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 .

Sillunnu Oru Kadhal** */2 (2006)

SEOKadhal tamil movie still.Cast: Surya, Jothika, Bhoomika

Gist: The movie starts with Surya and Jothika getting married. The whole village is rejoicing, but the bride and the groom are as indifferent as they can be. Jothika had always wanted to find a soulmate, fall in love and then get married. So she thinks that an arranged marriage is the end of all her romantic dreams. Surya’s reason for lack of any interest is not explained right away.

Fast forwarding 6 years, Surya and Jothika are leading a very happy married life in Bombay. They have a little girl, head over heels in love and can’t keep their hands away from each other. After reading one of Surya’s old diaries, Jothika finds Surya was in love with Bhomika, his junior in college and had gotten married to her. Bhoomika’s father had intervened and separated them with brutal force. Surya is heart broken and his words are, “I want to live with Aishwarya(Bhoomika) for atleast one day.”

Jothika is shattered to learn about the other woman in her husband’s past. But she is also extremely moved by the longing in her husband’s words. Being the doting wife who intends to fulfill all her husband’s wishes, she meets Bhoomika and agrees to share his husband with her for one day.

My 2 cents: I really wanted to like this movie. I have been waiting to check this movie out as soon as the DVDs were released. Surya is my all time favourite, I had fallen for him after I watched Nandha and Jothika entered my favs list after Khakha Khakha. When my friends told me that the movie was so-so, I was in serious denial. But I hate to admit that they are right. This movie was neither here nor there, I had to create a new category – “2.5 stars”!

Rather than focusing on the story and screen play, director has relied on riding the wave created by the real life romance between Surya and Jothika. There are lots of unanswered questions. I would have been more interested in finding out how Surya and Jothika hit it off. That would have been a nice “Mouna Raagam”, “Dum Dum Dum” kind of movie ain’t it?

After 6 years Bhoomika is no longer a timid girl. She seems to have become pretty independent, sports a devil-may-care attitude and lives in Australia. Then why didn’t Bhoomika make any effort to get in touch with Surya? Director seems to have taken effort to explain a lot of trivial stuff but he has no explanation why Bhoomika had given up looking for Surya.

Jothika introduces herself of Surya’s wife, when she meets Bhoomika for the first time. Bhoomika gives her a strange look and asks her, “Appo naan yaaru?” I loved her attitude in that scene. I really thought that she is going to do something big, but she falls into the typical stereotype.

Had I been in Surya’s shoes, I wouldn’t be standing there crying all the time. I would have been pretty mad at Jothika for coming up with such a stupid one-night-stand kind of arrangement.

Half way in to the movie, I started to get the feeling that the movie had been playing for a very long time!

Surya has great chemistry with both Jothika and Bhoomika. Both the women are very good looking. Lollu Sabha Santhanam who plays Surya’s friend has some great one-liners.

Music by A.R.Rahman. Typical ARR style music. I loved the folk song(Kummi adi), Newyork nagaram and Majja Majja. The other songs have to grow on me.

Other: For songs, trailer and production pictures, click here.

Some Trivia: Aasin was the first choice for Bhoomika’s role. But she turned it down because she felt that the role didn’t have much importance.

The movie’s release date was postponed to be as close to Surya-Jothika’s wedding, hoping that the wedding might boost box office performance.

From my friend – New York nagaram song is actually filmed in Switzerland!

Movie was renamed as Sillendru Oru Kadhal to qualify for tax benefits. (According to the new rule, in Tamil Nadu, movies with pure tamil names get tax break)

A ladies organization filed a stay order against the movie. Reason stated – depicting that the wife trying to fix the husband with another woman is against tamil culture. Could be another publicity stunt to boost movie performance(purely my guess)!

Verdict: Could’ve, should’ve put in more effort.

Something Something Unakkum Yenakkum*** (2006)

Something tamil movie clipCast: Jeyam Ravi, Trisha, Geetha, Prabhu, BaghyaRaj, Manivannan, Haniffa, Mallika, Mouli

Gist: Jeyam Ravi is the only son of mild mannered millionaire BaghyaRaj and ruthlessly ambitious Geetha. He meets Trisha at his cousin’s wedding. Trisha is a simple village girl who adores her brother Prabhu. Prabhu hates rich people. Ravi and Trisha fall for each other. Geetha intervenes and stamps out the romance by insulting Trisha and Prabhu. But Ravi has his mind made up. He begs Prabhu to give him a chance to prove his love for Trisha. Prabhu challenges to a farming contest. If Ravi, a guy who does not know the ABC-s of farming, shows the same yield of crop as that of Prabhu, a seasoned farmer, then he has a chance of win over Trisha. Its game time guys!

My 2 cents: This movie is a remake of a telugu movie by Prabhu Deva. Director Raja seems to have enjoyed the original and has worked hard to preserve the essence of the movie. Raja has relied heavily on ‘cuteness factor’ and it has paid off! Makes me want to see the original.

Except for the jakiradhai joke which is too cliché, other jokes are quite enjoyable. They have taken the whole of the first half to show how love develops between Ravi and Trisha, then the twist and then the climax. By proportioning the movie, they have maintained a good pace.

Ravi learning the tricks and trades of farming is potrayed in a cinematic manner. But it is not possible to cram the whole learning process in a three hour movie, so he shows cute short cuts like headphones while milking cow etc, quite frankly they are enjoyable!

Trisha and Ravi are quite a pair. There is nothing ‘village-y’ about Trisha, but she is quite adorable. Ravi is energetic and shows the right emotion at the right time. Prabhu manages not to over act and BaghyaRaj acts in the only way he knows to act!

Music by Devi Sri Prasad is vibrant and catchy.

Movie is fresh, colorful, youthful, engaging and for the whole family. What more do we want?

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

Verdict: Something something IS something something.

Kadhal ** (2005)

Posted on October 2nd, 2006 in 2005 Movie Reviews,Barath,Director Balaji Shakthivel,K,Love/Romance,Sandhya,Two Star Movies by truthandhappiness

Cast: Barath, Sandhyakadhal tamil movie clip

Gist: Same beaten down old love story from the times of Alaigal Oiyvadhillai. The backdrop for the movie is Madurai. Sandhya is the daughter of a wealthy businessman. She is a school girl in her 9th standard and falls in love with Barath. What is so special about Barath that Sandhya picks him to spend the rest of her life with? Is he wealthy? Nope. Is he educated? Nope. Do they share the same interests? Nope. He is the first guy to give Sandhya a piece of his mind, that’s what attracts her to him. They decide to elope for Madras and struggle to start a life. Meanwhile Sandhya’s folks are frantic. They find out through Sandhya’s schoolmate that they are in Madras and come to Madras to get her. They promise Barath and Sandhya that they will not harm them, lure them back to Madurai, beat Barath black and blue and force Sandhya to marry someone else. Few years later Sandhya finds out that Barath has lost his mind after Sandhya left him. Sandhya’s understanding husband learns about all this and takes care of Barath.

My 2 cents: The positive point of this movie is that most of it is very realistic. In fact the director, Balaji Shakthivel claims that it is a real life story. The director has pointed out that life is not a bed of roses for young lovers who elope. Sandhya’s uncle who comes to Madras in search of her sweet talks them in to returning to Madurai. As their convoy reaches Madurai, he slowly shows his true colors. These are some scenes that closely resemble real life. On the flip side, Sandhya and Barath seem to have fallen in love for no strong reason. So when they struggle to begin a life, it fails to get my sympathy. I felt like shouting, ‘serves you two right’ at the top of my voice. The climax where Sandhya’s husband learns about the truth and assumes responsibility for Barath is very dramatic. Both Barath and Sandhya have proved that they can act well. The little boy who acts as Barath’s assistant is abolutely irritating. I just can’t stand little kids who act all grown up. Joushua Sridhar’s music is pleasing.

Others:To hears songs from this tamil movie click here.
For movie gallery click here.
For movie trailer click here

Verdict: Kadhal is highly overrated.

Idhya Thirudan** (2006)

Posted on September 29th, 2006 in 2006 Movie Reviews,Director Charan,I,Jeyam Ravi,Kamna,Love/Romance,Nasser,PrakashRaj,Two Star Movies by truthandhappiness

idhayathorudan tamil movie clipCast: Jayam Ravi, Kamna(Introducing), PrakashRaj, Nasser, Vani Vishwanath

Gist: Charan has dealt with the same old love story which has been beaten to death since the dawn of Tamil cinema. Jayam Ravi who is a catering college student is in love with Kamna and it is love at first sight for him. But Kamna rejects him, for no apparent reason. Slowly Kamna realizes that she is in love with Ravi but her ego gets the better of her. She proceeds to flirt with Prakash Raj, leads him on to a wedding in a registrar office. Finally who ends up with who is not something hard or difficult to guess.

My 2 cents: If you don’t ask logical questions, or for that matter any questions at all, it is a semi-decent masala. Villains are thrown all over the movie just to provide so called interesting turns. Ravi is quite good looking and is a good dancer. Kamna gets a pass mark in her debut performance. In the looks department, she is neither here nor there.

There is no explanation why Kamna hates her mother (Vani Vishwanath) so much. Also she flirts with any one and every one, it kind of gets on one’s nerves after sometime. All of a sudden Nasser metamorphoses in to a good guy. Songs are barely okay. Charan seems to rely soley on Kamna’s skimpy clothes to promote the movie.

Others: To hear songs from this tamil movie click here.
For movie gallery click here.
For movie trailer click here.

Verdict: In a nut shell, Idhayathirudan lacks the ability to steal the viewer’s heart.

Azhagai Yirukirai Bayamai Yirukiradhu *** (2006)

Cast: Barath, Mallika Kapoor, Arunkumar, DheepuAzhagai tamil movie clip

Gist: A regular ‘boy loves girl, girl loves another boy, that boy loves some other girl’ story. Barath comes to city in search of his lover, Dheepu only to find that she is in love with Arunkumar. Barath meets Mallika Kapoor who is nursing a secret crush for Arunkumar. So Barath and Mallika Kapoor team up to split Arunkumar and Dheepu. But there is a neat little twist after the intermission. The girl Barath is in love is Mallika Kapoor and not Dheepu. Barath sacrifies his love to make Mallika Kapoor’s love come true.

My 2 cents: Mallika Kapoor and Barath have the right chemistry. Renuka, as Barath’s mother has delivered a good performance. The plans Barath and Mallika Kapoor come up to split up Arunkumar and Dheepu invokes laughter. Old fashioned but cute cartoons that pop up in the first half of the movie are worth mentioning.

Other: To hear songs from this tamil movie click here.
For movie gallery clickhere.
For movie trailer click here.

Verdict: No double/triple meaning dialogues, no explict sexual content, decent U rated entertainment for the whole family.

Ullam Ketkume ** (2005)

ullam ketkume tamil movie clipCast: Shyam, Laila, Aarya, Pooja, Aasin

Gist: Shyam, Laila, Aarya, Pooja and Aasin are collegemates. After they leave college they meet each other for Aarya’s wedding. In this time a lot has happened. The rest of the movie is a flashback about their college life, their friendship, broken hearts and lennnnngthy climax in which Shyam realizes that it is better to give up his one sided love and to marry the girl who loves him.

My 2 cents: This movie was first named Pepsi. After many issues the movie was finally released, but it falls quite short of expectations. Considering the fact that Laila was the only major star when the movie was made, her role receives a lot of importance. Laila is too peppy for her own good, but evokes sympathy when Shaym treats her like a pain in the wrong part of the body. I like her much better when she is calm and composed. A bubbly Laila is pretty irritating. Aarya cannot act for nuts. Let us see if his internship with Bala for ‘Naan Kadavul’ manages to mold him in to a good actor. It is Aasin’s debut. She plays a practical girl who knows what she wants in life. Shyam and Pooja manage to do their part well. Music by Harris Jeyaraj is effervescent.

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

Verdict: Ullam Ketkume is so-so.