuggling. But for Venkat, becoming rich is a dream and he along with his group of friends bring back the old smuggling to save Gunaseelan’s name among the local businessmen and also for their own good. Lady luck smiles at Venkat and his friends initially but when they decide to leave the business after one last deal, they lose huge money. What exactly happened forms the rest.

The clear winners of the movie are Raj Kumar’s direction, excellent acting from the lead cast and crisp editing. Though the movie seems to be slowly moving in the second half, it does not hinder the flow of the movie due to its twists. No one would have shown such detailed work on Rangoon, the place, and Burma Bazaar. The film loses the steam after interval but the strong climax and solid message compensate all the flaws. This is the best film in Gautham Karthik’s career so far, and he has brought so much life to the Venkat character, his energy level is amazing.

Sana, unfortunately, in her debut has very little to contribute. This is the kind of story that would work wonders even without a heroine, especially if she has no better job than to look pretty on-screen. Siddique is good choice for the character of Gunaseelan and he has performed well along with Lallu and Daniel who has pitched in with their performance too. Music composers RH Vikram and Vishal Chandrasekar have delivered impressive work and Anish Tharun Kumar’s cinematography is another major strength. With a solid content and authentic detailing, Rajkumar’s Rangoon is a gritty thriller that’s worth watch..!! 🙂

Baahubali 2 (TAMIL)

Starring: Prabhas, Rana Daggubati, Anushka, Tamannah, Ramyakrishnan, Satyaraj, Nasser and many more
Editing : Venkateswara Rao
Music : Keeravani
Cinematography: KK Senthil Kumar
Dialogues : Kaarky
Directed by: SS Rajamouli

Baahubali 2 the biggest release of this year in Indian cinema and the most expected sequel has finally released. After a blockbuster first part, the expectation for Baahubali 2 movie reached great heights. Did the movie manage the hype? Let’s see that in below.

The plot is simple – Palvallthevan (Rana) cunningly kills Amarendra Baahubali (Prabhas) through the royal slave Kattappa (Satyaraj) and also arrests Baahubali’s wife Devasena (Anushka). Saved by the sacrifice of Sivagami (Ramyakrishnan),  Mahendra Baahubali (Prabhas) comes to know about  the cruel death of his dad and takes revenge against his uncle Palvallathevan to become the king of Magizhmathi kingdom. Did he win and takes the throne forms the rest.

Rajamouli treats every frame with so much attention and care and that makes you to avoid blinking for the fear of losing out on a jaw-dropping moment in the story. Apart from the slightly dragged romantic sequences between the lead pair, the rest of the screenplay was so crisp that it covers all areas that are needed for such a grand film. Prabhas has stolen the show with his exceptional performances as Amarendra Baahubali and Mahendra Baahubali in the movie. He oozes action in all the scenes he appears. Anushka once again proves why she has been considered as one of best actresses of her generation, with the brilliant performance. The actress succeeds in matching the senior actors in the frame with her effortless acting skills.

Rana Daggubati who appears as the antagonist, is simply perfect in his role. His portrayal of the cruel king, especially the in the older age portions of the character is totally praiseworthy. Surprisingly, Satyarj’s character has been given an humourous touch in the movie, and the actor has played it to near perfections. Ramya has wonderfully portrayed the various shades of her character with the same ease. The VFX was exceptional at the certain points, but falls flat at a few portions, especially in the climax war sequences. The biggest highlight of the movie Keeravani and his background score. BGM gives you goosebumps.

Senthil Kumar’s camera takes you on a wide panoramic ride of eye-popping sets. Sabu Cyril and his team can take a bow for creating such breathtaking manual sets. Rajamouli has successfully broken the myth which suggests that sequels can’t over-power the first parts, with this amazing piece of work. He deserves a huge round of applause for making Baahubali 2 a magnificent cinematic experience. Baahubali on the whole is magnificent and has all the elements to make you watch it in theaters. A classic movie experience which simply outshines its highly celebrated prequel. Don’t miss this one..!! 🙂

Pa Paandi (TAMIL)

Starring: Rajkiran, Revathi, Prasanna, Chaya Singh and many more
Editing : Prasanna
Music : Sean Roldan
Cinematography : Velraj
Directed by: Dhanush

Dhanush has now entered into direction..!! After acting, producing, singing, writing lyrics he dons the hat of the director. He has chosen a 60+ actor as his lead in his debut directorial venture. Lets see what he has tried saying us through his story.

Power Paandi (Rajkiran) is a retired stunt master in Tamil film industry, living with his son Raghavan (Prasanna), daughter-in-law (Chaya Singh) and their two children. Raghavan wants his dad to stay at home and spend his time but Paandi is a person who can’t take things lightly, as  he wants to work and be occupied. When Paandi picks up a fight with the local thugs, it causes embarrassment to Raghavan. This forces Paandi and he writes a letter and leaves home. The old man wants to explore life and goes on a road trip to meet his first love (Revathi) in Hyderabad. What happens next forms the rest.

Dhanush has packaged the movie in such a way that the film has necessary commercial elements including fight, romance, songs and family sentiments. Establishing the characters and premise  takes up a chunk of the film’s first half. The film’s second half moves briskly, save for the unnecessary songs that act as speed bumps in the narrative. Rajkiran carries the entire film on his broad shoulder and shines in every frame emoting effortlessly be it charged up for the fight sequences or becoming a child when playing with his grandchildren.

Revathi lifts the film with her brilliant performance though for a very short period of time, she steals the show. The way she sits down with her daughter and discusses the idea of companionship at 60. Take a bow. The flashback scenes of Dhanush and Madonna Sebastian (young Rajkiran and Revathi) though well-written is cliched. Prasanna as the son who repents for his behavior towards his dad after he goes missing has given a good account of himself while Chaaya Singh as his wife does not get any scenes to score. Rinson as the boy next door who has a casual and loyal friendship with Power Paandi is so natural that you wish there are more scenes between them.

If simplicity is the heart of the film, Sean Roldan’s music is the soul. The background scores and the album itself is all about narrating Power Paandi’s story. Velraj’s camera captures the rural flavor and ambience effectively. Dhanush gives us a heartwarming film that, despite its conventional storytelling, packs in a huge emotional wallop. An emotionally strong film but not too much emotional on a story basis. Can give a try..!! 🙂

Kaatru Veliyidai (TAMIL)

Starring: Karthi, Aditi Rao Hydari, RJ Balaji, Rukmini and many more
Editing : Sreekar Prasad
Music : AR Rahman
Cinematography : Ravivarman
Directed by: Mani Ratnam

Mani Ratnam, known for his romantic tales with a different note is at it again! Each time he surprises us with a fresh angle. Tweaking his lead characters with curious settings and narrating the tale in a refreshing manner, Mani is able to achieve his vision to a great extent. Thanks to his long time association with ARR and Vairamuthu he has once again given the oomph factor needed for the film. Lets see how the movie has fared.

Fighter pilot Varun aka VC (Karthi) and doctor Leela Abraham (Aditi Rao Hydari) fall in love against the backdrop of the Kargil war in Srinagar. Everything is smooth till Leela realizes that it is difficult for her to move with VC’s self-centered nature and the way he disrespect her in public. She is a modern girl who wants equality in a relationship and decides to walk away from his life. VC gets caught by Pakistan army and he keeps on thinking of Leela and what happens next is the rest.

In this film, Ratnam rehashes themes and moments from his previous films, but he also takes a bash at understanding the gender wars. The climax looks tad weak, the scenes where Karthi escapes from a Pakistan jail looks convenient filled with logical loopholes. The screenplay sleep walks till the pre-climax where only the film moves in a normal speed. The film’s biggest strength is Aditi Rao Hydari, and she shines in every frame. She is there throughout and even gets a perfect introduction scene. She owns the film with her winsome performance. The way Aditi cries, laughs and emote completely attract us.

With a toned physique and sporting a new look sans a mustache, Karthi is at his career best, be it in a male chauvinist act or as the one who regrets his past actions. Blame it on his character of a self-centered egoistic brash guy, we hardly root for him and he looks quite uncomfortable in most of the intimate scenes. Visually, Kaatru Veliyidai is beautiful, beyond anyone’s imagination. Each frame is like a painting and Ravi Varman as the cinematographer deserves more than just praise. It is amazing how Ratnam uses the beautiful backdrop of Kashmir and a few other places throughout the film to paint a troubled love story and to highlight the different facets of love.

Rahman’s music, too, serves as the backbone of the film. The songs are perfectly placed and never break the flow of the narrative. Usually Mani flashes his brilliance in all his movies and he has shown in this too but unfortunately all that gets lost in a largely underwhelming film. There are some great scenes, some moments that prove why he’s a legend, but otherwise it is disappointing. Either he comes to our world and give his version of our story or he wants us to come us into his story. This belongs to the latter part where we are invited but we could not enjoy it fully. Better luck next time..!! 🙂

Kavan (TAMIL)

Starring: Vijay Sethupathi, Madonna Sebastian, T Rajendhar, Bose Venkat and many more
Editing : Anthony
Music : Hiphop Tamizha
Cinematography : Abinandhan Ramanujan
Directed by: KV Anand

KV Anand has joined hands again with write duo Subha and new face Kabilan Vairamuthu to pen the story of this film. This adds the curiosity of the film along with the casting led by Vijay Sethupathi and energetic T Rajendhar. When this unusual combo joins together we can expect a cracking film. Lets see whether the film is like that or not.

Thilak (Vijay Sethupathi) is a talented journalist, who wants to achieve big in media, he gets a job in a leading TV channel owned by Kalyan (Akashdeep Saighal). There he meets Malar (Madonna), his ex-flame in college, and love blooms again. Slowly Thilak finds the process is not so interesting, and he is upset. After Thilak’s unexpected honest live interview with a politician (Bose Venkat) where he is connected to issues with student power (led by Vikranth), who is a close friend of Kalyan goes awry, he and his friends decide to walk out. Now Thilak and gang join a little known TV channel owned by Mayilvaganan (T Rajendhar). The rest of the film is all about how the young team unmasks the corrupt side of the TRP driven channel.

The film moves at a rapid pace during the first half and is highly engaging and entertaining taking a dig at the TV channels as how they manipulate everything from reality shows to news to awards to get their TRP’s high. The dialogues are bold and striking and each character has its own distinctive style of speech which enhances the viewing. The ever-charming Vijay Sethupathi does his job to utmost perfection. His natural flair for comedy combined with his earnest attempt, he is a treat to watch. TR is acting in a full-fledged role after long time and he goes over the top with his usual rhyming and timing which is his strength.

Madonna Sebastian does a neat job and looks fascinating in the songs. Vikranth has given a riveting performance. Pandiarajan makes his presence felt while Bose Venkat is a revelation as the ruffian politician. Abhinandan’s cinematography, especially in the second half is excellent in giving the right feel for the different versions of the sequences of events. HipHop Tamizha’s BGM had a good sync with the content but still could have been better. KV Anand has dished out a well researched screenplay on their chosen subject and the powerful dialogues compliment it. Though it has its own flaws it can be enjoyed once..!! 🙂

Angamaly Diaries (MALAYALAM)

Starring: Antony Varghese, Reshma Rajan and many more
Editing : Shameer Mohammed
Music : Prashant Pillai
Cinematography : Girish Gangadharan
Directed by: Lijo Jose Pellisery

I had no clue what type movie is this when everyone said that this film is good. Seeing the posters, I could not even imagine what the film will be about. That too with no known faces. As usual went to see this film without any expectations. Read below about the film and you will come to know.

The story starts with happenings which leads to scuffle between two gangs and there we get to see about Vincent Pepe (Antony Varghese), a hot-tempered youth coming from a modest household of Angamaly a small town in Kerala. He wants to have a gang like how he has seen the other gangs in his town and he gets attracted to violence pretty early in his life. Pepe tries to get out of all the shady activities at a certain point but things go wrong, as some unprecedented happenings lead to a rivalry with another gang. In between this we see about his love life and what happens in his story forms the rest of the film.

First thing to see is the movie has 86 new faces that make up most of the casting and you can’t even point one performance as low and they are the one’s who carry the movie on their shoulders. There is a freshness which we feel right at the outset itself. The raw feel is a welcome break. The frames are real and the people in it are real. Antony Varghese, the newcomer has played the role of Vincent Pepe to near perfection. The actor astonishes with his balanced, natural performance.

The artist who played the role of Ravi is another actor who scores with his extraordinary performance in the movie. The actor has successfully broken the stereotypes of negative roles, with his stunning act. Reshma Rajan as Litchie steals the show when she gives the twist in the movie. Comic moments stand out with humor told in the most bizarre of situations and minute details bring out the flavors of life which adds plus for the film.

Chemban Vinod Jose has managed to come out with a convincing script that is based on real events and characters that behave like normal people. A big round of applause for Prashant Pillai for his terrific music and Girish Gangadharan’s splendid visuals. The icing on the cake is the climax scene filmed in a one eleven minute uncut shot. Director Lijo Jose Pellissery proves his extraordinary craft with the excellent portrayal of the Angamaly town and people who live there. He has done a great job by creating a truly raw and realistic movie experience with absolute brilliance. Overall, it is a realistic, brilliantly made film, which is a complete treat to the movie lovers..!! 🙂