Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Happy Birthday Kamal!


I've always considered myself a Rajni fan and a Kamal admirer. While the side I'm on in any Rajni vs Kamal debate must be quite obvious, there have been many times when I've fervently supported Kamal in arguments where Rajni wasn't in the picture. Kamal films occupy many slots(including the first) on my list of favorite Tamil films. And as a few commenters have pointed out, on an average, Kamal films have earned more stars than Rajni films on bbreviews.

That being said, there's has never been a list featuring Kamal on this blog. It is packed with lists of all kinds but one list that is conspicuously absent is one featuring Kamal. The reason for that is simply the overwhelming number of choices and the difficulty in comparing one vs the other. How can one compare the raw, uninhibited Chappani falling in love with Mayilu and the mature, serious Cheenu falling in love with Lakshmi?How can one choose between the heart-rending, anguished cry of Velu Naicker on seeing his son's dead body and the silent, helpless cries of Krishnaswamy when he tries to get his daughter back from the whorehouse? How can one pick between the finely-nuanced performances differentiating Michael, Madan, Raja and Kameswaran and the physically demanding performance that brought us Appu? How can one compare the transformation to a madisar-clad Avvai Shanmugi and the transformation to a withered, old freedom fighter Senapathy?

Probably the only way to make these lists is to come up with sets of criteria (best performances in the 80s, best performances with make-up, best performances in masala films, etc.) that limit the choices in each category. I'm sure I'll come up with such criteria and create some lists for Kamal. But for now, let me just wish India's best actor a very happy birthday. And thank him for his dedication to his craft and his incessant efforts to raise Tamil cinema to the next level.

Happy Birthday Kamal!

14 Comments:

At 1:22 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

BB, you are spot on!

Happy Birthday Kamal.

Ram, Kamal sir-a paathingana happy birthday sollunga. Namma ellara vida, Ram dhaan eppo india ponaalum kamal hassan-a paakarar.

SR

 
At 3:50 AM, Blogger Srivatsan Sridharan said...

Happy B'day Kamal :), let your milestones keep coming and set higher benchmarks.

Interesting that I'm yet to see comments from fellow Kamal fan Ram ;=}

 
At 5:17 AM, Blogger Karthik Sriram said...

nice write up Balaji. Its the exact thing with me too - I like Kamal's movies though I'm a rajni fan!!

LKS

 
At 8:14 AM, Blogger Vee Cee said...

While the side I'm on in any Rajni vs Kamal debate must be quite obvious...

Idha prove pannitteengaley! 'Raja' illai. 'Raju'. :-) :-) :-)

 
At 8:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My observation is that as long as Kamal does not interfere with director & just acts in the movie, the film is good & so his is acting ..
Mythili

 
At 10:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Diwali Results
ATM -- Average/Flop
Vel -- Hit
Kannamoochi - Above Average
Pandian

 
At 10:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mythili,

Name me the movies that he interfered which turned out to be bad ?

 
At 11:28 AM, Anonymous SubbuduDaasan said...

Hello Ms. Mythili:

Is there any data from you to prove that Kamal-sir's interference was the reason for few of his movies not faring well?!! Even "batcha's" who came yesterday to cinema (maybe becuase of their producer father or brother or in-laws........!!!) want the story, script and give suggestions(!). So shall we stop this blame-Kamal game - once for all!!! Thank you!

Looks like "VEL" is going to win the Diwali race with "Pollathavan" following closely!! (don't know about Machchakaran yet!) ATM is too slow and too long - though Villain Vijay tries his best to impress!!! But hey, who knows - if a total dud like Pokkiri can be a hit, why not ATM, huh?!!!! We - Tamil people accept all the "crap" thrown at us anyway!!! Right?!!!

 
At 11:37 AM, Anonymous ram said...

happy birthday velu naicker-ey!
in the midst of a terribly busy schedule, i still had to find a few minutes to post something on kamal's birthday...as many of u already know, i idolize kamal hassan out of proportion. thamizh cinema-vin mugavari + agaraadhi kamal sir!
i totally agree with u, BB...impossible to come up with one list for kamal.
but nevertheless, here's my fav kamal performances, in no particular order...i've tried to list a variety of roles just to illustrate your point...that he is indeed a true sakalakalaa vallavan:

- Avargall
- Nizhal Nijamaagiradhu (one of Kamal's super cool performances!)
- Raja Paarvai (Kamal the creator making a grand bow)
- Moondraam Pirai ("Viji...Cheenu, Viji" ena kannu...ena nadipu...)
- Salangai Oli ("this is kathak..." andha oru scene porum indha padam paarka...)
- Saagar (watch him dance to "oh maaria...")
- Punnagai Mannan (chaplin chellapa and sethu..."now stop that gibberish...number one its bad manners; number two dont talk in sinhalese, a language which i dont understand...and, a tamilian can perform all the duties of a husband, on and off the bed like any of u. so i care a shit for your opinions, sir." (look at the kinda english he's used way back in '86!)
- Nayagan (idha pathi sollarthuku oru naall poruma?!)
- Aboorva Sahodharargall
- MMKR
- Devar Magan
- Mahanadhi
- Kuruthi Punal
- Hey! Ram
- Anbe Sivam
and a lot more to come...

 
At 11:54 AM, Anonymous APALA said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, KAMAL-sir!!! The man - for whom my admiration grew so many folds that now I worship him!!!!!

Though it's impoosible to list out his bests - becuase even in his worst ones he outshines every best in the industry!!!! That's my humble opinion!

Well, for me, IN ADDITION TO RAM's LIST ABOVE:

GUNA - Agreed it has flaws but the pain of unfulfilled love never hit me so hard before - even a " Marocharitra" do not come close!

CHANAKYAN - with Jayaram playing a "mimic" artist & also Urmila Matongar's first film - developing the love story with just showing the "kolusu" of Urmila for about 15 minutes! Wow!!

16 VAYATHINILE - Aaththa adu vaLaththa, kozhi valaththa, aana, nAi vaLakkaLE........ Just wonderful!

ALAVANDAAN / ABHAY - yeah, you read it right! It was a flop maybe becuase he made BIG commerical compromises but the fact of the matter is: One twin kills for profession; one twin kills for enjoyment; One is a commando; one has escaped from a mental institute. Abhay delves deep into the double helix paradigm and into the psychology of a killer - A CEREBRAL MOVIE - as how I always FEEL and TALK about it.

List will continue.........

 
At 10:47 PM, Anonymous parthi said...

//Kamal films occupy many slots(including the first) on my list of favorite Tamil films.//

'Michael Madana Kama Rajan' is at the top of my list. What's yours?

 
At 7:30 AM, Blogger Balaji said...

vee cee, sorry, my bad :) but i immediately knew what u were referring to inspite of that cryptic comment. so still a fan :)

parthi, 'naayagan' :)

 
At 2:56 PM, Anonymous raj said...

rednu assignment innum pannalai - onnu idhu. Rendavadhu, before going on a break, oru assignment pandradha sonna gnabagam.
BB, stand up on the bench :-)

 
At 2:56 PM, Anonymous raj said...

rednu assignment innum pannalai - onnu idhu. Rendavadhu, before going on a break, oru assignment pandradha sonna gnabagam.
BB, stand up on the bench :-)

 

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