Tamil cinema has evolved a lot coming out of cliched themes. It�s no more hero running around trees romancing heroines or an angry young man bashing a bunch of anti-socials.
A young breed of filmmakers has come laying hands on unexplored themes and dwelling on sensitive and emotional ideas, taking leaf out of our daily life. Director Suseenthiran is one among them, who has proved his mettle with �Vennila Kabbadi Kuzhu� and �Nan Mahan Alla� before.
�Azhagarsamiyin Kuthirai� by Suseenthiran is more a children’s tale narrated with utmost maturity capturing the emotions and sentiments of rural people with all sincerity.
The story is wafer-thin, but the screenplay and dialogues are its life and blood giving a fresh feel. Two horses are found missing in two different places. Their disappearance leaves a big impact on the lives of many.
What happens if the lost horses are found forms the story. There are no familiar faces and the hero is no suave-looking or a smart fellow. But what makes the movie count is the way Suseenthiran has handled the story.
Perumal (Azhagan Thamizhmani), a village president, along with his men wants to conduct the temple festival of Lord Azhagarsami. The general belief in the village is that if the deity is taken out on a wooden horse, they would receive copious rain and all things would go well.
But due to various reasons the festival could not be conducted for many years. As it happens, the village reels under drought. Amidst great difficulty, Perumal arranges for the festival.
But to his horror, he finds the wooden horse missing. A police complaint is lodged and a couple of constables are posted in the village to investigate the incident.
An innocent cop (Suri) enters the village disguised as an ordinary man to trace the horse. Meanwhile there is Ramakrishnan (Prabhakaran), the atheist son of Perumal, who is in love with Devi (Advaitha), belonging to a lower caste.
Enters a white horse and all villagers gets convinced that it is Lord Azhagarsami’s horse and it has come alive. Things change in the village and all good things start to happen.
When they decide to conduct the festival with the white horse, comes to the village a youth Azhagarsami (Appukutty), claiming that it is his horse. He even lodges a complaint with police.
Azhagarsami is all set to get married to one Rani (Saranya Mohan) and the wedding is halted because the horse owned by him has gone missing. It is eventually agreed that the horse would be handed over back to Azhagarsami after the festival. But fate has other plans.
Appukutty is tailor-made for the role. His caring and sharing for his horse, his desperate search for his four-legged friend are brought out well. Saranya Mohan in a breezy role walks away with applause.
Azhagan Thamizhmani as Panchayat president brings out his best, while debutant Prabhakaran as rural youth is impressive. Devaraj, who played Ameer’s father in �Yogi�, is Saranya Mohan’s dad and is apt for the role.
If Suseenthiran is the captain of the ship, cinematography by Theni Eashwar, dialogues by Baskar Sakthi and re-recording by Ilayaraja are its guiding force. The three combine well.
At many places, the innocence of village life is brought out well by the maestro’s background score, with cinematography and dialogues providing enough support.
A major eyesore may be the movie’s pace in the first half, but due credit should be given to Suseenthiran for compensating it in the latter part, which goes fast and furious without losing its nativity.
Produced by Escape Artistes Motion Pictures and presented by Cloud Nine Movies, �Azhagarsamiyin Kuthirai� is a movie to cherish and celebrate.
Glitz, glamour, grandeur� These three �G� words sum up �Maaveeran� by S S Rajamouli, the man behind many hits in Telugu industry. He has come up with a wonder in �Maaveran� (�Magadheera� in Telugu). Mammoth sets, huge star cast, racy script and good use of computer graphics make it a stunning show on screen.
A blend of contemporary and period events, �Maaveeran� is not the regular commercial clich� you would expect from the �Telugu Desam�. Another highlight is apt Tamil dialogues by veteran filmmaker K Bhagyaraj.
Nowhere one gets a feeling of watching a Telugu movie being dubbed in Tamil and this makes �Maaveeran� work big time. What more, it has a universal theme that would be liked by kids and adults.
Huge palace, herds of horse, hundreds of soldiers, big desert, helicopter chase. Rajamouli has brought all this into reality in the film, thanks to producer Allu Aravind of Geetha Arts. The way they have been captured on lens by Senthil Kumar deserves appreciation.
Going hand-in-hand with the story is Maragadhamani�s musical score. It is a combination of racy and melodious numbers that lifts the spirit of the movie. Costumes play a pivotal part in period films.
Understanding this fully well, Rajamouli has ensured that apt attires are created for each and every character. Kamala Kannan’s visual effects add to the charm. Watch out for the chase and stunt sequences that are close to reality.
Coming to the star cast, young Ram Charan Teja, son of �mega star� Chiranjeevi has cast a magical spell playing the title role, while the young and bubbly Kajal Agarwal gives him good company. The movie has many other actors too with all playing their part exceedingly well.
Harsha (Ram Charan) is a bike racer and is behind thrills and spills in his life. Life takes a turn when he meets Indhu (Kajal Agarwal). When he touches her hands, a mystic feel prevails and he feels destiny has brought them together.
But enters Randheer (Dev Gill), Indhu’s cousin with an evil desire. Attracted by her beauty he kills her father and blame falls on Harsha. Randheer takes away Indhu with him to Rajagiri palace in Rajasthan.
Now Harsha goes in search of her and embarks upon a mission to set things right. Meanwhile it is revealed that the events in the lives of these persons have connection with those that happened four hundred years ago. What follows next, is the story of �Maaveeran,� a story that effectively juggles between the past and present, keeping audience glued to the screens.
Ram Charan is extraordinary as Harsha and Parthiban, he is impressive. His amazing body language, dialogue delivery and his expressive eyes are a treat to watch. A blend of beauty and glamour, Kajal Agarwal is apt choice. She is cool and casual in trendy costumes as well.
Dev Gill as baddie is tailor-made for the role. He deserves appreciation for the character. Sri Hari’s cameo in double role lends twist to the tale. Watch out for special performance by Sunil and Brahmanandham that evokes good humour.
Three cheers to Geetha Arts for making such a mammoth movie. They have rendered a grand film that is entertaining and enthralling and one that sure deserves applause.
�Maaveeran� on the whole lives up to the title.
Boy loves a girl and the affair faces hurdles where the boy is the reason for everything. How he overcomes all to hold the hands of his beloved forms the crux of �Kanden�.
A C Mugil, an associate to choreographer-filmmaker Prabhudeva, has directed this bubbly and youthful entertainer that has everything to woo youngsters. Mugil at many places reminds his mentor, who handled similar ideas in his directorial ventures.
The film stars Shanthanu Bhagyaraj, Santhanam, debutante Reshmi Goutham, Ashish Vidyarthy and Vijayakumar. The director deserves credit for weaving an entertaining tale with just five principal characters. The script is light-hearted but oozes with energy.
Vasanth (Shanthanu) is a computer engineer, who works in a software firm in Chennai. He wants to marry a girl of his choice. However in his village his grandfather (Vijayakumar) is a Nattamai, who wants him to marry his relative.
Shanthanu in a bid to stop the wedding says that he is in love with a girl. Now his grandfather sets a deadline – bring his beloved with her parents� permission in just 30 days.
Shanthanu comes to Chennai and bumps on Narmadha (Reshmi). It�s love at first sight. He acts as a blind man and wins over her sympathy. Eventually it develops ionto romance.
Narmadha’s father (Ashish Vidyarthy) is a police officer who is against the wedding. All hell breaks loose when Narmadha comes to know that Vasanth’s is not blind. Now a desperate Vasanth with the help of his friend Saami (Santhanam) goes all means to prove his true love for Narmadha.
When everything falls in place and Narmadha forgives Vasanth and gets ready to marry him, he loses vision in a freak mishap. How the couple is bailed out of the trouble is the climax.
Shanthanu is bubbly and enthusiastic. Unlike his earlier ventures (�Sakkarakatti� and �Siddhu Plus Two�), he plays a wholesome role and does utilise it well. He is good at stunts and romantic sequences.
Reshmi is a welcome addition to the list of Tamil heroines. She emotes well and interestingly after a long gap one gets to see a heroine hogging major share in a movie. Vijayakumar and Ashish Vidyarthy deliver what is expected of them.
The real scene-stealer is Santhanam. As usual his one-liners, quick wits and sarcasm are the movie’s highlights. He comes all through the second half and adds pep to the proceedings.
Music composer Vijay Ebenezer reminds one of Harris Jayaraj with catchy tunes which is a fusion of West and East. Prashath D Mishale is the backbone for the film capturing the scenes with essential grace and charm. Newcomer Antony Rooban’s editing is sleek and crisp.
The movie is more of �Kushi� meeting �Minnalae�. Mugil has not tried anything extra-ordinary or tried to be preachy. In fact at many places a sense of deja vu prevails and the climax looks amateurish. Mugil could have made it more logical. On the whole, �Kanden� could be a summer destination for youth.
It seems to be the season of television personalities trying their luck at wielding the megaphone. Close on the heels of Abhishek who directed �Kadhai� and Naga who made �Ananthapurathu Veedu�, here is Venu Aravindh.
His maiden directorial venture �Sabash Sariyana Potti� is a comedy caper that touches on the lives of tinsel town heroes, the world they are in and their political aspirations.
Venu Aravindh is a familiar face in small screen playing prominent roles and in cinema he has played second fiddle in many movies. Having watched filmmakers closely, he seems to have embarked on a journey to direct a movie.
His intentions are clear from reel one. He wanted to make a comical film and hence he has ensured that there is no place for logic. But stretching too much for effect he seems to have lost his way at many places. As a result, the end product ends on a sticky wicket.
Jayaram plays the lead role- that of a popular hero in Tamil cinema. What begins more like a �Thamizh Padam� (a spoof on Kollywood) ends up as an average and routine Tamil film.
But credits go to Jayaram who manages to evoke interest in the movie. His antics, body language and dialogue delivery manage to garner one�s attention. Debutant Sriram Karthik plays a pivotal character while Anjana Thamburatti in her maiden film plays a good samaritan.
Delhi Ganesh, Mayilsamy and Vaiyapuri also form part of the cast. Besides wielding the megaphone, Venu Aravindh appears in a double role that has a say in the script.
Gnana Guru (Sriram Karthik) lives a happy life with his friends in Vadipatti village. His mother (Sri Rajnani) wants him to make it big in life. Meanwhile Gnana Guru along with his friends that includes Ranjani (Anjana Thamburatti) are ardent fans of actor J R (Jayaram). They never miss the first day first show of his film. A mass hero JR has a couple of assistants Delhi Ganesh (Dass) and Mani (Vaiyapuri), who want the matinee idol to enter politics.
A visit to Vadipatti village by JR helps Gnana Guru meet him. He manages to leave an impression with the actor with his antics. While leaving the village, JR urges Gnana Guru to come to Chennai and try his luck in cinema.
Taking his words seriously, Gnana Guru comes to Chennai to meet the actor. He is in for a rude shock as the JR in real life is different from the one in films. He is a bundle of lie and selfishness. Gnana Guru’s attempts to get an entry to cinema through JR end futile.
Unable to bear the shock and disappointment, Gnana Guru resolves to become successful with his own efforts. He enters a television show which has JR as one of the judges. A battle begins between them. Who wins in the end forms the climax…
Jayaram has tried his best to infuse life in the film. Sriram Karthik, for a debutant, does his work well. The rest of the cast including Delhi Ganesh and Mayilsamy try to evoke laughter, but end up in vain.
Music by S Thaman is the film’s strength. The mass number and a couple of melodies are good to listen to. Krish Kamal’s cinematography and AL Ramesh editing are okay.
Produced by V R Raghunathan, �Sabash Sariyana Potti� begins on a good note but is half done.
Call ‘Eththan’ a sequel to ‘Kalavani’ with a difference. For, after ‘Kalavani’, producer Nazir and actor Vimal have opted to go the same way – coming up with a simple and straightforward film set in rural Tamilnadu about the life of a callous youth.
Debutant filmmaker Suresh, who had worked under ace director Balu Mahendra, has sketched the life of a young man, who borrows money left, right and centre and fails to repay them.
He has touched upon a serious theme but dealt it in a lighter manner. The movie proceeds in a brisk way and is flashy in parts. However the lacunae here is the grip over the script. It is jerky and deviates at many places from the core theme.
Vimal continues from where he left in ‘Kalavani’. As a mimicry artiste, his antics is sure to evoke laughter. Watch out for dialogues by Suresh, whenever Vimal tries to escape from money-lenders. It is sure to evoke laughter.
Sanuksha of ‘Renigunta’ fame plays the heroine. Young and chirpy, she fits the bill. It is yet another dignified performance by Jayaprakash, the most-wanted ‘dad’ of Kollywood, while Singam Puli succeeds in evoking laughter at many places.
Sathyamurthy alias Sathya (Vimal) is the son of a school teacher (Jayaprakash) in Kumbakonam. Vimal is a happy-go-lucky youngster, who yearns to do business. To achieve his ‘mission’, he borrows money from all quarters and is almost drowned in debts. Even as his father advices him to start leading life in a right manner, enters Selvi (Sanuksha), a student.
Sathya gets acquainted to Selvi and his life takes a turn. Meanwhile, Selvi gets into trouble and the baton is passed on Sathya to ensure that all goes well. How Sathya helps her overcome troubles and does romance blossom between the two forms the rest.
Vimal does his part well, while Sanusha is right choice for the role and emotes well too. Jayaprakash as school teacher delivers a punching performance. Manobala, M S Bhaskar and Mayilsamy form part of the cast.
Music by Taj Noor is okay and the exception maybe the song with lyrics in reverse ‘Eththan’ is a movie that begins well but loses direction as it progresses.
On the whole, ‘Eththan’ has its moments of brilliance. But a sense of deja vu prevails at many places.
Tamil cinema is slowly maturing to move away from commercial cliches towards experimenting unique plots and innovative themes. Gone are those days when tear-jerkers, masala movies and saas-bahu stories dominated the scene.
�Aaranya Kaandam� by debutant director Thiyagarajan Kumararaja is a novel attempt that breaks all barriers of methodical film-making.
Strikingly different from frame one, �Aaranya Kaandam� is a film not for weak-hearted. Though it may present scenes as they are from the real life, it may put the viewers in jolt at the first instance. It is more a character-driven story where the events in the lives of various characters make up the script.
The filmmaker has chosen to pull out a story from the warlords in North Chennai. With guns, narcotics and men dominating the scene, it is a violent tale on screen. There are enough swear words, specially in Chennai Tamil. The characters are so real for there is no fantasy attached to them.
Singaperumal (Jackie Shroff), who runs a gang of his own in North Chennai, dominates the story. His trusted lieutenant is Pasupathi (Sampath Raj). But the latter has a motive – to take control from Singaperumal.
There is one young girl Subbu (Yasmeen Ponnappa), who was lured by Singamperumal by promising to make her an actress, but he keeps her with him for personal gain. Sappai (Ravi Krishna), an innocent simple straightforward youth, is also with Singam Perumal. Subbu plans to woo Sappai and escape from the clutches of Singam Perumal.
Meanwhile, a narcotic deal comes and Pasupathy plays a double game, leading him to incur the wrath of Singam Perumal. Then there is Gajendran (Rambo Rajkumar) who has his own gang.
And an alcoholic Kalyan (Somasundaram) and his son Kodukapuli (Master Vasanth) arrive with their rooster from village to make money participating in fights. The war begins and the cunning and smart cookies survive. The movie eventually ends with blood shed and violence.
Kudos to the director for casting Jackie Shroff as dreaded Singam Perumal. He seems to have done it with elegance. He plays the role with consummate ease. Watch out for a different Sampath Raj. He is the scene-stealer playing his part with arrogance and style.
It�s an interesting role for Ravikrishna, which he has done well. He portrays emotions well on screen, while Yasmeen Ponnappa is tailor-made for the character. Somasundaram and and master Vasanth walk away with honours.
Yuvan Shankar Raja’s background score, more of natural sounds and silence at many places sets up the momentum in the script, while Vinod has opted for some stylish angles to capture dark life in Chennai.
All said, �Aaranya Kaandam� is a movie that doesn’t belong to the regular genre of Tamil cinema. It is different and unique. Watch it if you love bloodshed and violence. And credits go to SPB Charan for coming forward to fund such a novel attempt.
Who said movies are for mere entertainment. It is also a medium to propagate a strong message that is most needed for today’s society. Filmmaker Kulandai Velappan, in his debut venture, has handled a sensitive issue and arrives at offering a strong solution to it.
Women and child trafficking is the most common news one would find in newspapers daily. Three cheers to Kulandai Velappan and producer Kamal Nayan, who have gathered guts to take this issue, in their first venture itself.
�Aanmai Thavarael� is a compilation of events that happens in real life. Seemingly inspired by media reports and intense research on the subject, Kulandai Vellappan has etched a story and screenplay that is strikingly different from the commercial cliches.
He gets into a rhythm in the first frame and settles down to render a wholesome product that speaks about safety and security of womenfolk in the country. The need for the government agencies concerned to tackle the crime against women has been highlighted in the best possible manner.
The filmmaker also succeeds in convincing us with lesser known star cast. The actors have fit the role well. Maria Manohar’s peppy background score, Arabindhu Sara’s cinematography and V J Sabu�s editing deserve credit for they set up the right momentum.
Vettri (Dhruva) is an executive with a call centre while Yamuna (Sruthi), his neighbour, works in a BPO. There is romance between them and the couple meets every morning after Yamuna retuurns from her night shift.
One day, Dhruva waits for her, but Yuamuna goes missing. The issue takes a turn when Yamuna�s mother (Lakshmi Ramakrishnan) prefers a complaint with the police. The blame falls on Vettri. But enquiries reveal that she was kidnapped by a gang in a car.
Vettri promises to return with his beloved and sets out on a search. He knocks the doors of the police who keep passing the buck to various departments. Understanding that he is running short of time, he takes the help of Charles Antony (Sampath Raj), a former official in anti trafficking wing.
He helps Vettri obtain some vital clues and enquires to find out that Yamuna was kidnapped with few other girls only to be pushed to flesh trade in Goa. Vettri embarks on a journey to trace the car and redeem his lover from them. The search begins in Chennai which eventually after many twists and turns ends in Goa.
Dhruva is impressive. He portrays his role with utmost dignity. Sruthy is a welcome addition to Tamil cinema. She fits the role to T. The fear and agonies of a kidnapped girl are brought out well. Such roles are a cakewalk for Sampath Raj and he does play his part exceedingly good. The soft-spoken Subbu Panchu in the role of a villain is adequate.
All credits should go to the producers Redhead Entertainment. At a time when production houses prefer to do mindless masalas, Kamal Nayan, in association with Kulandai Velappan, has come out with a movie that is most needed for the hour.
A bold attempt that is worth a watch is �Aanmai Thavarael�