Friday, February 13, 2009

Director Top Talent !

Blogging after a long time - someone had forwarded me the link to the new Bala's movie - Naan Kadavul. Being a big fan of Bala, am looking forward to seeing the movie; after having seen Nandha several times and enjoyed Pithamagan. I have seen Sethu a long time ago too. In fact he made actors out of Vikram and Surya. Ajith was supposed to act in Nan Kadavul and it was said NK would do to Ajith what Nanda did to Surya and Sethu to Vikram, but Ajith backed out (and that had several other issues)... Given the pedigreee, Naan Kadavul should be a must-watch movie...

Then I thought back about the directors in Tamil movies. Here are some that I've enjoyed seeing over the past few years. These are some of Tamil Directors, who do make some really good films, but dont get noticed on national stage:

Bala: Outst
anding director, but with a really dark outlook - if you are a fan of Pink Floyd and Roger Waters, you would love Bala. He weaves an amazing story together; the actors really fade into the background of the characters. Technically brilliant, with no frames wasted and no characters extraneous. Very very low noise/signal ratio. If only, he makes a movie, with more positivity like the one he produced - Mayavi (who else... with Surya); I suppose he needs to make peace with his urge of "poetic justice" thing and take some creative liberty !

Cheran: Pretty good, could be as good as Bala, if not for his first love of acting; apparently he wanted to be an actor, couldn't make it and then went on to become a director. He has several very very good movies. Pandavar Bhoomi, Solla maranda Kadhai, Porkalam, Autograph (a bit long, believe could have made the Sneha part a bit more terse) and Thavamai Thavamirundhu, aided by some brilliant acting by Rajkiran; if only Cheran had foregone his part (of eloping, suffering etc), the film would have been truly outstanding. His inability to make it as an actor when he started out, should have given him the message ! Of course, few friends I know didn't like the movie - their argument being why pay money to cry through the movie ? However, of late, seems to have run out of material with Maya Kannadi. I'm yet to see Pirivom Sandipom.

Radha Mohan: A new director; so far has combined well with Duet movies (Prakash Raj's production company) - Azhagiyae Theeyae was the first one - usual off-beat softie, a decent one. Then came Mozhi, which I had covered elsewhere in this blog; it impressed me a lot; the characters, storyline, dialogues, songs - each dovetailed perfectly into a well orchestrated symphony. He has recently done a another out of the box movie - exploring father-daughter relationship - Abiyum-Naanum... Stand-alone, it might be a good movie, but somehow it would get seen through the lens of Mozhi; I believe even Radhamohan had done that; seems like he felt a heavy responsibility to fit into a genre and tried hard to to be as good as Mozhi.

Ameer: He of Bala's understudy. He seems to be more versatile and makes films of all kinds - Mounam Pesiyadhae (an entertainer), Ram (serious subject with "autistic" as an hero) and Paruthi Veeran (somewhat mirroring Bala's style of story-telling, complete with a dark ending). Paruthi Veeran, with the village background and Karthik performing like a seasoned actor on his debut was worth watching. It was kind of throwback to Bharathi Raja's Padhinaaru Vayadhinilae kind of set-up ! Some trivia about Paruthi Veeran - pre-release, it had gotten into some controversy around money, and Ameer who was very close to the Sivakumar's family split with them, after this movie.

Myskkin (Or Mishkin): Possibly, the new emerging talent - with Chithiram Pesudhadi and Anjaathae - IMO, both were very intriguing with some unexpected twists - the one in CP was brilliant; He seems to have lots and lots of ideas
and comes across as struggling to fit all of them in the same frame. He also chooses some unknown actors - Naren and Bhavana for Chithiram Pesudhadi, who were very very irritatinlgy loud in the movie; In Anjaathae, Naren, Ajmal Ameer (who was passable as Krupa) - and Prasanna who, in my opinion was terribly miscast as the villain. Additionally, I also think Mishkin works with very poor team; usually you find some of the editing amateurish, screen-play redundancy, camera angles puzzling. If only he had a good technical team, he would come across lot more professional; and perhaps a better product packaged well all around.

Venkat Prabhu:
He of bit-characters-in-Vijay movies and he of son-of-Gangai-Amaran fame. He is the up and
coming director who looks very promising. Much like Radhamohan-Prakash Raj combine, he seems to have struck a good rapport with S.P.Charan (he of S.P.Balasubramaniam's-Son fame). His first movie Chennai-600028, was funny (thanks his to his brother Premgee, narrative, dialogues and screen-play), very cogently constructed and narrated. Some good scenes, with funny twists, down to earth dialogues ("Dei, leg side'lae podathada"..."eppadi pottalum, adikarangada") made the movie lovable. His second movie was Saroja. If you didn't know its a rip-off from an English movie, it is a good movie pictured well. If you forgive the start trying to woo the college folks, its quite taut thriller, building up the intensity slowly. Lets see what he comes up the 3rd time, now that everyone knows that the 2nd movie is a rip-off.

Vasanth: discovered him recently :) with Rhythm... Need to look at his other movies

If you are not looking for story lines, but want to take your brain off and get completely entertained, look for these directors; there are pure, 100%, unadulterated entertainers... like
Hari (Thamizh, Saami, Aaru, Thamiraiparani), A.R.Murugadoss (Ghajini), Dharani (Dhil, Dhool, Gilli), Perarasu (Sivakasi), Lingusaamy (Anandam, Run, Sandaikozhi, Beema) K.S Ravikumar (who is fun to watch - has directed quite a few Kamal, Rajni movies)...Gautham Menon started well, but has hit a plateau. All of them have their flashes of brilliance and some of their movies stand-out.
And ofcourse, not talked about Maniratnam - i thought he was over-rated, anyways, because of the urban appeal !! And after Mouna Ragam and Nayagan, imo, he kind of lost it.


Anonymous said...

Quite educational.. and intro to someone like me who hardly watch Tamil movies.. Thanks. I will see some the movies from these talents, and then comment. - Suresh

Anonymous said...

"Quite educational.. and intro to someone like me who hardly watch Tamil movies.. Thanks. I will see some the movies from these talents, and then comment."
(thanks mr. suresh)

ramesh said...

I don't relate to any of them as I haven't seen any of these movies till date.. In any case, i can say for sure that you have all the creativity to be one of the future director talent if you want to be one :)...ramesh

mux said...

whoa..!!! I think I can ask a few Kollywood Qs in the quiz now! ;)

Excellent analysis. Un-surprisingly, no big names here.

EnGeetham aka "My Song!" said...

4Suresh: Thanks - you may really enjoy some of these movies.

4Accs: You could be the next Venkat Prabhu - and can say your commenting was inspired by Suresh's!

EnGeetham aka "My Song!" said...

4Ramesh: If only someone would buy my stories !!

4Mux: Bala is fairly big - although he does very very few movies. Btw, can you rejuvenate the online quiz group ?

Anonymous said...

Very good analysis of all the directors and their movies.