Paruthi Veeran *** (2007)

Varalaru movie clipCast: Karthik, Priyamani, Ponvannan, Saravanan

Gist: There is nothing ground breaking in the story. Karthik and Priyamani are lovers. But Priyamani’s father is very particular about caste issues, to the point that he would rather kill than let his daughter marry a person from another caste. Initially Karthik does not take Priyamani seriously, he is more interested in drinking and sleeping with other women. He has no second thoughts on lashing out violently on any one who dares to goad his anger. Later he is moved by Priyamani’s love and the lovers decide to elope leading to a long climax that is partly predictable and partly surprising.

My 2 cents: When you look at the movie you can immediately tell that the director has taken time to thoroughly enjoy every frame of his creation. Aamir not only wants to tell us this love story, but also wants to give us a true flavor of the village he grew up in. He has done it so well and so realistically that Paruthiyoor is more of a character by itself than a setting for the story. Take away the essence of Paruthiyoor, there is nothing more left in the movie! I know for a fact that most of the people in Tamil Nadu are going to love this movie and this movie will be a box office hit.

But I, basically, am a city girl. I felt at times that the essence of Parithiyoor was a bit too much, but again that is pure me. I would have preferred it if the accent of the characters were a little “less villagey”. Except for the dialogues uttered by Karthik and Priyamani I needed captions for the dialogues delivered by other people. Throw in few folk dances by transgenders, few brutal murders, real village people, dark oily faces with out makeup, a graphic climax and going back home to two kids who were screaming their heads(at 1.00AM ,we went for the late night show) off the whole time we were gone because they thought that appa and amma abandoned them; thats why I give it only three stars. Again, its just my perspective. Damn, I have never felt the necessity to explain my ratings before!

Karthik, is this really your first movie?! Looks wise I still like your older brother, but you did hell of a job in your debut. You have lived your part without any inhibitions. The part where you walk behind Priyamani with a stupid grin on your face and tell her, “Namakkum vandhiruchu yilla?” was way too, forgive me for the expression, ‘cute’. Kind of reminded me of Pithamagan Surya, not that you copied his body language or anything. Dude your graph is going to skyrocket.

Priyamani is brilliant, especially in the scenes where she yells for food just after she is beaten blue and black by her father. Apparently Ponvannan really hit her because Aamir wanted the scene to be real. It took 10 retakes, which means she was hit 10 times by an umbrella, her head was banged 10 times against a wall, she was thrown down on the floor 10 times and she was kicked on her stomach 10 times. She must have been really motivated to give a hit movie and make people notice her as an actress to put up with this ordeal!

For Aamir the third time is a charm. It is hard to believe that it is the same Aamir who made Monuman Pesiyadhe! All his three movies (Mounam Pesiyadhe, Raam, Paruthi Veeran) are totally different and one cannot find the shade of the previous movie in the next one.

For people who have missed the title card that the music is by Yuvan, they will end up thinking that the music is by Illayarajaa. Like father, like son.

Other: Check out paruthiveeranthemovie.com

Verdict: Go in expecting to come back with a little bit of Paruthiyoor. Some may like Paruthiyoor some may not, but eitherwaysit is sure to stay with you .

Pudhupettai **** (2006)

Pudhupettai movie clipCast: Dhanush, Sneha, Sonia Agarwal
Gist: Danush is a high school student. His father kills his mother and all of a sudden his life is turned upside down. He runs away from home fearing his own life and ends up in a gang. There he kills as it is necessary for his survival. He likes the adrenaline rush he gets out of killing people and kills people just because he can. He slowly climbs his way up. One wrong move against the politician he works with costs him dearly and he learns that one also needs a little diplomacy and patience to become a big shot.

My 2 cents: This movie was a perfect combination of everything I don’t like – Selvaraghavan(Kadhal Konden affected me too much. 7G Rainbow Colony was not my cup of tea), Dhanush, Sonia Agarwal, Balakumaran, gangster movies. So I started watching the movie with extreme prejudice. But I have to admit that I liked the movie……quite a bit. I hate to say it, but the individuals I dislike seemed to deliver just the right amount of everything when put together!

Though it is bathed in violence, Pudhupettai is not a movie about the life of gangsters. It simple narrates the journey of an individual from a diffident school student to a gangster. When pushed to the limits and when his life is threatened the timid Kokki Kumar kills because of pure gut instinct. Then he kills partly because he can and partly to preserve his scary image. It indeed is the story of the survival of the fittest.

Selvaraghavan has done a great job. He is quite a director. Deals more with the dark side of society, but he is good at what he does.

Dhanush…hmmm, where do I start? He delivers an extraordinary performance. Either he is a very good actor, or he has stared growing on me (damn I feared this day). When I told this to one of my friends, she looked at me all wired and declared that I need to get of the house more.

Sonia has a small role to play, which works well with my tolerance level for her! She has such sad eyes, frankly makes me think that she is constipated or something! Sneha, no doubt can act well. But she looks less appealing devoid of makeup. Whats with actresses’ fascination towards good prostiture roles?! Was that Alagarperumal, the director of Dum Dum Dum as the sleazy politican? Not bad at all.

Yuvan Shankar Raja’s music is awesome. I am not talking about the songs, the lyrics repulsed me. Na.Muthukumar could have done better than “Padicha naye ulle varadhey” kind of lyrics. Iam talking about the background music, Yuvan was so brilliant, the scenes felt so much more alive because of the music.

Balakumaran’s dialogues are very powerful.

Other: To hear songs from this tamil movie click here.
For movie trailers click here.
For picture gallery click here.
Wikipedia has some interesting trivia about the movie.

Verdict: Do check it out. Definitely not to be watched with kids.

Pattiyal **** (2006)

Pattiyal tamil movie still.Cast: Aarya, Barath, Padmapriya, Pooja, Haniffa

Gist: Aarya and Barath are orphans who have been best of friends since childhood. They grow up to be contract killers. Haniffa is a government employee who moon lights as a middleman delivering assignments to Aarya and Barath. Most of the hit men come across two types of women – women who are not repulsed by their profession and women who get scared of them. Padmapriya plays the first type and Pooja plays the latter type. Barath and Aarya decide to quit their profession after they kill a big shot in Coimbatore. But fate is a funny thing ain’t it? It has a strange way of making amends.

My 2 cents: Whenever a subject gets popular in Kodambakkam, directors and story writers are so keen on riding the wave that the same story line is repeated in two movies that are released around the same time. Now the craze is about the underworld. Naalai and Pattiyal have the same story. We will never know who stole the idea from whom, but atleast Pattiyal was coherent and well made.

The movie gives as realistic account of the lives of hit men. Contrary to popular perceptions, most of the time they are not people with special training, they are just ordinary people who choose killing as profession. They don’t have any remorse about their profession. They are neither rich nor have political backing. In fact most of them don’t even own sophisticated weapons that aide in their profession. They come dime a dozen and are easily dispensable. The director subtly and explicitly points out all the above through out the movie. When he shows Aarya and Barath learning to shoot by watching Hollywood movies, it is a subtle emphasis on their lack of shooting skills.

In Boys Barath was just a guy who danced well. In Pattiyal he is guy who can act as well. He plays a deaf and dumb guy and scores and ace in his acting. The scene where Pooja throws him out of the house after she witnesses Barath wielding a revolver, he pours out his emotions with hand gestures.

Padmapriya shows versatility. She is a little too hyper at times, but over all delivers a good performance.

Pooja plays a middle class family girl who falls for Barath without any knowledge about his profession. She tends to hand gesture a lot even to people who can hear well, was kind of funny. No serious complaints about her in the acting department.

Sporting a stubble, unruly hair and an irritated expression seems to be Aarya’s version of a hit man. He could have done some more homework on his role. Some times when he yells it is difficult to understand what he is saying.

Other: To hear songs from this tamil movie click here.
For movie trailers click here.
For picture gallery click here.

Verdict: Pattiyal was like a Chase novel.

Paarijatham *** (2006)

Posted on October 3rd, 2006 in 2006 Movie Reviews,Director BaghyaRaj,Drama,P,PrakashRaj,PrithviRaj,Roja,Saranya,Three Star Movies by truthandhappiness

Parijatham Tamil Movie clipCast: Saranya, Seetha, Sarath Babu, PrakashRaj, BaghyaRaj

Gist: Saranya is the daughter of SarathBabu. She works as a maid in Seetha’s house. Seetha learns that Saranya’s family used to be affluent, but all the wealth has dried up presently. Seetha is very impressed by Saranya’s warm and lovable nature. She is so impressed that she decides to make Saranya her daughter-in-law. She informs her husband(PrakashRaj) and son(PrithviRaj) of her decision, but she does not disclose the identity of the bride to be. Unexpectedly Seetha sustains a head injury and dies before she could tell PrakashRaj and PrithviRaj who she has picked out to be her DIL. PrakashRaj and PrithviRaj are determined to fulfill Seetha’s last wish, but are mislead and confused. Now enters BaghyaRaj with his usual sense of wit and helps father and son to solve the mystery.

My 2 cents: At a time where the whole tamil movie world is going ga-ga over movies about underworld and hit men, Paarijatham which deals with family drama is a breath of fresh air.

Another heroine oriented subject from the master screenplay writer, BaghyaRaj. He has proved time and again that he can captivate the audience with scanty story line. The movie is littered with typical BaghyaRaj-isms. But since we are watching his work after a very long time, it does not irritate us.

For a debut, Saranya gives a decent performance. Prithiviraj has played a romantic hero, very much different from his previous role as a loan shark(Movie Kana Kandein).

We all know how the movie will end, it is an ending we all expect. The strength of the movie lies in the screen play which keeps us guessing on the route BagyaRaj takes to arrive at the ending. So no complaints about a predictable ending! Anything but the predictable ending, I would’nt have liked the movie, after all I was looking for something light.

Other: To hear songs from this tamil movie click here.
For movie trailers click here.
For picture gallery click here 

Verdict: But for the gross comedy track towards the end of the movie, this would have been a wholesome entertainment for the entire family.