Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Another MMKR in the offing?

Honestly (and cynically), I don't think Kamal could have recreated in Mumbai Xpress, what he did in MMKR. He himself must be aware of it by now, if my prediction is for real. But, Kamal has been making lofty claims about the movie (here and now, here!) and he seems to be creatively much more satisfied with the movie than any of his recent comedies.
His quotes have ranged from,

With due respect to all my friends involved with that project, "Mumbai Express" is a different league of comedy. This is way above "Vasool Raja".
- in one of his early interviews about the movie.

After `Michael Madhana Kama Rajan,' this has been the most difficult screenplay to conceive.
in his interview with The Hindu.

But what I feel is that it's hard to get a performance when everybody does so well. Boman Irani is such a fabulous actor that if he does anything less than excellent, the audience will lynch him. So, leaving him out, if you look at Mumbai Xpress, the performances are unanimously far superior.
- in his interview with Rediff.

He doesn't generally do this. He did not say things of this kind for pre-release hype for any of his comedy ventures since MMKR (that he did'nt do it for MMKR was coz he didn't estimate exactly what a wonderful movie he had made along with his team!). He actually means it now! All the more, its directed (co-directed, should I say?) by Singeetham Srinivasa Rao who was behind the best comedies of Kamal.
Thats why I ve been excitedly talking about Mumbai Xpress and have high expectations on this, despite the absence of the genius of Crazy Mohan ( :(((( ) from Kamal's team; more expectations than any of the comedy movies he has done since MMKR!

When I say Kamal's team, I mean Crazy-Kamal writer-duo and the director (Singeetham in this case). Now, some peek into their works (qualitative! qualitative!)

1. Neither one of the three seems to have succeeded alone.
Singeetham - Little John (Singeetham's tryst with SFX).
Crazy Mohan - All duds except the delectable Poikkal Kuthirai (based on Crazy's drama "Marriage made in Saloon" and directed by K.B.) and Kadhanayagan (famous for its "Dubai" sequence!) to quite some extent, largely due to S. Ve. Shekhar's presence. Notable among these were Arunachalam, Aahaa (much praised one, though), Poovellaam Kaettuppaar, Ratchagan and Mr. Romeo. Other lesser-known attempts were Chinna Maappillai (Directed by Santhana Bharathi, a Kamal constant), Vietnam Colony, Thaedinaen Vanthathu (All Prabhu Starrers). Crazy tried his hand at screenplay as well for some of these movies.
Kamal Haasan - All his yesteryear comedies (err.. I mean 80's) and Singaravelan. None of them were written by Kamal.

2. The collaboration of the other two in the absence of Kamal Haasan was a mishit.
Crazy-Singeetham - Chinna Vaathiyaar, another dud with Crazy Mohan as the sole crusader.

3. The other two in the absence of Crazy Mohan collaborated really well in the past.
Kamal-Singeetham - Raaja Paarvai, Pushpak (Absurd quip: No dialogues. No Crazy. ;)).
Both movies were not pure comedies (I mean, humour for the sake of humour!).
... and now Mumbai Xpress.

4. The Crazy-Kamal duo without Singeetham were mostly partially successful. But, most of them ranged from reasonably good to occassionaly OK and weren't in the league of their works alongwith Singeetham. Exceptions were Sathi Leelavathi (notches way above the rest with a fine control on the humour), Avvai Shanmugi (largely because of the inherent set-up for fine comic moments and an ensemble cast with the finest line-up of actors in Tamil cinema, inspite of the absence of a fine director at the helm) which were real treats and not just reasonably good. PKS was immensely likeable in parts, with not much help from a very frivolous plot. Panchathanthiram, like Kaadhala Kaadhala, had sparsely scattered sparks of intellingence, but failed as a movie with its stagey setup and over-dependency on blink-you-will-miss-dialogues by Crazy and marked the saturation of the level to which Crazy Mohan's dialogues could help an otherwise ordinary movie.

5. And there is the fifth category with all the 3 present but
a. still were unable to deliver a patch of their earlier works in Kaadhala Kaadhala (it did have strokes of brilliance from Crazy Mohan), and
b. delivered Magalir Mattum, a very neat (not GREAT) comedy.

Disclaimer:- Though, this analysis does appear pointless, its for the reader to make his own conclusions.

P.S.:- Do check out the review (a tribute, rather!) of MMKR, a post by aNTi. The only comprehensive review of the movie, doing justice to the reviewed material, available on the web!


  1. Thanks for the compliment :) I re-read what I wrote just now and am proud of myself ;) I did find some faults (incomplete sentences etc.) and will correct them now.

    Thanks again for the mention. But I think your words are too kind :)

  2. Don't even mention!
    There is not much of good tamil movie reviews/analysis goin on, on the web...

  3. Zero: Sorry. I think I screwed things up by giving a title to that hitherto untitled post. Click here to read my post on MMKR! Sorry for the trouble!