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Sunday, June 19, 2005

[Movie Watch] Anniyan

Anniyan, the much hyped, rumored costliest ever, south-indian movie made. Ram C of the blogworld had written an excellent review. He had it nicely balanced out, detailing many of the aspects.

I'd like to add my two cents on top of his review.

With the exception of Kadhalan & Jeans, all of Shankar's movies, have some common trait. They all have a flair for grandeur. There is a strong undercurrent social message for the citizens. There is the hero, a lone warrior, who works towards a mass-movement, never has an easy ending while caught. The hero does not escape the easy route of people shouting the court/government out at the climax. They have more sincerity towards the social message than most other 'claims' made by directors. They have top-class music and good commercial elements housed in it for it to be a commercially viable success.

This movie is no different. There is no denying that, you can repeat the mantra of citizen-responsibility-accountability thousand times and it is still worth repeating. Well, not sure this is applicable in the movie world. It slightly makes one shift in the chair for its repetitive theme. His ideas are still worth applauding.

From a movie perspective, i found the comedy of Vivek, who does not get his 'own track' but nicely integrates and gels with the main movie, to be the best aspect of the entire movie. The acting by Vikram in some cases had an 'affected' style. It was like, you could see he was 'acting' while acting is like making you think they are living it out !. You'd never think Kamal was acting as the Indian thatha. But here, Vikram's Ambi role could clearly be seen as 'affected'. Sada, was at her best, very artifical too. As Ram pointed out, her dancing skills need some serious honing. The music (bgm) just passed the grade. There is nothing that you take out of the movie as hummable pieces. Even though the stunt/choreography was nice, the protracted matrix style frame-freeze technique is pushing the limits of audience's patience. If super-star Rajini's tyre-dodging itself can evoke smiles/laughter at the end of the sequence, there is no double guessing what would be the outcome here. But the stunts themselves were pretty novel. Camera work was good. I felt it to be a bit too-close up. May be my second row from the front had left me with that impression.

The dance sequences, situations, choreography, dresses etc need to be *seriously* revisited by Shankar. One could clearly see the 'Anbe Anbe' (Jeans) effect on 'Iyengaru' and 'Gopala' (Kadhalan) on 'Rendakka'.

As already pointed out by so many people, am not sure as to where all the 27 odd crores of rupees was spent !. I am positive that it could have been completed at less than half the cost, if the matrix-sequence had been cut short.

Sujatha, has, as always, done a wonderful job with dialogues. His command over the language is excellent.

Overall, i left the theater with a mixed feeling. I still have mixed feelings !.

The masses inching out of theater gleefully shouting into the camera could be heard saying...

'oru vaati parkalam'
'vikram acting super'
'vivek kalakitaaru'
'idhu oru nalla social awareness padam'

23 comments:

Ram.C said...

Good one Arvind, with your views.

The amount involved mind have gone to the technical assistants, foreign locales, Shankar's salary etc., Eventhough, each and every scene has been etched out carefully by him, I felt that the final product doesn't have a tight screen play.

I wish that the audience who are coming out of the theatre don't say "silathu puriyalayee?"

Arvind said...

Ram,

Thanks for the comments.

wishful thinking indeed ! ;p

Arvind

Raman said...

Nice analysis and review Arvi. Indian was a great movie that exposed how to commercialze a social theme. But, this one was a bummer.

Looks like you enjoyed the movie more than I did. Maybe, I was right in calling Anniyan - an onion in my blog. I know how much you love onions!

thennavan said...

"Anniya"ayamaa ippadi padaththukku adigamaana ticket koduththu duddu selavaaradennu makkalukku theriyallai pola irukku :-)

Arvind said...

thennavan,

Thanks for the comments.

"Makkal" le oscar ravichandranum adakkama ;p ?

I'd still be supportive of a movie, that continuously pegs away at making the country a living place, a responsibility of *all* the citizens.

but, as senthil wrote in his reviews, looks like the budget of the movie itself is hawala exercise !

Raman,

True, this movie can't stand up to Indian or any other Shankar's movie !

Ganesh said...

eppadiyo padatha poyi pattachu
Fairfax Lohemansdhane ?!

Arvind said...

Ganesh,

Chinna correction - falls church Loehman's ;)

Shiva said...

I gather this movie is of the Gentleman genre... Nice review. Should watch the movie soon..

In love with Assidy said...

as usual, needless to say,

g
r
e
a
t

review!

Arvind said...

Thanks Shiva & Aishwarya for the comments.

Shiva,

I would call it more of a 'indian' genre than 'gentleman' :-)

Ganesh said...

aravind
indha tag vishayma oru list potturukken poi paru
Apparam indhavarmavathu dc bloggers meet try pannalama.

ROBBIE said...

Arvind machhi!
kalakkitta ba! suberu! enna kalakkara machhi nee, superna super appidi oru super! social issue, anniyannu, affected acting..
thanks for mentioning thalaivars name there! :P

Arvind said...

Robbie,

Thanks for your flowing appreciation, it really means so much :-)

Icehouse le nee endha theru ?

Arvind said...

Royapettah Robbie ?

Arvind said...

Ganesh,

DC bloggers meet may be the weekend after long weekend ?

DeaK.In.FroSt said...

hi, arvind great review as usual. I have some Q's regarding the Raga the BGMs are based on.

1. When he puts the red mark on his forehead (the flute piece)

2. the part when he leaves to office b4 a guy spits on him. Wht raga is it based on. saama, arabhi or suddha saveri ?

3. The akaaram heard, when he sits besides the heroin in the bus.

4. you hear the same flute bgm when sada explains about the thyagaraja utsavam in the train.

...................................
some highlights:

...saadinchane is sung in the train. Beautifuly composed by gradually inserting instruments & vocal but short. :-{

...Vocal chorus of manasa sancarane

...The bgm nanda gopala during the kaveri river scene.

....Jagadanandakaraka superb work.

...gitaarthamu in surutti but again short.

...The bgm during the scene where vikram attempts commit suicide in the river was in charukesi,it was something nice to hear.
...................................

You could hear endaro mahanubhavulu and dudukula sung (hummed) by nedumuri hear and there.It is weird that the varali pancharatna kriti was not revealed in the movie.

Personaly i felt that rahman would have done a better job handling the BGMS, his classical touches are indeed distint.

Music Overall average...
take care,

regards,
Rajj

Arvind said...

Thanks Raj,

I dont have the bgms with me to comment nor do i have such good memory to retain bgms via scene index :-)

if i come across, will surely share it with you.

Thanks

DeaK.In.FroSt said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
DeaK.In.FroSt said...

Thanks for your concern arvind. Could you enlighten me about raga which the song kumari is based on.Is it in suddha Saveri, Aarabhi or Saama ?. I could provide you the bgms :0], Please provide me your mail ID..(Prefer Yahoo)

Desprate,

regards,
rajj

Bala said...

I guess the basic plot has come from Don Juan Marco.
I would say that Shankar has tailored it for Indian audience.

My 2 paise

Arvind said...

Thanks Bala, that is an interesting view :-)

SV said...

I saw the movie last week only - I liked it and agree with your comments. The feel though the movie is good, it doesn't create an impact as "Indian" or "Gentleman" did. In other words, not very touching. On the other side, brings a very good point that even being lethargic for small things (I refer to them as small b'cos in Indian context we are used to being careless) will have a huge impact over a period of time. I was little upset during the last scenes of the movie as it was shown that Ambi becomes a "normal" person but got convinced with the final shot that "he is still anniyan but became very smart".

From the music side, there is always a standard (not measured using scientific methods) for Shankar and ARR combo. It consists of various factors, song picturization, music, camera, location, visual effects etc., Though many of them are matching in this movie also (the Tulip gardens are amazing isn't it !!!!), Shankar and Harris combo is not scaling up as Shankar and ARR is my true opinion. Especially "iyengaru veetu" though sounds very good, reminds very closely "chennai sendamizh maranden" thereby cuts down the creativity.

To sum up, the movie is very good, can be seen once. Vikram has done a great job !!!!

I always feel (may be for some of you it might look a little too much) that given adequate opportunities and environment, Shankar can definitely scale up to bring movies of hollywood standards.

Arvind said...

Thanks SV, well said about ARR-Shankar combo :-)