Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Vote for Taj Mahal - A R Rehman

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Director Jeeva passes away

Popular Tamil director Jeeva died of a heart attack in Moscow , Russia , yesterday, June 25. He was 44.

He had gone to Russia for the shooting of his new film, Dham Dhoom.

Jeeva started off as a camera assistant and later, become a cinematographer. He worked with Tamil director Shankar in films like Gentleman, Kadhalan and Indian. He has also worked in Hindi films like Hulchul, Baghban and Hera Pheri.

Jeeva turned director with 12B and Ullam Ketkume. His recent release Unnale Unnale was a hit.

His body is expected to be brought back to Chennai on June 27 for the final rites, the sources said.

He is survived by his wife and two daughters.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Sivaji Review


Even before the release of the movie, its subject is known to all. True to the pre-release leak, Software engineer and NRI Sivaji (Rajnikanth) comes from the US with about Rs. 200 crores – for setting up a No-donation university and a free hospital for the poor. Sanction of government permits to Sivaji's target is made difficult by his opponents. Soon, Sivaji finds that bribe is the most common malady in government offices. Later, he comes out with a personal detection. India with its Rs 20,00,000 crores of black money is not a poor country. His action plan is clear: To get the details of hoarding black money by the government officials and Ministers and then blackmailing them to have his share, which he would utilize only for the good. Adiseshu (Suman), an influential but commercialized educationist always tries his level best to kill Sivaji. The war between the two heats up and the result is the murder of Sivaji. But a friend of Sivaji (Rajnikanth) comes from the US and takes over Sivaji's charity foundation, besides forcing fatal vengeance on Adiseshu. He also continues his battle against black money. Is he the Sivaji himself in disguise? Naturally, yes.

Artistes Performance

Rajnikanth has given wonderful performance with different getups. Maximum is extracted from the superstar in the dance division. His mannerisms – taking chewing gum into his mouth (the piece so thrown would hit his palm and jumps into his mouth) – is a good watch. The same mannerism is repeated in different types. His getups, particularly as a white and NTR, are done carefully. The climax getup with tonsured head and stylish beard comes as a surprise. His dialogues and contribution of comedy are a major plus point. In short, Rajnikanth shoulders the entire weight of the film.

Shriya looks charming as usual. However, she didn't get any special chance to perform, except for song and dance. The long absence of Shriya from Tollywood due to providing of bulk dates to director Shankar has led to a surmise that she would have been given an important role, which is not here.

Suman played the main villain. Sporting white dhoti and khaddar shirt, he is shown as the representative of those who find education a lucrative business.

Vivek played the friend of Rajni. His comical performance is routine. There is not much scope for Vivek to do the comedy, as Rajni himself handled it.

Manivannan and Vadivukkarasi played the parents to Rajni. The episodes in which they seek alliance for their son are interesting.

Raghuvaran did the role of a heart specialist, who has no direct link with the main story.

Nayantara appears in an item song (first song). Her dance is a good watch with lot of hip shakes.

Technical Values

Story of the film is not only an NRI tryst with education sharks, but also an attack against the black money in India. The story seems to treading the path of a Tagore, when the hero gets to investigation on the bank account and audit details. The subject (or say the message) is not dealt completely, but in bits and pieces. The movie has not reached the expectations of the audience when they look at the overall output of Rajni-Shankar combination. That too for the first time!

Screenplay is good. Comedy scene followed by a serious scene seemed the set formulae. The first half runs smoothly and the second half runs on a slow note, but for Rajni's part.

There is mixed response to the songs and music by AR Rehman. All the songs are dream songs, each showing Rajni in a new getup. The first song with more than 2000 junior artistes in the backdrop is shot richly. Rajni's steps as NTR, Chiranjeevi and ANR are a good watch.

Comedy is all right. Except for Rajni and Vivek combine comedy, there is very little or nothing special in this department.

Dialogues are a highlight in the film. Rajni's mannerism – Cool – said repeatedly is trendy. A couple of one-liners – "Pandulu gumpugaa vasthayi, kaani Simham okkate vasthundi." (Pigs come in groups, but Lion strikes singly) and "Manam eppudu chasthamo theliste ika jeevitham narakam" (When we come to know when we will die, life becomes a hell) – are good.

Shankar's direction is known for grandeur in all segments. Picturisation of songs, costumes and locations are rich.

Stunts are done with overdose of graphics. The chase and dash sequence with cars is good, but turns monotonous and unconvincing. Similarly, the climax fight is visualized in a good manner. As the hero and villain fight, the currency notes are spilled all over (signifying the hero's victory over black money). This sequence too is shot at length, which has lost the punch.

Graphic work deserves a mention. Much of this element is limited to aerobics of Rajnikanth in the air when he fights out the baddies. There are two interesting visuals: Blacktopping of roads before Rajni as he walks; and the setting of educational institution as the students walk on the campus.

Generally, there will be lot of importance to sentiment in almost all Rajnikanth's movies. Here, Shankar seems to have completely ignored this commercial element. The horoscope sentiment and its curious turn are conceived in poor taste.

Cinematography is excellent. Production values of AVM are tremendous.

Final Verdict :

The movie is opened to terrific collections. The lone strength of the movie is superstar Rajnikanth. Hence, its success rate is open for a debate.

Sivaji First Talk

Movie is awesome......excellent movie.....dead shot hit.........the 1st one hour of the muve is slow .....interval bang is awesome which is a big treat for rajni fans ....interval block (peeri shona vundane summa adaradhilla)......2 nd half full ultimate......climax 30min is the highlite where the movie goes to a high peak.....there is a big twist in is 100 times better than CM commercially...;........interval block resembles similar to TAGORE (chiranjeevi's muvie)..........SUPERSTAR comes with an industry hit after 3 years.........last but not the is all abt an NRI who teaches a lesson for all who dont pay tax .......THE MAIN PART OF THE MUVIE IS ALL ABT A MEDICAL COLLEGE REVENGE,......MUVIE IS A HIT....

This is what a fan from Abu-Dhabi who saw the movie has to say about Sivaji.

Come back for Sivaji Review tomorrow.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Niluvave remix in Lakshyam

ANR’s song ‘Niluvave Valu Kanuladaana’ (Illarikam) is being remixed and shot for Gopichand’s forthcoming film ‘Lakshyam’. Mani Sharma composes music. This song is shot on Gopichand and Anushka. Srivas is making his debut as director. Nallamalupu Bujji produces this film. Audio of Lakshyam is expected to release on 10 June. Lakshyam film will release either in the last week of June or in the first week of July.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Sivaji Vs Dasavataram

Directed by Shankar and produced on the banner of AVM Productions with Rajanikanth and Shriya in the lead, 'Sivaji' is termed to be a prestigious film on that banner.

There was a big talk that the film was made with the highest-ever budget of Rs 70 crores and would create a record in the south Indian film industry.

However, it is reliably learnt that 'Dasavataram' of Kamal Hasan is also being made with similar budget of Rs 70 crores.

According to the producer of 'Dasavataram' Oscar Ravichandran, they had already spent Rs 55 crores on the film and it needs another Rs 15 crores to complete the movie.

It is well aware that Kamal Hassan was portraying 10 different roles in the flick and one among them is the US President.

Another speciality of the film is that the technical crew that worked for 'Titanic' is working for this movie.

Okkamagadu - song in progress

YVS Chowdary's directoral and production venture Okka Magadu with Balakrishna in the lead is going on at full pace. The unit was in Rajamundry for about 20 days in April shooting at a huge house set constructed there. Next schedule started on 24th May and is continuing now. 3 action episodes, 6 songs were completed already. At present, 7th song is in progress. Tara is choreographing the song on NBK and Simran. Here are some highlights about the songs that were filmed so far.
• three choreographers (Rajasekhar, Pradeep, Anotny, Ashok Raj) worked on Balakrishna's solo song. Most part of the song was filmed in Rayalaseema and the patch work for this song was done at Samshabad.
• Pradeep choreographed a song on Balakrishna and Anushka in a set erected in Hyd
• One song on Balakrishna and Anushka was choreographed by Brinda in Australia
• 2 songs were filmed on Balakrishna and Nisha Kotari - one by Rajasekhar and the other by Brinda
• One song was filmed on Balakrishna, Nisha Kotari, Anushka by Ashok Raj in Saradhi Studios.

Also, one NTR song is remixed with modern orchestrization. Final schedule is planned in July which will go on in Hyderabad. Ashutosh Rana, Kota Srinivasa Rao, Ravi Kale, Subbaraju, Saleem Panda, Raghu Babu, Laxmipati, Krishna Bhagawan, Sivaji Raja, Chinna, Hariprasad are in the cast along with Balakrishna, Nisha Kotari, Simran, and Anushka. Mani Sharma composed music and Madhu Naidu is handling the camera.

NTR to build temple to his grandfather

May 28 is the birth anniversary of Viswa Vikhyata Nata Sarvabhouma, Nata Ratna, Padma Shri, Dr Nandamuri Taraka Ramarao. On that day, not only all his family members but also his fans worldwide pay rich tributes to him.

Though everyone remembers him in various ways, it was not just the case with his grandson NT Ramarao Junior. He not only bequeathed his attire, but also continuing his legacy in the filmdom.

He showed his love, affection and devotion towards his grandfather in a different way and in his own style. He bathed the idols of his grandfather NT Ramarao and also his grandmother Basava Rama Tarakam at NTR's birthplace Nimmakuru.

He lauded his grandfather in many ways and informed the visiting film journalists that he would construct a temple for his grandfather. Besides NTR, Gudivada MLA Kodali Nani, Sukumar and others participated in the meeting.

Lakshyam audio by the end of this week

Nallamalupu Bujji is making Lakshyam for Lakshminarasimha Productions in the direction of Sri Vaas. Gopichand, Anushka, Kalyani are doing lead roles in the film. The unit of Lakshyam met the press today at Ramanaidu studios.

Hero Gopichand thanked Bujji for entrusting such a good story for him. 'Sri Vaas is a very good director. He knows exactly what he wants. I got totally involved in this project after hearing the first half of the script. Also, Suresh Babu being a part of the project gave me full confidence that it would be a perfect film. There is always a positive feeling right from the beginning of this film. And I am sure that this film has the best music among my films so far released', said Gopichand.

Raghu Babu who is playing a key role in the film commented that he noticed a spark in Sri Vaas during the time of Murari when Sri Vaas was working as assistant to Krishnavamsi. Heroine Anushka also expressed her confidence in the film. 'This is not a running around the trees role.. but has good scope for performance', said Anushka. Suresh Babu said that though he was not really into listening to this script, he got totally impressed during the narration.

Audio of the film will be released soon, probably towards the end of this week.

AbhiAish at Roland Garros - The 2007 French Open

Before leaving for IIFA, yesterday Abhishek, Aishwarya & BIG B himself were present at Roland Garros - The 2007 French Open Tennis Tournament for the match between World # 1 Roger Federer and Tommy Robredo. As per sources Aishwraya Rai who is the brand ambassador of Longines - Swiss Watchmakers (official time keeper for French Open) has invited them for this event.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

BCCI shortlists John Emburey for coach

John Emburey has joined the race for India's new cricket coach. The Board of Control for Cricket in India invited the former England spinner for discussions in Chennai on June 9.

The BCCI had, on Monday night, said South Africa's Graham Ford and another foreigner would be invited to make presentations for the post left vacant by Greg Chappell after the World Cup.

"The Board of Control for Cricket in India has invited Mr Graham Ford and Mr John Emburey to come to Chennai and make a presentation to the Special Committee on 09th June after which a final decision on the next coach of Indian team will be made," a BCCI statement on Tuesday evening said.

Emburey, who was Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1984, holds the dubious distinction of being the highest England Test run-scorer (1713 runs) without a Test century. He claimed 147 Test wickets in 64 Tests, at an average of 38.4. After his playing career he coached Northamptonshire and Middlesex.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Sholey : Then And Now

The question that everyone is asking is - Will Amitabh Bachchan be able to give Gabbar a new lease of life in Ram Gopal Varma’s Sholay?

The chief of bandits in the new version is an underworld don and has lost his original crassness for a sauve though scar-faced sinister self.

Meanwhile, trying to fit into the Amitabh’s big shoes of the strong and silent Jai is newcomer Prashant Raj, another brooding baritoned tall order.

A charmer, a comic and a big flirt, that pretty much defined the original Veeru. And Ram Gopal Varma has roped in the very intense Ajay Devgan to reprise Veeru, an unlikely choice.

The new Veeru like the old one too loves his drink, still has a roving eye and is trying to get up, close and personal with Basanti who in the new version is Ghungroo, played by Nisha Kothari.

If Basanti has become Ghunghroo, then her trusted horse, Dhanno has become an autorickshaw named Laila. But the street smart, Rajnikanth-emulating Ghunghroo, clearly lacks the innocence of Basanti..

However, Ghunghroo has something that Basanti didn't have - Durga for a friend. Durga, is to Ram Gopal Varma what Radha was to Ramesh Sippy (director of the original Sholay). The mute-Radha always clad in white was played by Jaya Bachchan and Durga is played by Sushmita Sen.

And finally there's the Thakur. Inspector Baldev Singh now returns as Inspector Narsimha played by Mohanlal.

Ram Gopal Varma’s Sholay might be set in present day Mumbai but it's characters are a remix of the unforgettable characters from the 1975 classic. But then, it's the story, which matters the most, and as every Sholay fan knows - Is Story Mein Emotion Hai, Drama Hai, Tragedy Hai (This story has emotion, drama and even tragedy).

Friday, June 1, 2007

'AMAV' continues to top the Box Office

Venkatesh's winning streak continues this week with "Aduvari Matalaku Arthale Verule" topping the list again.

The top five Telugu films this week are:

1. "Aduvari Matalaku Arthale Verule" - Though this comedy looks like an unlikely creation for Sri Raghavan, it promises a busy season for the serious filmmaker.

2. "Aata" - The great chemistry between Siddharth and Illeana keeps the film going strong at the box office. Producer M.S. Raju and director V.N. Aditya break their jinx with a moderate hit.

3. "Munna" - After a good opening, the film may be sliding a bit at the box office. But Prabhas' looks, Ileana's oomph, lilting music and slick action stand "Munna" in good stead.

4. "Dhee" - Director Srinu Vytla's strength lies in lacing his stories with laughs. The formula clicks once again with the film bringing Vishnuvardhan back into the reckoning.

5. "Bhookailash" - Comedian Venu Madhav plays the main lead in this tale, which is about a farmer who becomes a millionaire overnight due to a real-estate boom.

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