Under the sun

Thursday, December 27, 2007

nakkal nayyANdi virumANdi

23 Comments:

  • Aaaha.....Super thalaivaaa...:)
    Kamal's analysis of "kalacharam" is ultimate nakkals.........His handling of the whole "Sandiyar" issue increased my admiration for him manyfolds....

    By Blogger mutRupuLLi, at Thu Dec 27, 04:57:00 PM  

  • Thalaivar the real "thaaru maaru"...

    By Anonymous Thilak, at Thu Dec 27, 08:55:00 PM  

  • Beautiful !

    avvaiyaar :lol:

    Did not counter Krishnaswamy's point at all, but managed to make him look silly.

    Sandiyar would have been such a lovely title for this film.

    Look at him feeling the words as he sings "eththanai thazumb (i)rukku"

    steadycam strapped on to sorimuththu is ultimate !

    Was the aruva' fling a rehearsal shot. Or was this the one, which was later mized into the scene using CG ?
    I ask because,the one we finally see in the movie is a real close shave throw.

    btw who are kaLebarargaL ?

    By Anonymous msp, at Fri Dec 28, 04:54:00 AM  

  • Ahaa ... idha appavey release pannaliya ?

    BTW, does anyone know if he was asked about 'Life of David Gale' being an inspiration and if so, his response to it ?

    By Blogger BNB, at Sat Dec 29, 05:41:00 PM  

  • Sridhar/Thilak,
    Yes.. ivvalavu naal miss eppadi aachu nu therila!

    msp,
    Did not counter-a? yen appadi solreenga?
    ella point-ayum kizhichaare. Glorifying "thug/aruvaa kalaacharam", glorifying Thevar community, matrum idhara kalachaara kutrachaattugal...

    I think the aruvaa shot is a rehearsal.

    btw who are kaLebarargaL
    Same kostin for me also.
    nIngaLE kEkkarIngaLA? appo nAnga ellAm? :)

    BNB,
    andha kelviya enakku therinju endha interview-layum kekkala. In fact, avara nerla paatha naan kekkara modhal kelviye avar "inspirations" pathi dhaan!

    By Blogger Bala (Karthik), at Sun Dec 30, 12:31:00 PM  

  • Bala, msp...
    Check this Wiki link for info on Kalapirargal....Their age is assumed to be the dark age of Tamil Nadu...
    "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kalabhras"

    By Blogger mutRupuLLi, at Mon Dec 31, 10:51:00 AM  

  • //Did not counter-a? yen appadi solreenga? ella point-ayum kizhichaare. Glorifying "thug/aruvaa kalaacharam", glorifying Thevar community, matrum idhara kalachaara kutrachaattugal...//

    Krishnaswamy's accusations were about how the end-product would be used. "pOtri Paatadi" has become a veritable anthem for caste-fanatics and "therku thisai aanda" reinforces a widely peddled falsehood. Krishnaswamy said that the word Sandiyar would also be taken as a self-complimentary term !

    Just to be clear:
    1)I personally don't think the artist is answerable to anyone.
    2) I simply love the title Sandiyar. It defies translation and defines Virumaandi so beautifully.
    3) And of course, ike every other person aged two and above I know Krishnaswamy was just after the publicity.

    mutruppulli, thanks for the link.

    By Anonymous msp, at Tue Jan 01, 09:56:00 PM  

  • Without getting into the origin of kaLebarargaL, I think we can safely presume that that's where we got the expression 'kaLebara paduththaradhu' from. Or, is it the other way round?

    By Blogger Zero, at Wed Jan 02, 05:48:00 PM  

  • I am not trying to play spoilsport here, but let me put in a few points so that we may have a look at Films as creative art products and their impact on the masses.

    When Thevar Magan was released in 1992, I could see a visible cockiness in a few of my class colleagues (11th standard in a Chennai school). Hitherto I had only known them as x, y or z , talked to their families and was having no idea as to what their caste is, like many others in Chennai - we have a dont ask dont tell dictum unless you happen to be a Iyer or Iyengaar, then you are marked out for eating Veg only during lunch. After thevar magan, those few students started calling themselves XThevar and Y Thevar and started singing their "Kulapperumai" song from Thevar Magan. They would have a foot long ruler in the back of their shirt and whip it out with some swear words. No doubt all these are childish acts of immature minds, however one can visualize the impact of this on rural TN going by this. Previously there was only one movie called "Vedham Pudhidhu" that had broken the "Kulap perumai" with "Thevar ngaradhu neenga padichu vaangina pattama?" however with this movie, Kamal IMO had unknowingly paved way for the demon to come out in open. I guess Dr.Krishnaswamy opposed to the movie title "Sandiyar" for the above reasons and I dont entirely believe he was out of line in asking Kamal to change the title. But he soon overstepped when he threatened to use violence and arson as the means. The Flip side to this entire episode is the fact that the through Thevar Magan, Kamal wanted to ridicule and admonish the "Kulapperumai" way of life, i.e., Aruvaa thaangi kalaachaaram, but our society's hypocrisy was too good for Kamal or any other well meaning individual. The better option for creators is to focus still on "fictional" things waiting for the caste fissures to join.

    By Blogger V.P.Jaiganesh, at Wed Jan 02, 08:30:00 PM  

  • Dig:

    Hi Jai.Hope things are fine at your end.Where were you all these days,not to be seen at the 'Hub'&no updates in your blog too.

    End dig.

    By Blogger Cinefan, at Mon Jan 07, 03:57:00 PM  

  • That's an excellent illustration by VP Jaiganesh. This is after all Tamil Nadu where 100 years after a Bharatiyar lived, caste clashes do erupt. So it's not just your conviction but how you express it that matters more.

    It's a lot like writing foolproof software : no matter how smart you code, there will always be an idiot who feeds ridiculous input to the program and crashes it. Therefore, begin with the idiot in mind :-)

    A movie like Thevar Magan which highlights the gore of hatred will still widen the caste-schism in certain areas and people groups. The message still won't sink in - I would prefer the positive message movies like Kaadhal which highlights the beauty of an intercaste marriage :-)

    By Blogger The Talkative Man, at Tue Jan 08, 02:58:00 AM  

  • Agree with jaiganesh here. I have also gone through this with some of my friends. They took it as amovie that glorified them.

    But I really don't understand why krishnasamy hated the title sandiyaar. IMO, virumaandi was more direct than that title. His remarks on kamal and his cinema were too childish. Had this come from someone who is working for the abolition of caste and all, we would have atleast listened to it. But here it comes from a person who literally *trades* with caste.

    But I was really happy with the way kamal responded. Had he tried to be lot more diplomatic, he would have overstepped. Inniakku avar enga irukkaarnnae therla.
    Kamal's one liners during that time were very famous. IN a press meet, he said "enakku evvalavu arasiyal theriyumoe, avvalavu thaan avarukku cinema pathi theriyum"

    Now, no politician will question kamal. His guts and the way he deals with these kind of guys just increases the admiration towards him. Quite ruthless and at the same time quite sensible.

    The line "Sattai podurathu vella kaaran kathu koduthathu" is a neat dig at krishnasaaamy who doesnt wear vesti and all and yet speaks on tamil culture etc !

    But, we loved Devar Magan a lot. PERIOD. If it failed to deliver the intended message to the audience, then it is a shame on the receiver.

    But apparently they tried to stop the screening of "BHarathi kannamma" ! don't know why ! They even whistle fora movie like paruthiveeran which has a soft dig on them.

    But filmmakers till now have compromised for caste values right from bharathi raja days. I like Bharathi kannama (the film) in this category)

    By Anonymous selvakumar, at Tue Jan 08, 12:11:00 PM  

  • and adding on to that,
    I am forwarding this video to my friends whom bala knows very well :) :) :)

    By Anonymous selvakumar, at Tue Jan 08, 12:13:00 PM  

  • Super find!! 'Summa'-LOL!! Abirami-where did she disappear?

    By Blogger Me too, at Wed Jan 09, 05:23:00 AM  

  • bale! pinni pedal eduthutaar aandavar.. I just love the way he suddenly goes deep into history to pluck out some event no one's ever heard about.

    By Anonymous scudie, at Sat Jan 12, 04:10:00 PM  

  • All,
    Sorry for the delayed "approval"(! periya vaarthai!) and respone.

    Jaiganesh/Selva,
    I would like to know your opinion/interpretation on/of "Potri padadi Ponne" - the lyrics and the song itself.

    What do you think is the difference between Sakthivel Thevar saying "avanga Andhra la Raju nu oru caste. mmm.. namma Thevar ku nigaraana..."
    and the lyrics, picturization and placement of the song?

    By Blogger Bala (Karthik), at Mon Jan 14, 09:10:00 PM  

  • Aparna,
    Vaazhthukkal * 3 (pudhu varavu, puthaandu and pongal)

    Scudie,
    Avar interviews ellam DVD-a podanum nu Raajkamal ku valiyurutha poren! :)

    By Blogger Bala (Karthik), at Mon Jan 14, 09:12:00 PM  

  • Bala,
    Let me be frank!
    Q1: I would like to know your opinion/interpretation on/of "Potri padadi Ponne" - the lyrics and the song itself.

    When I first listened to the song, I felt Raja has responded to Rahman's "chinna chinna aasai". Secondly when I saw the movie, the song simply rocked. I used to sing the whole song by heart!! I had an idea of that song as it originates from Thevarattam mentioned in "Ponniyin Selvan". Essentially a tribal song to glorify the head and culture of the warrior caste. nice lyrics and excellent rendition by Mano and chorus. Raja as usual had breathed his magic into the composition and PC simply had shot it beautiful. I didn't find it any objectionable. However you should always note that I am not from the downtrodden section.
    The words of Sakthi when he tries to legitimise the inter caste affair seems like a practical detour of words by a love lorn boy to get his affair approved by elders at any cost - even kicking his own personal beliefs and thoughts on the subject. That is what love for a woman makes some men do. However if you wanna dwell on it for a while as people like us having blogs always do, it establishes a basis for the system called caste throughout India. Essentially a power hierarchy - A multi layered haves - have nots that helps every group to remain wherever their previous generations were. The ones to be pitied were the lowest in the ladder as there is no upward mobility available while providing plenty of room for sidewards mobility - something which is hinted in this dialogue.

    All said and done, if you look at the current situation, the groups have diversified their cultures or subcultures to a crazy level so much that there are weirder and weirder practices among each and every caste in TN. One simply have to keep reading Kumudham and junior Vikatan to find out about those peculiar inner differences that defy law and reason.
    Thevar Magan was no doubt a great movie - a better reprisal of father son relationship seen in godfather. In godfather the father was reluctant and the son adamant (in heading the family), here the son is reluctant and the father adamant. Both movies had an elder brother who was a wastrel. The pecking order determined by conduct and not time of birth.

    By Blogger V.P.Jaiganesh, at Tue Jan 15, 12:27:00 AM  

  • Jaiganes,
    Firstly, let me confess that i should have phrased my question better. I meant the song with the context of caste.

    he words of Sakthi when he tries to legitimise the inter caste affair seems like a practical detour of words by a love lorn boy to get his affair approved by elders at any cost - even kicking his own personal beliefs and thoughts on the subject. That is what love for a woman makes some men do
    Exactly. Its not problematic at all for me. Its something pragmatic that Sakthi does - it could even be anyone of us. It is the character speaking. (One would like to think that it just so happens to Sakthi's good fortune that Banu *happens* to be from an 'equivalent' caste!)
    Should the song, on the other hand, which glorifies the Thevar Kulam, be viewed differently?
    Even if the answer is no, should Thalaivar have anticipated what was bound to follow, from the audience's side?

    By Blogger Bala (Karthik), at Tue Jan 15, 12:59:00 PM  

  • Honestly, much as I try to respond coherently to Jaiganesh's point, I am simply unable to do so. Questions like what exactly are the purposes the song achieves in the film's narrative (which I asked myself) etc. make it really vague for me, and beyond a point, I can't help but say, "it's just a song in the film, get over it." This further reinstates my position that there's no need to be, you know, overtly "socially responsible." As in "delivering the right message" to the audience.

    Of course, this can be taken on general principle. Like I do. Any work of art is personal and all that jazz. Why even posit a "leap of faith" in the audience with respect to the artist or the work of art?

    But, say, there's someone who earnestly wants to say good things in a film (though, I don't like the idea much myself, but I don't mind it at all), still there are fat chances that other bad things are also read from the same film by someone or the other. TTM, in one of the comments above, gives a relevant analogy in software development. But, what Richard Stallman (or was it Linus Torvalds?) once said about UNIX (it doesn't stop stupid people from doing stupid things) should hold valid here as well. Not just that, but that can be the *only* consistent position. TTM mentions Kaadhal as an overtly (I hope I've added a qualifier suitable to TTM's remark) "positive message movie," but then I've read articles which question 'Kaadhal' too. Like this one (3 pages; and, yes, there's a mention of 'Thevar Magan' too!) where the author mentions about an aspring filmmaker friend of the author who "talked of how Thevars in the hall shouted aloud" for some moments in this film too. He also says, "the director creates clever plot devices to ensure that the couple is not shown sleeping together in the three nights." According to the author, it's crucial that she goes through menopause those three days she stays with Murugan. Now, I can't seriously oppose this claim (just like how, as I confessed above, I'm not able to, in the case of the 'Thevar Magan' song), because I've no idea how it came about. (Yet another proof why one should always read/trust the work of art and not the artist.)

    By Blogger Zero, at Wed Jan 16, 12:53:00 AM  

  • Zero!
    As much it was difficult to respond coherently, I took almost half an hour to put some semblance of thought to bring my post to a shape (not to say that it is in any particular shape). But that is how messy the situation is in our country. So many SIGs( special interest groups) with the power to frame so many PILs(Public Interest Litigations). Our people, sombre and unruffled to their own pathetic state (manipulated and sucked up at every level and in every way) suddenly become inflammable when topics like caste, religion, star affinity and party allegiances are touched upon, even in a jocular way by works of art. So the question is are people like Kamal, Maniratnam are wasting their time trying to cater to such stupid people? Hard question and the answer as each day progresses seems to be YES. Take the instance of how Iruvar by Mani got gang raped by the pressures put by both dravidian parties? Kamal had to endure this or a title of the movie. Up north, they have to write a story and send it to Bal Thackeray and the Imams for safe passage. Here they have to send it to the 32764 caste leaders to get ratified!!! Basic point is our people and their leaders at one level treat art as mind numbin form of escapist entertainment and if the art tries to be socially relevant, the mere posturing will attract whiplashes from everone. It is people's goondaism enslaving the art form. In the face of it, one has to conform, accept it bitterly like kamal and tread on or migrate north where there is more freedom ( They let Parzania get made there didn't they?).

    By Blogger V.P.Jaiganesh, at Thu Jan 17, 11:52:00 PM  

  • Jaiganesh,
    My point here is, Kamal can't be held responsible (even for the sake of a discussion; not in the slightest sense) for what people make out of the film (even if one feels that the film itself "cops out" in various respects). Ultimately, people do what they feel like. If the song influenced them, it only means they let it to.

    As for your question....
    >>"So the question is are people like Kamal, Maniratnam are wasting their time trying to cater to such stupid people?"
    I'm really not sure. Yes, many obstacles exist for an artist in his way. We live in an imperfect world, and the artist has to work around a lot of things and still come up with something which he finds satisfaction in (his satisfaction being in "reaching the mass" or otherwise). This is the case not just for Kollywood, but any film industry in this world. That's how it will go, I think.

    By Blogger Zero, at Fri Jan 18, 11:59:00 AM  

  • Zero !!
    can't agree with you more.
    however the adjustment must come from both the sides. Mani has had already 4 heart attacks man!! that shows the stress he is undergoing everytime to make a movie.
    Artist must reach out to the masses - I agree, but at what cost?
    getting harassed every step of the way.
    I somehow have a guilty feeling that folks like me too are partly guilty in encouraging this biased "labelling" of artists. I have posted weird and unnecessarily caustic messages on Mani's work.
    Our people whould learn to appreciate the efforts put in by somebody and criticise constructively. Afterall these guys are just making movies, they are not building roads or bus stands for godssake. This is where i get pissed off with our people. We tolerate shitty smelling busstands and pothole ridden roads, but cannot tolerate a film for whatever it is. We immediately start writing in "our" blogs about how bad the movie is and what not. We choose to express all our ingenuity and "Englipish" knowledge only there.
    No wonder we have degenerated from a country of artists to a country of million critics!!!
    Where are our priorities? no wonder the dirty politicians are having a field day - If a movie can blind us from our realities, then they are all the more happy and that is why they have this great interest in poking at films, film titles, film makers etc., That is how we came to this point - a movie title giving Kamal a hard time.

    By Blogger V.P.Jaiganesh, at Fri Jan 18, 08:57:00 PM  

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