Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa 2: The Sequel to Karthik's Story

So, Gautham Menon fans everywhere; rejoice! 


There is confirmation from the man himself that there will be a sequel to his 2010 classic Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa. Watch the interview below from 31:56 where Gautham talks about the film with film critic Baradwaj Rangan. Here are some information we know so far about the film:



1) Madhavan will be replacing Simbu as Karthik 


This will be Madhavan's second film with Gautham after the latter's directorial debut, the 2001 blockbuster Minnale. Gautham admits that the recasting is "bothering" since it is hard to imagine anyone else as Karthik. However, this problem stems from the norm of how this so-called mass heroes will only do solo films where they are the only male lead. Although this might be true, there must be more to the story since Simbu is currently working on a Mani Ratnam movie alongside three other heroes; Arvind Swamy, Vijay Sethupathi and Arun Vijay. He does not seem to have a problem doing a multi-starer then, which brings us to fact number two...


2) It will be a multi-starer


We have known for quite some time that Gautham Menon has been planning a multi-starer with heroes from different south Indian film industries. However, we had no idea it was for VTV 2. Apart from Madhavan as Karthik, there will be three other heroes.  Puneet Raj Kumar, Tovino Thomas and an unconfirmed Telugu actor will be playing the roles of Karthik's best friends from college. The three friends will each play a restaurant owner, an IT guy and a car dealer who also owns ships respectively.  


3) It will take place 8 years after the events of the first film 


At this point in his life, Karthik is an established film director with four films under his belt. His breakup with Jessie probably inspires all of his films. However, he is now a playboy who no longer believes in love and jumps from one girl to another. His sister and the rest of his family disagree with his lifestyle but this is the new Karthik. 


4) There will be four different versions 


The first ten minutes of each version will feature each character in their native language. Just like how Madhavan's Karthik will narrate his version in Tamil for the Tamil-speaking audience, Puneet will play a character from Bangalore and will narrate his version in Kannada. Similarly, Tovino will play a character from Trivandrum and will narrate his version in Malayalam and the same goes with the Telugu version. However, it is unclear if the rest of the film will be only in Tamil. 


5) It will be a road film


The four friends take a break from their lives and travel to a fifth friend's wedding. Gautham was very careful not to mention anything about the fifth friend's identity. He (or perhaps, she) might be another important character in the film as well.

Also check out:

Dhruva Natchathiram: A Teaser Breakdown


Friday, February 16, 2018

Top 35 International Brands That You Didn't Know Are Indian (Probably)



India has its share of brands that have gone international. However, not many know of their Indian origins because of their anglicized names. Here is a list of famous brands that are actually Indian:

1) Louis Philippe
Source: Google Images

2) Allen Solly
Source: Google Images


3) Peter England
Source: Google Images


4) East India Company
Source: Google Images


5) HiDesign
Source: Google Images


6) Da Milano
Source: Google Images


7) Monte Carlo
Source: Google Images


8) Franco Leone
Source: Google Images


9) Munich Polo
Source: Google Images


10) Flying Machine
Source: Google Images


11) AND Design
Source: Google Images


12) Liberty Shoes
Source: Google Images


13) Oxemberg
Source: Google Images


14) Max Fashion
Source: Google Images


15) Spykar
Source: Google Images


16) Gini and Jony
Source: Google Images


17) Manyavar
Source: Google Images


18) Wildcraft
Source: Google Images


19) Blackberry's
Source: Google Images


20) Orra Jewelry
Source: Google Images


21) Higginbotham's Bookstore
Source: Google Images


22) Oxford Bookstore
Source: Google Images


23) The Wishing Chair
Source: Google Images


24) Cox and Kings
Source: Google Images


25) Spencer's Retail
Source: Google Images



26) Café Coffee Day
Source: Google Images


27) Barista Lavazza
Source: Google Images


28) Smokin' Joe's Fresh Pizzas
Source: Google Images


29) Pizza Corner

Source: Google Images



30) Barbeque Nation
Source: Google Images



31) Cream Bell Ice Cream
Source: Google Images



32) Naturals Ice Cream
Source: Google Images



33) Monginis Cake Shop
Source: Google Images


34) Haldiram's
Source: Google Images



35) Dosa Plaza
Source: Google Images

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Radio Channels in Maxwell Hill (Taiping, Bagan Serai, Parit Buntar)


My Main Six:
  1. Fly 89.9 MHz
  2. Mix 91.3 FM
  3. Hitz 93.6 MHz
  4. THR 102.1 FM
  5. Traxx 105.3 MHz
  6. Minnal 107.9 MHz 
Supportive Six:
  1. Lite 89.3 FM
  2. Hot 90.5 FM 
  3. Suria 91.7 MHz
  4. Era 95.2 FM 
  5. Sinar 96.4 FM
  6. Nasional 107.1 MHz 
Other Six:
  1. Kool 90.2 FM
  2. Mutiara 95.7 MHz
  3. Kedah 97.5 MHz 
  4. Zayan 98.1 FM
  5. Klasik 103.3 MHz
  6. Perak 104.1 MHz

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Top 15 Tamil Movies of 2017

It is that time of year again to make our Top 15 list. As always, we need to remind you we did not watch EVERY Tamil film that came out this year. Only some were shown at our local cinemas. The rest we had to watch on DVD, hence the late update.


So let the countdown begin:

15) Baahubali 2
Google Images

The only reason this film is not higher up on this list is for one simple reason - laziness. For such a big budget blockbuster, this film forgets one thing that its prequel did so well - keeping its promise to be a bilingual. The filmmakers simply chose to dub over some integral scenes in Telugu into Tamil rather than shoot everything in both languages. The lip-sync errors are so obvious it takes you out of the movie. Despite this major flaw, the story, action sequences, cinematography and visual effects are all top notch and worth your time.

14) Thupparivaalan
Google Images

There is a big difference between being inspired by someone else's work and ripping off other's work. This is a prime example of the former. Director Myskin makes a film that is entirely original based on characters from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories, who has been given credits in the film's opening. The film stays loyal to not only its source material's characters but how the story typically unfolds. What starts of as a small case slowly leads up to a much more serious crime. If only it was edited better without revealing the antagonists' identity so early in the film, it would have been as good as BBC's Sherlock series.

13) Maayavan
Google Images

Watching this film was like watching a two hour version of an episode of Black Mirror, just with less social commentary and more fast paced action. This is really a one of a kind sci-fi mystery thriller to come out of Kollywood. The cast gives a great performance and the suspense keeps us at the edge of our seats. But if only the film had stayed more loyal to the Black Mirror formula, it would have been much higher up this list. Instead, director CV Kumar chose to spoon-feed most things to the audience with countless exposition accompanied by visuals that made parts of the film seem like a science lesson. However, these minor flaws can be looked over considering how entertaining the overall film is.

12) Kaatru Veliyidai
Google Images

This film proves that even at his most average, Mani Ratnam is better than your average Tamil film director. If there is one thing all critics can agree on is the technical aspects of this film are solid, as in all Mani Ratnam films. Mani does well in making love stories as he always grounds them in the reality of the masses. His love trilogy - Mouna Ragam, Alaipayuthey and OK Kanmani all revolved around urban middle-class Tamil-speaking people. However, if we can look pass Kaatru Veliyidai Kashmiri setting and predominantly northern Indian cast, we will find a beautiful love story that transcends time and place.

11) Pandigai
Google Images

Another great piece of work by a debut director, this film is one of the best heist films to come out in recent times. For a film that starts out as what seems to be an Indian version of Fight Club, the interval block twist suddenly moves the plot into a heist story about a group of young men trying to redeem themselves. What stops the film from being one of a kind is it has the stereotypical bubbly heroine and the comic-relief best friend. Apart from that, this is a film with some genuine surprises that will hold your attention right up to the very end.

10) Taramani
Google Images

A film about a young single mother who has a live-in relationship with a man she is only dating? This film makes OK Kanmani and Iraivi seem so tame. Just like how the male lead's preconceived notions about a woman's role in a relationship is challenged, so is the audience's. Although the director's voice over can be a little annoying at times, this is overall a well-made drama film that explores how urban India is adapting to changes coming in from western culture.

9) Aruvi
Google Images

What is left to say about this film that has not been said? This is one of those rare films that will make you cry, laugh, and feel all kinds of other emotions at once. Our heroine, Aruvi is a lovable and happy-go-lucky young lady who had a blessed childhood and grows up into a beautiful and confident college girl. Then, something happens to her that changes her life forever. Director Arun Purushotaman leads us to believe one thing about our protagonist. Then, he drops a bomb on us that shows us that we are no different than the members of society who he is making us go against. The satirical aspects of the film could have been more subtler, but the ending will make you forget all its flaws and haunt you for days.

8) Theeran Adhigaram Ondru
Google Images

Imagine a Gautham Menon script directed by KS Ravikumar. That is the best way to describe this film which is based on the real life Tamil Nadu police operation that led to the capture of the murderous Bawariya criminal tribes in Uttar Pradesh over a decade ago. This film could have been so much higher on this list if only the technical aspects matched the maturity of its story. The over the top action scenes, the buildup for certain characters, the comical love angle and the throbbing background score stop the film from being different. Otherwise, this is undoubtedly one of the best police films to come out of Tamil cinema in recent years.

7) Aval
Google Images

Aval joins the ranks of Maya as some of the few straight up Tamil horror thrillers in the pool of Chandramukhi wannabes. The fact that the intimate scenes between our male and female leads not making headlines for the wrong reasons goes to show how mature Tamil film goers are these days. That is not the only reason this film has an adult certificate. The film gets violent and brutal whenever it has to be for more than just shock value. The story is not entirely original but the gripping screenplay and the incredible technical aspects keep us intrigued from beginning to end.

6) Kurangu Bommai
Google Images

If you have watched it, then you will agree that no other film has shocked you as much as this one. Despite revolving around serious subject matters like smuggling and the search for a lost father, the film still manages to be somewhat fun and lighthearted. The big reveal at the very end will leave you breathless for a moment or two. It has been sometime since Bharathiraja has directed a film as big as his name, but in this film, he plays the role of the male lead's father with such endurance and love that you will remember this character no matter how big the revelation at the end is.

5) Maanagaram
Google Images

It is hard to believe that most of the people behind the scenes of the crew are first-timers. For such an intense suspense thriller, the director cleverly weaves in humour every now and then. Unlike most Tamil thriller films, the love track in this film plays an integral part to the overall story. An interesting part of the film is some story arcs are left open-ended and we as the audience are left to decide the fate of some of the characters involved. Even at the very end, when our two male leads finally come together, the director refuses to reveal what actually happens to them after that.

4) Kadugu
Google Images

Here is another film on this list that challenges the stereotypical role of the male hero in a Tamil movie. Bharath ticks all the boxes - he is handsome, musclebound, brave, kind and morally righteous. But he is also selfish. When he witnesses a man of power taking advantage of his position, he chooses to turn a blind eye. Rajakumaran, the second hero, is an unattractive and timid character. The third hero, Bharath Seeni, is for the most part a pushover who cannot stand up for himself when the first Bharath steals away his love interest. How these three heroes' stories come together is makes for a compelling story on what is right and what is wrong.

3) 8 Thottakkal
Google Images

Somebody give M. S. Bhaskar an National Award already! His performance itself deserves a watch, but that is not the only great thing about this film. First time director Sri Ganesh has a few surprises up his sleeve. His hero is not your usual ultra-macho super cop. What starts of as a slow-burning police procedural thriller makes a 360 degree turn in the second half and becomes a drama film. If you can look past the annoying song sequences, then this film's outright refusal to abide by regular Kollywood conventions makes it an absolute winner.

2) Vikram Vedha
Google Images

The film is very self-aware as a gangster origin movie. As this year's Thani Oruvan, the hero and anti-hero have great chemistry that works well on screen. Apart from the flashbacks that happen too frequently and inorganically, this film will keep you on the edge of your seat. The film not only has a gripping plot with several twists and turns, it has great character development that allows us to understand both male leads' motivation, particularly Vijay Sethupathi's anti-hero character.

1) Kuttram 23
Google Images

While Gautham Menon was busy making movies like Neethane En Ponvasantham, Yeto Vellipoyindhi Manasu, Ekk Deewana Tha and a slew of other often delayed projects, Arivazhagan has taken over his place as the ace director in making cop thrillers. It is not everyday that we get a medical thriller from Tamil cinema and that itself makes this film unique. Inspired by a novel by writer Rajesh Kumar, the movie is fast paced but still manages to maintain its mystery element for a shocking reveal in the climax.