Charlie Review – Charlie is a Malayalam romantic comedy released in 2015. A young woman Tessa moves into a house and finds the previous tenant Charlie has left his things as is in the house. As she cleans she finds the narration of incomplete incident and attempts to find more about it. Her attempt turns into a journey of her life and she falls in love with Charlie before she meets him.
Charlie is a soul searching journey filled with love. It seems to be a fairy tale of sorts that each one of us try to find in our life. The characters in the movie are sketched beautifully and each one of them stays in your mind later as well. The comic tone of the movie adds to a pleasant watching experience. Dulquer Salman and Parvathy Menon have essayed their roles with perfection. As the movie progresses they grow on you. The curiosity and eagerness to meet Charlie grows on with Tessa. As it grows on her it grows on the audience too. The other significant character in the movie is played by Aparna Gopinath. She is a great addition in the second half.
The screenplay never dulls for a moment and it is one of the best interval blocks I have seen for a romantic movie after Vinnaithandi Varuvaya. The movie also captures the essence of the culture of Cochin very well. The background score and songs merge with the sequences well. The climax sequences happening amidst of Thrissur Pooram has been done well. Kudos to Director Martin Prakkat and team for believing in Charlie and being candid in presenting it.
High Points: Fresh screenplay, Characterization of the artists, Comic flavor to the whole movie, Culture of Cochin, Performance of the lead actors.
Low Points: Not many low points here.
Overall, if you have been complaining about the usual cliches in movies go and watch Charlie it is fresh, emotional and provides a great viewing experience.
My Sassy Girl Review – My Sassy Girl is a South Korean romantic comedy movie released in 2001. Gyeon-woo an engineering college student meets a girl who is very bizarre. But circumstances make them meet frequently and he falls in love with her. Will they get together is the plot of My Sassy Girl.
A feel good romantic comedy script’s success depends upon the uniqueness of the characters and the situation although the overall plot is going to be the same. The script should introduce the lead pairs and make the audience want them to get together. My Sassy Girl does that perfectly. The movie is so fresh due to the characterization of the lead characters and the unique situations they are seen in. The movie throws a surprise to the audience in the way the characters react at every scene. It thus makes it a very interesting watch. For instance, the habit of the girl to create screenplays for movies based on some popular blockbusters and bringing in a twist to the ending is a brilliant ploy. The director Kwak Jae-yong has not given into the temptation of creating the usual cliches of a romantic movie. Rather he has travelled along with his characters throughout and the suspense he has held till the end makes it a very interesting watch.
The script also brilliantly leaves certain aspects to the viewers discretion. For instance, the girl’s name is not told throughout the movie and if she actually meets an old man at the end is left for interpretation.
High Points: The plot situations are crafted well, The characterizations of the lead protagonists are done well. The suspense held till the end gives a high degree of satisfaction to the viewers, the fresh visuals are of a great strength for the movie. The flash sequences of the story written by her.
Low Points: Not much of low points here
Overall My Sassy Girl is a great example of how a romantic comedy script should be. This is a must watch for all romantic comedy lovers.
Inji Iduppazhagi Review – Inji Iduppazhagi is a Telugu and Tamil romantic comedy released in 2015. Sweety is a happy go lucky girl. Her mother is worried about her over-weight. When Sweety meets a handsome and health conscious documentary filmmaker Abhi as her wedding alliance she rejects the proposal before he rejects it but internally she hopes that he would fall in love with her.
The movie’s plot has a potential to be a wholesome entertainer. It opens very well where we are introduced to the sweetness in sweety’s life. She reminds of Amélie Poulain from the french movie Amélie in the way she views her life and wishes to bring happiness in people’s life. But soon the plot looses its track and gives into the temptation of commercial formula thereby giving way for cliches being introduced. There is a point in the film where Sweety tells Abhi that she is tired of being just a friend. Post this the movie does a nose dive and Sweety’s character becomes lost in translation.
Anushka has performed well for the most part. But the story couldn’t capitalize on her acting skills. Apart from her, Urvashi has a very enjoyable role. The character of Sweety’s father, grandfather, mother and brother have been sketched well. In the end, you think they could have made a very good movie with the premise and the characters.
High Points: Initial setting up of the plot, Production quality, Anushka’s acting, Characterization of Anushka’s family.
Low Points: Lack of focus on the screenplay, commercial cliches, predictable and beaten to death sequences.
Overall this is an effort that has gone bad due to its lack of focus and substandard treatment of the plot. With a better screenplay, this team has a great potential to deliver an entertainer. Wish them luck for their next venture.
Can Skip It
Romeo Juliet Review – Romeo Juliet is a Tamil romantic comedy released in 2015. Aishwarya misunderstands Karthick to be a wealthy man and falls in love with him. When they decide to take their relationship to next level she realizes that he is not rich and breaks up with him. Will Karthick be able to win Aishwarya back is the plot of Romeo Juliet.
Producer turned director Lakshman has tried his hands with some tried and tested formula of romance. However the plot uniquely differentiates itself from the lead pairs being the ideal lovers to more self-centered people. When this was a welcome change in the plot, it quickly falls back into the trap of making them those ideal pair. The screenplay is very superfluous and does have a lot of flaws. What keeps the movie ticking is the music and those moments where few of the comedy sequences had worked and brings a laugh. Jayam Ravi has done a decent job in his role while Hansika’s acting chart varies like an ECG graph. The scenes are bit lengthy compared to how precise the modern day scene constructions have become.
When making romantic dramas one of the key things that the writers should pay attention to is the point of view from both male and the female characters. Many screenplay falls into the trap of skewing towards the point of view of just one character. Romeo Juliet is one such screenplay.
High Points: Uniqueness in the plot with self-centered people falling in love, music is a big positive for the movie.
Low Points: Very predictable screenplay, cheesy romantic sequences that had been done and dusted in many movies. It is high time for Tamil script writers to move away from naming their lead character in the romantic drama as “Karthik”.
Overall Romeo Juliet is an average affair that delivers only half of what it had promised to. It would entice people looking for a cheesy romantic drama. You might enjoy it watching this one when played on TV.
Wait for DVD/TV
Haiku Nee Short film Review – Haiku Nee is a Tamil short film released in 2015. Arjun and Ramya once connected with deep love have broken up few years ago. But still Arjun carries the love for Ramya in his heart and visits India from US with a hope of reuniting with Ramya again.
Thanks to Surrya for letting me watch this movie as I missed it when it was premiered.
The movie is from the team that made Unakkae Uyiranen. It is love based theme yet again and director Surrya Narayanan has a nice grip on portraying love on the screen. The visuals are very fresh, crisp and colorful. Like the previous outing they have managed with very minimal characters. As an audience you wish and hope they get together but things start going more awry and whatever you hoped for not to happen starts happening. This kind of keeps you engaged with the plot. As you see the film the brilliant visuals are sure to make a very good impact on you. In particular the love portion of the lead pairs has been taken very well and is aesthetically very appealing. The only point I was disconnected is the feedback scene between the coffee shop waiter and Arjun. Seemed bit out of place, a different context in the conversation could have helped much better.
High Points: Fresh visuals, Background score suited well for the narration, Screenplay is very crisp and bringing the entire story plot into a coffee shop is very good.
Low Points: I couldn’t stop comparing their last outing with seasoned actors versus new faces this time. They have given their best and I am sure with experience it would get better.
Overall Haiku Nee is yet another promising product from Surrya Narayanan and his team. Kudos and all the best to the team for a nice short film. I am expecting more genres to be explored by them in the future.
Watch the film here.