“Thimiru Pudichavan”… An enjoyably OTT cop drama that’s like a Hari movie done right

November 17, 2018


Spoilers ahead… Read the full review on Film Companion, here: https://www.filmcompanion.in/thimiru-pudichavan-movie-review-vijay-antony-baradwaj-rangan/ Murugavel (Vijay Antony) is the most earnest cop you’ll find. He doesn’t take bribes (and to the irritation of his colleagues, he won’t let them either). When he sees a sewage-related problem, he wades into the muck and begins a cleanup operation. When his […]

Posted in: Cinema: Tamil

“Kaatrin Mozhi”… This remake could have used better craft and performances, but the core still works

November 16, 2018


Spoilers ahead… Read the full review on Film Companion, here: https://www.filmcompanion.in/kaatrin-mozhi-movie-review-jyothika-vidharth-lakshmi-manchu/ In Radhamohan’s Kaatrin Mozhi (The Language of the Wind), Jyothika plays Vijayalakshmi (Viji), an endlessly enthusiastic housewife whose mantra is “Ennaala mudiyum.” (I can do it.) In the first scene, this can-do spirit is put to test in a lemon-and-spoon race. Her husband, Balakrishnan/Balu […]

Posted in: Cinema: Tamil

The man behind the Superstar

November 15, 2018


Read the full article on Film Companion, here: https://www.filmcompanion.in/southern-lights-baradwaj-rangan-rajini-interview-zee-tamil-2.0/ A few thoughts on Rajinikanth’s Deepavali-day interview on Zee Tamil, an “event” that possibly rivals 2.0 because the Superstar so rarely meets the media. As he walks in, he looks like a benevolent family elder, bald and smiling and with kind eyes. He looks like he […]

The letter in ‘Casablanca’ versus the ones in Chantal Akerman’s ‘News from Home’

November 15, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: https://www.firstpost.com/entertainment/a-cinematic-reading-of-the-letter-in-casablanca-versus-the-ones-in-chantal-akermans-news-from-home-5553291.html BBC Culture’s poll of the 100 best foreign films has given us fodder for many, many columns – so this week, let’s look at one of the female filmmakers on the list. Not that there’s much choice. There are only four women – three-and-a-half, in a sense, […]

#AskBR – Sarkar

November 14, 2018


In which I answer a few questions on an older film… or a new one. For more, subscribe to FILM COMPANION SOUTH: http://bit.ly/2xoNult Copyright ©2018 Film Companion.

Posted in: #AskBR, Cinema: Tamil

Viewer’s Voice: Venu (Herbal Pharmacist)

November 13, 2018


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Readers Write In #59: Is the film playing Kill-Marry-Hook Up with its female characters?

November 11, 2018


‘Kill-Marry-Hook Up’, for the uninitiated, is a conversation game where participants are presented with three names. They are then forced to map each name with exactly one option from ‘Kill’, ‘Marry’ or ‘Hook Up’. ‘Hook Up’ is usually replaced with a “profane” synonym, but let’s stick to the Koffee With Karan version of the title. […]

The Amateur’s Art #44 – Bubbleman / 333

November 10, 2018


See here for what this series is about. Director’s note: A 2-minute Silent Horror film revolving around a Bubble bottle and a guy over a midnight told in Point of View (POV) Mode and A 2-minute Silent Thriller Short revolving around a Guy’s nightmarish experience with a demonic kite over a night

“Thugs of Hindostan”… A dull attempt at a masala potboiler that hopes star power will trump the script

November 9, 2018


Spoilers ahead… Read the full review on Film Companion, here: https://www.filmcompanion.in/thugs-of-hindostan-movie-review-aamir-khan-amitabh-bachchan-katrina-kaif-baradwaj-rangan There are three words in the title of Vijay Krishna Acharya’s new film, and at least two of them are wrong. Unless you count a small band of thuggees, who rob and kill travellers, the film has  no “thugs”. Aamir Khan’s Firangi Mallah is […]

Posted in: Cinema: Hindi

Off The Topic: Sensitive Males

November 8, 2018


A lot in this article really resonated with me. Any one else — man or woman — cares to weigh in? https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/highly-sensitive-man_us_5b464565e4b0e7c958f73cf4 Many people don’t have patience for a man in distress. We’re expected to pull ourselves up, lick our wounds and soldier on. I’ve always been super sensitive — the highs are high and […]

‘Seven Samurai’ is certainly a great film, but is it the best foreign film of all time?

November 8, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: https://www.firstpost.com/entertainment/seven-samurai-is-certainly-a-great-film-but-is-it-the-best-foreign-film-of-all-time-5517931.html Polls are fun. They’re imperfect. They’re maddening when they don’t match your tastes. But they get people talking about the subject, which is the whole point of the poll. For a while now, BBC Culture has been running polls on cinema. In 2015, the web site asked […]

Writing a piece on writing a piece on Kamal Haasan

November 7, 2018


Read the full article on Film Companion, here: https://www.filmcompanion.in/kamal-haasan-64-birthday-zero-anand-rai-punnagai-mannan-apoorva-sagotharargal/ On the multi-hyphenate’s 64th birthday, Baradwaj Rangan tries to make a list and gets meta (and how fitting is that, given this star)! I’ve just realised it’s tough to write a peg-less piece about Kamal Haasan. Well, there is a peg: his birthday. But it’s not […]

Readers Write In #58: Vada Chennai and Wasseypur: Rooting cinema with music

November 6, 2018


It’s been merely weeks since Vada Chennai released and the film is being talked about as a work that will go down in Tamil cinema as a milestone. Apart from solid writing, good camerawork and some stellar performances, there’s another factor that elevates the movie: The distinctive music. Criticism has risen about the way the […]

“Sarkar”… An efficient political platform that should have been a more effective movie

November 6, 2018


Spoilers ahead… Read the full review on Film Companion, here: https://www.filmcompanion.in/sarkar-movie-review-vijay-murugadoss-keerthi-suresh-varalaxmi-sarathkumar/ T his seems to be the year for NRIs plunging into the muck of Indian politics. We saw it in Bharat Ane Nenu. We saw it in NOTA. We see it in Sarkar (Authority), directed by AR Murugadoss (with a mile-long opening note acknowledging […]

Posted in: Cinema: Tamil

Off the Topic: Film lovers and frayed tempers?

November 4, 2018


Based on the tone of comments in the past few years, I’ve been wondering whether we’ve grown snarkier, less patient to understand, less inclined to hear someone out and have a dialogue, more likely to stick to our pre-formed opinions? None of this is a problem, as such, and I am no fool in search […]

Posted in: Off The Topic, Personal

Off the Topic: Making sci fi accesible to the masses

November 3, 2018


Dear BR, Below is a topic which I felt can be discussed on the thread. The gap between the first and second installments of Enthiran is almost a decade. A huge time frame from a technology stand point. So much has changed and developed in the area of AI,robotics, data age. While I wasnt anticipating […]

‘And Breathe Normally’, and the interesting ways in which black and white critics write

November 1, 2018


Read the full article on Firstpost, here: https://www.firstpost.com/entertainment/and-breathe-normally-reviews-reveal-the-interesting-ways-in-which-black-and-white-critics-write-5483691.html Ísold Uggadóttir’s Icelandic drama, And Breathe Normally, played at the Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival With Star, and the first scene shows you the reason behind that title. Lara (Kristín Thóra Haraldsdóttir), a single mother, is at the supermarket, realising how much she has to pay for […]

She Says She Says: Mass, Masculinity & Thalapathy Vijay

October 31, 2018


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“Bulbul Can Sing”…. A languid, beautiful, understated tale of a girl who learns to be herself

October 30, 2018


Spoilers ahead… Read the full review on Film Companion, here: https://www.filmcompanion.in/bulbul-can-sing-movie-review-rima-das/ What if the protagonist of Village Rockstars were a few years older? What if she wasn’t driven by major ambition (becoming a musician)? What if she simply wanted to loll around in her village in Assam? Bulbul Can Sing, Rima Das’s follow-up to her […]

Viewer’s Voice: Arumugam (Istri Wala)

October 27, 2018


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