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Tuesday, November 29, 2005

தன் முயற்சி

ஓர் புது உலகம்..

தன் முயற்சியால்
வெற்றி இலக்கை

இன்றைய உலகம்..

அவன் வெற்றியை
உறுதி செய்து
பின் பற்றும்
நூறு பேர்
233rd post

Monday, November 28, 2005

After thoughts.. Genuine or not?

Compared to the weekends, the crowd would be less on a weekday in Little India. Last Friday, I had taken off from my work and was there with my wife.

While we were walking on the platform, this guy stopped me. My first impression was that it was a normal address query. He asked me if I have few minutes to spare. OK..that didn't seem to be an address query, as I thought. I nodded, inspite of my wife waiting for me.

It seems he was from Trichur, Kerala. In a mixed accent of Malayalam & English, he mentioned that he arrived here few weeks back and had got a job in a Chinese Finance Co. He expected to get his Employment Pass within a week's time, since it has been applied for already. He added further that he was from a poor family and the money he had, had completely drained, with none of the shoppers giving him temp jobs during his visit visa period.

He hesitantly asked (with moistured eyes) if I could help him to survive for few days. That was a tricky situation for me. By the look of it, he seemed genuine. But, I didn't know how to help and was not fully convinced. I could have suggested him to approach the nearby temples, since there was a possibility for them to help. But they might also be seeing 'n' no. of people like this regularly. So, I didn't suggest that idea.

When I suggested him to approach that Chinese Finance Co. (his prospective employer) to get an advance for his survival, he mentioned that he didn't approach them since no Indian faces were there. Since I was hesitant to come forward, he offered to show his passport to prove his genuineness. He showered me with some jargons saying that my face looked so helpful(!!) and that's why he approached me. He added further with an innocent face, that it would be OK even if I don't trust & help him.

Now, I didn't want to go further on that talk, since my wife was waiting. So, I just managed to pass on some money to survive for two days. He just accepted it and left the place, thankfully.

Normally, this type of situation used to happen in India very often - when people migrate from villages to cities. Sometimes, it would put us in an awkward situation to evaluate the genuineness of those persons. This was the first time, I had encountered a similar situation on the Singapore roads.

After leaving that place, I had several unanswered questions -

Was he genuine?
Should I have enquired more about his educational background and checked his passport?
Did I encourage him to go around like this further, to earn more?
232nd post

Sunday, November 27, 2005

An Enchanting Odyssey

That was the name of the programme, presented as a part of my son's School Annual Day function. The evening's event was organised @ the UCC hall of NUS, on Saturday.

To everyone's surprise, the schedule was followed on dot. All sorts of welcome address and prize distribution were over, within the scheduled time. Followed them, was a Play which lasted for 2 hours.

The conceptualisation of the Play was too good.

6 kids get lost in the jungle during their trekking. Then, they just try eating some mushrooms which makes them to faint. After some time, some tribal people surround them and bring them to their senses. They decide to sacrifice the kids, to get favours from a Witch.

However, the witch doesn't want to devour the kids and promise to take them back to their homeland. Since the kids had eaten the strange mushrooms, they couldn't recollect their country's name. So, based on the clues given by them the witch takes them to different countries.

First, they visit China, because they could recollect "Lion dance & shopping". They get a treat of lion dance.

Then, "Fashion & Pastry shops" take them to Paris - where they see some wonderful French dance.

The kids realise, their homeland's Indian delicacies like "Naan / other stuff, with some good Indian dancing". So, the witch takes them to India. They land up during the harvest festival and get to see Rajasthani 'Ghumar', Assamese 'Bihu', Keralite 'Onam' & Punjabi 'Bhangra'.

One of the kids recalls her "Ballet sessions" in her homeland, which helps the witch to land them in Russia - to see some wonderful ballet.

Another kid's passionate recall of "Football craze fans & beach" lands them in Brazil to get entertained with a Salsa dance.

Then, the kids realise that the Witch takes them to wrong destinations purposefully, eventhough she is aware of their homeland. They come to an agreement, by which the Witch asks for a favour. To fulfill that, the kids are taken to Middle east, where they get treated with a dance of "Arabian beauties".

Finally, as agreed the Witch brings them back to "Singapore" where they are able to see the multicultural society, to which they belong.

That was the end of the play..... :-) :-)

All credits need to go to the director of the play, Dr.Golam Ashraf. He is currently a professor in NUS and had shown all his skills and expertise in managing the 200+ students who perfomed that evening. The one month long practice presented a fabulous evening.

The content lived upto the title of the programme.. "The Enchanting Odyssey" for us too, not only those kids who were lost in that jungle.
231st post

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

'S Pictures' ventures

Can we build a hype around the new ventures of 'S Pictures'?

Since, most of you guys in this blogworld are aware that Shankar's 'S Pictures' has announced two of their proposed ventures and one is expected anytime soon.

#1 Veyil

Cast: Bharath, Bhavna (mallu) & Pasupathy
Music: G V Prakash
Director: Vasanthabalan

Bharath has an interesting line up already with his 'A..I..B..I..' and 'Pattiyal'. Hope the director of 'Album' who couldn't create a magic earlier, will succeed with a different presentation this time, like his predecessor Balaji Sakthivel. With the introduction of another mallu girl Bhavna and ARR's nephew GV Prakash, I believe Shankar is betting on something unique.

Would be glad if a different movie is delivered to us.

#2 Imsai Arasan 23-aam Pulikesi

Cast: Vadivelu, Nanditha, Monica, Nasser....
Music: Sabesh-Murali
Director: Simbhudevan

Eventhough the promo's poster reveals it as a historic story, as reiterated by Shankar himself, I doubt whether it would be a historic movie. Going by the title, I doubt whether Shankar would spend so much money to present a realistic historic comedy.

There are two possibilities in this scenario.

1) Either it must be similar to Cho's 'Muhamad-Bin-Thuglak' full of funny comedy
2) It must be a promotional gimmick to just woo the press and audience. It may be a normal comedy subject, with an unique title.

Sabesh-Murali's combination has not produced any magical numbers so far in the industry, except those melodies in 'Thavamai Thavam Irundhu'. Need to wait and watch, if they could exploit this opportunity to show their potential.

#3 "Yet to be titled"

Cast: ??
Music: ??
Director: Balaji Sakthivel

Can we expect some announcement on this venture either this week or the next week - before the big bang announcement of AVM's 'Sivaji'? Fingers crossed....X

Following the footsteps of Ram Gopal Varma, Shankar is promoting different genre of directors. That is a welcome move. Looks like he is wisely investing his earlier harvests into different baskets, instead of putting all into his own child. Would be glad if this model succeeds, since it makes the field more competitive.
230th post

Monday, November 21, 2005


During yesterday's coffee break, the crux of my chat with a recently engaged Colleague, was his "phone bills.."

Method: Using Calling cards
Nature: Midnight daily conversation with his Fiance
Effect: 300$/month hole in his wallet

A guy who was never comfortable with too much of spending is currently swallowing these bills. He is unsure whether he will have the same enthu after marriage (trying to be realistic!!). Irrespective of his reasoning, I blessed(!!) him to continue on his phone-dating without talking too much on the bills.

Two reasons....

1) I knew guys, who had spent $1000-$1500/month, before the flooding of calling cards here. Compared to those, this budgeted calls looked miniscule.

2) I missed that thrill... even thru phone :-( :-( Don't ask me, why?
229th post

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Real 'Ghajini'

That's what I felt, when the Argentine won yesterday's Tennis Masters Cup Finals held at Shanghai.

2 sets down against World no.1

Level @ 2-2

Lead at 4-1 in the last set

Again the cycle changed, with the come back of No.1. It became 5-5 and the World no.1 went up once again to 6-5 and started serving for the championship. Still the Argentine didn't want to give up and pulled that game to make it 6-6. Finally, they entered the tie-break which the Argentine won with style.

That was a fabulous score of 6-7 6-7 6-2 6-1 7-6, a result of 4 1/2 hours of play, for the biggest title of his career.

Another contrasting statistics - Federer's fourth defeat all year - Nalbandian's fourth of his career.

I have seen him so many times near the victory post, only to lose it to the opponent. During the final moments of yesterday's match, we wished him to win and he did. With style...

Pic Courtesy: Rediff.com
228th post

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Too many things...

Too many things at the same time... Unable to visit others' blogs too :-( :-(

Anyhow, Happy Children's Day, to those kids who felt as "newly born" while expressing their views for this NAYAN post
227th post

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Different arena to play around...

This is how (the title), I will term the current scenario where in we are getting successful novelists / journalists into Cine field. Earlier, you might have observed adaptation of hit novels / stories into movies. In those type of movies, the main stories were tweaked mostly to suit the cine audience mood. Sometimes, the original plot alone had been kept with more commercial elements added, to make them hits.

I could remember some of those novels, which were adapted so...

SUJATHA's - 'Gayathri' & 'Priya' [In 'Priya' you could have observed several tweaks compared to the original plot & characters]. Two years back, one of his interesting novel 'Nila kaalam' was directed by Gandhi Krishna [director of 'Chellame'] Eventhough, this movie didn't run well commercially, it got a recognition among critics. There was a news few months back, that he had accepted for adaptation of his 'Pirivom.. Santhipom' too.
RAJENDRAKUMAR's - 'Vanakathukuriya Kaathaliyee' (Sridevi)
JAYAKANTHAN's - 'Sila Nerangalil Sila Manitharkal' & 'Oru Nadigai Nadagam Paarkiraal' [I believe, the second one also had Lakshmi in the lead]
SIVASANKARI's - '47 Natkal' (by K.B. with Chiranjeevi & Jayapratha), 'Nandu' (by Mahendran), 'Kutty' (a simple story well made by Janaki Viswanathan)
Pushpa THANGADURAI's - 'Oru Oothappoo Kan Simitukirathu'
T.JANAKIRAMAN's - 'Moga mul' (directed by Gnana Rajasekaran)

and may be some more, which I might have missed.. like Writer Lakhsmi's works (help, please...)

Of late, that trend has changed. Now our novelists & journalists have been lured with attractive returns, to have better involvement in the cine field. You could have observed several novel stories & punch dialogues in the last couple of years by some of these well known personalities led by Sujatha.

Our DBI team takes you thru the path for few mintues....

SUJATHA, who is celebrating his silver jubilee in film industry, has been associated with the leading directors for a long time. His association with the industry was so thick that, he led PentaMedia for sometime into various film ventures. His involvement stretches from story discussions, dialogues till the end of the movie, which is an inspirational one to the youth of these days.

His work which got started with K.B.'s 'Ninaithaale Inikkum', had fueled many other leading directors in the last two decades. Couple of his interesting ventures were - with Maniratnam (Roja), Bharathi Raja (Nadodi Thendral), Shankar (Indian, Mudhalvan, Boys, Anniyan) Ravichandran (if I'm not wrong, it was 'Kannethire thondrinaal', pl.correct me if not), Jeeva (Ullam Ketkumae) and the list goes on...

As everybody is aware, now he is completely into 'Sivaji' discussions. During an interview in our local FM 96.8 last week, he was very cautious in delivering project details of that movie. He admitted that he & Shankar's team need to be careful, since more hype is surrounding this mega venture. There was another interesting revelation during that interview. It seems, when Rajini approached him for 'Baba', he refused since the movie required contributions for its spiritual part which was ultimately taken up by Balakumaran. [he honestly said that he could not have justified his role].

His relationship which seemed to have started with Kamal 2 decades back, continued with 'Vikram' and couple of other movies which followed it. As a friend, it seems he got involved in many of Kamal's movies. Now he is also involved with Kamal-KSR-Crazy Mohan team for 'Dasavatharam', eventhough this movie is not portrayed as a comedy movie (inspite of those 10 roles, publicized). Trust this successful team presents another interesting stuff to the audience.

BALA KUMAARAN - I was so impressed with his 'Thaayumaanavan' novel (televised for DD in the early 90s), that I became his hardcore fan and started reading all his novels.. Eventhough, I have lost touch with his writings of late, I had come across several works of him thru movies. Eventhough his novels were not converted into celluloid packages, his involvement in dialogues had brought out several interesting movies to the front.

Some of his involvements were with Maniratnam (Nayagan), Shankar (Kaadhalan, Jeans) and several other directors for Guna, Mugavari, King, Citizen, Baba, Athu, Jananam, Manmathan, Thotti Jaya etc., His upcoming movies too have interesting directors / actors.. Selvaraghavan / Dhanush's 'Pudhupet', Simbu's 'Vallavan', Arya's 'Kalaba Kaathalan', SPB's 'En uyirilum Melana' etc.,

The famous duo writers SU-BA (Suresh-Bala) are expected to join KV.Anand once again for his new venture, after their previous successful involvement (Story/dialogues) in 'Kana kandein'. I could recollect Sarath's 'Chanakya' as well, as another plot requiring some sharp dialogues in which they were reportedly successful. Hope to see many more interesting plots from these Duo writers.

As far as I know 'Pattukottai' PRABHAKAR had penned for movies like Balaji Sakthivel/Vikram Combo's 'Samurai', Satyaraj's 'Maaran' and Prasanna's 'Kaathal dot com'. Still some striking movies are yet to come from him. I heard he is busy involving in couple of movie projects currently.

Cartoonist / Journalist MADAN showed his knowledge on several issues thru his involvement in Kamal's 'Anbe Sivam' [including those famous 'Tsunami' dialogues, well ahead of our Dec-26 incident]. I have also understood that he was involved in the recent thriller 'Aayul regai'. {probably BALAJI can confirm this, being the only person in my known circle who had seen this movie}. Trust he would pen for some more interesting movies.. Let us wait and see.

Definitely this arrival of more number of specialised novelists / journalists have brought in fresh air in the area of "story / screenplay / dialogues", which used to be typically occupied with masala stuff. Hope this continues and we get to view more watchable stuff from our energetic youth directors and artists.
226th post

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Unbelievable 16

In a recent interview, when Nayan had been asked if she will be campaigning for any political party, she had reportedly replied.. 'I can't, for I am just 16 and don't even have the right to vote'.

I don't want to get into her DOB and check whether it is correct or not. It may be a twist given by the reporter also.

But I have observed that, people are very happy to claim their age as "Sweet 16" for a long time.. [Given a chance, I may also do it..]

However, it becomes very hard to believe, sometimes. It just turns out to be another entertaining news. I felt so this time, when I read this :-) :-)225th post

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Chennaiyin Mazhai Kaalam

It seems, after last week's rain 'Amma' had told that 'See.. I told you earlier, that we are going to get good rain... Now you have got it'.

Need to appreciate 'Amma's predictions.. but alas, Chennai had to still cope up with the heavy rain's effects.

"Learning is a big ocean!!!"
"Kadamai Thavaraa uuzhiyar.. See the crowd inside, still"
"It seems, it was an urgent issue to go out and address"
"Guys recalling yesteryear swimming practice in village ponds"
"Pothy's advertisement near Niagara"
224th post

Monday, November 07, 2005

Surprising Divorce

I got two different types of feelings, when I read this press release of yesterday.

Let us talk about the positive side. Kalaingar Karunanithi has stated that he is delinking from SUN TV & Kungumam from now on and has sold out his family stake in those organisations. Does it mean that he won't appear everyday on the small screen giving his opinion on earthquake / rain etc.,? I assume so...

On the negative side, SUN TV is reducing the entertainment elements for bloggers (like KAPS), eventhough they are still running the serials which will feed us for a long time. Isn't it?

If you could observe, the missing of Key personalities (I mean, long term associates) is happening slowly in SUN TV... earlier it was AV.Ramanan, then 'Nirmala Periyasaamy' (you can read as 'Niirmalaaa PeriiiiyaSaaaamy'), now it is Kalaingar Karunanithi. I am eagerly waiting for the turn of the Iron(!!) lady who used to be showered with "Neenga romba azhagaa irukiinga, madam?" comments... nagara mattengraangalee... :o( :o( :o(
223rd post

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Survey time...

I was explaining something to my son on a particular topic, for it was a fruitful chatting. At that time, there was a knock on the front door... and somebody was outside with a Survey form. The survey, which was on the usage of Cable tv and Broadband services of the local providers, went on for few minutes. In the meantime, I got a prompt from my better-half that it was getting late, to wrap up the work with my son. Still I continued, till the completion of the survey.

It used to happen sometimes over phone as well. Last month, it so happened that a survey call which started with "5min only" guarantee, extended upto 15 minutes with nearly 50 questions. By the end of that call, my energy level had dried up fully. Even then, I had a satisfaction.

What's the need to undergo that?

Because, I could understand their job nature.. I heard some of them do it as a part time job for specific companies like this. I had experienced it once, personally.... :-)

During my college days in Madurai, our professor introduced a Marketing guy (from Madras), who was there to do a survey among the teenagers on Ice cream trends. The agenda was like this.. He gave 20 survey forms to each one of us and asked us to visit different residential colonies targetting equal no. of boys and girls. Each successful / genuinely (!!) completed form carried a "X" amount as a reward. Since, it was an interesting assignment earning money for us, we accepted it gladly.

But it was not that easy, as we thought.

In certain houses the Moms (of teen girls) didn't entertain us.. we were stopped just near the doorsteps and the girls replied to our survey questions from the half-closed doors. Some people didn't entertain us completely, due to lack of time.

I did visit some of my friends' houses to fill up the survey forms thru their sisters. That was also tricky, since I had never spoken to them freely earlier. Somehow, I managed. Few of my friends gathered the results in front of girls' schools and colleges. [the reason, why I am talking about the girls alone, is that we found it trickier only there]

As usual, to complete the forms quickly, few in our friends' circle filled in the Survey forms on their own, without even visiting anyone's house. ['aasai'... to earn quickly]. That Madras guy caught them red-handed [thru cross-verifying] and refused to accept those survey forms, threatening to forfeit all they had earned so far. That approach of our friends, got amended immediately.

By the end of two days, I was so happy to earn my first pocket money - by exploiting my own(!!) abilities....

That experience, resulted in a decision. Not to refuse answering any surveys, unless it becomes too personal or due to lack of spare time.
222nd post

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Majaa - Review

Being a holiday today (for Ramzan), we decided suddenly to venture out for a movie... the immediate choice was 'Majaa'.

It must be the obvious selection, since I'm not for a typical Vijay action masala (my son's favourite) & a sensual BaluMahendra flick (eventhough 'AOKK' was my favourite, it may not be suitable to watch with my son).

'Majaa' scored better than these two for those reasons... a decent masala with less action, apt to watch with children.

Eventhough, the promotions were more focussed on Vikram & Asin, equal importance were given to the characters of Pasupathy, Manivannan & Vadivelu also. Eventhough that approach keeps the movie going at a regular pace, while coming out you may compare Ghajini's 'Kalpana' with this 'Seethalakshmi' and will realise something lesser here.

Being a remake of the malayalam hit "Thommanum Makkalum", the story is a very simple & known one. The father & 2 sons (erstwhile thieves) decide to give up their profession and move to a new village. How the sons settle down with the local belles, are shown in a lighter vein. Definitely, it would have been a simpler task for Mamooty or Vikram to do the lead role in a light hearted comedy like this. Vikram has done his part with ease.

Pasupathy & Vadivelu steal the show with their expressions and situational comedies. Asin doesn't have much scope to show up her acting skills and it is yet another movie to her credit. That's all. Murali is not that impressive as Asin's dad. [his best portrayal was in 'Dum Dum Dum']

The songs are filling the gaps as usual, with the first 'Majaa..' song reminding the 'Dhool...' song sequence of 'Dhool' (including the Lorry and the fields). Asin was gorgeous in that 'Che Che Che ' song with her costumes and dance movements. In that 'Sollith tharava...' song shot in Austria, Vikram's get-up didn't suit the melodious mood of the song. When they tried to use designer type of costumes (You chk out the song, you will know!!), they could have avoided showing Vikram in that village get-up too..

- The clean stuff with several hilarious moments in the screenplay.
- Pasupathy & Vadivelu, eventhough Vadivelu's part reminded some of his previous movies.

- Lack of the "required pull" to sit thru the whole movie.
- Vidyasagar. He could have come out with better numbers, than what he delivered.

Not being a high budget movie, will be an advantage for the profitability of this venture. Eventhough, it may not be an impressive feather on Vikram & Asin's hats, it is not a failure definitely.

My Earlier Reviews - Limited edition (munch them, if you hvn't)
Ghajini / Anniyan / Ullam Ketkumae / Sachein

221st post

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

New dress...

Thanks for all your personalised wishes and thru comments section for Deepavali.. Once again, I hope you all would have enjoyed the day well.

For us, the day had gone very quickly... :-) with the visit to crowded temples, meeting a lot of friends, exchanging wishes, etc., Received the usual comments on the dresses.... :-) :-)

But yesterday, I didn't have any mood to go to the office. If it is in India, we would be very glad to visit the school / college / office in new dresses with high spirit (Isn't it??). But, it was just another day in my office yesterday. Nobody looked into my new shirt and commented :-( :-(

Atleast I was glad that my new shirt received attention on Deepavali day... among my friends in the temple.
220th post