Archive | September, 2009

Legend of Bhagat Singh:Great movie with marvellous music

29 Sep

Legend of Bhagat Singh is a movie directed by Rajkumar Santhoshi which released in 2002. It starred Ajay Devgan as Bhagat Singh and he ultimately won the National Award for the best actor for living the role of the historic character. The beauty of the movie was that the facts were shown as they happened, sans any other unnecessary distorted deviations. This is because the script of the movie was validated by none other than Kultar Singh-the younger brother of Bhagat Singh. I remember we saw the movie in the open-air theatre of our hostel and after the emotional climax everybody had tears in their eyes. Even the other supporting actors playing the roles of Chandrashekhar Azad, Rajguru, Sukhdev etc did a fantastic job of it. It may have been providence that the movie was able to have some of the finest performances thereby paying a fitting tribute to the great martyr who sacrificed his life for the country.

Special mention must be of the eye-catching and appropriate sets used in the movie to depict the British Raj times (the cars, tongas, buildings) by art director Nitin Desai. The cinematography was also wonderful by K.V.Anand. One of the major factors for the success of many movies is the music-especially the background score and the Mozart of Madras-A.R.Rahman gave a masterful music score for this movie winning a National Award for the best background score. The songs of this movie too were splendid especially Desh Mere, Mera Rang De, Mahive, Jogiya and Sarfaroshi Ki Tamanna (sung by Hariharan and Sonu Nigam!). All-in-all Legend of Bhagat Singh was an all-round good movie excelling in all the departments.


Meaningful Cinema: True purpose of art

24 Sep

There are many views about what is the real objective of cinema is—entertainment, making us laugh, conveying a message, adding something to our lives etc etc. According to me, any good film will try to do all these things (and maybe more) thereby maintaining a holistic balance between the three. Films should definitely entertain us and ALSO make us think and at the end of the day there should be some good takeaways which will add value to our lives. There are many such outstanding movies that I have come across and I thought of listing them here. All these movies are those that I have seen many times. In this post I will only be referring to Indian movies spanning two languages-Hindi and Tamil.

  1. Sholay-A classic, high energy movie much ahead of its time with a stellar cast. A unique action-oriented story, beautifully shot!
  2. Golmaal-A lovely movie with witty dialogues and a wonderful cast of  “actors” Amol Palekar and Utpal Dutt.
  3. Chak De India-A case study for effective leadership. This is one of the movies where Shahrukh Khan truly showed that he is a good actor. The sports scenes were picturized perfectly making it look like live matches.
  4. Dil Chahtha Hai-The most unassuming movie I have seen. So real and so natural. Farhan Akhtar showed that a simple story of three friends can make a great story.
  5. Taare Zameen Par-Brilliant, moving cinema. An unconventional, heart-warming story about the relationship between a teacher and his student.
  6. Lagaan-This movie portrayed beautifully the life of the simple people in rural India and added the plot of galli cricket to make a gripping story with magical music.
  7. A Wednesday-This is movie-making at its best. Probably one of the most hard-hitting movies we will ever see! The message to shun terrorism will linger in our hearts for the rest of our lives.
  8. Mouna Raagam-A simple story of a couple going thro’ emotional upheavals and finally realizing their love for each other. The music and the background score by Ilaiyaraja elevates it to another level.
  9. Anjali-The cult classic in children’s movies, again Ilaiyaraja makes you literally cry with his violin cascades in the BGM’s.
  10. Thenaali-A humourous, comic entertainer shot in Kodaikanal. The Kamal-Jayaram-Crazy Mohan team never disappoints, watch out for the next one!
  11. Panchathantram-The best comedy I have ever seen! Killer dialogues that will make you run a laughathon! I don’t know how many more times I will watch this one.
  12. Thavamaai Thavamirundhu-An unlikely, unexpected entry in this list. A very realistic movie on the relationship between a son and his father and very engaging too. Probably one of the best movies of Cheran with super music by Sabesh-Murali.
  13. Mozhi-One of my recent favourites, a simple, witty love story set against the backdrop of music. Prakash Raj always produces very watchable movies. Vidyasagar’s music too was splendid.