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Showing posts from March, 2016

Uyyala jampala (Telugu movie) and playing house

Uyyala jampala, a 2013 Telugu film, is a cute love story.  It is interesting and certainly worth watching.  However, there was one scene which stood out for me and made the movie much more than that.  It clearly illustrates that so much can be said with a single scene.  Let me describe it for you. It is a flashback into the hero's childhood.  The heroine and the hero were childhood friends.  One day, the heroine sees a mango (on a tree) and requests the hero to pluck it for her.  To this the hero replies "I will pluck it for you if you promise that you will play house with me".  Generally, girls are more interested in playing house.  Girls coax boys into playing house with the promise of some goodies.  So, I was really surprised by this reverse persuasion.  But, soon I understood the motive. As soon as they started playing house, he started treating her like a servant.  She has to serve him food, massage his legs and so on.  He just lies down and orders her arou

In defense of the Telugu film industry; An introduction

I am a Malayali (Keralite), but I LOVE Telugu movies. I can now understand Telugu well and can speak reasonably. I have spent a lot of time defending the Telugu film industry - often I had arguments even with Telugus. So, I thought I should write down my arguments once and for all, so as to make it easier for me in future. Like every industry, there are bad films in Telugu too. In fact, I believe that 90% of the movies in any industry is bad. One can just choose to ignore them. So you should not judge an industry bad just because it has bad films. If there are a handful of good movies each year, then the industry should be called good. And Telugu industry certainly qualifies. Another point is that, the high budget films try to play it safe - as the risk is higher. So, if you really want to see something different you should see the low budget films. If a certain type of low budget film makes it big, then someone might make a similar high budget film. Now let me answer the quest

Golanthara vaartha: Why is sex the most unforgivable act?

Golanthara vartha is a 1993 Malayalam film, written by Sreenivasan and directed by Sathyan Anthikad. The film stars Mammootty,Shobana, Sreenivasan and Kanaka in the main roles. The film is about Rameshan Nair (Mammootty), who strives hard to make his village an ideal place.  He is well respected throughout the village and is the go-to guy in case of any problem.  I have heard some criticisms, calling this character a typical moral police.  However, I do not agree with this.  What puts him apart, is his true concern and the effort he puts to help others.  The way he helps Karakkattil Dasan (Sreenivasan), a local goon, to mend his ways and start a small business is very impressive.  I fell in love with him. What surprised me is that, he is able to forget and forgive the past of Karakkattil Dasan,  but not of Rajani (Kanaka).  In his efforts to make Dasan a normal member of the society, Rameshan Nair with the help of others, tries to find a match for him.  This leads them to the hous

Priyamanasam (Sanskrit)

Priyamanasam is a movie about renowned Malayalam poet Unnaayi Warrier, about whom very little is known. The film is a fictional presentation of his life, based on available information. It is interesting in many ways. Unnayi Warrier is famous for his Nalacharitham aattakatha - the story of Nala, from Mahabharatha, written for Kathakali. In the film, a parallel is drawn between Nala and Undayi Warrier. The story of Nala, is a sincere love story between Nala and his love, Damayathi. Even though they were both sincere, they get separated as Nala gets cursed. The curse disfigures Nala and he becomes unrecognisable. The rest of the story describes the ordeals they go through, to finally get united. Unnayi Warrier, who loses his love due to the curse of poverty, is similar to Nala. In the movie, the final union of Nala and Damayanthi is described as a manifestation of Unnayi Warrier's dream of getting united with his love. Through his work, he was living the li

Naanu avanalla...avalu (Kannada)

Naanu avanalla...avalu is a film about struggles of a transgender based on the life of Living smile Vidya.  The film is made really well and raises many important questions.  It is a cry to not discriminate those who are different from us -  at the very least treat them more kindly. Madesha (the protagonist) exhibits girly behaviour from childhood and is attracted by clothes "meant for" girls.  He believes he is a female trapped in a male's body.  When I saw this I was haunted by many questions - especially because this is based on real experience.  Is there really something called feminine dressing?  Is there something really called feminine?  What about all the people who attribute gender differences to social conditioning?  As asked by a person in the film - what does it mean to be female(trapped in a male's body)?  Note that, this is different from being a homosexual, which is much easier to understand. What I liked the most in the movie is the relation betwe

Charlie (Malayalam)

I hated Charlie.  Dulquer Salmaan's characterization was irritating.  His scorn+contempt (puchchham) and inhuman ability to influence others reminded me of yet another irritating character - Mohanlal's character in Innathe chinthavishayam.  The hieghts of insanity is reached in this small incident in the movie -  Due to the depression caused by a break up a girl could not concentrate on the surgery and hence a kid lost his/her life.  Due to the guilt and depression caused by this incident, she lost the kid growing inside her.  This was too much for her and she decided to suicide.  At this moment Dulquer convinces her that there is so much beauty in the world by showing her Orion (the constellation).    My problem is really not with it being unrealistic.  In some sense it is trivializing the pain she was facing.  If someone is pushed so far as to attempt suicide their pain is certainly not trivial.  And it pisses me off when someone looks down on someone else's pain.