Tuesday, 20 November, 2007

Hareendran Oru Nishkalangan - Review

Hareendran Oru Nishkalangan
Benny Ignatious
Indrajeet, Jayasurya, Bhama, Sherin, Jagathy

By Moviebuzz

Vinayan seems to be out of form these days. His latest Hareendran Oru Nishkalangan, fails to impress even though it has timely message. The trouble with the film is that it falls between two stools, and post interval there is no real story to say.

Hareendran (Indrajith) is a software tycoon who runs Starlines a very successful listed company. His right-hand man is his childhood friend Gopalakrishnan (Jayasurya), called GK. Hareendran is a nice guy, who is straightforward and trusts people blindly, while GK is a cunning fox in sheep's clothes. His sole aim in life is to con Hareendran and take over his company one day. Hareendran's mother (Ambika) fixes his marriage to Indu (Bhama) who is in love with Alex (Manikuttan), a self styled left sympathizer who threw up his IT job for the party! And GK uses his girlfriend Pooja (Sherin) to influence Hareendran to make him the executive director in Starlines.

The villainous GK uses others like a pawn in a chess game, and manipulates them to his advantage which results in Indu running away with Alex a few minutes before Hareendran was to tie the Thali around her neck! This leaves Hareendran shattered, and he becomes an alcoholic and leaves GK to run the company. But a few days later GK is brutally murdered and Hareendran is accused of killing him, and a media witch-hunt start and he is unable to defend himself even after the court acquits him and in the climax the real murderer is found!

The media targeting innocent persons and tarnishing their image is a regular occurrence in Kerala It is a very topical subject, which could have been handled with a little more care by the director. The other message in the film is about today's youth's craze for material comforts in a society ruled by share prices in the stock exchange. Indrajith looks uncomfortable in the innocent tycoon's role, Jagathy, Salim Kumar provide their usual comedy, while Jayasurya has done a similar smiling villain in Arabikatha. Bhama who made a sensational debut in Nivediyam has hardly any role, Sherin is there to provide glamour. Usually a Vinayan film will have atleast one hummable number, but Benny Ignatious's music lacks punch.

On the whole Vinayan had a very topical issue, which after his commercial packaging for entertainment purpose lost its focus and fizzled out. Better luck next time!

Verdict: Average

Friday, 16 November, 2007

SRK's Cricket Dreamz

The $3 million Indian Premier League (IPL), which takes place next year, will have Shah Rukh Khan bidding for a franchise among 90 other bidders.

However, current cricketers like Sachin will not be allowed to bid for the franchise as per the decisions made in the board. Hence players like Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, and Sourav Ganguly will play only for home teams.

It is said that apart from SRK, there are many other personalities and top businessmen among the other 90 bidders some of which includes the England based Lord Swaraj, business tycoon Vijay Mallya, Anil Ambani and Hollywood actor Russell Crowe. The floor price for the bidders has been fixed at $50 million.

Adnan Sami to host Musical Show

Composer, pianist and singer par excellence Adnan Sami, will now be taking the contestants through the musical journey that is, a brand new interactive and musical game show called Bol Baby Bol on Star One. The show talks about getting your lyrics right!

Adnan Sámi will be put on the role of the host. The game commences with the lead singer circulating amongst the audience, singing a song and the person who completes the lyrics following his / hers, gets selected for the next round.

So, brush up your lyrics and stay tuned as Adnan Sami dances to the tunes of this new exciting and interactive musical game show – ‘Bol Baby Bol’, this Friday and Saturday, that is November 16 and 17 at 9 pm on Star One.

Vinayan is back

Vinayan is back doing what he does, making films with the youth. His latest is Hareendran Enna Nishkalangan, which has guys like Jayasurya and Manikuttan whom he introduced. The film releases this Friday (November 16), and is expected to bring some relief to superstar controlled Malayalam cinema.

The story of Hareendran Enna Nishkalangan is about how the left forces in Kerala living in a bygone era are refusing to accept changes in the industrial and social milieu. Inderjit plays the title role of Hareendran a nice guy who runs his own IT business, and he goes by the book. This lands him in trouble with the left unions, who are against any kind of software revolution in the state.

The timely story has been written by Vinayan's son Vishnu Vinayan, and it is a youth oriented film with all essential ingredients. The film has Inderjit in the lead with Jayasurya, Manikuttan, Bama, Cochin Haneefa and others. The film has music by Benny Ignatious and camera by Venugopalan.

The industry is hoping that youth centric films like Hareendran Enna Nishkalangan becomes popular with the audiences, for the betterment of Malayalam films.

Thursday, 15 November, 2007

Diwali Releases review

The dust has finally settled down. The big hype surrounding the release of Deepavali movies too has come to close.

A total of half-a-dozen movie has hit the screens on Deepavali day creating great hype and expectations among the audience. Vijay's 'Azhagiya Thamizh Magan', Suriya's 'Vel', Sathyaraj's 'Kannamoochi Yaenada', 'Polladhavan' starring Dhanush, Jeevan starrer 'Machaakkaran' and 'Agra', a movie featuring newcomers.

It was celebration time at various cinema halls and multiplexes last week when these films hit the screens. Fans celebrated in joy the movies hitting the screens.

Let's check out the response and box office results of these movies.


'Vel' starring Suriya in dual roles and directed by Hari has opened in a big way. A typical Hari film with emotions, sentiments, humor woven around a couple of families, 'Vel' has managed to get positive reviews from the audience. The movie is doing well specially in B and C Centres.

'Azhagiya Tamil Magan'

Vijay's 'Azhagiya Tamil Magan' has witnessed a bumper opening. Almost all the shows in Chennai city have been running to packed houses. Vijay dons a dual role. However his role with negative shades has not gone down well with his fans. The movie features Shreya, Namitha and Ashish Vidyarthi in the cast. Rahman's music has failed to strike the right chord.


Dhanush's 'Polladhavan', a typical Chennai film, has managed to garner positive response from the masses. Directed by Vettrimaran the movie, starring Divya and Daniel Balaji in prominent roles, has catchy songs, pulsating stunt sequences and earthy humor.


Jeevan's bad guy image among the audience is the USP of 'Machaakkaran'. Directed by Thamizh Vannan, the movie starring Kamna Jethamalani opposite Jeevan has witnessed a good opening. The movie has seen good crowds in Chennai city. Yuvan's songs have failed to resurrect the movie.

'Kannamoochi Yaenada'

'Kannamoochi Yaenada', produced by Radhika Sarath Kumar and directed by Priya V, is a romantic comedy, inspired from the Hollywood film Meet the Parents. Prithviraj, Sandhya, Sathyaraj, Radhika performs with ease to make the movie worth watching. A decent family entertainer sans any skin show, ‘Kanamoochi Yaenada’ is doing well among family audience.

Gods into Tollywood Movies

Younger heroes rarely play mythological characters. So it gets exciting when the senior heroes step forward to do something different from what they have always done.

We have already seen Balakrishna in mythological roles. Soon he will be appearing as Sri Krishna in Ranga Panduranga, where he will play the dual role of the God and the devotee.

Then we already know that Nagarjuna is playing God to Vishnu in his forthcoming film which happens to be a take off from the Hollywood film Bruce Almighty.

It is said that Nagarjuna will also play Sri Krishna. No, he won’t be decked in jewels and play the proverbial God. But he will play a God in suit, a la Morgan Freeman in the original. It will be interesting to see two aspects of the same God played out by top heroes!

Wednesday, 14 November, 2007

Indrajith to Tamil

Indrajith has been one of the young actors in Malayalam cinema who is showing much promise with his natural talents in acting.

The actor, who finds its easy going even in short cameos in star films, has excelled in many roles in the past. Indrajith presently in the sets of Vinayan film ‘Hareendran Oru Nishkalagan’ is looking forward for chances to make his debut in Tamil.

He has recently received a call from his long time friend and Tamil superstar Vikram, to appear as the main villain in his new film ‘Kandhasamy’.

Indrajith whose immediate dates are blocked by a number of films in Malayalam has not decided yet about joining the film

Siddique go Blooywood

Director Siddique who has the most impressive records for creating hits in Malayalam has been evading the industry for a few years. He was heard to return to Malayalam with a Dileep film for Next Vishu. It was also announced that the film will take off once he completed the his recent film in Tamil titled ‘Sadhu Mirandaal' with Prasanna, Kavya Madhavan and Sheela in the lead roles.

But according to the new developments the director is all set to shift to Bollywood to make a film for Good Knight Mohan. The flick which will mark his debut in Hindi will start once Good Night Mohan's new venture 'Gouri' with new comers gets completed.

And as per his records, Sidhique will in all probabilities deliver his films as big hits which will give fewer chances for him to return to his home language.

Friday, 9 November, 2007

Azhagiya Tamil Magan - Review

‘Azhagiya Tamil Magan’ banks heavily on Vijay’s charm and performance. The Ilaya Thalapathy has lived up to the challenge created by the huge success of ‘Pokkiri’. He looks stylish and handsome. He lights up the screen by his dynamic performance.

Director Bharathan has exploited Vijay’s strengths well. He has provided a perfect entertainer for Vijay fans by giving ample chance, including dual role, to Vijay to come up with a stylish, action packed, romantic heroism.

Vijay plays both hero and villain. The first half is filled with romance and a mystery surrounding Vijay’s Extra Sensory Perception (ESP), while the second half is dominated by the tug of war between the two Vijays.

Let us first look at the storyline. Guru (Vijay) is an athlete and business management student. Abhinaya (Shreya) is the daughter of a business baron (Ashish Vidyarthi). They meet and, what else, fall in love.

The movie goes on to show how the lovers manage to get the permission of the parents. In the meantime, you get to see a different dimension in the tale while the romantic drama is unfolding. Vijay visualizes some bizarre scenes inside his mind. The scenes are disturbing and worse, they become true in the real life.

A psychiatrist (played by Dr. Rudran, a professional psychiatrist) confirms that it is ESP power and says that the imageries visualized by Guru would actually happen sooner or later. Unfortunately Guru visualizes another scene which he would never like to see happening. Sensing a danger to his sweetheart, he runs away to Mumbai from her to save her.

In Mumbai he stumbles upon a person, who looks alike himself. This gives him a different meaning of the horrible incident visualized by him. Before catching the man, played by Vijay again, Guru gets into an accident and the new man moves to Chennai where he is mistaken as Guru.

Stylish and care free Prasad, the look alike Guru, is a greedy person, who would do anything to earn money and enjoy life. Abinaya mistakes him for Guru and gets him to her house. Sensing his strength, Prasad decides to act as Guru and marry the rich Abhi.

The real Guru comes back and tells everyone the truth. But no one is ready to believe him, as he is outplayed by the wicked Prasad in each and every move. Finally the truth prevails but not before the tensed battle between the two with lot of twists and actions.

Before going in to details we must say that ESP is not a proven scientific fact and hence the director putting it as a matter of fact is unacceptable. We could have digested it if the director had presented it in a different manner without pretending to be scientific.

Coming back to the script, the director has come up with a new idea in form of ESP to provide twist in the tale. Though the idea of double role is not new, Bharathan had made the tough of war between the two interesting by conceiving a few interesting sequences.

The first half however, is dragging too much to the comfort of the audience. The efforts to convince the father and mother, one by one, play as speed breakers. The way the girl falls for the hero lacks imagination. The ESP imageries and Vijay fighting with Vijay have been executed well.

The director has done well in presenting Vijay - the USP of the film. The hero looks handsome, and stylish. The second Vijay in particular, is simply awesome in his styles. Vijay has presented a virtual treat for his fans by his mannerisms, actions, voice modulations, and body language.

Shreya, arguably possessing the most stunning and sexy figure among today’s heroines is simply ravishing. She and the director, of course, pretty well know that acting is not her forte and hence bank on her USP, which is her curvaceous body, to make the proceedings, especially the songs attractive. Namitha is effectively used for a scintillating song.

Santhanam as Guru’s friend doesn’t go overboard and provides some comical relief. Good performers like Sayaji Shinde and Ashish Vidyarthi are wasted in insignificant roles.

A.R. Rahman’s music is outstanding. In fact that songs sound better when heard – and seen – in the movie. ‘Maduraiku Pokaathey’ and ‘Valaiyapatti’ are quite attractive. The remix version is more convincing when seen in the context. The background score is effective in the scenes when Guru gets ESP images.

Balasubramaniam’s camera work is spectacular, especially in song sequences. The scenic beauty of Phuket Island and other locations are amazingly captured. Larencce has made wonders in choreographing. Vijay’s dancing movements are quite stylish. Overall, ‘Azhagiya Tamil Magan’ has nothing new to offer but the movie definitely entertains.

Vel - Review

Hari, one of the best commercial directors in Tamil, has lived up to the expectations in 'Vel'. He has presented a racy film that provides a perfect entertainer. The movie has action, sentiment, and romance. The script, which is compact, is well complemented by the performances.

The two layered story unfolds nicely. The story opens with a family with a twin children losing one. The separated boys grow up in different environments. The one grows in Chennai becomes an officer (Vasudevan) in a private investigative agency and the other grows in Dindukkal becomes a typical rusty young man (Vetrivel).

The city bred Suriya charms VJ Asin through his professional ethics. Rusty Vel is engaged in the bloody tussle with Kalabhavan Mani, who has deep rooted enmity against the family. Vasu is full of brains and smile while Vel lives with sickle and dangerous duels.

Vasu’s mother (Saranya) could not forget her lost son. She is longing to bring him back to her home. But she couldn’t find his whereabouts. The family, in which Vel lives, is so affectionate with him. Especially the grand mother (Lakshmi) is emotionally dependent on him.

VJ Asin accidentally finds Vel and informs Vasu. Vasu goes to the village and meets his brother. The family refuses to send Vel to his original family. Vasu, understanding their unadulterated affection towards Vel, agrees to give up his claim.

But he has one request. Vel should go to Chennai pretending as Vasu and live with his mother. Vasu in turn would act as Vel in the village. Vel accepts.

Vasu continues Vel’s struggle against powerful Kalabhavan Mani but with a different approach. Vasu uses his brain and investigating network instead of muscle power. The rules of the game changes, and Mani finds himself cornered.

The movie goes on narrating fierce fight and sentimental drama between the two families over Vel.

Director Hari is known for his compact script and smart execution. Though he has proven his caliber in a few films life 'Samy', 'Vel' is easily his best film. It showcases his ability to create a racy entertainer. He has treaded in a safe path to make a commercially viable film by choosing a routine theme based on sentiment and action. But the treatment he has given to the story is commendable. You cannot single out a scene that is boring or redundant.

He has conceived and executed the action and romantic sequences equally well. The pace is ensured from the word go. The two dimensional climax – action and sentiment – is quite appealing.

For Suriya, the roles are not as challenging as the ones in 'Pithamagan', 'Gajini' or 'Perazhagan'. He gets routine roles but his handling makes them look special. He breathes fire as 'Vel' and spreads charm as Vasu. Though there is no much difference in the get ups, he has differentiated both roles by his body language and dialogue delivery. His action in emotional sequences is touching. His on screen chemistry with Asin clicks once again.

Asin doesn’t have much to perform but she does have her moments. The initial roles showcase her magical charm. She has handled her role with amazing ease and brilliance. She shows her caliber when she looks at her lover in the village house with admiration and love.

Kalabhavan Mani, as villain with comical traits, rocks. The man adds life to the proceedings by his inimitable style. Vadivelu’s comedy is simply amazing. The man is definitely one of the major assets of the film.

Saranya and Lakshmi do their parts well. Raj Kapoor as the uncle of Vel and Charlie as Vasu’s friend are competent.

Yuvan Shankar Raja’s music is soothing to the ears. The songs sequences, however, are not among the pluses of the movie. In fact, songs do weaken the pace of the movie.

The bottomline: 'Vel' rocks with racy script and powerful performances. Surefire entertainer to brighten up the festival season.

Director: Hari

Producer: M. Chinthamani

Cast: Surya Sivakumar, Asin Thottumkal, Vadivelu, Aishwarya,

Kalabhavan Mani, Nassar, Charan Raj, Lakshmi, Saranya

Raj Kapoor, Charlie

Music: Yuvan Shankar Raja

Telugu Stars in to business

Venkatesh’s Adavari Matalaku Arthaleverule was made with a call centre backdrop.

Now, yet another film with a corporate backdrop is being made titled Mr Medhavi. The film has Raja and Genelia in the cast.

While Raja plays a corporate employee in the film, Genelia plays an NRI, who comes to India and falls in love with the hero.

The film is being made by Neelakantha, who had earlier made films like Show and Missamma.

The film’s audio release is slated for November and the release date is being set for December.

Dileeps New Flick

Shafi, the most sought after director of Malayalam cinema, who has made it a habit to deliver continuous hits, is planning another film with Dileep.

Shafi is in the lookout to shoot the entire film in Malaysia. The project which will be funded by Vaishakha Movies is in the scripts of Benny P Nayarambalam.

Shafi and Benny had earlier associated together with Dileep to create a big hit, four years back, in 'Kalyanaraman'.

This new film by the same team which is planned to be in theatres by the July of 2008 will start its shooting only by the month of April.

Tuesday, 6 November, 2007

M G Sreekumar debuts as music director in Tamil

Malayalam playback singer M G Sreekumar is debuting in Tamil as a music director at a time in three different films.

The first to get released will be ‘Kanchipuram’ - an off beat film starring Prakash Raj, directed by Priyadarshan. The second film will be ‘Paraya Paraya Pattanam’ produced by U TV, directed by Vijay. Sreekumar will also be giving music to a Tamil film which is produced by the Malayalam banner Seven Arts.

Sreekumar debuted into music direction in Malayalam with films like ‘Achanayaanenikkishtam’ and ‘Thandavam’.

The national award winning singer has created a few good songs in these films.

'Raudram' shifted to January

Raudram', the Mammootty starrer which was earlier scheduled to get released this month end, will now make a release by the last week of January.

The film directed by Renji Panikkar was shifted as Mammootty was keen to complete his Christmas release 'Katha Parayumpol' at the scheduled time. Moreover the fever that gripped Renji Panikkar also took another few days from the shooting schedule.

Now that the film has been shifted, the distributors Marikkar Films are also feeling happy for they could stretch the run of their latest ‘Nasrani’ at least till the week of Christmas.

And by that time the film will complete 75 days and will mange to get back its investment.

'Rock 'N' Roll' will take one more week

'Rock 'N' Roll', the first fun film by Renjith starring Mohanlal was scheduled to make a release by the 8th of this month.

But according to the new schedules the film will hit the screens only by the 16th of this month.

The film which has just completed the Post production works is said to have delayed due to the big national releases like Sawariya, Om Shanti Om and Tamil biggie 'Azhagiya Tamil Magan' that is expected to get released for this Diwali.

The postponement has resulted in the every movie fan to look forward to other language films for this festival season.

Monday, 5 November, 2007

Sdhu Mirandaal - Siddiq - Updates

“ ‘Sadhu Mirandal’ is an action thriller with comedy”, says Prasanna.

The young actor is busy shooting for ‘Sadhu Mirandal’ opposite Kavya Madhavan. The movie is directed by Siddhique.

After a long gap, Kavya Madhavan makes her comeback to Tamil cinema.

Speaking about the film, Siddhique says, "I have done films like ‘Friends’ and ‘Engal Anna’ in Tamil before. This is my third venture in Kollywood. It has action, sentiment and comedy in right proportion. The hero is an unemployed youth and the heroine, an engineering student who is also a TV compere."

Kavya Madhavan says, "I want people to recognize me as a good artiste. I don't mind doing films in any language so long as I can prove my talent. My character in Sadhu Mirandal gives me more scope to perform."

BOOT - Suresh gopi -Shaji kailas combo

The new film by the hit team Shaji Kailas- Suresh Gopi film titled 'Boot' started its shooting precisely a month ago. But the latest news suggests that Shaji has completed the shooting for the film in a record 22 days!

The film produced by Pyramid Saimira in the scripts of Rajesh Jayaraman is now in the post-production stages.

'Boot' which was shot mostly in the high ranges of Idukki also invited media interest as no media men were encouraged to be in the location , during the time of shooting. And after the shoot Shaji and his script writer Rajesh Jayaram are still refusing to elaborate on the story. The synopsis given to the press largely tells about the tragic love story between Bala and Honey, and no clues are given whether Suresh Gopi is playing a cop, or not.

The film features only 15 characters played by Murali Maniyanpillai Raju, Krishnakumar, Raghu, Rajan P Dev, Riza Bava, Bheeman Reghu, Biju Pappan, Lakshana and Hani Rose apart from the lead.

AK Sajan with a host of Projects

Scriptwriter - Director A K Sajan, who is enjoying the sweet success of his recent films like ‘Nadhiya Kollapetta Rathri’ and ‘Chinthamani Kola Case’, is now amidst a lot of projects, mostly with the super stars.

The immediate one will be his sequel to the film 'Stop Violence' which will also be scripted and directed by Sajan. The film will have Prithviraj in the lead.

After the film, Sajan will script for a number of projects for Mammootty and Mohanlal. The Mohanlal project will be directed by Joshy and will be produced by Sasi Ayyanchira.

Mohanlal will present a Punjabi character Lal Singh in this film which will start by the earlier months of next year. Then A K Sajan will start scripting for the Mammootty starrer, directed by K Madhu.

Friday, 2 November, 2007

Box office analysis

First weekend performance of latest release

Yet again box office has taken an expected route as was predicted last week. JAB WE MET was always meant to take the best opening, NO SMOKING was bound to be either too good or too bad at the box office, MUMBAI SALSA was supposed to be behind in the race while BAL GANESH was always a non-starter! What transpired in the weekend gone by followed the exact route as JAB WE MET took a good opening on Friday only to turn very good and excellent on Saturday and Sunday.

Imtiaz Ali's work has been loved by all and there is not a single soul who has been heard saying anything negative about the film. Shahid and Kareena have come up with their career best act which has been lapped up to such an extent by the audience that repeat audience has already started making beelines.

As of today, the film is a guaranteed hit and it only has to be seen how far it goes from here. Indications are that the film would be continued into second week with same number of print count (at places even more) to en-cash the maximum moolah before OM SHANTI OM and SAAWARIYA strike on 9th November. Still, such are the strengths of the film that there would be no surprises if JAB WE MET turns out to be one more choice available for viewers this Diwali!

NO SMOKING - Aah, there have been hundreds of gigabytes already spent in reviews, blogs, forums, articles etc. and the majority have conveyed their thoughts that the film was too bizarre to be comprehended and a pain to watch. As stated in my last week's column, the film could have gone either way! Unfortunately for Anurag Kashyap, the film has gone the way with which he won't be too pleased. The film crashed after the first day itself with all around negative reports. NO SMOKING doesn't have any chances to survive at the box office and would be a two week runner before biggies arrive. Now that's unfortunate for John since just like Shahid and Kareena in JAB WE MET, even he had come up with his career best performance in NO SMOKING.

With all talks centered on JAB WE MET getting all around positive response and NO SMOKING just the opposite, not many were actually even aware about the release of MUMBAI SALSA. The result was that the opening was quite poor! Now that's sad since this Manoj Tyagi film is well made and has all in it to woo the urban audience. Cheeky and naughty with real life scenarios unfolded through the screenplay, the film made for a good viewing but unfortunately didn't find many takers. One expects though that on DVD circuits, it will find the audience it deserves.

So what happened to BAL GANESHA in the meanwhile? A poor opening that was further marred by poor publicity and promotional campaign. Expect the film's DVDs to land in town soon!

Last week's movies

SPEED is a trade disaster. The film neither took an opening nor garnered any word of mouth. Result was that after a 1 crore opening, the film has simply vanished. The collections were unmentionable all over with Mumbai being best at just 20 lakhs. Though the makers are still promoting the film reasonably well on satellite medium, one wonders which are the screens that are playing the film in the second week? Expect the film's DVDs to be out in a fortnight's time!

From the past

With SPEED being the sole release of the week gone by, BHOOL BHULAIYAA enjoyed it's #1 position for second week in succession. In spite of a huge 26 crores opening, the film fell by only 40% and brought home another 15.5 crores hence enabling the film to cross 41 crores mark in two weeks flat. Mumbai collections were greater than 2.5 crores, Delhi was superb at 1.5 crores while NCR brought in another 75 lakhs plus. The film has sustained quite well at other centers of the country too, whether big or small, which has resulted in a hit status for it already. While a 50 crores total is pretty much in sight within a fortnight with a superhit status on it's way, it has to be seen if it would be able to survive the 9th November challenge!

LAAGA CHUNARI MEIN DAAG did see a fall but still not as bad as one would have expected considering the negativity around the film from most quarters. After a near 12 crores first week, the film saw the collections sliding to 5.5 crores with around 60% drop. However, if one looks in absolute terms, 5.5 crores is certainly a miserly second total for a Yash Raj Film and doesn't augur well with their star production house status. Particularly big cities haven't been too kind with Mumbai falling from 2.5 crores to 80 lakhs and Delhi from 1.5 crores to 55 lakhs.

At 18 crores, LAAGA CHUNARI MEIN DAAG has now netted even lesser than JHOOM BARABAR JHOOM and suffers a flop status at the box office. Yash Raj Films would now have their eyes set on AAJA NACHLE to end the year on a happy note even though 2008 beginning looks quite promising with TASHAN being their first offering of the season.

In the future

With all eyes on OM SHANTI OM and SAAWARIYA arriving on 9th November, no film is releasing this weekend. A wise move because even if they would have been released, they wouldn't have survived beyond a week due to the two biggies occupying majority of screens across all major multiplexes/single screen theaters.

Revolutionery song in ‘Katha Parayumpol’

Anil Panachooran, the lyricist of ‘Arabikkatha’ has surprised everyone by singing a revolutionary song ‘Chora veena’ in his debut film ‘Arabikkatha’.

The song not only became noted for its inspiring content but also because of the raw but effective voice that rendered it. Anil Panachooran also was seen in a few sequences of this song which was in the hit charts for long.

The latest buzz is that Anil Panachooran will also be singing another song for the new movie 'Katha Parayumpol'. The song which starts 'Veythasthanaya Barber ‘ will be shot on Sreenivasan who share the lead in the film with Mammootty.

M Jayachandran is giving the music to the song which also features Pradeep Palluruthy in the vocals.

Thursday, 1 November, 2007

T V Chandran's next film Vilaapangalkkappuram

National award winning director T V Chandran began filming his latest venture 'Vilapangalkkappuram' based on the aftermath of the 2002 Gujarat riots.

Suhasini, Biju Menon and Thilakan play prominent roles in the movie. Producer of the film Aryadan Shoukat has written the story of the film.

According to Shoukat, ‘the story revolves around Sahira, a Muslim woman who flees Gujarat soon after the riots and arrives in Kozhikode.’

"This role is played by Priyanka who recently starred in a Tamil film 'Veyyil'. Sahira arrives in Kozhikode and is taken care by Mary Varghese (Suhasini) and Gopinath (Biju Menon). She has a lot of problems related to the aftermath of the riots and she is brought back to normalcy by the two doctors" said Shoukat, son of senior Congress leader and former minister Aryadan Mohammed.

The film would be shot in Ahmedabad, Wayanad and Kozhikode.

Wednesday, 17 October, 2007

CHOCOLATE - An Instant Super Hit - kudos to Shafi

The Prithviraj - Jayasuriya starrer 'Chocolate' has emerged as the dark horse among the Ramzan releases.

The film which opened last Friday in 39 theatres was declared an instant hit, as the growing mouth publicity will ensure the a safe run of the film for another couple of months.

The film has gathered more than one crores from the first three days. Completed in a moderate budget of around two crores, the film is likely to break even by a three week run.

Prithviraj, who didn't have a hit although 2007 will also be relieved with the film's run. Shafi who delivered a big hit in the earlier months of the year with 'Mayavi' is celebrating with his successive second hit of the year.

Salimkumar and Roma have contributed equally to the success of this film which is sure to gather more momentum in the coming weeks.

Nasrani - Movie Review

Watching ‘Nasraani’, it was pretty easy to find that the movie could never hit the wall. Its outcome looked not so bleak considering that this Mammootty fare has more sequences for his fans to stand up and cheer than his recent three movies. Executed by ace director Joshy on the scripts of another director Renjith, whose track record of creating hits still remains not much modest. The film opened with best of the initials that was fetched by any Malayalam movie this year. But, cued in the conventional current mode, the film is a flattering tribute to ‘action less’ action movies which borrows the essential structure of the recent so called stuffs even while raising its own propaganda against the family rule in politics, that is a regular word in the current scenario.

'Nasraani' is fast paced, slickly made ride in the first half where the script is consistently snappy. It has a little of resourceful plotting and some deft dialogue touches, best seen during Mammootty's discourse running all through the movie. The film plays out as a well funded Movie, complete with over the top performances but toward the later half, like all the recent Joshy movies, this too loses its steam.

In the movie, Mammootty is David John Kottarathil, a rich unrestrained planter, known popularly by the fancy name D K. He spends most of his time boozing in the company of his friends in the Cosmo Club, in which he is the care taker and the secretary. He has got a little of tragic stories behind him as his father John accidentally kills Eappachayan, the father of his lady love and is on jail for life. This episode on their engagement day forced D K to stay back from marrying Sara Eapen, a college lecturer, even after 10 years from the incident.

David always roam around enjoying life, even in helicopters, with his driver Sukumaran (Kalabhavan Mani) and is always their to solve the problems of the club. In the film he has even a whopping introduction scene, which has him landing his helicopter in Sara's college campus and festinating her away to a lone mountain top to celebrate 10 years of living apart.

All is going not so bad for D K, till Annie (Mukta) a medical student and Sara's half sister who is taken cared by David, is accused by the police for committing the murder of Benny, an upcoming politician and the son of political king and former Revenue Minister M C Paul (Vijayraghavan) . With supportive evidences and witnesses, Police is all the way around to seize the girl who is said to have taken revenge and killed the future prospects of Malankara Congress, for having ditched one of her best friend who committed suicide following Benny's rejection!

Benny's untimely death has created upsets to the carefully laid plans of M C Paul to project his son to the top by making him an M L A in the Kadathuruthy by-election. Paul, who is other wise a family friend of David, now turns against him, as David is now in the mission to save Annie from the related problems. Aided by the villainous son Xavichan (Biju Menon) and top officials of the police, Paul is all set to make David's life a mess. The only way out for D K is now to find out and bring in the original culprits before the public and the law. And in the way, he is also to expose the family leadership pattern that is inherent in many parties including Malankara Congress and the police- politician nexus that is threatening the state.

The biggest minus of the film is the screenplay which rarely packs the punch line sequences that are the back borne to these kinds of films. The movie is essentially for the fans and general audience may not relish too much as the story point scores less. The first half of the film is alright but with innumerable sequences which moves past with every characters in the frame holding liquor glasses, works out like a video campaign for the associated labels. The second half slows down a bit. Joshy struggles hard to hold the film together, even though neither material nor execution makes his task enviable. The later half and the climax is the biggest yawn with, implausible melo- dramatic series of twists and turns that continues for long. The rather preachy final mishmash is neither realistic nor stylish.

The movie does have its moments - It works on its own terms, as a colorful adventure whose clichés and silliness will be acceptable to regular viewers because they're typical of the genre. Ranjit and Joshy repeats their stereotyped protagonist of a macho man, ever powerful even to make the CM behave as per their schedules. Mammootty as D K pass over the role with little effort which have him presenting casual comedies, soft romance and punch lines with equal consummate skills. Vimala as Sara also manages to infuse her cool dude character with some charisma when the meandering screenplay allows her to do so. The production values are really excellent. The abundant number of artists and innumerable extras who appear in every alternate scene give a big feel to the movie, evenly supported in camera by Shaji and in sets and art by Joseph Nellikkal-both Joshy regulars. The film also has two passable songs by Anil Panachooran-Biji Bal team.

Director Joshy does a polished, workmanlike job, assembling a package attractive in its visual elements rather than its content. Any way the film proves once again the crowd pulling abilities of the mega star. And ultimately it was the thing that was essentially expected from the flick. So, to watch Mammootty and nothing much more, just have a try.

Thursday, 11 October, 2007

DASAVATHARAM- Release shifted to Pongal

Dasavatharam to release only for Pongal. The news has come a shock for several thousand Kamal Haasan fans who were waiting to see their favorite hero in ten different roles this Deepavali.

Kamal Haasan had stated that the film would only hit theatres only for Pongal.

It is said utmost care is being taken in post production works, which is the reason behind the delay.

Speaking after presenting the coveted JC Daniel award of Kerala government to noted Malayalam cinematographer Magada Ravi Varma, Kamal said that shooting of the film was completed.

‘Final touches are being given to Dasavatharam. The film will be released on Pongal,' he said.

Produced by Oscar V Ravichandran and directed by KS Ravikumar, Dasavatharam has Kamal in 10 different roles. Asin and Mallika Sherawat are acting in pivotal roles.

Kangaaroo ready to jump!!!!

The shoot for the film titled 'Kangaroo' will start in a week's time. Prithviraj is an auto driver (Jose Kutty) who takes care of a baby which he found on the street.

Just like a Kangaroo he carries the child everywhere with him and gives it every comfort. Jose Kutty is also almost an orphan like this child, who was born in a big family, but had to lead an ordinary life.

The film which is produced by Isabella Movie Tone is directed by Raj Babu. The film have a big cast including Jayasuriya, Kavya Madhavan, Jagathy, Salim Kumar, Bindhu Panikkar, Suraj, Sijukuttan, Lalu Alex and Sukumari.

The film which is distributed by Lal Release may reach the theatres as a Christmas film.

Mohanlal - Sathyan Anthikkad film for next Vishu

When Lal united with his favorite director Sathyan Anthikkad for last year's Rasathanthram, it resulted in becoming the biggest hit of the director.

The film which ran for more than hundred days collected around 15 crores from the box office.

And when the news arrives about the next project in which both the master talents unite once again, film goers will naturally expect another big hit, which tells the story of ordinary men.

According to the latest schedules Mohanlal will start acting in Sathyan Anthikkad's new project from the mid of January.

The scripts of the film which is planned for next Vishu, is in its last stages of completion. The film will feature Meera Jasmine-another Sathyan regular in the female lead.

Sathyan has been repeating her fourth time in a row, the previous three like Achuvinte Amma, Rasathanthram and Vinodhayathra becoming big hits.

The other cast and crew of the film are being finalized. And as usual this time too, Sathyan will give a title to the film only when the shoots are complete.

Wednesday, 10 October, 2007

KPAC Lalitha won the Premji Award

K P A C Lalitha will recieve the much coveted Premji award for the year. This announcement was made by the award committee members yesterday.

The actress will be presented with the award in a function that is to be held by the end of this month.

K P A C Lalitha, one of the senior most actress of Malayalam cinema had appeared in more than 500 films in a career span of 35 years.

Equally popular as the wife of late director Bharathan, and the mother of actor -director Siddharthan, she is still busy with plenty of offers from the film field.

Release Date Not Fixed for Kalkatha News

Even though the shooting of the film 'Calcutta News' is progressing in a fast pace, with an intent to release for this Deepavali, Blessy is still not sure about the release of the film.

‘We are planning to complete the shoots by the second week of October. But the film has got a good amount of graphic works. Quite different from my earlier movies, this film also have a few action sequences, so I am not able to figure out a date for the release of the film, at this point of time’, says the director.

The film which started its shooting by the first week of July faced a lot of adversities during its shooting. The movie produced by Thampy Antony is now heading to become one film which is getting completed in the highest number of shoot days.

Monday, 8 October, 2007

Kalkatha News - Preview

After making critically acclaimed films like Kazhcha, Tanmatra and Palunku Blessy - the path breaking director is now back with 'Kolkata News'.He is doing his first film with Dileep, Meera Jasmine, Indrajith and Vimala Raman.

It was Blessy, who introduced Meera, one of his neighbor in Tiruvalla to Lohithadas for Sutradharan, and it will be another treat to watch these national award holders, working for a film. More over Blessy is for the first time moving out of his favorite south Travancore locations to the East of India, to shoot a different mystery filled romantic story in Calcutta, much different from his earlier ones which dealt with middle men and farmers in Kerala. This is the first Malayalam film to be fully shot here, even though a few scenes of G Aravindan' s Vasthuhara, Shyamaprasad's akale , Kamal's Mazhayathum Munpe, and T V Chandran's Kadhavasheshan were also shot here .And with all new cast with the blessed Blessy, expectations are ever time high for this film, which is taking more than normal shoot days to complete ,due to a multitude of reasons, ranging from floods in Kolkata to the clash of dates of its stars .

The plot of the film is set across the eastern metropolis, Kolkotta. Here Dileep is playing the role of a television reporter Ajith Thomas, who is working for the channel Kolkata News. Dileep has a smashing new look in the film with stylish spectacles, hair falling on the forehead and is clad in smart casuals, playing the savvy reporter.A Malayali by birth, his family has been based in Calcutta for long, as his parents had also worked here years before. Now he stays with his mother and his brothers. One day while investigating a story, Ajith comes across Krishnapriya's (Meera Jasmine) pictures while going through some unused footage. She is a woman who lost her husband in mysterious circumstances, a few weeks after her marriage. Krishna priya, who had come to the city with her husband, Hari (Indrajith), is now left all alone and is searching or her husband with her limited resources. Days after Ajith meet Krishnapriya, accidentally, and find out that she was a school dropout, who was forced into marriage at a tender age and sent to Calcutta. Seeing the grief of the lady, Ajith takes the cause as his own and starts to search for Hari with his wide media contacts. But he only realized later that slowly, he is falling in love with the true- blue, desolate women. The film is based on the happenings in one year in the life of the television journalist

Calcutta News have noted cinematographer S Kumar, who cranks the camera for the first time in a Blessy film .Shot quite extensively in Kolkata, the splendor of old Calcutta and its mood has been etched in the film in a beautiful way. The locations included some of the huge bungalows, which were used for shooting in such films as Raincoat and Choker Bali.

Blessy who is a big fan of the music legend Salil Chowdhary, who has worked in 28 Malayalam films in the earlier seventies creating 112 hit songs as music director ,has taken his former assistant Deb Jyothi to provide music for the film. Deb has been the music director of films like Raincoat and Choker Baali. The others in the film are Vimala Raman, Innocent, Maanasa, Bindu Panikkar Krishnamurti, Unni Shivapal, Tom Jacob, Oninthoi, Deepan Chatterji and host of Bengali actors.

Produced by Thampy Antony in the banner of Kaayal films, the film is distributed by Century Pictures. The film is now planned to grace the theatres as a Deepavali release.

Shankar with Next Film ROBOT starring ShahRukh Khan

After a blockbuster hit in 'Sivaji', director Shankar is now gearing up for his next venture 'Robot'. Since the director is wielding megaphone for Sharukh Khan for the first time, he is taking extra care in each every aspect of the film.

Sources say that Shankar and his team are currently holding discussions in a farm house near Mahabalipuram to give final touches to the script.

Plans are on to commence the movie this Dusshera. Robot will be produced by Red Chilies Entertainment, a production house of the King Khan himself. The movie with all its techno jazz will be released in Tamil, Telugu and other languages besides Hindi.

ROMEO - Dileep Rajasenan RafiMecartin film from October 15

Dileep will join the sets of his new film 'Romeo' by the third week of this month. The project which is planned to be on floors by the 15th of this month will have the scripts by the super hit director duo Rafi Mecartine.

Directed by Rajasenan, the film will have two heroines, Samvrutha Sunil and Vimala .The film portrays the story of a youth who falls attracted in between two popular female singers

Dileep is now in the sets of ‘Kolkata News’ where director Blessy is giving the final touch ups to this Deepavali release.

Ramzan Films Line

With hardly a week to go for the Ramzan festival, around five films are getting ready to make it into the race for the winner. After a dry month where, hardly any Malayalam films got into theatres, more centers were engaged with Tamil and dubbed films.

The first to go into the race is another dubbed film; ‘Hero’ starring Allu Arjuna. The film directed by Puri Jagannath is releasing today at 35 centers.

The major releases in Malayalam will appear next week with Paradesi starrring Mohanlal expected to arrive on 12th of October. The film directed by P T Kunju Muhammed is expected to get released in 40 theatres.

Then on the same day will see the release of films like Mammootty’s Nasraani directed by Joshy, Shafi's 'Chocolate' with Prithviraaj, Jayasuriya and Roma. Nasrani is likely to release in 55 centers in the state on Friday scheduled to open at 2 pm, all over Kerala, with no morning or noon show on the opening day. Suresh Gopi will have the long delayed 'Black Cat’ directed by Vinayan, released on the same day.

Apart from these films, debutante G R Indopan's ‘Ottakkaayyan’ will also find select theatres on the same day. With a lot of well made films scheduled for Ramzan viewers can very well expect a better season than the driest Onam that they had just now.

Friday, 7 September, 2007

BollyBoxOffice-This week

First weekend performance of latest release

How much I have been proved wrong! All this while I had a strong belief (even reflected in last week's column) that whatever be the eventual box office status of RAM GOPAL VARMA KI AAG, the least it would do is get a good box office opening. After all AAP KAA SURROOR is a living example of how hype and curiosity (negative or positive) can bring in audience.

Sadly, it didn't quite happen for RAM GOPAL VARMA KI AAG that neither got anywhere close to flames nor stayed on to show any sparks. The film simply failed after the first show itself and by the time Friday came to a close, it was crystal clear that the film had disappointed one and all. It was always expected that the film would fetch extreme reactions from people (nothing wrong with it) but an all around hostility was something that the cruelest of critic, audience or industry insider had not predicted.

So what went wrong? Was it just the comparison factor or a film being plain bad or any conspiracy? Well, rule out conspiracy because if that always worked then some of the biggest box office gainers from past and present may not have worked. Was it the film being plain bad? Well, let's get it right. Coming from a film maker other than RGV may probably not have fetched such extreme reactions. Yes, the film did disappoint but it wasn't the kind that was unbearable in entirety or didn't have a minute of anything which was redeeming.

In the nutshell, it is clear that it was the SHOLAY comparison coupled with huge expectations from the film maker simply killed the film at the box office.

VICTORIA NO. 203 had it's maximum hopes on picking up by word of mouth. Well, but what can one say about a film that didn't have a word of mouth at all. With as low as 10% occupancy at number of centers on the first day followed by all around negative vibes that it generated, the film has been a non-starter at the box office. With no USP to boast, lukewarm promotion, zero hype and overall being an average product, it is set to be a looser at the box office.

Third release of the week DHOKHA isn't expected to fare any better in spite of good word of mouth by those who saw the film. The sad part is that the film was hardly seen by many which didn't give rise to a kind of spread that Bhatts would have been hoping for positive vibes over the weekend. The film's best aspect is discovery of Muzammil followed by Pooja Bhatt's best direction till date. A good subject treated quite well, the film may just loose out at box office but has good prospects on DVD circuits if marketed better than the way it's theatrical release has been.

Last week's movies

It's confirmed. HEYY BABYY has taken the second best start at the box office this year after PARTNER and is now one of the best openers in the history of Indian cinema. Raking in excess of 27 crore across the country, the film had close to 5.5 crores coming from Mumbai followed by Delhi being strong at 2.5 crores. Delhi NCR was very good too at 1.35 crores while Ahmedabad too crossed the 1 crore mark. In all a recipe that reads a definite hit at the box office.

The film's second week is also expected to be strong due to AAG fiasco though it would be interesting to observe if the film manages to cross PARTNER's 60 crore + total. Reason? DHAMAAL releases this weekend and the film is carrying excellent reports. It may just prove to be too much of a competition but more about that later. Sajid Khan now finds himself in the A league of directors and he should be choosing his next project extremely carefully due to high level of expectations from him going further.

There is nothing at all to say about KAISEY KAHEN since it is a colossal disaster of the highest degree with less than 10 lakhs coming from the box office across the country!

From the past

Talking about disasters, MARIGOLD now sits at the top of the list for Salman Khan's all time biggest box office disasters with the film being pulled out of theaters in one week flat. With no more addition to it's total of 75 lakhs, the film's collections are lesser than some of the soft porn films that are released at regular intervals.

BUDDHA MAR GAYA is another addition to the flops in 2007 with more than 90% fall over the second week. Raking in just 20 lakhs, the film has fallen very badly and is closing at a total of 3 crores. Since the film was made at a shoe string budget, the losses would be minimal and makers can expect the DVD sales and satellite re-runs to compensate for it. Yet another film this season apart from RGV KI AAG that was criticized by almost everyone and everyone (even if most had probably not even seen the film)!

With the third week of CHAK DE INDIA also holding quite strong in spite of competition from more popular cinema like HEYY BABYY, this Shimit Amin/Jaideep Sahni/Shahrukh Khan film is now a Superhit. Less than 50% in the third week has resulted in 8.5 crore more coming in to bring the total to 45 crores. This is for a movie that was stated to be offbeat/unconventional to begin with and had doubts around it's entertainment quotient! Collecting close to 1.75 crore from Mumbai, 1.2 crores from Delhi and 65 lakhs further from Delhi NCR, CHAK DE INDIA is a winner all over.

The film's anthem composed by Salim-Sulaiman is now the sports anthem across India as well as abroad, something that can be witnessed from all the victory cheers around recent cricket and hockey wins for India. Many girls from the film are also being noticed with Vidya Malvade getting a fresh lease in her career and Sagarika Ghatge getting the best of offers.

Taking a 50% fall in collections but still staying into the Top-3 charts, PARTNER has made another 1 crore in it's 6th week. At 61.5 crores, the film is now breathing it's last and should wrap up with another 75 lakhs or so in it's kitty over next 3 weeks. Lara Dutta finds herself into the big league again after critical acclaim in JHOOM BARABAR JHOOM followed by tremendous box office success in PARTNER.

In the future

One sincerely hopes that Ram Gopal Varma's DARLING doesn't get engulfed into the negative fire that AAG has created. A film that looks genuinely well made while reminding of the director's vintage BHOOT, it still doesn't promise to shake the box office with it's opening. All it's hopes lie in word of mouth since the opening isn't expected to be promising. On the other hand DHAMAAL is expected to take a good opening (60%-70%) and if industry insiders are to be believed, it has all in it to show 100% collections by Sunday. Reason? The film is said to be extremely well made and total 'dhamaal'. Expect fireworks from this laughaton.

AMMA's all stars movie starts this November

A year after its initial announcement, the film produced by AMMA has finally announced its shooting dates.

The movie produced by Dileep on behalf of the Association of Malayalam Movie Artists (AMMA) will have an ensemble cast which includes all the big names of Malayalam movie industry.

To be directed by Joshy, the film stars Mammootty, Mohanlal, Suresh Gopi, Dileep, Jayaram, Naren, Prithviraj, Indrajith and Jayasuriya in important roles.

The film is planned to start by the 16th of November. The script writers Sibi Udayan who has just completed the scripts is giving final touches to this biggest project in Mollywood.

Mammootty - Anwar Rasheed Again - Double Role

Mammootty in his career span stretching to more than 25 years had been quite unlucky with the double role characters that he portrayed.

He was seen in a very few double roles in his more than 300 odd films. The only few films that run well are Dada Saheb and Samrajyam, which were big hits of the years.

Now after a long time Mammootty is again appearing in a double role in the new film by Anwar Rasheed, who has delivered the biggest success of his career in Raja Manikayam.

The film, not yet titled will have him donning the roles of two brothers. Scripted by Benny P Naayarambalam, the film is expected to start by the end of November.

Once again produced by Marikkar Films, this Mammootty starrer will have music by Rahul Raj. The finalization of the scripts and the crew are in the last stages.

Tuesday, 4 September, 2007

Vimala Raman romances Dileep

Vimala Raman seems to the biggest find of the year in Malayalam, as she is cast continuously against big stars.

Even though none of her films made big talk at the box office, still she has two big releases in Nasrani opposite Mammootty and in College Kumaran opposite Mohanlal.

She had recently been with Dileep in Calcutta News in a short cameo, but not as his heroine. After being the female lead of Suresh Gopi, Mammooty and Mohanlal, she is now finally becoming the heroine of Dileep in the next film Romeo.

The movie directed by Rajasenan, after a long gap is scripted by Rafi -Mecartin.

Nayanthara bags female lead in Vijay's Kuruvi

Nayantara has orchestrated a coup of sort.

Nayanthara, who appeared for an item number in Vijay's Sivakasi,
will play his heroine in Kuruvi. She is now acting in a couple of films including Billa and Yaradi Nee Mohini.

Initially the role was set to go to Trisha. Apparently she pulled out due to call-sheet problems. Trisha is the number one heroine in Tamil now. She is playing the female lead in Bheema and Goutham Menon's untitled film.

The new movie Kuruvi is directed by Dharani and produced by Chief Minister M Karunanidhi's grandson
Udhayanidhi. Dharani, Vijay and music composer Vidyasagar, who came together to create magic on screen with Ghilli, are back again for Kuruvi.

Vijay after completing the shooting for Azhagiya Tamil Magan and is expected to commence shooting for Kuruvi.
The film will hit the screens on 14 April, 2008.

Dileep -Siddique come together

Siddhique, the ace director of Malayalam has been keeping away from the industry after the superhit film Chronic Bachelor with Mammootty.

He had done a few in Tamil in these days, but due to some mysterious reasons he opted not to direct any in Malayalam.

The director, who is presently busy in Tamil with his latest flick with Kavya Madhavan and Prasanna titled Sadhu Mirandal, had finally decided to make a come back to his home language.

Siddhique will now direct a movie with Dileep in the lead, which is planned for next Vishu. The director, who is famous for converting his every film into major hits, will be supported in this venture by Johnny Sagarika.

Dileep is appearing for the first time in a Siddhique movie. The director will also pen the script for the film. The other cast and crew of the film are being finalized.

Sunday, 2 September, 2007


Lohithadas has been in his best in the past, contributing fresh story lines to films that always captured the heart of the Malayalam viewer’s. But recently this industry's most dependable writer-director has been keeping away from business for quite a time and even his comeback in Chakkaramuthu couldn't make any impressive watch. So for Naivedhyam, he has attempted a rehash of the best tried and tested formula in Malayalam, taking bits and pieces from many hit films like Sallapam, Ee Puzhayam Kadannu, Nandhanam and Kasthooriman. Any way the result is a film which comes with his own brand of narration, giving us an endearing watch, this Onam.

Naivedhyam is a simple film, revolving around simple characters. Yet, it works, partly because the story defies the regular stereotype, due to its super-efficient performances and partly due to the well-crafted screenplay and convincing storytelling.

The film's opening hastily sketches the life of Mohana Krishnan, an outspoken Brahmin guy who is presently into carpentry work to keep his family comprising of his widowed mother and sister. He is the son of C .K, a famous dramatist, who fought for the rights of writers. Even after his father's death, Mohana Krishnan managed to study all arts and crafts till his plus two, but as his family's prospects fell on his shoulders, he left his traditions to find better jobs to maintain his family intact. Forwarded by one of his father's friend lyricist Kaithapram, who happens to meet him in a composing session, Mohana Krishnan arrives at the Kovilakom, headed by Ramavarma Thampuram, a pious aged man who was a dear student of Chembai Vaidhya Natha Bhagavathar.

Mohana Krishnan was looking for a job at Kovilakom, but the financial position of the Tharavadu was not so bright that they cannot offer any job for him. But as the health of the elderly priest in the Tharavadu temple owned by the Kovilakam was declining, Ramavarma Thampuran deputes him to assist him at the temple. Although he doesn't know much about mantras and rituals, the old priest gives him necessary training and entrusts him with the rituals of the temple while keeping a supervisory role for himself.

As the Keezh Santhi (Assistant Priest) comes, the prospects of the temple brighten as he works day and night to keep the rituals of the temple, and to invite the people from the surroundings to the temple. The young priest very soon become the object of fancy of every one and grabs the attention of many young women, including the heroine Sathya Bhama, who is an orphan, the illegal daughter of a lady who committed suicide for her misdeeds. She and her grand mother live in a separate house away from their relatives, selling the Pappads that they make for a living.

Sathya Bhama also has her share of agonies as she is in constant threat from one of his cousins Surendran, a reckless goonda who is hell bound on marrying her. And when ever he comes to her house, she finds solace in the temple outskirts. As Mohana Krishan also stays in the temple, they starts meeting there on nights at a regular basis and eventually circumstances force them to fall in love. And as usual with every love stories, not everything is going in their favor, as they are caught red handed, from inside the temple.... Though the starting of the film is just about okay, it gains momentum after initial few reels. And with the sequences of monologues of Mohana Krishnan with the Deity Krishnan, the film climbs a steady lane, comfortably placed and paced. There’s also an absence of comedians or sub tracks to test our patience, making for a different experience.

The debutant Vinoo Anand as Mohana Krishan towers over everyone else with a mind-blowing performance. He has guarded his family traditions with a wonderful and a fitting debut. It's rare for an actor to get such a difficult role in his very first film. It is even more difficult for the newcomer to carry it on, but Vinoo never falters with a feel free body language and is definitely the backbone of the film, right till the end of the movie, which keep the viewer engrossed definitely an actor, to watch.

Bhama as Sathya Bhama is not just a photogenic face, but also proved as a first-rate actor, showing the jhalaks of another Manju Warrier in the making. She has got charismatic eyes, and does full justice to her character and with a little more refurbishment on emoting skills, she can easily climb the ladders of audience approval. Her chemistry with Vinoo Anand is also amazing - they are a fresh pair, good looking, and simple - and so is their love.

Nedumudi Venu and Bharath Gopi make exceptional towering performances in other prominent characters. Aparna, Athulya, Kochu Preman, Sreehari and a bunch of freshers are also adequate in their respective roles.

M. Jayachandran’s music is another highpoint of the film, with the songs that have a different sound and the placement of each track in the narrative make you cherish them all the more. Oda Kuzhal Vili Ketto is the pick among the five songs in the movie.

Cinematography by debutant Sajan Kalathil is consistent and show promise. The locales of Palakkad and the sets especially that of the big temple by art director Prashanth Madhav give the film that extra zing. Adding to the film's plus points are its feel good tempo and duration.

An enjoyable film, all in all even though the film could have been better if it had some fresh progressive content. Nevertheless, in these days of blunt remakes, the audience should be happy with something that takes only bits and pieces.

CBI from Delhi - Suresh Gopi Shaji Kailas

After essaying the roles of detectives and police officers to perfection, Suresh Gopi is now donning the role of a C B I officer. His new film with Shaji Kailas C B I From Delhi will have him as the lead protagonist.

The film will be produced by Pyramid Saimira productions, who are planning to produce another ten films for the year.

The last two films of Shaji Kailas' Time and Alibhai couldn't rise up to audience expectations. So this time the director will also have to prove his audience pulling powers, once again.

Chak De script goes to the Oscar Library

Many observers have commented that the Chak De India had two heroes: Shah Rukh Khan and the script. It seems that the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences agrees.

The Academy (which among other responsibilities hosts & hands out the Oscar Awards) has requested a copy of the screenplay for the permanent script collection. The scripts in the collection reside at the Margaret Herrick Library and are made accessible for research purposes only; students, filmmakers, writers and actors are among the regular patrons. Screenplays may only be viewed in the library; they do not circulate. Also, no screenplay is allowed to be photocopied.

The invitation is recognition that the screenplay of Chak De India is comparable with the best in the world; and will become an invaluable asset for future generations of filmmakers. As the movie goes from strength to strength at the box office, it is a tribute to the entire team that helped make Chak De India such a universal success , critically and commercially.

Vikram on remake of rajnis Moondru Mugham

After Ajith, it is turn of Vikram to try his hands at a Rajnikanth remake.

Ajith is currently acting in the remake of yesteryear Rajnikanth hit Billa. Vishnuvardhan directs the new version and it features Nayanthara and Namitha in prominent roles.

Meanwhile, sources say Vikram has been approached to work in the remake of another Rajnikanth film. Moondru Mugam, which featured Rajnikanth in triple roles, might be remade soon.

Vikram had earlier expressed his desire to be part of such a film.

Buzz is that director Hari, who wielded the megaphone for Vikram starrer Samy, might direct the remake version.

Azhagiya Tamil Magan makes money

Quite appropriate to its name, Vijay's Azhagiya Tamil Magan's (ATM) has made enough money even before its release.

According to reports, producer Appachan has made enough money from the movie even before its release.

Buzz is that Azhagiya Tamil Magan has made a new record among Vijay films in terms of business.

It is said that Pyramid Saimira Theatres had brought the distribution rights of Azhagiya Tamil Magan for a whopping amount of Rs 25 crore.

With shooting is expected to complete soon, it is expected that the film would hit theatres on Deepavali. Directed by Bharathan, Azhagiya Tamil Magan has Shreya and Namitha opposite Vijay.

Sibi Malayil - Mohanlal team with Flash

Sibi Malayil has kept away from Malayalam film industry due to some petty issues with the producers association, following a petition from the producer of his last film Amrutham about the bad audio track, the film carried. But now the associations have cleared off the allegations made against the talented director and have lifted the ban enforced on him. In his comeback Sibi is more energetic than ever announcing his two films with Mohanlal, back to back.

The first film titled Flash will start by the first week of October. The film scripted by S Bhasurachandran, an eminent journalist is a suspenseful film which has Note Book fame Parvathy in the lead. Produced by Tomichan in the banner of Mulakupadam films, will be the Christmas release of the star.

The second film of Sibi Malayil will witness the reunion of Lohitha Das with the master director. The film titled as Bheeshmar will start by March of 2008

Raudram turns to Shauryam

Scriptwriter turned director Renji Panikkar who has just started shooting for his Mammootty starrer has changed the tile of the film. The film which was earlier titled as Raudram will now be called as Shauyram.

The film which is another critique of social events is very crucial for Mammootty, who is in quite confusion after two debacles of his recent movies. Shauyram is produced by Marikkar films who are celebrating the success of their first two ventures- Big B and hello. The film is planned as a release for mid November.

Tuesday, 7 August, 2007

Double Role for Mohanlal

Mohanlal is trying his hand at double role for his next film to be directed Joshy.

The film in the scripts of A K Sajan is produced by Sasi Ayyanchira (the producers of Mission 90 Days).

This new untitled film will be an immediate project of the veteran director after Nasrani which is presently in the sets.

Joshy has recently created a few hits with Lal including Naran, but his last release July 4 with Dileep didn't work out quite well.

Dileep back on track

Vinodayatara has done wonders for Dileep. The actor is back on track with handful of offers. Buzz is that his next Calcutta News is shaping up well.

Meanwhile, Dileep has been assigned to play the title role in Jose Thomas' new film named Omanakuttan.

Sibi and Udayan pen the script for the film produced by Mahi under the banner of Super Star Films. Recently Sibi and Udayan met Dileep on the sets of Blessy's Calcutta News.

Friday, 3 August, 2007

ALIBHAI - Rocking Posters


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Anoop Chandran turns Hero!!!

Anoop Chandran, who has become an essential comedy star of the present day Malayalam cinema, is turning hero in a couple of films.The first film of Anoop as hero is the film directed by Sharath Chandran Wayanad.
In this untitled film he will be appearing in the role of an Arab national, who comes to Kerala for a job. The second film will be directed by Aneesh Panikkar, in which Anoop appears in the role of a greedy youth who is into any thing for money.
The film which depicts the mindset of middle men of Kerala to become instant rich men, Anoop's character is even ready to marry a disabled rich girl.

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Thursday, 2 August, 2007

CHAK DE INDIA Wallpapers

Click on the thumbnails to see fullsize image...

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Wednesday, 1 August, 2007

Smashing new look for Dileep in Culcutta News

Dileep working for the first time with the path breaking director Blessy, has gone in for a new smashing look in the film.

For the film titled Calcutta News, he is appearing as a Television reporter, with stylish spectacles and straightened hair falling to his fore head.

The actor, who is clad in formals with id tag around his neck, will present Ajith Thomas, an investigative television reporter working for Calcutta News.

One day while investigating a story he meets Krishna Priya (Meera Jasmine), a woman who lost her husband in mysterious circumstances, a few weeks after her marriage. What happens after is the plot of the movie.

Meera Jasmine, Blessy's neighbor in Thiruvalla, is appearing for the first time in a film directed by him. Few will remember that it was Blessy who introduced her to Lohithadaas for her debut film Sutradharan. As expected after Kazhcha, Palunku and Thanmaathra, this too will be a different film according to the initial reports.

The movie earlier slated for Onam will now hit the release centers as a Ramzan release.

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NADODIKKATTU 4 - Rafi Mecartin replaces Roshan Andrews

Converting Hello into the biggest hit of the year definitely has its claims.

The major part of the accolades went to it
s directors, who timed the sequences to perfection and etched out the best of the performances from Lal, the most flexible actor around.

And so Mohanlal has decided to grant his dates for the fourth part of Nadodikkatu to the super hit director duo of Hello Rafi -Mecartin, as a reward for the big hit.
Earlier the news was that Roshan Andrews is going to do the sequel of the classic comedies.

The producer of Hello Joy Thomas Shakthiulangara will fund the project, which also has got the support of Sathyan Anthikkad, the original director of the classic movie.

The fourth part will again feature as usual, Mohanlal with Sreenivasan, as Dasan and Vijayan.

Mammootty in & as Theeppetty Chandran

Mammootty's next venture after Nasrani and Raudram will be Theepetty Chandran.

The film scripted by T A Rasaq will be directed by the most promising director from the younger generation M Padmakumar.

The film which is planned for Christmas will start by October.

M Padmakumar became famous with his films with Prithviraj like Vargam, Vasthavam and Ammakilikoodu. This is the first time he is associating with a Superstar.

Monday, 30 July, 2007

Nadiya Kollappetta Rathri - Review

After much waiting and many shifting of release dates, K Madhu's Nadhiya Kollapetta Rathri has finally hit the screens. The film as expected has some thing fresh to offer providing edge of the seat entertainment, keeping us guessing, all through.

Nadhiya Kollapetta Rathri begins from where the Railway Division of Salem forms a Railway Anti-Criminal Task Force (RACT), which is headed by Dr. Sharafuddin Tharamasi IPS, an encounter specialist, whose is a hardened officer who has already taken 16 lives in his encounters. He with his trusted men in RACT provides additional support to hinder railway crimes. And as a part of their work, they start to investigate seven cases associated with railway that are still left without clues, of which top priority is given to the Souparnika Express case, who left a black mark on railway security.

Souparnika Express, between Chennai and Mangalore on its inaugural run, years back witnessed three murders, of which two were branded as suicides. Sharpshooter Nadiya Mather, who had boarded the train after missing her flight, was found brutally wounded, which left her in a vegetative state for a year. The assailant used a scalpel to stab her in the head, leaving her brain dead with no signs of recovery.

Two other ladies - danseuse Thulasimani was found hanging inside the coupe in which she was alone and was locked from inside. NDTV reporter Sreya Maria was later found lying dead on the tracks. All three were traveling in the same AC First Class Compartment, having seven coupes.

Sharafuddin Tharamasi and his team, calls back all those who were associated with the case, including all the travelers in the compartment, the TT Thatthankottu Muthu , AC attender and the railway officer Kathireshan who first investigated the case. The pieces of the jigsaw puzzle about versions and reasons for various murders are meticulously scattered across an engrossing first half. The later half explains how the forces solve the cases and what happens in the deceptions that various characters take into themselves. K Madhu and A K Sajan play by the rules but doesn't disappoint. The thriller slows down its pace in the latter half, but with more action and suspense ensue. The makers won’t let the cat out of this bag, till the dead end that keeps us glued in the seats.

The novelty of the film is definitely that there are three murders committed on a single night on a train, of which the victims are in no way related. The script is tight, with most ends tied up. Though the fake blood, some overdone dramatic sequences in the first half, and the super star mostly as a one man dialogue presenter looks foul, the overall production is slick. Shots of trains, top angle shots of moving express trains sprinkled all over creates the atmosphere of urgency. Snappy editing and quick-paced action help take the tension to a feverish pitch. Interspersed with the frantic chases are moments of relief provided by Suraj as the TT and Anoop as the A C attender.

Suresh Gopi as Sharafuddin Tharamasi does not seem fresh, because he has been doing such roles far too often, but the character is safe in his hands. Whatever its antecedents, this is just another cleverly packaged one-man show for him. The entire story is designed to suit his energetic style of acting as he infuses the drama with tremendous anxiety, particularly in the first half, with his edgy body language

Kavya Madhavan has got another two meaty characters in the film, to show her potential after a long time. Others in the cast including Siddhique, Shammi Thilakan, Urmila Unni, Subair, Sureshkrissna,Vijakumar and Madhupal too have done their respective roles well.

As for the technical aspects, art-direction by Gireesh Menon and cinematography by Anandakuttan deserve special mention, as both have worked to the extremes to give the real feel to the shots shot on train.. Editing too is slick to suit a fast paced thriller. .

Despite its a little lagging in the second half, Nadhiya Kollapetta Rathri makes an impact because of tightly written screenplay, the performances and the effective use of the moving train as a backdrop for some genuinely gripping sequences of investigation.

Altogether, definitely worth for a meticulous watch.