Friday, August 19, 2005

Rajni and Shankar together!

Cast: Rajnikanth
Direction: Shankar
Production: AVM

Doesn’t the above sound like dream opening credits for a movie? But it looks like the dream is coming true and we will be seeing exactly those credits roll on the screens next year! AVM’s next film, after Ajith’s Tirupathi, will bring together Shankar and Rajnikanth!

Rajnikanth was earlier rumored to have been approached to play the lead role in Shankar’s Mudhalvan. But he turned it down since he thought appearing in a film where he played Chief Minister would damage his relationship with Karunanidhi.But even as I was seeing Mudhalvan, I couldn’t help thinking how amazing Rajni would have been in that role. Now its another chance for the two to cook up a blockbuster.

Let the countdown begin!

[Thanks Vijay for the pointer. What a great start to a Friday :-]


At 10:12 AM, Blogger Vee Cee said...

Interesting that you mention the Rajini/Mudhalvan trivia, because I saw Nayak (Hindi Mudhalvan) a couple of days back and Anil Kapoor's name in it was, guess what, Shivaji Rao. Intentional or coincidence????Hmm??

At 10:46 AM, Blogger bl@her said...

I feel Shankar is the most over-rated director of Kollywood. He has survived by employing good technicians. Another 100 crores down the drain, and out comes a distractingly lavish, glamoured and frustratingly romanticized film. I just hope the magic presence of Rajini would help. Also wish AVM Saravanan would have a hold on the amount of skin show and double entendres that usually go with Shankar's movies. Cheran or Bala, please somebody ram it down Shankar's throat that big money is not equal to great movie.

At 11:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

yaen balaji sir, kamal hassan padam pathiyum sify-la poatturndhaane...adhelaam paaka maatengalaa...? :-)

yeah, looks like your Friday is made...:-)

At 12:01 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

vc, interesting observation. i didnt know that!!

bladehawk, jaggubhai wasnt false news. just got dropped. this one seems true since the producer announced it. the editor mohan news was just rumor and wasnt mentioned by him or rajni or anybody else.
but u're right... nothing's sure until the poojai. can just hope its true.
and arjun did do 'mudhalvan' well. that was the rajni fan in me talking :)

anu, thanx for dropping by. been reading your comments for many of the previous posts too. good points and nicely expressed.

but have to disagree with u on shankar. i don't think a director could survive on technicians alone. if thats the case, kathir(kaadhal virus, kaadhalar dhinam, etc.) would be a top-rated director today! shankar is a good director and is a master at mixing a social message and masala. as for double entendres and skin show, i think he made the mistake only in 'boys'(and the comedy segments in 'gentleman'). but he seemed to have learned his lesson well. 'anniyan' was very clean and decent(not talking about the violence here) i thot...
but i dont think AVM Saravanan would be the right choice to put a hold on those though... remember 'sakalakalaavallavan' or any of those masala movies of the 80s?

ram, vijay link kodutha udane straightaa indha news item poi padichu post panniten. rest of sify inum padikkave illa :) paathirundha nichayam potirupen :)

At 12:52 PM, Blogger Munimma said...

Yes, interesting! exciting - not for me :-)
As to the story, it surely will be GM 4 aka Indian 3 aka anniyan 2 :-)
And Soundarya will be handling the special effects - a must in Shankar films.

The name, going by the trend, would be something like ET in Tamil ;-), local to national to global to universal, right? :-P

btw, you haven't submitted your guess for the fruit :-)

At 1:57 PM, Blogger bl@her said...

This whole write-up is my personal opinion, no offense intended for Shankar’s fans, I know he has a big following. Shankar, I feel, has good ideas for his movies, but unfortunately that doesn’t make him a great director. If he were to just narrate his stories to a normally good director, I guess the movie would turn out to be a far more universal one. Well, I have to accept that I have stopped watching Shankar's movies after “Jeans”. But I never had the motivation, will tell you why.

“Gentleman”: I was about 11 when I went for this movie. Agreed, it was not meant for children’s viewing. But now I am an adult, and I can swear that I wouldn’t call the movie a good entertainer even now. My points of contention: If you will call the subject new, it is not quite right. We have had better Robinhood stories told in Tamil. Obviously, the flashback or the motivation is different in different movies, but the purpose is the same. I feel “Naan Sigappu Manidan” is a much better movie of the same genre. In “Gentleman” the flashback happened to be based on education rather than sentiment, good, but excuse me? You dare to target this kind of a movie (what with the language, violence and crude exposure) to the school kids? Wait, you got a hit there Shankar, but you know how you managed it.

“Kadalan”: I don’t even want to talk about this movie. The Vadivelu jokes, the worm-eating “will-do-anything-for-love” scenes and the utterly stupid dialogues (I actually wanted to download the whole script of the movie, would have been good fun to read it when one is down) I say the movie was what it was (a hit) because of the songs and the hero (both the newcomers A.R.Rahman and Prabhudeva were hyped big time at this time if our memory would go till then) Any takers?

“Indian”: How many Kamal Hasan movies are the director’s movies? If you ask me as to who should be applauded for Nayakan, either Maniratnam or Kamal, I would immediately say it is the latter. For he is just there, every frame, every scene, demeaning the presence of versatile actors like Jankaraj and Saranya. Nothing wrong, but it’s his film, you have to believe that. Indian is a good concept, yes, but it’s an out and out Kamal movie, and of course I could see Shankar in the character sketches of Urmila, Senthil etc.

“Jeans”: This is a ridiculous movie. Just a double Aishwarya Rai treat, if anybody can see the positive side of it.

“Mudalvan”: Concept-good (a text-book ruler’s story); performances- great (Arjun fitted the role to the T) songs- superb (Azhagana ratchasiye); technology- incredible (the traffic jam scene & the unwanted Mudalvane song). With technicians and artists doing more than half of the job, can we term him as a good casting coordinator or a period director? I personally feel the movie is totally romanticized, but it appears like that is what is wanted by the crowd, so I am not even bringing that point in contention. Did anybody wonder why the same movie when taken by the same director with Anil Kapoor was a major flop? Am I hearing you right? Did somebody miss Arjun’s underplayed performance?

“Boys”: No comments…

“Anniyan”: I am a great fan of Vikram’s but it never had any enthu to watch this flick. The whole look of his, the sets, the dresses… I stand out of the crowd. Any day, I would prefer a simple movie like “Vetri kodi kattu” to convey a profound message… That said, like Balaji pointed out, he is far better a director when compared to Kaadal series Kathir, but that is not fair comparison. I am on the platform of him being considered as one of the best directors of India!! I disagree.

At 2:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

anu, most overrated?! I don't know if I agree or disagree.

Agree: Shankar isn't all that, nor is Mani Ratnam. I like certain aspects of both.
+ Shankar's attempts at grandeur pale in comparison to Hollywood, but you have to put it in the perspective of his environment. Thumbs-up.
+ Even in the middle of his fantasies, he manages to get in some down-to-earth, no-nonsense sequences (in a way Mani Ratnam never has)
- His handling is inconsistent. You can tell he is trying to mix in senti w/ comedy w/ action w/ "crowd pullers", but the problem is he doesn't mix it well.
- He gets great reviews for his song picturization, but with a few exceptions, I am never impressed (unlike Mani Ratnam, whose song picturization I usually love)

Disagree: Shanker (and Mani) are better than 99% of the directors we have. There are a lot of one/two-hit wonders. Very few sustain beyond that.

Personally, I like Cheran the best. His movies are rarely trivial, he doesn't overload on senti that makes me puke, and his movies have been different. And unlike Mani and Shankar, he doesn't look to Hollywood for inspiration.

But ... we need a Cheran, we need a Shankar, we need a Mani Ratnam. What we don't need is the other 99% morons :-)

At 7:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hero: Superstar
Story, Screenplay and Direction: Shankar
Producer: AVM
Music: AR Rehman
Cinematographer: Ravi Verman (Rajni's matrix-style but 3-D fight??)
Stunts: Peter Hein
Choreographer: Prabhu Deva (innoru Rakkamma?)
Villain: Prakash Raj
Heroine: Asin
Comedian: Vivek
Dialogues: Sujatha
Lyrics: Vairamuthu (ONLY)
Graphics: Soundarya Rajnikanth..
Costumes: Latha Rajinikanth
Singers: SPB (For Rajni) and Chinmayee, Sujatha, Shalini and Madhushree
Editor: VT Vijayan
Art Direction: Sabu Cyril
Item Number: Aishwarya Rai

Idhu eppadi irukku? (Balaji and other Rajni fans: Soooooper!!)

At 9:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

anu if only u were anywhere in chennai i wld come st and give u the biggest bear hug ever:)
bingo on shankar,except u forgot to mention jeeva's camera as a plus:)
i have had the ( mis) fortune to meet him in person and u cldnt possibly see a worse soplangi and asamanjam rolled into one:(
just that he gets a gd team going and stands there like a zombie watching them work:)
bj anu cldnt hv been more rt...
ilata krishna street la appadi oru periya veedu (surya's neighbor) kattiruka mudiyuma..sheer suzhi...
wrong man at rt place rt time
..ellaam avaroda nalla vaeLai:)))))

At 9:53 AM, Blogger bl@her said...

Prakash, now the Maniratnam-Shankar comparison can go a very long way. But let us not get into all that. :-) It is Rajini's next and probably last flick (please don't hit me, I heard gossips like that), so lets look forward to it.
Rekhs, I unfortunately am stuck in Amherst, otherwise, I would have loved to meet a person who thinks in the same wavlength too...

At 1:52 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

anu, i've always thot its the screenplay that is the key to a movie rather than the story and shankar is terrific at screenplay. thats why 'gentleman' was entertaining inspite of earlier robinhood stories.
i didnt like those things in 'kadhalan' either(its probably my least fav shankar movie) but again, the screenplay was good and the movie never lagged. and we've had enuf movies flop inspite of having Prabhu Deva as hero and good music to prove that those 2 aint enuf.
i think 'nayagan' was a manirathnam movie and 'indian' was a shankar movie. kamal may have been in every frame but thats cos shankar fashioned the screenplay that way.
'jeans' was a light-hearted fantasy. seen in that light, it was enjoyable(and again, had good screenplay)
mudhalvan - the good concept was shankar's right? and a good movie does not come from merely bringing good technicians together. it comes from using them in the right way.
boys - no comments from me either :)
anniyan - weak on story or logic but strong on screenplay.

shankar is a showman pure and simple. he likes things on a big scale. he makes entertainers. so can't compare him to cheran or bala.
and since u talk about 'vettrikkodi kattu', that was cheran trying to be more 'entertaining' too. with the woman dancing in a vulgar dress and the cheap vadivelu comedy... i'd take an 'indian' over that any day...

nattamai, i hate his earlier comedies too. but directors need time to understand their strengths. even manirathnam had some horrible comedy in 'agni natchathiram' and 'idhayathai thirudaathey'. but he understood comedy was not his forte and stayed away from it. similarly, shankar seems to have learned his lesson and 'anniyan' had great comedy that went along with the movie and wasnt cheap or vulgar.

sure he is a masala director. but he's a great masala director. thats all i'm saying :) i love those directors u've mentioned. but i love shankar and dharani too.

At 10:11 PM, Blogger bl@her said...


At 9:40 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As someone had said in this thread...we need a Maniratnam, a Cheran or a Shankar but it is the many other cheap directors whose only intention is making commercial money making movies, is what tamil film doesn't need.

Maniratnam is definitely one of the very best, I would go to that extent in judging him as a good director with his movies like Nayagan & Mouna Raagam.

Shankar though I agree is spending a fortune is atleast trying to throw light on some of the many atrocities which is happening in real life. I wouldn't rate him as the best definitely but definitely is not the worst and has managed to give huge hits more than once.

I have begun to admire Cheran a lot more after I saw his latest melodrama "Thavamaai Thavamirundhu". It was an amazing movie, the impact of which I feel even 1 day after coming out of the theatre.

These directors make an impact on the viewers in their own different ways but everyone will agree that they are definitely making an impact. But it the other directors, Paerarasu for example who makes film goers sick with his commercial ventures. Sorry if there are anyone who loves the kind of movie which Paerarasu makes but am just taking his case as an example. His movie sucks bigtime. The dialogues and movie as it is, is so cheap and is blatantly aimed at making money. Stop such directors from making such disgusting films and the tamil film industry will improve by leaps and bounds.

This is my first visit to this Blog and find it to be really good. Goodwork Balaji

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