Category Archives: Movies

Alaipayuthey 20

Celebrating 20 years of Alaipayuthey with 20 specialties of the movie.

1. Colours

Be it the happy, vibrant colours of Shakti’s salwar kameez or Karthik’s blue shirts or the scenery in Pacchai Nirame or the rich Indian colours during functions in Yaro Yarodi, Alaipayuthey or Mangalyam songs or be it the dark tone when the movie takes on a serious note in the second half. The colours by themselves match the scene in every single frame.

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The Magic of Alaipayuthey – 20 Years Later

This blog of mine has always been synonymous with celebrating all things Alaipayuthey! So, it would be highly unfair if I leave this special occasion of Alaipayuthey turning 20 without at least a passing mention here. But when have I ever been able to stick to just a ‘passing mention’ of Alaipayuthey? 😉 So, here is yet another heartfelt raving about that special movie!

Sometime in the beginning of April during one of those sleepless nights, it struck me that Alaipayuthey was turning 20 this year. Since then, there have been quite a few reminiscences going on in my mind. From thinking of 20 special things to 20 special scenes to recollecting certain write-ups of mine, Alaipayuthey has yet again been giving me quite a few relaxing moments during this much-needed anxious period!

While it would be cliched to say that this movie remains as special to me today as it was 20 long years earlier, it is indeed the case. When I saw earlier in the day that Mani Ratnam was going to be appearing Live on Facebook with Suhasini, I set a reminder and watched it from the start to finish, absolutely hooked to it. And then when Madhavan made an appearance in the show, I can’t tell you how much the Alaipayuthey fan in me was rejoiced! Is there any better way to celebrate Alaipayuthey?!

As Madhavan said the famed ‘Naan onna virumbala’ dialogue in the show, the magic in these words were as fresh today as it was when we first heard it. Madhavan asked Mani Ratnam about why there was such lengthy, filmy dialogue in this, so unlike his usual style. Before I knew it, I was thinking about several of the proposal scenes in all his other films.

When Suhasini showed a mirror with a colourful backdrop, even before she started talking about it, I shouted out loud, ‘Hey this is the Alaipayuthey mirror!’ 😀 She indeed did confirm that this was a mirror which she had bought in Hauz Khas, Delhi and was used in Alaipayuthey. Knowing yet another new trivia about anything and everything related to Alaipayuthey excited me today as much as it did during my teens. 🙂 That mirror in which the thaali is hung 🙂

If watching a mere Live conversation with Mani Ratnam gets me this excited, guess how much the movie still excites me even today!

96

It was during one of those sleepless nights like today’s that I watched the movie 96. The story or the songs or the few scenes from the trailer didn’t really impress me. But when I watched the movie fully, there was one thing that I could identify with – nostalgia!

There was the lead character Ram who was still holding on to his time and memories with Janu so close to his heart and hadn’t fully moved on from the past.

There was Janu who, though seemed to have moved on with her life for all practical purposes and appeared to have accepted all that had happened and not happened, was still holding on to those memories and feelings as fervently as Ram.

Yes, there were some flashbacks that were boring to me and there were way too many tears in the present scenes and the love story in itself didn’t seem any special. Yet, there was this one thing that made me keep watching the movie till the end and even get reminded of it at random moments – the portrayal of nostalgia!

Be it Ram excitedly recollecting the places in Thanjavur, the place where he spent his childhood, from the passenger seat of the car or stepping inside his old school or all the students of the class excitedly catching up wih each other after so many years or be it the class reunion or be it the fond reminiscences of the past by Ram and Janu, it was that nostalgia written all over the movie that appealed to me more than anything else.

Of course, the cinematography was superb, there was this enjoyment of watching Madras on screen and Vijay Sethupathi was excellent as usual!

Chekka Chivantha Vaanam

Spoiler Alert

Chekka Chivantha Vaanam is indeed painted red all through, what with ruthless bullet shots and gruesome murders. As Varadan (Arvind Swami) says in the movie, we are all nothing but a big cipher when death strikes. The internal family war, which we find out in the end is brilliantly planned by Rasool, is fought in this movie till everyone in the gangster family is turned to nothing but a big cipher.
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Jugni – Kaatru Veliyidai

There are those songs that start like a whiff of fresh air. Jugni is one such – the opening soft music as fresh as the air in the snowy Himalayas where the video of this song is shot!

Then those foot-tapping beats change the mood of the song. The constant dance-worthy beats all through and those intermittent exploding beats, the soft layers of short snatches of music in the background here and there – at times soothing, at times intense, but all through mesmerizing – stay with you long after this song gets over.
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My Little Pony – Afterthoughts

So, we successfully managed to sit through the entire ‘My Little Pony’ movie! My son kept crying and running towards the exit on and off and when there was just fifteen more minutes of the movie left, he gave the biggest cry scared of the monster on screen. This was his first time in a theatre and he kept saying he doesn’t want the big TV and wants only his small TV at home! But he enjoyed all the songs and said those were happy. I started watching the movie with him paying full attention and asking him not to be scared and telling him princess pony will be rescued. I realized that he was just not used to seeing real villains in his Nick Jr shows and that was the reason he was scared.

Though I kept debating if I should just leave, my daughter wanted to see the movie fully. She enjoyed the songs and got herself interested in the movie after a while.

When the movie finally ended and we came out of the theatre, my son said pony was happy and he wanted to watch it again! Fascinating how a child’s mind is!

My Little Pony – The Movie

Fifteen minutes into the movie, I wonder how I am going to pass the next 75 minutes. While my 5-year old seems to be enjoying it, a few minutes of seeing black monstrous ponies on screen later, my 2-year old wants to go back home and watch Nick Jr instead!

My sister and I bought a ‘My Little Pony’ puzzle when we were young kids without knowing that those were the characters of a cartoon series. Back then, I thought the ponies looked very nice. But a few years earlier, after my daughter was born, I tried watching on YouTube what I thought were my favourite ponies, but we couldn’t watch it beyond a couple of minutes. The ponies didn’t look beautiful anymore to me.

We are again trying to watch the ponies on screen only today since that’s the only animation movie in cinemas now. Apart from us, there are only 5 more people in the theatre at Cathay Cineplex, AMK Hub. My 5-year old is also not liking it now. To say that we are all bored is an understatement.

Boring voices, serious conversations and fights, lots of fight – no fun whatsoever. I really wouldn’t recommend watching this movie.

Let us hope that the movie becomes interesting after a while at least for my children.

Magalir Mattum 2017

I didn’t really like the movie and found it quite dragging. But, yes, it is important to portray what a majority of women in our country are going through post marriage through films like this.

Some parts of it were quite unbelievable. From when did men have a change of heart as easily as Livingston or Banupriya’s son has in this movie and start cherishing the women in their lives right away?? Are just a break from their women and a few life lessons enough for them?

The plight of the married women shown was not far from reality though. The wife being made to act as a substitute for a maid as shown by Banupriya or the wife not having the freedom to choose her career as shown by Saranya are reality which we see everyday.

It did feel nice to see long lost friends having a happy reunion.

The one thing which I liked in the movie is the initial documentary which Jyotika takes on housewives/homemakers where each of them talk about their lives. The contrasting personalities of one woman who speaks at length about her never-ending everyday household chores and states how much work she does and the other woman who happily says that post marriage, she is just at home doing nothing, reflected how perceptions differ, be it from the general society or from just oneself. Ironically, both women were homemakers who had children and their routines would have been similar. Yet the way the women perceived themselves differed. Did it depend on the way they were treated at home and how others perceived them too?

Kaatru Veliyidai

Breathtaking visuals, beautiful colours, mesmerizing music, people with flaws and feelings abound, a leading lady in lovely costumes, a love story on a setting that makes you think beyond your normal lives and thank those brave soldiers who are helping us lead a safe life – that is Kaatru Veliyidai for you.

If you are looking for a story of two perfect and caring people falling in love with each other and leading a happy life together, then this movie is not for you.
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Alaipayuthey – The Colours!

Watching Alaipayuthey fully last Saturday, I seriously couldn’t recollect the last time I watched it fully! It definitely has been a few years! Watching it make me feel 17 years younger, got me away from feeling like an oldie having entered into my 30s. 😉 And yes, it made my hands itch to write something about it here!

I love colours – deep, rich colours, vibrant hues, bold strokes of colours on a canvas and even dull, moody tones. Alaipayuthey is one movie which literally celebrates colours through the song ‘Pacchai Nirame‘ and through almost every single frame. It is not just Pacchai Nirame, each and every scene of which glorifies the many varied hues of colours painted naturally by nature on this wide canvas called earth and sky.

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