Monday Malayalam: Notebook, The Spoken Lesson is Different From the Shown Lesson

Yet another Hotstar miracle!  I film I had been curious about because of Rosshan Andrews, the director, and which was impossible to find.  Until suddenly it popped up!  Right there, at my fingertips!  The wonder of Hotstar.

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Tuesday Tamil: Solo (SPOILERS Review), More Than the Sum of Its Parts

Okay, let’s do this!  Tuesday Tamil!  Actually on Tuesday!  My box office post is still going to be late this week, but at least everything else will be back on track.  Plus, I am excited to talk about plot details for this movie. (no spoiler review went up earlier today)

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Monday Malayalam: I Saw Solo! What an Interesting Experiment (No Spoilers Review)

Sorry!  Padmavati took all my time yesterday, so we missed Monday Malayalam.  And now I am doubling up on Tuesday, a no spoilers and a spoilers review, both, for Solo.  Because it came out in Malayalam and Tamil, so I have decided it works for both.

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Monday Malayalam: Avidathepole Ivideyum, I Am Still in Love With 80s Mohanlal

Oh young Mohanlal!  Why are you so wonderful?  One of my first Malayalam films was Aalkkoottathil Thaniye which is mostly a Mammootty film, but in his two scenes, Mohanlal stole the show for me.  And now with them as equal actors, I am even more convinced that Mohanlal is the one for me.  At least, in the 1980s.  Haven’t made a decision yet for the other eras.

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Monday Malayalam: C/O Saira Banu, A Unique Kind of Mother

All Hail Hotstar!!!  Greatest Website/App/Alternative media source in The World!!!!  I picked this film basically at random out of the almost a thousand options available to me.  Because I vaguely remembered hearing it was good plus, Manju Warrior!!!  And it is good!  And it is Manju Warrior, like ALL Manju Warrior!  Her character is the whole film.

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Monday Malayalam: Bhaskar the Rascal, Finally a Mature Love Story!

What a cute movie!  Which charmed me so much that I had to put up a post yesterday describing the whole thing so that people could see how perfectly it could be remade as an SRKajol movie.  Or really, in any industry with any star couple.  There are so many talented mature actors, and so few scripts for them!

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Monday Malayalam: Neram, Not Bad

Well, that was okay.  Definitely an okay movie, not a great movie, or even a terribly interesting one.  But it was available to rent on googleplay, and it had Nivin and Nazriya, so a fair enough timepass.  But I would still have enjoyed re-watching Ohm Shanti Oshaana for the thousandth time more.

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Monday Malayalam: Narasimham! Thilakan FINALLY Gets His Comeuppance!

Welp, I did it, I finally watched Narasimham.  And it was pretty much as expected.  Not exactly what I look for in my Malayalam films, but Mohanlal was there, and so was Mammootty for a bit, and now I have seen Most Successful Movie of All Time, or whatever the accurate superlative is.

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Monday Malayalam: Kerala Varma Pazhassi Raja, Indian Warfare in India

Kind of odd watching a movie which hits so many familiar beats, even in the same time period, but it is about Malayalis fighting the British instead of Americans.  But then, that’s the point, the British are the British wherever they are, and there is only one particular form of warfare that is effective against them.  Well, at least in the 1700s.

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Monday Malayalam: ABCD, Not a Very Good Movie

I am continuing my “well, it’s the DVD on top” decision making process for films as I unpack.  After two good Malayalam choices and one so-so Telugu, I have landed on a really quite bad Malayalam film.  It looks like it was a big of a box office hit, but most critics agree with me that it is generally no good.

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Monday Malayalam: His Highness Abdullah, Comedy is All About Shock

I just cycled through a whole bunch of variations on that title, “unexpected”, “juxtapositions”, “breaking boundaries”, but really it’s just shock.  That kind of “I can’t believe they went there!” shock.  Which is why it is really too bad that I saw this film after having already seen a whole bunch of other movies that went to the same kind of shocking place.  Since all the others were just imitating this one, it should have had the privilege of shocking me first.

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Monday Malayalam: Gandhi Nagar 2nd Street, A Movie to Sit With For a While

I fell behind this weekend, and now I have to write my Monday post seconds after finishing the movie.  Which is really too bad, because this is a film that really needs you to sit with it for a while before you are ready to talk about it.

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Monday Malayalam: Shajahanum Pareekuttiyum, What if Movies are Just Conning Us?

This was a kind of interesting film.  Not a great film, maybe not even a good film?  But an interesting one.  Well, interesting in the last twenty minutes.  The set-up for that was a bit of a drag.  But most important (for me), this was a FREE film!  It suddenly popped up at my library, while I was in the middle of the move (DVDs finally unpacked as of this morning, but books still in boxes), and I had to watch library DVDs.  So it was perfect for me.

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Monday Malayalam: Leela, a Movie About Musth

Well, this was a bit of an interesting downer!  A movie about sex that was not at all sexy.  Appropriately so, sex work is not sexy for the sex workers, it is just a job that they do from necessity.  And it’s not necessarily sexy for their clients either, it is also something from desperation and misery.  So, woo!  An accurate depiction of life for a sex worker!  Which means, depressing and grinding and tiring and dangerous and yet dull at the same time.

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Monday Malayalam: Oppam! Priyadarshan Does a Thriller! (SPOILERS)

Well, I finally saw Oppam.  Only 6 months late.  Oh well, this is what happens when the theaters only give one screen to Malayalam films, and there are 4 (or 5?) major releases for Onam weekend.  I saw Oozham, which was in a similar genre but not quite as good as this.  Because Prithviraj is not quite as good as Mohanlal and Jeethu Joseph isn’t quite as good as Priyadarshan.

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Monday Malayalam: Munnariyippu, the Brazenness of Youth Against the Intransigence of Age

I avoided this movie because it looked scary, and I don’t like scary movies!  But it really wasn’t bad, because it was less about the “scary” parts, and more about the character parts.  The specifics of the danger weren’t the point, it was the way our heroine rushed headline into the danger that was the point.  Because young women are very very foolish!

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Su Su sudhi Vathmeekam: Learning to Accept Your Flaws, Not Hate Them

What an interesting movie!  It’s about stuttering, but not really.  It’s about growing up, but not really that either.  And it’s also a little bit about Mukesh being a really nice guy.  It’s all of these things combined, it’s just sort of about life.

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Monday Malayalam: Amen, Art Above All

I’ve watched this movie twice now.  Once really seriously, pausing and rewinding if I thought I missed something, and once more just skimming, letting it play while I brushed my teeth in the morning or wrote blog posts at night.  And I know I have still missed SO MUCH.  But I am going to do my best to try to understand it and present it to you.

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Monday Malayalam: Udayananu Tharam Asks Does the Film Create the Star or the Star Create the Film?

What a fascinating movie!  Oh my goodness, SO INTERESTING!!!!!  Starting from the opening shot, which sent me down a whole mental wormhole of film history.  But mostly, I am SO GLAD I watched this film the same week I saw Angamaly Diaries!  Because this film makes the hypothetical argument that Angamaly Diaries proved in reality.

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Angamaly Diaries: Lijo Jose Pellissery Finds his Place Besides Orson Welles and Martin Scorsese

That headline isn’t hyperbole.  There’s one sequence in this film, way at the end, which should be shown in film classes right along Welles and Scorsese from now on.  It’s an amazing technical achievement, but you don’t even notice that, because it is such an amazing artistic achievement at the same time. (Very very long and detailed SPOILER review here)

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Apoorva Ragam: Another Malayalam Pioneer of New Cinema

You know the problem with pioneer films?  They are so groundbreaking and wonderful when they come out, but then after they have cut out the new path, the films that come after it are so much more luxurious and elaborate, it makes that poor struggling scratched and damaged first film look like nothing in comparison.

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