My whimsical thoughts

Archive for April, 2010

Current State of Malayalam Film Industry


It’s a well known fact that Indians are crazy about three things: – Cricket, politics and Movies. I come from southern most part of the country where cricket is substituted by Football. I am no exception to that. Here communism still survives and politics is discussed with the highest amount of intensity. That leaves us to the last item i.e. Movies! Malayalam film industry is well known across India and have contributed the finest of the stars and artists. It has produced quite a lot of movies with CLASS. The movies with entertainment value are being remade in other languages by Priyadarshan and likes. However, I don’t wish to go GAGA over it.

After 4 months of break with Malayalam movies, I watched ‘Bodyguard’ with lot of eagerness and expectation. The movie was a topic of discussion even before its first scene was shot. It had a near perfect cast. Dileep and Nayanthara’s mention was more than enough. They were directed by the hitmaker Siddique. This also happens to be Nayantara’s Malayalam movie after long. I can’t find words to describe this movie. Calling it Trash would be belittling the word. My limited vocabulary doesn’t know any word lower than this. Mostly, we see a movie because of trust attached to the person(s) involved with the movie. I just had it in me that Siqqique will not fail and he did fail me. A starved movie fan gets stabbed in the back for the blind faith he had. Dileep seemed so serious in a wafer thin nonsense plot. Come on dude, you have to understand that people don’t want you to be serious and you have failed numerous times playing the serious guy. Learn something from it.

Disappointed and dejected, I took another chance and I saw ‘April Fool’. Well to keep it short, I was rubbing salt on my wounds. Again a hyped movie with an ensemble cast by Malayalam standards. Jagdish had worked hard to get it together. Do we need that line? It turned out to be a trashy remake of Bheja Fry, which in-turn was the remake of a French movie ‘Le Dîner de cons’. Remake or not, the Hindi movie was made in a nice way. The point to be noted here is that, a solid story with a film to refer couldn’t be made into a good final product. Movies don’t merely run by snob value! People have to stop marketing the movies by sheer star power!

If I were to ask an average movie viewer (not the hopeless fanboys) as to which was the last good movie (in literal sense) they watched; they will have to scratch their heads for long time to come up with an answer. Is this the same Industry which produced films that I watched during my childhood days? On various occasions, I’ve seen film makers blaming SOAP’s, piracy etc. Recently one of the superstars even blamed other language movies. Case of ‘Sour Grapes’? Indeed YES!!!!

One must always understand that it is quality that matters. Run of the mill “stories” don’t always work and so doesn’t the presence of a Super Star. It is always the presence of quality cinema that matters. I’ve seen movies like ‘Black and White Kudumbam’, ‘Duplicate’ which have seen moderate success compared to the much touted superstar movies. These aren’t great movies and also were released with movies from other languages, and were also victims of piracy. Yet they made some money. This just indicates that there are still viewers in theatres if you show them a good movie.  Guys! Are you all out of your senses and its high time you all wake up!

If I had a chance, I will first slap the director and then the producer for making such trash.  My next double slap will go for the actors who take up such trashy assignments. You guys are held in high regard and you have ardent fan following. Why abuse it? Costs of making films are rising because of the higher remuneration. Why the extra money? For the nonsensical fan clubs? In theatres these days, you see more of fan club posters than that of the movie’s! It is because of these guys that the movies recover the money. Gone are the days when the movies used to run based on quality; quality means better word of mouth publicity. Now it has totally turned to leveraging your fan clubs and fan followings. I’d criticized Thilakan when he spoke against superstar power and the abuse by fan clubs. I think now that he is right.

I hope they realize the drawbacks soon and comeback to the good old days. It’s high time you stop basking in your own glory.

– A Malayalam movie fan

PS: Thanks a tonne to Vidhyut S and Fatima for editing and making this readable 🙂