Sunday, December 23, 2012

Chinaman - review

‘Wasted Talent’  is a theme that I love. The moon and Six pence is one of my all time favorite of the same genre.
There is another way to view ‘Wasted Talent’, it’s called hidden gem, the gem which will forever be hidden.
We love to tell people our discoveries.
 “Invest in this stock, mark my words. It’s a multi-bagger”
“But no one is saying so”
“That’s why I’m saying this is a multi-bagger, that no one had realized. I found it”
What if the talent that you discovered was never discovered by no one!
Chinaman  - This is one of the first fiction book that I bought.
I wanted to read a sports novel and the only sports that I know reasonably well was cricket and I don’t know much about Srilanka, so I thought that it will be a good experience.
Non-linear narration, a story about the book in the book itself.  Story about a Journalist’s life, about a mystery cricket. LTTE, match – fixing, cricket politics. Is sports more important than life?
So many things are discussed in this book and you need patience, because the main theme is finding the mystery man and you need to patiently go through all the pages to find it out.
There are so many distractions in that book, for example the character Johny, there is no need for him in this book.
You can have a big canvas of picture to provide a good experience, but if you cannot connect everything in it holistically it becomes a drag.  
You know the story is fictional, so many things are looking just out of world, you never will really feel that this is a biography of a mystery cricketer (that’s what I thought initially)
Anyway it’s a different story told pretty well. Taking events from  a person’s life bit by bit and trying to understand him is a difficult effort.
Well done Snehan Karunatilakan

Friday, September 7, 2012

Director's Cut - Blurb

Three Aspiring Directors see a girl in Marina Beach and the scheme of events that unfolds trigger their creative juice…..

This is the new story I've written, drop me a mail if you would like to read it.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Urumi - Review

I was disappointed.
Why should you have (unnecessary) love story in a period film. That too why you make a Hindu love a Muslim girl and vice-versa.
Why make Vidya Balan an oracle and have one unnecessary song.
Why unnecessary present day role for the period film characters. Why can’t the film be just a period film, why an unnecessary reference to present.
Why should there be a hand to hand combat between the hero and the villian.
Even Avatar had a final hand to hand combat with the hero and villain, cinematic and unnecessary.
I did research on Vasco da Gama after seeing the film and was astonished to find what was shown in the film was true.
This just shows how skewed our History awareness is. Also shows how powerful media Films are.
More (authentic) historical films needs to be made. But care should be taken to give a balanced view. Black and White picturization, we are good they are bad kind of  stereotypic  characters is not the answer.
Good camera but not so good music and also very slow combat. I expected at least 1 full sized war. Most fighting sequence in slow motion.
It seems Vasco da Gama had asked the Hindu ruler to expel the Muslims which the Hindu did not agree.
This important and significant scene was missed in the film.
Sometimes the creator throws in some symbols, some hints, which he expects the viewer will  uncover and appreciate.
A good creator leaves lot of symbols, there is a main story and then there are hints which can be appreciated by viewer who wishes to go deeper.
The Mosquito bite on Gama was a symbol, the symbol was to show that Gama finally died of Malaria. Gama did not care much about the mosquito, he just kills it. Blissfully unaware of his awaiting death.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The Tragedy about the Tragedy

Cinema, fiction are very different from our real life. Real life has a lot of irrational things. But fiction, cinema are technically rational, these mediums present the ‘edit’ version of real life.
2 characters meet and they speak about a point and they speak so that the reader/ viewer understand sthe context. This can never happen in real life.
Take this example
“Do you really have to go?”, asks the mother
“Yes amma. This is educational tour and we are going to Udhagamandalam to study the tribes life”, replied the daughter
Do you see how crystal clear the dialogue is? But can you be sure that this is how the incidents happen in real life? The woman and her daughter would’ve spoken the same things, but it would have been lengthy exchange and could’ve happened over a period of week. But for the sake of Fiction/ cinema the creator has given the distilled information.
Now there is this craze in Tamil Cinema to take a rustic story with a tragic end. But what is tragic in this tragic cinema is the tragedy is irrational!
Take for example ‘Vennila Kabadikulu’, the movie goes for a smooth finish, but the director decides that he needs a tragedy. Nothing works like tragedy, the sympathetic wave of the crowd is extremely important.
So the hero dies accidently. Yes! Accident happens in real life too! Life is so irrational that suddenly a person dies in an accident. But in cinema you cannot do it. You should be as rational as possible.
It’s ok if a character dies of an accident and then the story can be how the people around come terms of what happened. The story can provide space for how rationally the characters react. But abruptly ending a story with a tragedy is a ‘tragedy’ of creativity.
In ‘Valmiki’ the hero is a thief and he finally turns a new leaf and all of a sudden someone snatches the gold chain from the heroine and she gets cut in her neck and she dies. Come on! Be creative, it’s easy to make people cry but it’s difficult to make the tragedy rational. And it’s the duty of the creator to make it rational.

Mirza Raja - Blurb

“We are not slaves of Mughals, to not to care for the empire during time of distress. We are very much part of the glorious Mughal empire. We are partners, stakeholders”

The life of a Rajput Commander of the Mughal Empire.

This story I wrote recently can be called 'narrative non-fiction'.
I tried my best to be faithful to history.
I was intrigued by this Rajput Commander, who witnessed and co-created some of the important events in his time period.
He was eclipsed by some prominent historical figures, I just had a glimpse of him and thought how big role he might've played and did my research which confirmed my intution.

If you want to read this story drop a mail and i will send it across to you.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Don’t fool you readers

I’d seen soaps where in an important event happens. I mean I know when I see that event that it cannot happen. Soap proceeds very slowly why should there be an important breakthrough now and guess what.
An actor wakes up from his sleep, forehead sprinkled with sweat, he gets relaxed that it was just a dream. But you viewer may not get relaxed! This is just cheating the viewer.
The viewer/ reader should be pleasantly surprised but should not get irritated or fooled. If the creator takes care of the above rule the world will be a better place.
In Vinnaithandi Varuvaya, there is the last song where the Hero and Heroine gets married in America. I’ve no issues with it being a dream song, but the hero’s crew members were present in that song, making it feel like a real life event. This is really a let down!
I recently read “The Runaway Jury” a brilliant thriller, but if you look back after reading the whole novel. The girl need not have contacted the Plaintiff lawyer., she contacted the lawyer just to distract us.
I’m given up on thrillers because they try to fool you, there is nothing wrong in not revealing a secret, but distracting you with a non-event is silly.
Why can’t the creators (directors of movie, serial, writers) be more conscious and try entertaining the readers

Saturday, January 7, 2012

The Blaft Anthology of Tamil Pulp Fiction - Review

Recently read this book from a lending library
I remembered pulp fiction Tamil novels were very famous during 80s and 90s.
I thought they would've died by now, what with the advent of regional TV channels and Internet.
Also its no longer fashion to read a Tamil book.
Even I myself seldom read Tamil.
So here I'm a tamilian reading a translated work of Tamil pulp fiction.

What i noticed about the story is the narration is very abstract, the authors don't describe each character well. If there is more than 4 characters you don't know which one the author is referring too. You will not be able to connect.
Also the stories are like draft, there is this carelessness of the author, he has to complete this work by today, this story is just 1 of his thousand stories. This will be published in a magazine and may be never republished later.

The stories reminded me my own stories, it made me realize that my narration is also as poor as these stories, at the same time i knew that some day under the sun, if those stories were published and are now part of an anthology. My stories can definitely see the light.

Here are some stories which are
The Rich Woman
Dim Lights, Blazing Hearts
Sweetheart, Please Die
GLory Be to the Love that Kills!

The Rainbow