Sunday, March 17, 2019

The Film maker after names of places.




      Film directors hold their unique positions in several aspects of film making.Apart from the choice of their pet themes,suitable story line and course of narration, they reflect their singularity in the choice of titles for their films. Gautham Menon for instance, is enamoured of lengthy titles such as Vinnai Thaandi Varuvaayaa?Pachai Kili Muthu Charam and Acham Enbadhu Madmaiyada.Some of his titles also reveal his fascination for MGR's film songs. Mysskin is known for disturbing titles such as Pisaasu and Savara Kathi. In a similar manner, we have Perarasu who has named all the seven films he he has directed,after names of places.The only film that does not bear the name of a place as its title, is a Malayalam film directed by him{Samrajyam II Son of Alexander}
    Before directing his first successful film Thirupachi,Perarasu has acted in insignificant roles{as a reporter and a doctor} in films like Edhirum Pudhirum and Arasaatchi. His first film with Vijay as hero, became a great commercial hit, because of its highly energizing sequence of events,siblings' sentimental attachment,speed in narration and heart throbbing music, composed by three music directors like, Devi Sri Prasad,Mani Sharma and singer Dhina.The film had a huge cast with abundant scope for villainy exhibited by Aryan {as Paan Parag Ravi},Pasupathi{as Pattaasu Balu} and Kotta Srinivasa Rao{as Saniyan Sagada}.
    By giving distinct names to rowdies, Perarasu took the onus of narrating the story effectively, by loading its weight completely on the shoulders of Vijay, who played the role of an unflinching villager, bent upon eradicating rowdyism fouling the city of Chennai.This he does, not simply for the sake of his sister married to a city guy, but for all men and women, to breathe the fresh air of peace and happiness in the crowded metropolis.The film was a total entertainer and became a dynamic launch pad for the directorial prowess of Perarasu. The fact that Super Good Movies of R.B Chowdhri produced the film,added to its distribution value and success formula besides the victory tag of actor Vijay.
     Perarasu was fortunate to have big production houses to produce his films.Apart from R.B.Chowdhri,it was A.M.Rathnam who produced Perarasu's next film Sivakasi, another Vijay film and later on, Dharmapuri,a Vijayakanth movie.While Thirupathi starring Ajit was an AVM film,his Thiruvannamalai starring Arjun went into the hands of Pushpa Kandasamy of Kavidhalaya Production unit. Perarasu's Pazhani and Thiruthani, both  Bharath films,were produced by Sakthi Chidambaram and Chokkalingam Subburaj respectively.Though all the seven films of Perarasu were watchable in terms of their vibrant action mode, it is only the first two films with Vijay as Hero, that speak high of his directorial efficacy.
   The themes and story background of Perarasu's films are backed by rural happenings as family and social events. mixed of good and evil.If Thirupaachi was a tale of brother sister fine bonding of affection,Sivakasi unfolded the tug off war between an evil elder brother and his redeeming younger brother.The film was a cauldron of challenges between the two revolving around both funny and furious sequences. Pazhani once again focused on sister-brother equations with the younger brother struggling to reform his ruffian brother in law and bring harmony in the married life of his sister.Here too,there were challenges and smart execution of challenges.All the films of Perarasu delve into the world of social and political crimes involving M L As{Thiruvannamalai}medicos{Thiruppathi} and anti social thugs.Thiruthani is the only film where the hero dies in the hands of the police.
    The musical quality of his films belong to the moderate category because excepting the first two films which carried the mesmerizing effect of music, the rest of his films did not leave any memorable mark.While Srikanth Deva composed music for Sivakasi,Pazhani,Dharmapuri and Thiruvannamala,Bharadvaj took up music composition for Thiruppadhi and Perarasu himself took care of the music segment for Thiruthani.Perarasu is not only fond of places as titles of his films  but is also consistently dedicated to his passionate zone of sentimental melodrama and retrieval of family and society from the deeply infected evils of criminality,violence and injustice.
   Most of his films were action bonanzas with Thiruppachi and Sivakasi stealing the show.Just as his films carry the names of places as their titles,the names of the places will some how or other bring to one's memory the films of Perarasu and their level of impact on the minds of film viewers.Incidentally,there came a film bearing his own name Perarsu as its title and this action film starring Captain Vijayakanth,Prakash Raj and Sharat Babu reiterated the power of his name through elements of dynamism and force,making the the title of the film and name of the director after names of places, stay long in the memory of the audience. 
                                          ====================================



Monday, March 4, 2019

The off the track films of Bharathiraja










    Everybody knows that P.Bharathiraja is the prime film maker of rural romance,succulent with the unsurpassed quintessence of village routine.Starting from his Padhinaaru Vayadhinile he took us on a sweet journey,through the cute and crooked streets of hamlets and bigger villages,to experience the precious happenings in most villages,especially those  in southern Tamil Nadu.Films like Kizhakke Pogum Rayil,Niram Maaraadha Pookkal, Nizhalkal,Pudhiya Vaarpukal,Puthu Nellu Puthu Naathu,Alaikal Oivadhillai, Karuthammaa, Kadalora Kavidhaikal,Vedham Pudhithu,Nadodi Thenral, Mudhal Mariyaadhai,Kizhakkuch Cheemaiyile and Pasumpon would ever remain as rural masterpieces,from the sublime creative soul of this amazing film maker.
    But there is another side of this outstanding director of Tamil films.He has not hesitated to travel off the track and make action films,action thrillers and psychological thrillers for a change.At least six films stand to his credit in this regard.They are 1}Sigappu Rojaakkal 2}Tik Tik Tik 3}Oru Kaidhiyin Diary 4}Kodi Parakkudhu 5}Captain Magal and 6}Thamizh Selvan. Kamalahasan was the hero of the first three films in the list. Kodiparakkudhu was made as a special Rajinikanth action thriller. Kushbu and Raja shared the screen space in Captain Makal. Captain Vijayakanth as district collector made Thamizh Selvan a different kind of movie for the director. While Bharatiraja himself wrote the story for the first two,K.Bhagyaraj took up the onus of writing the story for Oru Kaidhiyin Diary.It was R.Selvaraj who provided the story line for Kodi Parakkuthu and Captain Makal.The film Thamizh Selvan travelled on the story of M. Rathnakumar.
   Of these six films,Sigappu Rojaakkal and Oru Kaidhiyin Diary received rave reviews on account of the classic role performance of Kamalahasan as a misogynist and psychologically perverted male in the former and as a personally victimized political follower,wreaking vengeance against the wrong doers in the latter.That too in dual roles,as the wronged father and dutiful son in police uniform in Oru Kaidhiyin Diary,Kamal created new performance records at the early stage of his acting career.While Sridevi meekly fascinated the audience in Sigappu Rojaakkal,Radha and Revadhi stole the show by their charm and smartness in Oru Kaidhiyin Diary.Both these films received repeated audience at the theatres during the years of safety of Tamil Cinema,free from the threats of Video Piracy.
  Tik Tik Tik was a suspense thriller with a kind of usual spicy additions of glamour and stunts of an action film.It was a moderate show depicting sophisticated romance and subhuman violence.It revolved around a tale of nefarious smuggling of diamonds inserted in the body of women models without their knowledge {by drugging them}and killing them after removing the diamonds from their body.It was a film of abundant glamour,contributed by the three popular actresses,viz Madhavi,Radha and Swapna.With absolute thriller effect,it brought out the fact that Bharathiraja was far above his stamped image of an exclusive rural film maker.Despite all the enticing ingredients,Tik Tik Tik did not toe the victory march of the other two Kaml films made by Bharatiraja.
    Kodi Parakkuthu was an indisputable Rajini film with his inimitable style formulations and dialogue delivery.This was once again an action thriller with Manivannan first donning the role of a horrid villain,with the powerful voice support of Bharati Raja. Murder mysteries formed the crux of the story line and Rajinikanth as a dynamic cop under the mask of a local rowdy did not fail to throw his pep and performance,potential to the utmost satisfaction of his fans. Amala's charming role play and Sujatha's pathetic profile,were the other supporting factors of this action thriller,though it failed to make a hit at the box office.The other action thriller Captain Makal which was greatly anticipated became a dampener,for want of consistent vigour in narration.
   Tamizh Selvan was in fact a decent action film,with political undertones reflecting the conflict between upright bureaucracy and the corrupt political system.Subdued narration and Vijayakanth's underplay of the role of a district collector without resorting to undue verbal blow ups,were the major positive factors of this action film blended with breezy narration.I still remember the peaceful march of all bureaucrats lining up with candles in their hands for the recovery of their collector hero,from a political attack on his life.Unlike most other Vijayakanth films,it was a slow moving course that would have left his hardcore fans high and dry.But for those who would look for a direct and realistic portrayal of events and characters,the film was undoubtedly a qualitative product.
  The intention of this article is to show how film makers at times deviate from their pet paths and travel on different tracks,just for the sake of experiencing something uncommon in their creative process,as and when they get inspired to try something diagonal,to their ideologically compatible genres of narration.In this respect,Bharathiraja has delightfully travelled off his most inspiring rural track.
                                         ===================================