Kerala Cafe(2009)

It sets the high standard among all those released in the recent past.It was an experimental venture and it wins.All credits goes to director Renjith for coming with the idea and coordinating the project.Its an astonishing journey of life depicted through 10 films . Am quite happy to hear that the experimental film become a success and that too many loved the experiment, i mean the causal users of the film. The following is about those 10 films with no particular order.

The film 'Nostalgia' shows the life of a man residing in Dubai who feels nostalgic about their time they lived in their homeland. Padmakumar did a good job in conveying the theme and the humorous way of conveying the thread was nice. His previous films included the critically acclaimed 'Ammakkilikkodu' and 'Vastavam'(Not to mention the commercial crap 'Parunthu').

The film 'Aviram' was a nice portrayal of recession hitting largely into the lives of ITians. And surprise surprise surprise, the director is none other than B.unnikrishnan who i never thought would come with such a good film. I think he is all set to do good films, just needs some good stories to work with. The main problem was he used to write for the films he directed. Well acted by Siddique and Sweta. Ten minute time frame was taken perfectly.

The film 'Mrityunjayam' gone below the expectation. In fact thought it deviated from the common theme journey. Horror didnt worked out well. But acting were still above average. The surprise was Fazil's son who seemed to have improved his acting.

The film 'Lalitham Hiranmayam' was the one got a lot of curse from the audience due to the subject the movie concentrated. The acting of the second heroine Dhanya was below par compared to other two. The subject was a bitter one for viewers of the cinema. But for me he has done the best job to carry out the subject. Excellent editing and cinematography. The colours of the film was so brilliant that i thought if the script was a little good, then it would have been a real treat to watch. The parts showing the romance(if it can be called so) between suresh gopi and dhanya was portrayed with soothing camera angles and did a perfect editing as well. The initial scene was verysoothing to the eyes with rain pouring in the background. Lots of styles to watchout for.

Lal Jose's 'Puram Kazhchakal' was adapted from the story written years back by C V Sreeraman. It starts as smooth pleasant story and gives some humorous moments and ultimately gives you pain. Simply good film with good acting department.

'Makal' by revathy was a disappointing tour. It wasnt a boring film. The problem was it was the same old story. The directors talent should be to choose a new subject and present that in 10 min frame or in how to present this story in a different way that could have just washed out the cliche. Disappointing effort, but not bad at all. It has its own moments that makes it a good one.

'Happy Journey' by Anjali menon positions among the top films in this saga which entertained most of the audience. There is something refreshing in the subject. The real hero of the subject for me was not the director, but were the duo actors, Jagathy Sreekumar and Nithya. Nithya promises to be a very good heroin to look out for. Nothing else to mention about the story. A good Journey that is really interesting.

'Off season' by Syamaprasad was again a disappointing one for me. I got something far below from what i expected. It was a light approach on a very serious theme. It worked well but was average. Its about recession hitting in foreign countries and people coming in India in search for the job.

'Island Express' is one of my favorite films of this saga. It has got cinematography, graphics and crisp editing blend with a good script and sharp dialogues. The direction was completely new from what i normally see in Indian films.The starting of the film wasnt very convincing and a bit tougher to follow along the lines to understand what it is telling. Slowly the story conveyed and when it reached the climax, it winded up beautifully. The heroine of the film was new and really good as well. Except Rahman and Jayasuriya acting from every other were excellent. The cinematography along with colors was top notching. Now Shankar Ramakrishnan is a director to watch-out for.

'Bridge' was directed by commercially acclaimed director Anwar Rasheed. He proved his caliber already with these average films. In one word the film was 'Awesome'. There isn't a single element to consider as weak in the film. Brilliant direction,excellent cinematography, excellent choice of story, neat script, dialogues and excellent acting department. Everything worked fine for the movie. Certain scenes in the films made me remember the films by the famous Korean director Kim ki Duk(this is not a comparison but just comparing the excellency). The first shot with the camera itself was brilliant. The raining that sustained in some parts of the movie is beautifully captured.The location was fantastic as well. I think this one was the film with larger time consumption more than 20 minutes. And this one has got more claps from the audience. Everyone felt like they have seen something big.True. Even some days after watching the film, the images that the film shown will be imprinted on you. Thats how powerful the medium Cinema is capable of. A director to watch-out for the future.

If you havent seen this yet, you would be missing one of the greatest films in malayalam. A real treat to watch for. An answer to all those who asked what can be done in 10 min frame. After watching this we feel like where the hell where these directors have been?

OneLine: An experimental venture that stands out to show the brilliance of direction.


District 9(2009)

Its aliens. Its Sci-Fi. Its terrific. And its low budget. But you wont feel it. Its the story first Script Second, the direction 3rd and the CGI comes last. But considering that on a low budget they created a quality CGI, that after the film is finished i felt like they were near me. A very strong story that makes you adhere to your seats from the beginning itself. The story is unique which makes the film interesting for each and every audience from the very beginning. Can you believe the slums of aliens? Can you believe aliens waiting in queue to get their food? Thats it. The craziness exists in the thread. The direction is excellent, that makes us feel all the pain, humour and the provocation. Into the thread; Once an alien mothership comes and halts above africa. The military unit evades into the spaceship and searches for dangerous extra terrestrial beings. Rather they witness very weak and frightened thousands of aliens. They then brings each of them from their mothership and takes into earth and gives treatments. As years pass by the area becomes completely populated by Aliens and becomes a ghetto and named as District 9 where man meets alien. The Nigerians exploits the aliens and makes money. The government studies their powerful biological weapons but no use. Some dead aliens are used for experiment as well. As years passes a riot begins where people demands evacuation of aliens and fights for freedom. Now the real story begins. A journalist appointed by govt, is send to the slums to gather the signature of the aliens in order to move them to a different place and from their matter becomes worse. If you are thinking this would be a usual E.T film, then you are wrong. In fact i witnessed a great film in recent times. Excellent debut by the director Neill Blomkamp. Hope he had more in his pocket. Well dont miss this film.

OneLine: What if there are so many lines to write....


Christmas in August(1998)

A beautiful film that just sustained the smile on my face. The film is very real. And thats the best thing why i loved it the most. The direction in classy that i felt a breeze going around me while watching the film. Its a bit pain towards the end, but that seemed to be usual with most of the korean melodrama. A sincere film with a very nice story. You will easily get attach to the leading characters. Into the thread; The hero Jung-won has his own studio where he takes phtotos of people coming to him. They range from children to youngsters to middle aged to oldest. He is so comfirtable with his life and takes it as easy and as a very pleasant one. He meets another girl who comes to visit his studio and soon she becomes a bit attracted to him, however i dont think it seemed like him attracted to her except that he seemed to be enjoying her company.There is not much to talk about the story,else that become a spoiler. Scenes like; when school going children are asking Jung-Won to enlarge their favorite girl in the group photo, and he soon involves with them in a little chit chat asking about their girls; are pretty funny and extremely beautiful. The editing seems to be choppy at times, but still the film is really good and worth a shot. My opinion is don't miss this one. Even if you are not a Korean movie fan you are gonna like this.

OneLine: Simply beautiful and suddenly become my favorite.


Classic aka Keulraesik(2003)

A beautiful romantic movie. The excellent part which i felt of the movie were the music and the background score. So much melody is worked into it. If you have got a romantic mind, then you would forget everything else and appreciate the film from your heart. The movie consists of two extreme love stories coupled with scenic views. Into the thread; Ji-Hyae finds the old letters belonging to h er mother Jo Hee from her bag detailing the romance between her and her first love, Joon-Hee.But fate decides her to move apart from him. The story then moves to present time were Ji-Hyae gets into a love triangle which goes on between her and her best friend and her friend Sang Min. This is mixed with the love trianlge in the past which she understands through her mother's letters. Unlike most of the korean melodram a, it has a happy ending. And the climax is a twist, something you wont expect. If you havent watched this movie yet, watch it, and watch a high qaulity one too, because the background locations chosen are so breathtaking and the music too.

OneLine: It's not a great film, but its very enjoyable and well done.


28 Days later(2002)

What will you do when one day you awake from bed and find out that nobody is around you? Then find that some are here, but not like what you thought. They are scary, they are behind you, run... Its about survival. What will you do for survival? Can you kill your friend, your sister, your brother or even your parents? And what if its like having suicide once you find that there is nothing after survival, and may be you gonna die soon or become like all other zombies? The film captures all these emotions. The loneliness, the anger, the lust, the parental care, the love towards your lover, parent and everything. The story is quite good, in fact excellent to glue you onto your seat until you finished seeing. The climax is excellent. The best thing that i felt about the film is the direction. There were scary movies even before this and after this. Most of them entertained you but only some of them made you feel like you watched a great quality film. I would say Stanley Kubrick's The Shining was one such kind of movie even though both are miles apart in their treatment. I always felt slumdog was an overrated movie. Watch this. Then you know that this one is way better than slumdog(i know both are of different genre). The treatment is excellent.

Oneline: Simply brilliant


Ditto aka Donggam(2000)

A blend of melodrama with fiction(or fantasy). So-eun gets a ham radio and one night she gets some signals from In. In teaches her how to use the equipment and they began chatting. This leads into a relationship between each other. They finds that both are studying in the same college. One night they both agree to meet at a marked point. However they wont find each other. Then In finds that they are separated by time. In fact 21 years. In is living in the year 2000 and So eun in the year 1979. At first she was very uncomfortable with the fact that they are 21 years apart and felt In was doing some pranks on her. When days went by she finds that they are in fact 21 years apart. And when he finds more about In she becomes shocked and she becomes in a state between her faith and love. She finds that her love towards her boyfriend in the present time may change the fate of In in 2000. Like most of the film the film is bittersweet and ends in the year 2000. A slow film but very much enjoyable.

Oneline: Something different in the thread.


Rear Window (1954)

"Through his rear window and the eye of his powerful camera he watched a great city tell on itself, expose its cheating ways...and Murder!". A classic from the director Sir Alfred Hitchcock. His movies always center around crime and mystery but aren't necessarily racy thriller, but would guide you to a different location makes you become part of the story. Don't be reluctant to see this movie just because it is born in 1954. It is unique in its style. The story would be a difficult one to remake as most of the material for the story couldn't be accomplished. For eg: due to heat people in neighborhood are used to open their windows when they are inside the house. Which wont work for today as most of the apartment in New York have centralized ac system. However a strikingly similar film is made in 2007 called 'Disturbia'. The film is a bit slow but yet very beautiful that i almost forgot that am watching a film. I felt like i was sitting and walking beside the characters. i wont say all characters were excellent in their acting, but were enough to accomplish the job. The story is about a wheelchair bound photographer, Jeff using his binocular watches his neighborhood. While he was on his job he got accident and broke his leg. As he is in wheelchair all day, his only entertainment becomes watching the characters in neighborhood through their open rear windows. He watches their daily activities and becomes acquainted with all of them. A dancer who enjoys practicing her steps, aged couples with a dog, a lonely women who seem to be living in a fantasy world,a newlywed couple,a salesman and his complaining wife, a frustrated composer were in his neighborhood. One day Jeff feels like the salesman's wife is missing and he thinks he may have murdered her. He had no proof and he found it difficult to make his friend, the detective to believe him. But at least he become successful in making his lover and his nurse to believe him and together they are digging for proof. The story becomes intense and climax was very good as well. Even though its a mystery, thriller film the romance also depicted very well. In short one of the best films i have ever seen.

OneLine: A must see film.

10 /10