Tuesday Tamil (On Wednesday): VIP 2! A Fun Film to See in Theaters

Well, I saw another new Tamil movie in theaters! Kabali, Vikram-Vedha, and now this.  So, 66.6666% of all Tamil films I see in theaters start with “V”.  And another 66.66666% involve relatives of Aishwarya Rajnikanth.  And 100% of them involve me arriving at the last minute and missing the trailers.  Oh well.

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Tuesday Tamil: Pizza! An Unfinished Horror Film

Well, I watched Pizza!  Which had a high standard to live up to, because the only other horror movie I have seen is The innocents.  Oh wait, also Ezra.  Which is a lot easier to beat than The Innocents.  I think I would say this one landed closer to The Innocents side of the scale than Ezra.  Oh!  I forgot The Fog!  Which hardly qualifies to be called a movie, let alone a horror film.  But is fun if you ever want to see Irrfan Khan in the worst film of his career.

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Tuesday Tamil: Velaiilla Pattadhari, Dhanush Explains Why I Started a Blog

Well, I finally watched VIP!  Because I really really wanted to watch that teaser with Kajol, and I decided I couldn’t let myself watch it until I saw the first movie.  Anyway, it is just as good as you all said it would be!  And the plot and themes and stuff hold together a lot better than it appeared from the Wikipedia synopsis.

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Tuesday Tamil/Telugu: Robot/Enthiran, What Am I Missing? Why Was This a Hit? Is It Just Rajnikanth?

I finally saw Robot!  I think it might be one of those movies that you miss out too much if you don’t watch it at the exact right moment.  Watching it now, just a few years later, the special effects seem dated, the song sequences not so great, and even Rajni Sir’s performance is not as good as it could be.  Remember, I am coming off of seeing him in Kabali, where he not only played his age, he played a layered real complicated version of himself.  I mean, this performance is great, the best part of the movie for sure, but I kept thinking “why are you doing this when I know you could do so much better?”

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Baahubali 2 Review (No SPOILERS): Baahubali 1 Was Just the Overture, This is the Real Film

Just got home, haven’t really replayed it over in my head yet, still trying to shake out everything I saw and how it all fit together.  But I think I can at least give you some things to think about while you are watching it for the first time.

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Chennai Shopping List! Now With Additions!

Chennai Update!  I have put in some of your suggestions, plus added a few books.  If something you suggested isn’t included, it’s not because I hate you, it’s because I explored and I can find a copy without needing to go all the way to Chennai for it.  And I want to save luggage space for the really really hard stuff!

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Thursday Tamil: Major Chandrakanth (Not the NTR One, the Other One)

Well, this was depressing!  And shockingly coincidental.  I am beginning to suspect that the K. Balachander fictional universe only contains about 200 people, which would explain why so many characters end up having surprising connections to other characters previously introduced.

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Happy International Women’s Day! Here are some International Women!

(This is a reposted and Updated post from last year)

There are so many many many options for a Women’s Day post, that it kind of blew my mind and I couldn’t decide!  Most empowering films for women?  Most feminist songs?  My favorite female characters?

Anyway, I decided to switch focus to the “International” part of it, and look at the most International women in Indian film!

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Tamil Tuesday: Aval Oru Thodharkadai Shows Why a Woman Turns Cold

Second week that I am managing a Tamil Tuesday!  And an actual good film this time, another R. Balachander.  If I were still watching movies in a wild and unplanned manner, I would be zipping through all his films on youtube and probably getting super confused as to what happened in which.  But with my new alliterative schedule theory, I have to hold off.  Or else zip through and then schedule all my posts out for the next several Tuesdays.  We’ll see what I end up doing.

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Boys: Don’t Make Me Be a Teenager in Love in India!!!

Attakathi, Vinnaithaandi Varuvaaya, Premam, and now this, they all have very similar content, the kind of content I don’t really see in American film, or even in Hindi films that much.  The struggles and pain of being in love, and not being of an age for it.  It isn’t something American movies deal with, maybe because it isn’t an issue in the same way in America?  At least, not any more.

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OK Kanmani: Seriously, How Will this Work in a Different Language?

I watched this movie months and months ago when it first arrived on American Netflix, but that was before I was blogging seriously so I didn’t pay very close attention.  I wanted to watch it again, now that the remake will be releasing soon (January 13th), and think about how this film could possibly be remade.

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Nayakan: Finally! A Kamal Haasan Movie I like!

As you may have picked up from my Aval Shanmughi and Ambe Sivam posts, I have a hard time with Kamal Haasan.  Yes, he is a brilliant actor.  Yes, he has movie star charisma.  But it just seems like his characters have to be so perfect and so wonderful, that no one else is allowed to do anything.  But this Kamal Haasan movie, this one I liked!

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Kabali: My First Tamil and My First Rajinikanth Film in Theaters!

I saw Kabali!  It was SO GOOD!  Okay, the second half lost track of itself a little bit, and there were some character bits that could have been better, but overall it just had so much more depth and excitement and energy than the other movies I have seen lately!

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Vettai: Madhavan is Just a Big Old Teddy Bear, Isn’t He?

This was such a cute movie!  Everyone was just so nice to each other and supportive and not mean.  Even all the family dynamics that in another movie would be the source of much drama and trauma were just kind of laughed off.  By the movie, but also by the characters.  No lingering resentments or quest for vengeance, just a sort of “well, that’s how they are and that’s fine.” kind of attitude.

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Anjali: Maybe I am Getting Immune, but Ratnam Didn’t Make Me Cry This Time!

First, a warning: this is the last day of regular reviews before we enter Salman week!  Brace yourselves!  Anyway, I wanted to go out with a bang, so I finally sat down and watched Anjali, all set to sob and sob like I did for Kannathil Muthamittaland it was a good movie, don’t get me wrong, but it just didn’t send me in the same way.  Maybe because I’m not the intended audience?

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Iruvar: Okay, Is It My Fault That I Didn’t Understand This Movie? Or Is It Because I Needed To Know 60 Years of DMK History?

I was watching this movie so closely!  So closely!  I know the drill with Ratnam films, he just drops in these little bits and then moves on so you can’t look away for a second.  And yet, I was still completely lost.  But I don’t think it’s my fault!  Or at least, not my fault because I wasn’t watching closely enough, but because I didn’t have the expected background.

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Happy International Dance Day! It May Be a Made Up Holiday, But I’m Still Celebrating!

Thanks to Amitabh’s twitter, I just learned that 4/29/2016 is International Dance Day.  I had a half moment of thinking someone was punking him, but a bit of googling confirmed that it is actually a thing!  Created by the International Dance Council, a UNESCO partner group.  Which means it is enough of a thing that I can celebrate by posting the best, or at least my favorite, dances!  Well, some of them.  Good news is, this is apparently an annual thing, so I can come up with a whole different list next year! Continue reading

Lucia/Enakkul Oruvan Review

I am so embarrassed! I got confused and accidentally watched the Tamil remake of Lucia first!  And now I can’t go back, my primary reference is always going to be the second version not the original!  The best I can do to make up for it is to review them both together.

(Luckily, moviemavengal did not make the same mistake, and was able to watch the original unspoiled!  Check out her review here)

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Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa: It’s That Movie With the Soundtrack I Love!!!

Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa was one of the few non-Ratman Tamil movies recommended to me and, more importantly, was available through my library, so I watched it last weekend.  And then the first song started and I went “Hey!  I know this soundtrack!”  Ever since Ekk Deewana Tha started being promoted 4 years ago, I have listened to the Ekk Deewana Tha/Vinnaithaandi Varuvaaya/Ye Maaye Chaseve at least once a week, if not once a day.  It is really really good.  So that was an odd point of familiarity/unfamiliarity from which to start.

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A Peck on the Cheek/Kannathil Muthamittal: Maybe the Reason I Keep Watching Ratnam Movies is Because He is SO GOOD?

I’m working through my list, and I just watched my second Ratnam movie of the week.  It’s not even on purpose!  I’m just looking at the films that are easily available/generally recommended.  This one in particular apparently went to a bunch of international film festivals?  The end result being, it is easily available from my library, and on a bunch of streaming websites.  I mean, it’s also a really really good movie, but the reason I picked it to watch next was based purely on convenience.

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Thalapathi: Yay! My Favorite Mahabharata Character Gets a Happy Ending! Also,My First Rajnikanth Film!

Well, happy-ish.  He still doesn’t get Draupadi.  But at least he reunites with Kunti and Arjun!  Also, it’s a Mani Ratnam movie, so the directing is just all around excellent.  But more importantly, Rajnikanth!  It’s my first Rajnikanth movie (not counting Ra.ONE, because why would you?) and I have to say, he does impress!

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Urumi: I Finally Learned the Real Name so I Can Stop Calling it a “Fwippy Sword”!

After seeing the news article yesterday about this movie maybe being re-released with Hindi dubbing, I got curious and tracked down a sort-of legal online source so I could stream it.  And I am kind of stunned that it hasn’t been dubbed already, and that I’d never heard about it before.

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My Movie To-Do List: Let Me Know If I Missed Something! And Click the Links to See What I Have Already Covered!

So, I’ve been watching Hindi movies for over a decade, but there are still a few I haven’t gotten around to, and others that I’ve seen but still haven’t written about.  And I’ve barely started on Malayalam films.  And I’ve only seen a few Tamil (Jeans, Ok Kanmani, Kandukondain Kandukondain, etc.) and Telugu (Bijjugaadi, Bahubaali, Mirchi, etc.) as well.

You have all been super nice about giving me suggestions and requests, and rather than hunting through old comments and old emails from friends whenever I need to find something to watch, I am going to put them all in one place.  And if you see something missing from my list, or a miss-spelling, or anything that should be removed/changed, or an additional note I should add to the film, just note it in a comment and I will update the list!

UPDATE: I’m working through the list, the ones I’ve already written about now have links to the related post.

UPDATE 2: If it is a Hindi film from 2016 or later, just assume that I saw it opening night and wrote a regular review and summary of it, and search the full archives of the site to find those.  Too many of those to list here!

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