Friday, October 16, 2009

Kamal pol oruvan ?!

I was eagerly awaiting ''Unnai pol oruvan'' not just because I liked the hindi version (A wednesday) and I am a Kamal fan but also because of this nagging thought at the back of my head that the remake should retain the essence of the good movie and should not be spoilt by Kamal's over enthusiasm. Kamal is a very talented artist but like Sherlock Holmes says he does not always exhibit the quality of the greatest artist - the knowledge of when to stop.

Well my apprehension was uncalled for since Kamal had underplayed the role as needed, maybe with a little difficulty while Naseeruddin Shah cruised through all along.

So far I have not seen a person or a review that has anything against the movie. So I am going to play the devil's advocate and concentrate on the flaws....or atleast what I can point to as flaws.

Remember the scene where the cop checks a high-rise building after being tipped by the man who supplied the explosive ? When he does not find him here, logic dictates that you send cops to check all high-rise buildings in Bombay (or Chennai) and narrowing them down should not be difficult because he has to still be in the heart of the city and a high place where he can have good reception and can still be obscure.

After all the hue and cry about keeping this whole case confidential, to the extent of not even revealing the perpetrator's name, his sketch is faxed to everyone including the FBI and interpol !! Will he ever be able to travel anywhere or get through an airport ever? Even if one assumes that the sketch was never faxed, Anupam Kher or Mohanlal even suggesting it is logically wrong, right ?

Another miniscule thing that nagged me is a 50 yr old man with a wife, who calls to remind him to bring home items for Kheer or Kesari, has to live on nearly stale (he smells them, grimaces before he eats) sandwiches...I mean I have never known a single day where appa or anyone in that age group in my family taking sandwiches for lunch....there are a zillion things in the Indian cuisine that one would rather eat. Exception: weirdos (mostly teens) who pay 120 rupees for a sandwich in the airport, when there is a dosa or chat stall for half the price next door.

One thing I hated about the tamil version was Lakshmi's role. I could have definitely done without her role and the unreasonable animosity between Mohanlal and her. Maybe this was an attempt to take a dig at the political situation in Tamilnadu but it was badly done.

To finish it on a optimistic note, I liked some of the dialogues in the Tamil version. I was glad it was not translated word for word because certain phrases are effective only in that language. I also liked the fact the fight was on behalf of society and was not a personal vendetta.

Some of the dialogues I enjoyed (from both versions):
I am replying on a Wednesday.....obviously
Mujhe tharike se parvah nahin, sirf nathije se.....dangerous argument

Terrorism is instant, why should Justice not be so ? reply in a lighter note in Rajini style, azhikardha kashtam, aakardhu dhan kashtam
(pointing to the computers, hacker says) idhellam munnorgal, abhivadaye sollitu try panren....apdiyavadhu abivadaye sonna seri !

All said and done, every time there are movies like Indian, Anniyan, Wednesday they do extremely well. I don't think this is mainly due to the story and screenplay being different, it is because each one of us pour out our frustrations by identifying with the protagonist in one way or another. So each time there is one such hit, doesn't it also showcase our helplessness ?!
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