Jun 20, 2010

ராவணன்: Movie Review

Mani is the master of magnificence. There are people who watch movies especially for DIRECTORS. I am one. Ofcourse, I do revere Rajinikant like any other Tamilian. I do admire Kamal & Vikram. I like Surya very very much but  beyond all  of that, i am more of a director's fan than a die-hard male lead supporter. Mani tops the list of my favorite directors. Why does people show me a sorry face when asked about Raavanan ? I don't feel this most-expected-movie-of-2010 is unwatchable. Maniratnam is back after 3 years. Guru (2007) is his last flick i guess.

I enjoyed watching this movie frame by frame. Yeah, you read it right. FRAME by FRAME. It's the impressive, impeccable Cinematography that definitely deserves a National award. Or even something beyond that. Can give one to the director or any other crew member but the DOP definitely deserves it. Awesome, astonishing camera work. Breath taking locations. Hats off to Santosh Sivan. I presume his SIXTH national award is near. Art direction and editing is sure to receive the same round of applause. Now that i typed the will-be-talked-about part, let me get into the movie.

The plot:

The first scene makes it all clear. You are going to see something different that you haven't seen before. Vikram is a Tamilnadu Tarzan who fights for the good of his forest folks. He is one of the toughest, strongest, bravest, and all the superlative -est's emerged from Oxford. The city cops resents his heroics.  Decides to hunt him down somehow. An encounter specialist, S.P - Prithvi raj is hired to do the job. During his sister's wedding, Vikram was shot on the neck by a decisive move from the encounter specialist. He survives the shot. Evades. Everyone escapes including the groom but the bride. She was taken into police custody for inquiry. Like it happen in all tamil films, the fat folks molest her. She commits suicide. Vikram decides to take revenge. Kidnaps Aiswarya, Prithvi's wife. The cop comes back for her girl as well as to destroy Vikram. The chase constitutes 80% of the movie. Prithvi succeeds after a scintillating climax.

The Cast:

Vikram did a neat job. He is a hard working talent who puts exhausting effort for what his fans respect him. Mani utilized every bit of excatly that. I want to see the hindi version especially for him. I am curious to see how he played the role of the exact opposite there. Aish aunty eyes is still amazing. 16 years after the pageant , the Miss world is still so beautiful. Some said she looks old but it's the least possible you can see in a 36yr old. She did a fantastic job of a fearless wife. Prithivi Raj, after Mozhi, no director would dare to give him a cop outfit. He shined spectacularly. Worked out and improved his physique  for the job and played to perfection - the role of a courageous, hell-i-care, bring'em-on cop. Was Karthik the Hanuman ? Nice to see him on screen after a long time. His role is limited but he did well. And for Heaven sake, dear directors, please don't sign Priyamani for portraying poignancy anymore. Was she a rape-victim specialist or what ? Atleast Mani did not make it as demolishing and devastating as Paruthiveeran. Mani conveyed the point in a decent fashion avoiding Yuck's in the crowd. And no wonder, Ranjitha received more roar and response than Aish :P

The Crew:

A.R.Rahman did give a greater deal of impact in the BGM but not at his best in the Songs as far as i feel.  I am still listening to Vinnai thaandi Varuvaaya everyday. These songs aren't as mellifluous as  i expected. May be because Mani gave foremost priority to the story rather than emphasizing on sizzling songs. Enough lauds for Camera, Art and Editing is already given. Now, the director. Who will dare to enter a dangerous forest like this ? Who will dare to depart from the storyline of the country's greatest Epics ? Mani is an Individual. He gives his view point using his creative brilliance. He clearly conveyed what he wanted to. Like it or not, it's up to you. Mani doesn't direct movies for just MONEY alone. If that is what he intends to, he can also join the bandwagon to remake  those Kutti'z and Jetty'z and all other crap. It's not every time you like what a person conveys !
Suhasini Maniratnam is a movie critique herself and now that she is out there contributing to a Ace director's  movie,  the world is all eyes. Her DIALOGUES lacked punch and strength. The screenplay isn't engaging either. Slow movie. Most of us felt like the chase is happening for a very long time.

Watch out for:

  • The first scene where Aish was abducted.
  • The scene where Aish falls down in the falls. The camera-editing-CG must be appreciated. Even if you closely notice, there will be scratches in Aish hands which makes it look R E A L !
  • The climax scene in the hanging bridge. I have never seen such a 'cliff hanging' moment in any Indian cinema !
  • The camera work when Prithvi burns a news paper with a Cigar. There are lot of interesting such CLOSE SHOTS all over the movie.
  • The scenic beauty from scene #1 of the misty mountains throughout the movie. I can watch it again and again. I will never care who kills whom. I will just wow at the scenery :P
  • The last scene in which Vikram slowly fall over the steep. Too touching.


Theme ?

Well, as far i saw, the message in one line is - ஆவதும் பெண்ணாலே, அழிவதும் பெண்ணாலே :P
But Mani has a deep insight. This is his message to you all.
Did such a man ever exist..? Was he just a myth or a metaphor ?
Is Raavan the line that divides Good from Evil ?
Does our understanding change when we look from the Opponent's Perspective ?
The bond between the Hunter and the Hunted - Between the Captor and the Captive seems to be a bond of do or die.
The tension between opposites often seems so electric, that it isolates them from the rest of the world, leaving just the two - All alone...
Are Ten heads better than One ?
Is there a Ram inside Raavan ? And a Raavan inside each of us ?!

The Deal

There are lot of aspects that make up a movie. If you find the story or screenplay defective, then don't claim the  entire movie is poor. There are always good things you should cheer about. Like the dedication and hard-work of the entire crew, staying in a forest and shooting gregariously in spite of  a grueling shift. See the brighter side. See the better side. Appreciate it. Life will become more beautiful.

1 comment:

  1. good review, the last part 'The Deal' is really good. Thanks vicky :)


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