Monday, 4 July 2011


2011 by Sibi Malayil

Till a decade before, the name Sibi Malayil used to give a minimum guarantee to Keralans that there should be something good. And two decades back, his name was enough to have an assurance that the movie would be excellent. Anybody who has watched his Thaniyaavarthanam, would not think twice to watch another movie of his. Like all other veteran directors of Malayalam cinema, he too is swimming in the lower tides of his career.

A girl and boy, with lots of problems behind them, meets and have problems and then fall in love. And there is a villain. 

Its the same old wine, in the old bottle, just with a new label sticked on. But even the wine isnt tasty, as if it was made from grapes collected from various wine yards. Violin ends up by and large a very ordinary of the ordinary movie. The same things that we have seen so many times, but with different actors.

Looking back, Sibi Malayil did well only when he had a good script. That is quite evident now. A director should be able to bring out something even from a poor script, just like Bala did with his Avan Ivan. That movie didnt had a good plot or script, but scene by scene, it was good. In fact many scenes would remain etched in the memory even many days after the show. That clearly proves Bala, is a great director. Even with that poor script, Bala managed to get brilliant performances out from his actors. Compare this with Sibi Malayil and he has really failed. There are only few scenes, very few, where he does good as a director. To repeatedly make his actors perform poorly, scene after scene, speaks very lowly about Sibi Malayil.

I am really falling for Nithya Menon. She is looking more and more gorgeous in each movie. But really wish, she hadnt done this movie at all. She will want to forget this movie very soon. Further evidence that the performance of an actor is at the hands of the director. There may not be anybody associated with this movie, who would want to project this movie at any point of their character, except the guy who played as a friend of the hero. He was excellent. 

Delhi Belly

2011 by Abhinay Deo

Since Lagaan happened, Amir Khan is always associated with good cinema, especially by the great Indian middle class. I think he called this production of his something like Adult Comedy. I was almost sure, this must be a desi remake or mixing up of many American Pie's, Loony Tunes, Euro trips or movies like that. Well, I was wrong and right also. Yet, another effort by Bollywood to make a hollywood movie in India. And this time, its in English too. So hopefully, he could try his luck at the Oscars, his dream forever.

Tashi and his two friends share a typical Indian Bachelor accommodation, somewhere in old Delhi. Tashi's airhostess girl friend, hands him a packet to be couriered to some address, which he further passes to his friends and finally this pack is mixed up with a pack of stool. Bad guys are after them for the packet. 

If one is in the right mood, you will laugh it out, during the whole movie. If at all you decide to think a little bit, you might find it , well a bit weird or strange or even ugly or like a hotch-spotch of many hollywood attempts. But let me admit, this is not a movie to think or wonder about some logics or anything like that. It is an out and out escapist fare, to just have some fun. And there is loads of fun, and to be frank, there are moments of brilliant fun. But mostly, I found it as desperate attempts to make a laugh. And here the desperate attempts are mostly around a bad stomache and frequent visits to the toilet, which lacks water and et all. Anyways the crowd was laughing it out.

But I found the movie ended up as neither Hollywood nor Indian. The characters sometimes behaves as if they are in America and sometimes as Indians. At times they spoke with an American accent and then real Indian English. So mostly it turns out as a Hollywoodish kind of comedy, meant not for children, but happening in India surrounded by Indian sensibilities. Or may be I am ignorant and there might be people in India who behaves as if they are neither American nor Indian. Possible. If at all, Indians used so much of 'fuck' in their talks and spoke out loud about 'blowjobs' and 'assholes', this movie is normal. May be there are and then I am wrong. When one character's girl friends walks out to another marriage, the guys thought is to appear at the wedding and scream - she has given me a blow job. Isnt all this taken directly out of hollywood scripts. May be the modern metro Indian youth, even the middle cass or lower middle class ones, might be dreaming America or Hollywood. If yes, then I am wrong for sure. Also, when lots of kissing happens in public and Indian public don't even care, then definitely India has changed and I am blind not to see the change.

Add to it the use of English and I wondered for how many Indians, is this movie made for. Even, small town educated Indians might not easily understand the English in many scenes. But there is some cheap fun and bit slap stick that all would understand. I really didnt understand why this movie was shot in English. The only point might be the need to reach a larger International audience. But I would say, they might not find it too much as an adult comedy. This might be adult comedy for Indians, but not for the west, I am afraid. Even if they did, they would only consider Bollywood has just joined the kinder garden for adult comedy.

I do not know the name of most actors in this movie, but the casting was brilliant and the performance of almost all of them too. Vijay Raaz as the gangster, was the best for me. Also that actress who played Maneka. Her expressions after the kissing in the car, were really brilliant. In spite of all this, I would still say the director deserves credit to make a sleek movie, with an excellent pace.

Should you want to just laugh, escape from stress then watch Delhi Belly. There is plenty of laugh and some are really brilliant.

But as an Indian, I feel really sad when we try to follow west to the hilt.