Jun 17, 2008

Dasavatharam Review

I was not too sure, if I actually had to write this review. I just didn’t want to think about the movie again. Not that it was all that bad, but I would say it would be one of the not-so-memorable movies of the ‘Universal Hero.’

Dasavatharam – literally translating into ‘ten incarnations’, seems more so like a fancy dress competition, the different masks make it even worse. It is Kamalhassan in ten roles, and not all of them make a mark.

At the all new Cinemark movies, I saw this one with a lot of friends, and also with no expectations.

The first fifteen minutes of the movie set in the 12th century was really spectacular. If the movie had maintained the same pace and narration, it would been a better movie. But, in the end it seemed, why there was a need for this segment of the movie.

The storyline is simple – there is some bio-weapon under development, which needs to be stopped by going into the wrong hands, and it travels all the way to India. The scientist behind the development, Kamal also travels, only to meet many other Kamals who are different characters in the movie. Finally, while the bio-weapon is all set to cause destruction, the divine intervention (OMG, am I using all these words?) causes the Tsunami, thus combating the effect of the weapon.

If Kamalhassan had concentrated more on the story than on the ten roles, I am sure we would have seen a better product. I am sure the director KSR had no role to play in the movie, other than dancing for the last song as an item boy :).

Now speaking of the good things – three of the roles stay in your mind for a long time. The first person set in the 12th century, the police officer who speaks five languages in Telugu (someone said this was one of the Kamal’s best characters ever), and the ‘padikadha medhai’ – illiterate scholar. The ex-CIA agent seemed to be the most irritating character. I somehow like the Dr. Bush character for its right depiction of the ignorance.

The second half seemed to be gripping for 45 mniutes, and after that it was all lost. Especially, the Punjabi singer’s song was so unnecessary. But it came at the right place, and served as the interval for us poor souls, who sat through the movie without a break.

The tsunami scene was very well shot and did show most of the impact, mostly through graphics though.

Mallika Sherawat should probably be thanked for her little and insignificant on-screen time. Asin was irritating, with her just screaming of ‘perumale’, every two minutes. Luckily, there was no romance shown between Asin and Kamal till the very end. Thank the perumal, who spared us from a duet between the two of them.

Speaking of music, Himesh had no role in the movie, with 3 songs having the screen time and none of them being memorable. Devi Sri Prasad’s background score was better than expected.

Speaking of the ‘memorable’ scenes:

One Thanglish scientist in the lab saying ‘Thamizh’la sollanum na, adhukku paeru NaCl’.

George Bush saying – ‘Well, if it is complicated, don’t bother to explain’, ‘What is NaCl?’

The doctor saying – ‘Even the surgery would not have been as careful as the bullet, in removing the cancerous growth which was so close to your throat.’ OMG, give me a break from this one! Or was it a spoof towards Superstars movies.

Kamal saying – ‘Every one of us has a ulaga nayagan (Universal Hero) in them.’ OMG, would we be seeing 1 billion Kamals in the next movie.

Well, we must congratulate Kamal on achieving the record of putting together 10 Kamals on screen. He did what he wanted. Now it is the turn of the audience to approve of his effort or reject it.

I would give it 3 out of 5 for its concept but not-so-well presented content, and a 5 on 5 for its technical superiority. The music – not even worth grading!

Jun 13, 2008

Tamil Radio

For those who crave for Tamil Radio, here is a good source and it is FREE and legal too!
http://www.aahaafm.com (Sorry, for some reason a hyperlink was not formed. Click on the title of the blog 'Tamil Radio' to go to the page)

I particularly like the show Rahmaniya, which is so obvious. I try to listen to Chinmayi's Aahaa Kaapi Club in the evenings (morning in India)too, but forget to turn it on at most times :( . Probably recording it and listening to it in the morning would be a good idea.

It's been there for a little more than one year apparently, and I get to know of it NOW!!!

Looking good - for good!

In the past few weeks, people have noticed a change in my looks (read hairstyle). It's far different from the orange-headed frame with all the hair falling on it. While this look brought in confidence (read attention), I really wonder if it is such a big deal.
Probably, I will learn to enjoy the confidence (attention) in some time, or maybe people won't even notice it after a while :)

Jun 12, 2008

Dr. Without hardwork - Excuse me!

While writing my previous blog on Dasavatharam, I thought if I should write Dr. Kamalhassan or just his name. A student who has finished medicine or a student who has finished PhD, are usually addressed as Dr. so so, which is not wierd at all.
However, the concept of honorary doctorates is what puzzles me. Started at a US university, many decades ago, it is now being conferred at almost every university, be it in India or elsewhere. A person who has done enough service to mankind, or accomplished something that not many have achieved deserves it. The great Mother teresa would took care of the needy deserves it. A person like the Mozart of Madras would deserve it for bringing in such a change in the field of Indian film music.
But things have slowly changed, and a movie star would acts only in remake of other language movies, or acts only in hit comedy movies, or someone who gave 5 hits in a rows DOES NOT deserve it at all. One of the exceptions is that the remake Raja does a lot of social service, and he probably deserved some recognition in that front. But in most cases film stars getting a honorary doctorate is not an achievement at all. It might be done by some nameless university to get popular.

(This is not in disrespect to Dr. Kamalhassan at all! I respect him and he rightly deserves such a honor, at least for making a wonder called Anbe Sivam)


It was Sivaji last year at this time, and this time it is the other legends 'Dasavatharam.' Dasavatharam is the name given to the 10 incarnations of Lord Vishnu in Hindu mythology. But now, the thing is about Kamalhassan (or should I say Dr. Kamalhassan) and his 10 roles in this movie.
Hyped to the max, I feel it is going to be a really good or really bad movie. But for the efforts that have gone into the making of this movie, I feel it shouldn't go wrong this time for Kamal.
The movie has a song 'Mukundha Mukundha' which sounds like Konjum Mainakkale, but has grown on me...
I will be watching the movie, but not the first day first show though. It is not at the usual Tempe Cinemas where we watch the Indian movies here in Tempe. Hopefully it is a better theater :)

Will be back with a review of it as soon as I watch it!