Tamil Features

Top Stories Of The Week: World Actors’ Day; Aishwarya Rajesh On Her Bollywood Debut & Many More

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Over two week’s since its release, Vijay Deverakonda’s Arjun Reddy continues to make waves at the theatres and social media. From writing reviews to character analysis of the lead hero and his troubles, it appears that the hype around the Telugu film might take a while to die down.

Arjun Reddy props the hero up to be a brilliant surgeon; brilliant and flawed; brilliant and perpetually angry; brilliant and a misogynist prick. But why does the audience feel sympathetic for a broken man like him?

Read here: Arjun Reddy – In Love With The Idea Of Being In Love

And while misogynistic heroes continue to rule the screens, a play written in the 60s stays relevant even today. Written by Vijay Tendulkar in 1963, Khamosh, Adalat Jaari Hain – a cine-play available on Hotstar – deals with a woman’s sexuality, her choice to have a child, her getting pigeonholed into roles, and her moral character are discussed, judged, questioned, imposed and politicised by the society.

Read here: The review of Khamosh, Adalat Jaari Hain

Kollywood actress Aishwarya Rajesh made her debut in Bollywood with Daddy this week. In a quick interview with us, she talks about how Daddy has been a huge learning curve for her considering her unconventional debut, and equally unusual choices in films.

Read the interview here: “Pointless To Work In Projects That Will Not Make An Impact”

Incidentally, last Friday also happened to World Actors’ Day.

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We discover that, like in Jigarthanda, acting or drama schools are intensive, emotionally-draining, and often time-consuming, owing to the fact that acting, as easy as it looks, cannot be learnt in a few days. Or months. 

We find out more from Aadhira, who runs Naveena Koothupattarai in Valasarvakkam, and Jayarao’s Theatre Lab.

Read here: Schools That Have Embraced Acting As A Way of Life

And with acting and actors, come star kids. While the debate on nepotism rages on, a hoard of star kids are ready to make their debut soon. Right from catching a glimpse of them as little children through tabloid photographs, to them becoming the millennial’s Instagram icons, we take a look at five upcoming star kids slated for their on-screen debuts.

Read here: Hoard Of Star Kids Ready To Make Their Debut – Did Anyone Say Nepotism?

Speaking of stars, ever wondered what comprises a star vehicle? 

Star vehicles are called so for a reason — they are vehicles to showcase the star’s prowess, and cater to his ‘fans’, a demographic about which little is known, other than that this legion of people can go to any extent to ensure its ‘star’ does well.

Over the years, we’ve seen many star vehicles fall by the wayside, let down by poor scripts, bad production values, more focus on the ‘moments’ than the journey of the characters, and overly-hyped up drama and star introduction scenes. But, how many of them have succeeded at the box office?

Read here: Here’s Why Star Vehicles Don’t Make Creative Or Economic Sense

At a recent event, writer-turned-filmmaker Raju Murugan said that film audiences will not accept films that portray the transgender community in an insensitive manner. But, despite the rich tradition and folklore surrounding the third gender, Tamil Nadu and Tamil films continue to depict the transgender community disrespectfully. 

Not only do they evoke laughter, the characters are one-dimensional and are more often than not, portrayed as evil beings – be it Vikram in Iru Mugan, Prakash Raj in Appu or Ojas Rajani in I.

Read here: LGBT Characters In Tamil Cinema – It’s High Time The Community is Given Its Due

And with FEFSI strike raging on, over continued disagreements with the Tamil Nadu Film Producers Council (TFPC), we take a look at the union and its inception.

Read here: All That You Need To Know About FEFSI Union

Reviews:

The week saw four releases – Daddy, Nerrupuda, Kathanayagan, and One Heart – The AR Rahman Concert Film.

Daddy, starring Arjun Rampal, Aishwarya Rajesh, and Farhan Akhtar, is about Arun Gawli, Mumbai’s dreaded gangster. Unfortunately, Ashim Ahluwalia’s film makes Gawli a far less interesting figure in this stylishly made film.

Daddy Review: Plenty Of Style In This Tamed Version Of A Dreaded Gangster

Neruppu Da, about a group of firefighters led by Vikram Prabhu, is all about self-sacrifice, friendship and saving lives. With a title like Neruppu Da, the onus is on the film’s director and his team to make sure that the film lives up to its title. 

Nerrupu Da Review: This Story Of Firefighters Fails To Ignite Any Thrill

Kathanayagan, starring Vishnu Vishal and Catherine Tresa, is about how a man rises to the occasion and becomes a hero. A hero could have well been about questioning long-held beliefs and convictions, and societal wrongs, but Vishal chooses to turn it into winning a drunken brawl with rivals, and flooring a dozen villains at once.

Kathanayagan Review: How Not To Make A Hero 101

The real winner this week is perhaps the docu-film on AR Rahman and his concerts. No major plot or narrative arc, no villains and heroes, no henchmen, no evil corporation, no heroines (unless one counts the amazing musicians – Annette Philip, Mohini Dey, Ann Marie). But the audience was hooked. Whistles, whoops, screams, and singing along.

One Heart – The AR Rahman Concert Film: Music, Rhythm And Some Sorcery In A Playlist

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