Tag: hulk

Parking Lot Notes: Nerkonda Paarvai

It is difficult for me to see Nerkonda Paarvai without making comparisons to Pink, at the same time it is also difficult for me to accept that an EDM festival in such a large scale would be held near Mamallapuram.

Yes, that is how H Vinoth’s Nerkonda Paarvai begins. 

If this had been an FRS we would have cut points for disbelief, but this is no FRS. 

Even with some years behind since its release Pink had something going for me, its absolute lack of heroism itself was heroic, the smooth transitions between the scenes which were not wanting to create dramatic tensions when they did not exist. 

When Amitabh Bachchan stands up to say “No” there is but a ticking clock (presumably of the court) which keeps him company, there is no other score. 

Just a lawyer delivering the closing arguments of his case. 

There has been many a column dedicated to how bold it is for a hero like Ajith Kumar to take up such a subject.But many columns need to be written on how the film making differs and the additions that Vinoth has added only hamper the classic and on point film making of Pink. Hopefully this is a start. 

Nerkonda Paarvai is in all ways an inferior remake of Pink. Let’s start with the characterisation. 

Deepak Sehgal is a disturbed ageing lawyer, his illness is mentioned but not explained, we know it is an impediment when he mixes up words when fighting for the girls. These impediments make the fight difficult, they add one more layer when the wronged girls go against the powerful boys. 

In the Tamil remake, the worst I had feared had happened; Bharath Subramaniam has a mental condition- bi polar, stress and anger issues etc but this is hardly an obstacle, in fact this mental condition gives Ajith a superpower to bash goons- again typical nondescript goons. There is no obstacle, in fact here they fear the hero. 

I loved Viswasam, I almost felt it was a clever Tamil reworking of Logan- Ajith even sports the same tired look of Hugh Jackman (this for another blog post). In Nerkonda Paarvai, his association with super heroes continue and Bharath Subramanium is nothing but a Bruce Banner/Hulk as realized by Ajith. 

Nothing wrong with that, except that this characterisation is in the wrong movie. 

I am not sure if the Pink remake needed a heroic backstory for its hero, but it surely did not require the utterly unconvincing Vidya Balan flashback. Oh and a loud Yuvan background score. 

And of the other actors only Rangaraj Pandey seems to be having fun, playing a version of himself- one of the most confident debuts in recent times. 

At the Laureate we do not celebrate movies just because of the themes that they take up- but hey many liked this film- why such negative notes? 

Maybe it is me, I should have given more time between viewing these films. 

In that case I would have forgotten about how beautifully absent of background music Pink was.

I would have forgotten the biting sarcasm that Sehgal brought about in his ‘guide to the modern Indian woman’.

I would have forgotten that Amitabh was just a player ( an able one at that) in the movie which was more focussed on the girls. 

I would have forgotten all about how the original treats people as people and not playing them as heroes and villains, the remake does this constantly by close-ups and ominous music. 

Maybe it is not them, it is me. 

MODERN PROMETHEUS

MODERN PROMETHEUS

 (Or)

Looking at film through Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron

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Immaterial as it may be our opinion on this state, the movies that our generation will be associated with will be the comic book movie, three words now very close to my heart.

The comic book movie now, is the film noir of the past, the western of its time, a broad genre defining a certain time and recalling a certain sentiment. Like the above genres that have been mentioned, the comic book movie will surely get its due, but only in the future.

This sudden construction of a pedestal for the comic book movie is because I truly believe that the comic book movie has in fact erased the boundaries between word and visual which is something every great literary adaptation aims to be, comic books being truly the most visual amongst the printed forms of literature. The comic book movie is also accelerator in the fusion of the genres, and this is because of the variety that each comic character offer.

“Man creates his own demons”

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In Age of Ultron, Tony Stark fears for the future of the planet and creates a protective force under the hood. Ultron would be A.I enabled Iron Men to be called onto provide eternal peace for our planet, but as we can all guess, this save the world vanity project (TDKR reference done) goes not only out of hand but also turns back on its creator.

If we are looking to track the genetic genealogy of Avengers: Age of Ultron, then it is most certainly Mary Shelley’s gothic classic Frankenstein, only increment action here and there and populate the screen with powerful beings.

Some of the problems that people had with Ultron was that, the movie did not perhaps have a powerful villain, but I found that this movie had more character than its predecessor; because here (Ultron) there is no reason to create a powerful villain to justify and the characters have already been established.

The end is a more relaxed picture, where the intention is not to be blown away by the graphics of it all, but to go on this adventure with this bunch of misfits who are now emotionally charged rather than charged with heroics, and there is the inter-super banter!

Whedon also indulges momentarily into 1950s territory, the super hero movie giving way to over the bar talk between the troubled in-love damsel (Natasha Romanoff played by the super talented ScarJo) and the world weary-cynical-removed hero (Dr. Bruce Banner). A masterstroke of a love track between the noises.

This is the kind of genre inter-operate ability that is interesting for me to watch.

With Marvel trying to impress us with release dates for mega movies in the years to come, an Avengers movie is no longer about why and how the Avengers trounce their enemies, but about the characters, these heroes and their feelings, the setting, the worlds, the words. Action and villains can take the rear.

I was a partial Marvel movie convert after Iron-Man 3 and a fully changed man after the second Captain America flick and it seems I will remain so after Ultron. I hope that these films are seen beyond than what they are intended for, but I am sure it will now be an un-ignorable thing in the recent future, but right now if you go and tell your friend that Avengers:Ultron is about the perils of creativity and questions if man can really play God, super-men in this case, you will probably be chuckled at.

Post Script to Ultron

**** Captain America is amazing! (as if we needed to tell you that, this is also my answer to “which is your favourite avenger?” question”

****Mary Shelley’s 1818 gothic horror novel Frankenstein was subtitled Modern Prometheus as it mirrored the mythical tale, we have smartly made it the title for our Avengers: Ultron piece (we are amazing!). Our subtitle of course is over ambitious, I must confess.

****This piece was written under the utter influence of the Ultron soundtrack, specifically the “heroes” track. Soundtrack composed bby Brian Tyler and Danny Elfman.

**** Most of the times when we say Ultron we mean Avengers: Age of Ultron the movie and not the villain.

Thank you for reading.

SUIT UP!!

(In as many colors as possible)

Avengers (2012)

 

Avengers poster courtesy Mondo, yes it raacks!

Sometime during one of the hundred carefully and aesthetically choreographed action sequences, Phil Coulson (“since when is he Phil? His first name is Agent”, Tony Stark informs us) informs rather warily on his way to the end (oh no! spoilers) to the main antagonist Loki played to some exception by Tom Hiddleston that he (Loki) would never win because there was no conviction.

Well, that could apply to the rest of the costumed crusaders and the whole plot of Avengers, we all like them; but do we want them all the time? Simply put in more serious prose: What is the relevance of a hero in the absence of a crisis? The Avengers doesn’t deal with all that, since Marvel had already green-lighted the mega-project and only needed a skin of a story to work on. The skin provided by Joss Whedon is there, but we do not have time to pinch in further, only later these questions were realized whensome thinking was done beyond the CGI. Was an Assemble! Call really necessary to tackle an invading army brought out by Loki (simply put villain, otherwise put Shakespearean tragic anti hero with a brother problem). I mean haven’t these fellows (Iron Man, Captain America, The Hulk, Thor and others. Simply put: good guys, the heroes. Otherwise cannot be put.) have done those acts singularly in the past.

Tesseract, the cube of infinite energy is the item of contention as with the previous Marvel production of Captain America, Loki steals it right from Nick Fury in return of an army of Chitauri (more bad guys) which will lead directly to earthlings to be ‘free of freedom’. Comics and any literature often derided for inducing loss of reality states in its readers have always stayed on pace with real events, like how Avengers meanders through nuclear disarmament, energy crisis and the power of the people. But are these done just as a nod to reality or will these help in creating something in the public is a topic hardly discussed, not even by Arnab Goswami. Fiction follows fact only up to a point where it can fuel its own progress, in the end these are just plot elements.

Joss Whedon’s Avengers is not pretentious and gives what it exactly aims for: a proper summer blockbuster, only to maximize those electronic ticket printing sounds at the theatres and it does this cleverly by indulging in the main characters only if the events lead to a graphic fight and this type of approach not only is good to watch, does not mess with our head in any way, in plain sight, it is an enjoyable movie with right lines at the opportune moments. Dialog in superhero movies should be a separate PhD topic, there is just so much to observe.

There is no need to bother about acting in a film headlined by Robert Downey Jr, especially when he is joined by a shy and angry Mark Ruffalo, the heroic Chris Evans, and the visitor Chris Hemsworth, though I did expect a little more of chatter amongst them, all that is lost in the run up to the war.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is a very theater friendly one, not only it has internal connections, there is also the happy fact that simply for watching the Avengers you would have to go through those told stories and the looming possibility of further individual films like Hulk.

Opinions on movies are mostly instantaneous, which makes it easy to proclaim that a/any movie is the most ‘awesomatic of the aaaromale’ superhero movie ever, but Avengers is not to be so. End of the day fans are happy and will sleep without fear that they are in the good hands of the Protectors of Planet Earth, ‘realists’ will nod in disbelief and continue to make feigned movies.

So Suit Up, you don’t need a reason to watch the movie, as they didn’t need one to make one.

The piece was written under the influence of a song fittingly called, “Tu Mera Hero” from the movie Desi Boyzz (yes two zees), close friends tell me it is the only good thing in the film.

Joss Whedon’s Avengers is now out on theatres, no good print available on net.