Tag Archives: Chennai

5 Reasons Why Chennai Express is Houseful Despite Pathetic Film-making Compartments

chennai express shwetha

Google Chennai Express and you will find pathetic review headlines like the one pasted above for the film. If Box Office is to be believed all these reviews have gone for a toss. The film is set to breach 200 crores and is almost certain to beat 3 idiots for the record. Just goes on to show all that hype we create around only good movies irrespective of the stars working is just hype, nothing else. Anyways, here are five reasons we thought Chennai Express is houseful despite a pathetic storyline and script.

1.     Shahrukh Khan and Deepika Padukone: You might bomb me here saying the last two films of SRK has bombed big time so I am wrong in putting this as my first point. Wait, let me bring forth my thought. I mean how many times have you seen Shahrukh Khan doing a comedy with someone like Deepika Padukone and failing. Does anyone think that Om Shanti Om had a plot. The film though still was massively successful, wasn’t it. Same reason.

2.     An audience that is masses: So you thought someone reads the reviews and then watches films. You are right but you are absolutely wrong with the numbers of such folks. They can be counted on your fingers and on most occassions even they do not agree to reviews unless they see themselves. Plus movies like this do a world of good outside metros, especially in Hindi speaking states and this one of course even in Tamil Nadu. Go and see the kind of whistles Lungi song would have got in the hinterlands of UP as well as in Chennai.

3.    The entertainment quotient: For the majority of the audiences, filmmaking doesn’t matter the most as long as it entertains them for the time being. Chennai Express may not have the great content in terms of a script but it does have those elements to entertain and that not many can debate. One of our authors who to us is the most prudent film person also liked the fact that you could keep brain outside and watch this flick. Frankly, in a daily life that is too bugged with serious issues the maximum that is needed is a good time-pass two and a half hours. He says Chennai Express comes well on that point.

4.     Marketing: How can we forget marketing in today’s filmmaking business. Especially in an SRK film who personally if you take my opinion knows the best ways to use pr and media coverage in his advantage. The way he toured promoting the flick even at time when he was unless spoke volumes about the kind of extent the filmmakers where going to create an impact. The film had to do well after this, the only surprise was the doing as good as it has done till now.

5.     Let’s not forget the fans: These one brought together a huge chunk of fans considering at stake where three big stars, SRK, DP and not to forget the blockbuster as I call him, Rohit Shetty. The fan power spoke of itself when no one spoke of them and showed the reviewers their real value. SRK’s fans again re-instated him at the top and he would be definitely cherishing this after a couple of duds in the last couple of years.

Let’s cast no doubt over the fact that Rohit Shetty’s films are meant for fun and nothing else. It was upto the audiences to make up their mind and watch the film which they did in huge numbers. We have the option to keep our intellectual eyeglasses on or simply go as someone with whistling skills; good and bad films come later.

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Chennai Express – Is A Full Paisa Wasool Journey

chennai express shwetha

By Shwetha Kalyanasundaram

All set to board the Chennai express?!? Vaango…ukkarango (read: please come…please sit)!!! Is the journey worth the ride?!? Read on.

Full credits to SRK and the moviemakers to have the name of the female lead displayed over the male counterpart! This drew loud raptures from the crowd and what a way to start the two and half hour odd train journey.

Back again as Rahul (naam toh suna hoga), a planned trip to Goa changes track to Rameshwaram, as he comes across Meenamma, who boards the Chennai Express in typical DDLJ style. As the train chugs along, there are definitely some funny gags which have you in splits. A la Rohit Shetty’s ishtyle, the movie serves comedy and action in equal dosages – flying cars and bikes and colorful sets, for a change, we got to see some action involving steel buckets too!

The movie does have its share of rough patches. Deepika’s twang was lousy, despite being a southern belle. Her Hindi was fluent in certain places, while in most of the other scenes, her dialogues were laced with the southern accent. How’s that even possible?!? Gal, you ought to have gone in for a dub-artist. SRK keeps referring to the power of the common man in the movie. Now, how many common men wear or for that matter can afford a Dolce & Gabbana vest today?

A major portion of the film had Tamil dialogues – for a moment, I was confused if I was watching a Hindi movie or a Tamil flick. The female lead, aptly nicknamed Ms. Subtitle serves as an interpreter whenever the need arises. As much as the important bits were translated, it’s obvious that some portions were lost!

SRK’s screen presence is mind blowing and has you begging for more. He tickles the funny bone, makes you shed a tear and packs in quite a punch in the action scenes. Deepika Paduone was a complete stunner and surrenders to her character completely (albeit her southern accent). The veteran southern star Sathyaraj leaves a desired effect but his role was down played that had me a tad disappointed. The villain Niketan Dheer looked menacing and fit into his role perfectly (but even the villain couldn’t speak good Tamil!). Rohit Shetty travels the full mile to deliver an action packed comedy with all the tried and tested ingredients of the genre he is known for.

Chennai Express is a typical family entertainer – full paisa vasool journey!!

Chennai Express: Finally an SRK film with a story

Chennai Express: Finally An SRK Film With A Story

chennai_express

By Ankush Kumar

The last interview I read on Shahrukh Khan, he said two things. One ‘ Deepika Padukone is the soul of Chennai express’. Two ‘ he wants to be remembered as an actor who constantly tried’.

Chennai express is an example true to his latter statement. The man has definitely tried. SRK has always been your boy next-door actor, whenever he has tried hardcore action, the Baadshah has looked stupid. But here in this journey he has balanced the genres of romance and action perfectly well.

Add to this the comic elements Rohit Shetty style and ‘you would want to get on this train baby’! His former statement that ‘Deepika is the soul of the film’ also holds true. She plays a South Indian girl whose dad is a don and gets the accent and mannerisms spot on.

Rahul played by SRK gets on a train and witnesses the death of a ticket checker, hence Deepika escorts him to her house till matters calm down, and how Rahul escapes the clutches of the goons forms the crux of this Southern sojourn.

The cameraman has captured picturesque Kerala beautifully. The editing of the movie though is a huge let down. The first half of the movie is crisp until Deepika and SRK escape from her home. Post interval though the film drags on endlessly. 

Every time a Rohit Shetty film is filled with amazing car related action sequences; this is no difference except for the fact that Ajay Devgn possibly looks better doing those stunts. As long as SRK plays the quintessential lover boy Chennai express is a joyride, but beyond that the movie falters!

The saving grace though is that the movie atleast has a story, and for a change the item numbers have the fun element than the vulgarity.

I am going with 2.5/5 stars with this movie; die-hard SRK fans relish the character of Rahul yet again. Till then Eid Mubarak!

A Birthday Bash Gone Awry

By Kartik Kannan

persuasion

8 am April 13- 2011

As I was browsing through the newspaper, I took a closer look at the date. I was 48 hours from my wife’s birthday, and it totally skipped my mind, since I was busy pursuing my alternate career as  a cricket correspondent for a radio station (Chennai LIVE 104.8 FM) in Chennai. Before my wife found out, that I had no surprises lined up on her birthday, I had to figure a place, mode of commute and a nice room (apart from a gift that makes her go WOW).

I went to my bathroom with my laptop, and within a few Google searches, honed in on Gokarna, a place diametrically opposite to Chennai, on the west coast. I booked bus tickets on KSRTC, for a 1330 bus ( or so I thought ), and booked a beach facing room on OM beach.

I told my wife, that there was a surprise waiting for her, and she should pack her bags for a quick 5 day trip. I did not mention the name of the place though, and used the time she was dressing up to buy her a watch.

45 minutes early or 15 minutes late?

We biked our way to the CMBT bus stand, reached there 45 minutes early, so that I could blindfold her in the bus, and not tell her the location. It turned out that, I had seen the 1330 bus, but had booked the 1230 bus instead, and here I was at the bus stand,15 minutes after the bus had left. One part of the surprise broke when she realized that we had to board another Bangalore bus. We took the 1330 bus, and found our way to Bangalore.

Bangalore Darshan

I realized that we had to reach Navrang Theatre ( North Bangalore) to board another private bus to Gokarna at 2130. Our bus to Bangalore was late (2010) and it reached Silk Board, on the southern periphery of the city, and I decided to get down here, and rush in auto to the northern end of the city. After agreeing to the auto-drivers random number quote, and frantic calls to my wife’s cousin in Bangalore, we realized that we may not make it to the 2130 bus, being stuck in one of the many traffic jams. My relatives sensed that we had not had any food, so packed some rotis for us, and drove to the bus stand, to ask the bus to wait for us. Luckily for us, the bus was delayed by 30 minutes and waited 5 more minutes for us, after our 3 wheel mad goose chase across the ends of the city. The conductor called out loud and clear, for passengers to Gokarna, and the final surprise element evaporated in thin air, as my wife heard his shrieks.

Celebritydom in Bhatkal

Some more adventure followed next morning. It was my turn to report on last night’s IPL match for the radio station back home, which I had completely forgotten. I had no clue about the game in last night’s mad chase, and had very little battery charge left on my mobile. I called up a friend, and he mailed me the Cricinfo scorecards, which I read in 2 minutes, and then the call came from the radio station asking me to stay on line, while they introduce me in the show. I could not do this in a moving bus with wind blowing from both sides, so asked the driver to stop on the road for 2 minutes, which was in the outskirts of a town called Bhatkal. I got down from the bus and got on with my match report, on phone with a lot of gesticulations with my hands and face, to drive home the impact of Pune beating Kochi in last night’s match. As I finished, I saw some 20 people around me, listening and watching intently, including the bus driver. They thought I was some celebrity who was doing Live reporting, since I also had my SLR camera dangling across my neck (which I had kept to take moving shots from the bus).

Meanwhile, my wife was clearly amused by the turn of events, and had quite a start to her birthday eve! We had more adrenalin than we had bargained for, and hoped we’d get some more on our trip, as the bus made its way to the rickety Gokarna Bus stand.

 

 

 

The Ghost of Kothi No. 136 at Punjabi Bagh

This is a short story by Ravi J Singh. For those of you who feel excited by fear factors, keep a lookout for the series.

Ghost

“Do it fast guys, we are already late and the installations cannot be delayed more”. Vardha, the South Indian team leader almost shouted on his fabricating team. He nervously looked at his golden chained Timex watch tied to his left hand. Droplets of sweat were now visible on his forehead and temple area, though it was a cold night of Delhi in January 1998.

Work pressure and deadline can have this effect on the leads after all. But was the pressure really so much on Vardha Swami Narayanan, a 33-year-old recently married guy from Madras who immigrated to Delhi seven years ago, that he was sweating profusely in a cold night of January of Delhi. The minute needle of his watch touched the number 3 and the hour needle was on 12. A worried Vardha looked at his guys – Ghanshyam, Kishore and Surinder – all young lads in their early 20s, who were trying to assemble the signboards with their trembling hands.

They wanted to get over this ordeal before 12:30am, and so did Vardha. All of them were aware of the fact that a big showroom opening was scheduled of one of their regular clients, and all the signboards had to be installed before 11am in the morning. They still had good 10 hours to complete the job, which by industry standards, were more than enough to complete the job.

Despite this, they were in great hurry. Was it the long working hours? Probably not, because working in night meant 1.5 times extra regular income and free night meal! And 500-600 rupees extra was lure enough to keep any fabricating guy working whole night.

Everything was fine till last week when that incidence happened with Radhey and Kishore…

…The same incidence happened with Srinivas and Mishra four days back and with Sonu, Mangal and Vishnu yesterday.

And, it happened to all of them in the fabrication area and around 12:30am. The area which was a long covered passage connecting the 200sq. yard lawn to the back side of famous Kothi no.136 of Punjabi Bagh area in West Delhi.

Punjabi Bagh is an affluent upper-class area of West Delhi, primarily comprising kothis (villas) ranging from 1500 to 3000 sq. yards. And, of course, true to its name, the majority of the population is of upper business class Punjabis. Like the Bhallas, who were the owner of Kothi no. 136, many had their business establishment within their villa.

So, the ‘Bhalla Niwas’ which was the name of Kothi no. 136, was planned in a way where the front 2/3rd area was utilized for the lawn, car parking and residence. And, in the rest 1/3rd were crammed the reception, design studio, printing unit, fabrication area, finance dept, a stinking urinal and a big 50 years old Peepal tree. The thick Peepal, with its roots emerging from the branches, looked horrifying, especially at night. And it happened to be at the other end of the fabrication area.

Currently the trio was fighting against time to finish their work and escape the place before 12:30am. Vardha, yet again, looked at his bejeweled watch, which was a dowry gift. The clock struck 12:28. It was in no way they could complete the job in the next two minutes.

Suddenly Kishore shouted “wo aa gayi, wo aa gayi“, threw his tools and ran towards the reception area like a mad dog. Ghanshaym and Surinder stood on the spot clueless and so did Vardha. They looked terrified and unsure. Is this really happening to them…the incidence which happened to seven people in their organization in last 10 days on three occasions! And, Kishore was the only one who had agreed to work at night again despite going through the now-infamous incidence. This incident has been talked and discussed incessantly by the 35 odd employees of Bhalla Signworks, situated in the Kothi no. 136 from last 10 days.

While they looked around unsure, they suddenly heard the voice!

…to be continued

Rebut To The Author Who Wrote “Rebut To Chennai Super Kings Fans vs 1.230 Billion Indians”

rebut

 

By Shwetha Kalyanasundaram

Pretty lousy in your rebuttal Mr. Author! For starters, if the article written by Anuj was “unnecessary”, you needn’t have published it in the first place. You ought to be careful of your words when you write dude! Being a critic is alright, but you’ve gone the extra mile, hurting the sentiments of many with your HATRED!

So, here goes my rebuttal of certain points you’ve made.

1. Dude, all the teams playing in the IPL have the same amount to spend on their players. It’s no different for CSK/MI and for the rest of the teams. Ain’t our fault if RR and Punjab spend their money on unknown players. N all the franchise players pockets runs “deep” (quoting you)!

2. As far as exploitation by the auto drivers, what has that to do with cricket dude?!? Makes no sense. N FYI, exploitation by auto drivers happens in other states as well…not jus limited to Tamil Nadu! I ve faced the heat in Bangalore despite being a “South Indian”! And up north, the first question the auto/cab drivers ask is “Madamji, aapp “Madrasi” eh?” Ain’t that exploitation??? Dude, you oughta realise that it happens across the length and breadth of the nation. not jus in CHENNAI!

Guess this link would tell you how gracious we the Chennai crowd are to any team – regional/international whenever a match is played in MAC

http://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/a-rewind-of-indiapak-matches-in-chennai/article4256150.ece

3. Music is the passion of every Chennaite! You’ve jus touched a raw nerve there. True, Halla Bol & Korbo are catchy – pockets of the two Bollywood stars there run “deep”! The two teams spent more money on advertising than on their players…ha ha ha! We were sensible enough to create a simple, yet effective anthem for our team. No stars – focus remains on the true flavors of Chennai

“Kolaveri Di” alone doesn’t explain the music of Chennai. We are a state which dives deep down to the fundamentals of music, providing the nation and the world with some of the best Carnatic musicians! Come December, we host the entire nation and people across the world to some delightful music and dance, n mind you, it’s not jus Carnatic but also Hindustani vocalists from across the country. Music runs deep in all of us. Looks like you turn a deaf ear…I ll send you season tickets for December tis year and then I dare you to talk about our music!

4. As far as your wonderful embrace to us, thanks (but no thanks!) It’s people like you who create a divide n rule policy and it sucks dude! Quoting you again “Change YOUR thinking, embrace US, and believe me the feeling will be mutual”

5. As much as you put up a disclaimer that you don’t mean to hurt us, IT HAS!

For someone who jus said that you were angered by only the fanaticism, this article throws light on how much of hatred you have to a state which is a part of the nation we all belong to. It’s people like you who create the divide. Tis article was totally uncalled for and shows you in poor light! Disgraceful Mr. Author!

CSK rocks

 

 

 

 

Rebut To “Chennai Super Kings Fans vs 1.230 Billion Indians”

meiyappan

For me the IPL was over the moment Mumbai Indians won it and the trophy was given over to the winning captain. A Chennai fan though Anuj Chennai, wrote an unnecessary article on why Chennai fans are subject to global criticism and why they are the best side in any case. A rebut point by point was needed and here it is.

1. Most consistent team: Go find out how much your team was brought for, how much was paid for some marquee players and how much someone like Sir Ravindra Jadeja got. Now let’s compare it with spends by some teams like the Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab. If with that kind of spend, those teams can win and reach best four, its a shame for teams like CSK and MI if they do anything less than winning. On the same yardstick, don’t compare a franchise based model with a national model (Australian cricket team). Here if you can pay and you have deep pockets (by now we all know where the deep pockets were coming from) you can buy the best, in Australia it’s not money that players are bought for. I hope you are getting the point drawn.

2. CSK fans and Madness: This is something I would somewhat agree to. Even an auto-rickshaw driver in that state and city comes down to exploitation of anyone who he figures out cannot speak the language. That’s how they border everyone and chuck them out. As far as praising Pakistanis are concerned, this is a serious case of split personality disorder.

3. Yeah, You Alienate Others: Anuj again makes a great point in number three when he says it can be frustrating for a fan supporting any other franchise in the stadium. The entire idea of IPL was to divide and if the so called literati of Tamil Nadu is being fooled by it, hats off to Lalit Modi, what a proof of concept this is.

4. The Anthem Is Pathetic: Frankly, I would not mince words in calling the Anthem as poor as it can get. Korbo Lodbo Jeetbo and Halla Bol are far better in lyrics and Music qualities. Just adding jingoism is not creating an anthem. Probably ‘Kolaveri Di’ best explains the music there.

5. No One Has Alienated Chennai: No hard feelings bro, your state and land is as much a part of this country as any other. Don’t feel alienated. This feeling of yours leads to the people there thinking everyone is an enemy around. Change the thinking, embrace others, believe me the feeling will be mutual.

This article did not mean to hurt anyone. It only meant rebutting a few erring points laid out in the one by a fanatic fan. 1.230 billion people love when AR Rehman wins an Oscar and when Sridevi gyrates her body to the tunes of Mr. India. We are proud of the Kamal Hasans and Rajnikanths of Tamil Nadu. We are proud of a Tamilian Muslim President called APJ Abdul Kalam but we do not like when someone proudly rants that he/she is more important because of their lineage and state.

tamil actors