I happened to see two very different movies this weekend.
One is a remake and the other is refreshingly new to Indian Cinema.
One has been made four times (twice in Hindi and twice in Tamil), still the story telling was very shallow.
Other has successfully explored a totally new domain for Indian Cinema and has told it very nicely.
One relies entirely on Hero's star appeal, high glamor quotient and foreign locales.
Other relies entirely on story, a new kid and domestic locales.
One makes you yarn and go to sleep.
Other makes you laugh, cry and most importantly think.
One I want to forget..
Other, would see few more times..
If you still haven't guessed....
One is Billa 2007 a poor remake of Rajni's Billa which itself was a remake of Amitabh's Don. Director Vishnuvardhan got lot of ink time for this movie which seemed to have made aping Holly Wood. But, he seemed to have missed bus big time. He relies entirely on Ajith's star appeal and the high glamor quotient of Nayanthara & Namitha. The story telling is so bad that all ones remembers about the movie is the endless slow motion walks of Ajith, characters just starring at each other in photo op locations and endless car chase and guns. Mr. Vishnuvardhan could have done lot better than this and his audience deserved better.
Other is Tare Zamin Par by Aamir Khan. Mr. Khan has donned the mantle of the director for the first time and done exceedingly well. This movie is very different from the usual fare and relies entirely on the power of the story and story telling. There is no female lead actress, no fights and no sentiment. Just simple story about a dyslexic kid and his turn around. What the Schools and Government policies couldn't achieve, Mr. Khan has done through his movie. This movie has raised the awareness about dyslexia and the needs of the children afflicted. The actual hero of the movie is NOT Aamir khan but a 11 year old boy who makes you cry, laugh and shudder.
I saw a very unique thing today. Generally people would starting walking towards the exit when the movie ends and credits starts rolling. But after the end of Tare Zamin Par, majority of the folks just stood and watched the credits till the end. Hats off of Aamir Khan for making a such a wonderful movie. Though I know Hindi a little bit, I would have better understood the dialogs and its power had they been in Tamil. I wish Aamir Khan dubs the movie in Tamil and other languages.
Tare Zamin Par - A+ (A must watch and is bound to impact you)
Billa 2007 - D- (Avoid, sleep instead)
I saw both movies at Sathyam Cinemas. The New Zealand guy running the show at Sathyam has done a remarkable job of improving the movie going experience. From online booking, to refreshments to the courteous attendants to ambiance to plush seats. This guy has paid attention to everything and has changed them for better.
Now, only if he could replicate that outside the movie going experience would be lot better. The moment one steps outside the theaters, you are mobbed by the pushy auto drivers. Even if you escape them, chances are you will get stuck in unrelenting traffic grid lock.
But there is very little Sathyam Cinemas could do for that. They have changed a lot inside and it seems to be continually improving. Thanks Sathyam and the New Zealand guy for a pleasant movie going experience.