God’s Mischief -The Journey of Survival


Direction: Salim Ahamed
Cast: Mammootty, Jewel Mary, Siddique, Sreenivasan, Salim Kumar, Shaheen Siddique, Viji Chandrasekhar and Joy Mathew.

Plot premise:The plot features the life of Pallikkal Narayanan who migrated to the Middle-East during his teenage years in the early 1980s, when the Kerala Gulf boom was at its peak. He belongs to a very poor family and was forced to take up the responsibilities at a young age. He plans to leave Gulf and settle in his hometown when he comes for every vacation; but is always forced to go back.

12107808_10153714338017774_3017800305717842928_nEven adventure enthusiasts would think twice before crossing the Arabian Sea on a dhow without ample gadgets.  50 years ago, desperately poor Malayalees with no hope, little skills and a growling belly, hung on to the billowing sails that took them to an unknown land of plenty. The newly gushing oil wells of the Persian Gulf were beckoning cheap labour in the mid-1960s.

12079518_10153716277907774_2037661269262551633_nThe first generation of migrant Malayalee workers who ended up in the deserts of West Asia knew not where they were headed for. They only knew their Dravidian tongue, the virgin paddy fields, the bountiful rivers and the sound of the never-ending rain, but soon they were all Malayalees of Arabia, turning their desert dreams into mansions back home, building a new Kerala.

10410697_10153494170737774_1450299502487338457_nPathemari” or “the dhow” recreate the journey of a young, desperate Malayalee from the Kerala coast to the Gulf in an old cargo vessel. Malayalees’ Mega Star’ Mammooty, play the role of the carpetbagger. Interestingly, 35 years ago, Mammooty had played a small role in Vilkkanundu Swapnangal(1980) the first Malayalam movie on the Gulf migration. Mammootty’s voice was dubbed by Sreenivasan.

Every Keralite has at least one friend or relative who is struggling to support his/her family by working tirelessly in Dubai. Pathamari” is about such struggling Malayalis in Dubai. As it is a familiar story for many of us, there is no suspense element in it, but we still sit firmly on our seats just to see what happens next.

USMM 30 - 3The way the movie ends is also quite nice and this adds to the overall good when Narayanan’s coffin is brought in, his best friend proposes that it be kept on the verandah of the new house that was being built, that had been the man’s dream. When his sons think otherwise, Narayanan leaves home once again, never to return.


SALT (chemistry):The story is not new, but the way it has been presented along with the right casting makes it a must watch. Hats off to director Salim Ahamed for bringing such a real life story to reel life, helping many realise the struggles of each and every pravasi
MANGO (what’s fresh?): Refreshing to see Sreenivasan in a role that tells a tale or two of its own.
TREE (strength): After critically praised C.K. Raghavan in Munnariyippu(2014) & the disturbingly real Venu in Varsham(2014). Mammooty’s Pallikkal Narayanan is yet one more of his most hard-hitting performances during recent times, it is a treat to watch the hero, who portrays the character in a dedicated manner.


  • Courtesy : various sources

The Big Hearted Returns


Direction: Rohit Shetty
Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol, Varun Dhawan & Kriti Sanon


Plot premise:
Raj is a humble car mechanic who helps the needy. He also keeps away from unnecessary fights and quarrels. His ambition is to bring up his brother, Veer. A flashback shows that Raj was actually once a Don named Kaali in Bulgaria. (Inspiration : Baasha – 1995 &  Old Telugu Movies)


It’s a long date with SRK that occasionally stumble on the edge of boredom, but it certainly isn’t all wrong. Parts of Dilwale, propelled by a spirit of inspired lunacy holds this no-holds-barred action comedy in good town.


If only it had enough substance to sustain its momentum all the way to the very end, it would probably have been far more fun to watch.


If you hang in there and do not allow the many distractions and diversions along the way throw you off road, you might find yourself getting into the swing of things, especially in the first half.


Some of the scenes might seem rather unnecessary and overstretched. Dilwale delivers exactly what you would expect from a Rohit Shetty film: runaway entertainment; that has a crowd-pleaser illuminated all over it.


The director comes up with a movie that has all the tried-and-tested ingredients of the romance genre that runs somewhat low on velocity at times in his brand of filmmaking.


SALT (chemistry): SRK and Kajol.
MANGO (what’s fresh?): Breathtaking locales (Iceland and Bulgaria) & Kriti Sanon.
TREE (strength): Shah Rukh’s mega-stardom & Varun’s enthusiasm.



A Rehashed Genesis of R.A.One (2011 Indian science fiction superhero film)


Thanks to

Writers :Anubhav Sinha, Kanika Dhillon,Mushtaq Sheikh & David Benullo

Movies : Ra.One (2011). The Pursuit of Happyness (2006). The Matrix (1999).The Terminator (1984).The Amazing Spider-Man (2012).

It is the year 1991 in Boston. An absent-minded professor of Computer science Shekhar Subramanium is a talented computer scientist and computer graphics designer from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He invests his entire life savings developing computer games to compete against increasingly popular offerings from other perceived competitors. He is exploring the creation of a multi-definition design that stimulate the senses of the audience—vision, sound, balance, smell, even touch (via wind)–and so thus drawing the viewer into the onscreen activity of the game. He demonstrated his idea to Computer companies. He was not able to impress most of the companies, and his growing financial demands upset his wife Sonia, who works as a hotel maid. The lack of a stable financial state increasingly troubled their life, despite of this they stayed united caring for their five-year-old son, Prateek.


It’s been a long while since Shekhar is designing this new immersive, multi-sensory technology game set in 2099 where the antagonist will be more powerful than the protagonist. His focus on the game often leads him to ignore & forget his surroundings. He names his game RA.One. (Random Access One). He models his face for the game’s protagonist G.One (in Hindi Jeevan), while the shape-shifting antagonist RA.One (in Hindi Ravan) is made faceless. R.A.One is an efficient at killing assassin machine programmed to kill; G.One, a resistance ranger machine programmed to protect. The Game contains three levels, the final level being the only one in which R.A.One can be killed. The virtual world of R.A.One has off-line, real world components and applications. It is designed to re-connect logged in players to the real-world via virtual means. Users can halt at a level in the game online and resume off-line continuing the already loaded game and thus sharing the experience.


Shekhar scripts his game programme in three levels. The game is set in a fantasy world of an artificial intelligence network called Cloud. Humans waged a war against intelligent machines they had created. When humans blocked the machines’ access to solar energy, the machines instead began to gather the humans’ bioelectricity as a substitute power source. In level one the game introduces R.A.One, Its initiating an attack on the resistance leader Lucifer and the survivors of Cloud. In level two the game further introduces G.One. G.One will protect Lucifer & rally the survivors of the resistance movement against R.A.One & its army of assassins of the Cloud. In Level three when the Resistance has survived two levels & will be on the verge of victory, R.A.One will travel back in time to level two (minutes before G.One is introduced) to kill Lucifer, as a last-ditch effort to avert the formation of the Resistance.

RaOne Character concept for animation_05

While Shekhar run the final tests, he notices unusual glitches in one of the off-line component but chooses to ignore them for the while. He logs in under the ID Lucifer and proceeds to the second level, but is interrupted by an unidentified error. Unknown to Shekhar, while fixing the error he accidentally causes the mainframe to malfunction and a pathway programme gets fed into the software. This programme gains a wireless technology via which R.A.One can exit the network & enter the real world. Ra.One, unable to end his turn with Lucifer and angry that he has proceeded so far, becomes determined that Lucifer (Shekhar) should be killed before it is too late to avert the formation of the Resistance. R.A.One returns to level two & uses the wireless technology to enter the real world.


Unaware of this and detecting this discovery he follows some blackboard scribbling in which he reverses a sign in the equation. Shekhar records an audio message to explain the possibility of this discovery while driving home. Meanwhile, Ra.One kills a gang member, a gun-shop manager, and two other people named “Lucifer” listed in the internet telephone directory. It eventually tracks its target to a petrol pump forecourt. After purchasing his snacks, Shekhar is on his way back to the car when an Audi gets exploded near the petrol pump. Shekhar is astonished to see R.A.One. Shekhar tries to escape and fearing for his life rush home. Unfortunately Shekhar is again attacked by R.A.One, leading to a car chase. R.A.One eventually crash Shekhar’s Car into a wall. Shekhar dies in his Car.
Sonia is devastated after Shekhar’s death which everybody believed to be an accident. No further traces of R.A.One were found after that.


10 Years later, a young Pratik is attending Midtown Science High School. Sonia is a single mother now working as a senior administrator staff in a hotel. While at their home & Sonia is away at work, Pratik discover Shekhar’s study that had been corrupted and is in a mess. Gathering up all the hidden documents, he re-assemble the game R.A.One however the game does not respond, he assumes the files were damaged in Shekhar’s car crash. Pratik finds through his father’s papers that Shekhar associated with fellow computer programmer Akashi at Vermont-based Metacortex Corporation.

RaOne Character concept for animation_04

Akashi is still a game designer who works for Mr Barron at Metacortex corporation, he has been delivering a number of commercial failures; an irate Mr.Barron gives him his last chance to develop a successful game. During a system maintenance meeting, Akashi receives a phone call from Pratik, revealing himself as the son of late Shekhar Subramanium.
They meet in a park. Akashi explains Pratik that Shekhar was unable to obtain financial backing for his visions and patents, and so the R.A.One work was halted. Today, it remains primarily a curiosity in the history of Virtual Reality. To impress Mr.Barron, and upon the request of Pratik, Akashi decides to use Shekhar’s idea, fix the glitches and release the game R.A.One. His colleague, computer programmer Jenny retains Shekhar’s face as the model for that of G.One while the shape-shifting Ra.One remains faceless. Akashi implements the character movements.


Akashi & Pratik revisit the blackboard scribbling in which Shekhar reversed a sign in the equation. Based on it Akashi conceptualize the only way to kill R.A.One. He creates for each R.A.One & G.One to possess an electromagnet attached into their chests to keep the attacks that wound them from reaching their heart and killing them. This electromagnet called H.A.R.T (Hertz Amplifying Resonance Transmitter) also when attached into their chests makes them powerful. The importance of H.A.R.T is explained. R.A.One will travel back to level two (minutes before G.One is introduced) to kill Lucifer. If G.One is able to survive this level and enter the final level three, then G.One will gain the Bullet Hell; a gun with one bullet. R.A.One can only be killed in level three and only by this bullet and only if the H.A.R.T is attached. The H.A.R.T thus is their power and fault alike.


Ra.One once again undergoes final tests without any further glitches but Akashi & Pratik are unaware of Shekhar’s last minute audio message and the wireless technology that is obtainable once level two is completed; connecting both the virtual and the real world. The game is officially launched, it receives a standing ovation from the audience; a hooked Pratik insists on playing it immediately. He logs in under the ID Lucifer and eventually proceeds to the second level. Coincidentally at the end of level two Pratik and Sonya return home.


Hours later Ra.One becomes self-activated. R.A.One destined to kill Lucifer once again uses the wireless technology to enter level two as in the real world. Meanwhile, Pratik visits his father’s work-shop at home & stumble upon his books and files. Pratik gets hold of the audio message which shocks Pratik. He quickly informs Akashi, who partially understands the situation but is not convinced and rushes to Pratik’s home. Ra.One finds Akashi, kills him, and assumes his form and goes to find Lucifer (Pratik).


Sonia, devastated after hearing the truth behind Shekhar’s death, tells Pratik that the family will return to India immediately. A suspicious Pratik notices digital patterns on the fateful road and realises that Ra.One has come to life. He convinces Jenny of the same when they see the destroyed game laboratory. Jenny tries to bring G.One into the real world. Meanwhile, Ra.One in the form of Akashi chases the family on their way to the airport, but G.One enters the real world and causes a gas explosion which temporarily destroys Ra.One. G.One takes Ra.One’s H.A.R.T. and accompanies the family to Mumbai after Sonia realises that she needs him.


Subsequently via interconnected computer networks on the internet that is linked to a private television channel network of Mumbai, Ra.One returns to life. It takes the form of a music producer Aryan, and tracks down G.One to Pratik’s birthday party. During the party it Hypnotizes Sonia and assumes her form to kidnap Pratik. Ra.One then instructs G.One to return it its H.A.R.T. back, & sends the real Sonia in a malfunctioning local train. The train crashes into the Chatrapati Shivaji Terminus, but G.One saves Sonia in time.

RaOne Character concept for animation_06

R.A.One recreates the computer-simulated world of Cloud. Pratik logs in under the ID G.One & returns to level two in the virtual world. Pratik (G.One) fights Ra.One, survive the level and enter the final level three. R.A.One is left with little power. The H.A.R.T is now attached into their chests and makes them powerful. G.One achieves the Bullet Hell, however a furious, R.A.One creates ten copies of itself. While they are unable to identify the real Ra.One, the pair realise that only one of the ten has a shadow: the original R.A.One. G.One shoots and destroys R.A.One, absorbs its remains and disappears along with the simulated world of Cloud.

RaOne Character concept for animation_01

Six months later, Pratik and Sonia return to Boston, where Pratik manages to bring G.One the man with his father’s face into the real world.

An American Epic Space opera

Star Wars


A galaxy described as far, far away in the distant past.

Here the Jedi, a representation of good, is in conflict with the Sith, their evil counterpart. Their weapon of choice, the lightsaber.


The Jedi are a monastic, spiritual, and academic organization and dates back to at least 10,000 years before the destruction of the first Death Star.

The Death Star is a fictional spacecraft and superweapon. It is capable of destroying an entire planet with its powerful superlaser.


The Jedi Knights in the Jedi canon, serve and utilize a mystical power called the Force in order to help and protect those in need. For many generations, they served as a paramilitary for the Galactic Republic and the galaxy at large to prevent conflict and political instability including playing a leading role in the later Clone Wars.


The Clone Wars begin when thousands of systems seceded from the Galactic Republic form the Confederacy of Independent Systems (CIS). The first battle occurs on the CIS planet Geonosis where the Republic’s new clone army, led by Jedi generals, combats the Separatists’ battle droids. War quickly spreads across the galaxy and eventually reaches the Republic’s capital planet, Coruscant. The Clone Wars end shortly after the Great Jedi Purge, with the massacre of the Separatist leaders at the hands of Darth Vader. The entire war was orchestrated by the Republic’s chief executive, Supreme Chancellor Palpatine, who uses the Clone Wars to manipulate the Republic’s Galactic Senate into granting him emergency powers which he then uses to turn the Republic into the Empire.


The Sith are those who are strong enough to seize power through force or cunning. An organization created by Darth Bane after the destruction of the Sith Brotherhood of Darkness dynasty that lasted 1000 years, and promptly ended with the death of Palpatine.


Sheev Palpatine served as charismatic Senator from Naboo, who—through the use of deception and political manipulation—rises to the position of Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic and, finally, to the aged, pale-faced Darth Sidious, Emperor of the first Galactic Empire.


The Sith Lords or Dark Lords of the Sith, were masters of the dark side of the Force. Each Sith Lord traditionally uses the title Darth before their Sith name. The Sith exist only two at a time: a master and an apprentice.


The Galactic Empire is a galaxy-spanning regime established by Darth Sidious, to replace the Galactic Republic.The Empire replaces the Galactic Republic in the midst of a galactic civil war orchestrated by Palpatine, the Republic’s Supreme Chancellor. Palpatine is also secretly the Sith Lord Darth Sidious who intends to purge the Jedi and restore the Sith to power in the galaxy. Palpatine’s Sith identity is only known by a small few throughout his life. Palpatine claims that the Jedi attempted to assassinate him and overthrow the Galactic Senate and declares the Jedi to have committed treason. Palpatine declares that the civil war with the separatists in combination with the sudden overthrow of the Jedi requiring the reorganization of the Republic into a state that can provide stability, and a safe and secure society, a Galactic Empire with himself as Emperor. The Senate that he has manipulated overwhelmingly applauds Palpatine’s decision.


Though Palpatine’s Sith identity remains a secret to most, his apprentice Darth Vader is the Sith Lord who is the ruthless apprentice of Palpatine who is feared by many in the galaxy. The Empire eventually transform into a fully totalitarian regime, A brutal dictatorship, one based on “tyranny, hatred of nonhumans, brutal and lethal force, and, above all else, constant fear. They face opposition in the form of the Rebel Alliance.


The Galactic Republic was a interplanetary State prior to the establishment of the Galactic Empire. The Galactic Republic government was ruled by the Senate. It was a democratic, though eventually ineffectual, constitutional republic tied up in layers of bureaucracy.

The Republic began as a mutual protection and economic alliance among a number of planets in the Galactic Core. Each member world chose a Senator to represent them in the Republic Senate, a central Legislative body. Senators were ambassadors of their homeworld, and member worlds were able to maintain their government and society in accordance with local beliefs, customs, and traditions.


The Senate was an enormous building containing 1,024 floating platforms, each of which contained a senator and his or her aides. Each platform in the senate represented a “sector” of the galaxy, with one senator for that sector accompanied by a delegation of aides and advisers. Some platforms represented individual worlds bringing special pleas to the senate, others the special interest guilds such as the Trade Federation. Along with the senators, the leaders of the individual member planets apparently also had the power to vote in the Senate and introduce legislation. Each senatorial delegation had one vote.


The members of the Senate then elected a Chancellor from amongst their ranks who served as the Senate’s presiding officer and as the Republic’s de facto leader. The Chancellor was assisted by the Vice Chair, who is presumably elected in the same manner as the Chancellor.The Chancellor was elected from within the Senate for a set term. Presumably this term was up to two terms of four years, with the Senate able to give the Chancellor emergency powers as well as remove him from office when necessary.


The Jedi function as a peace-keeping force in the Republic, giving them a significant degree of political power. The Jedi with the most authority serve on the Jedi Council, among who Yoda and Mace Windu acted as de facto leaders at the height of the Republic. Although the Chancellor did hold some degree of political authority over the Jedi, very little pressure was ever put on the Council before Palpatine took office and commanded that Anakin Skywalker become a member of the Council, despite the misgivings of the Jedi. While the council allowed Anakin to be in the council, they did not grant him the status of a Jedi master.


Anakin Skywalker, Originally a Jedi prophesied to bring balance to the Force, he falls to the dark side of the Force and serves as Darth Vader the evil Galactic Empire at the right hand of his Sith master Darth Sidious. He is also the father of Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia Organa.


The Rebel Alliance learns that the Empire has been constructing a new Death Star under the supervision of Vader and his master Emperor Palpatine. In a plan to destroy the new weapon, Han leads a strike team to destroy the battle station’s shield generator on the forest moon of Endor, allowing a squadron of starfighters to enter the incomplete infrastructure and destroy the station from within.


Palpatine entreats Luke to kill Vader and take his place, but Luke refuses, declaring himself a Jedi. Furious, Palpatine tortures Luke with Force lightning. Unwilling to let his son die, Vader kills Palpatine, but is mortally wounded in the process.


The strike team defeats the Imperial forces and destroys the shield generator, allowing the Rebel fleet to launch their final assault on the Death Star. Lando leads the remaining ships into the station’s core and destroys the main reactor. Luke escapes on an Imperial shuttle with his father’s body, while Lando escapes in the Falcon moments before the Death Star explodes. On Endor, Leia reveals to Han that Luke is her brother, and they share a kiss. Luke returns to Endor and cremates his father’s armor on a funeral pyre. As the Rebels celebrate the end of the Empire, Luke sees the spirits of Obi-Wan, Yoda, and Anakin watching over them.

Approximately thirty years after the events, The Force Awakens.


Barn Owl

Vellimoonga (1)

Direction: Jibu Jacob
Cast: Biju Menon, Nikki Galrani, Aju Varghese, Tini Tom, Lena, Siddique & K. P. A. C. Lalitha


‘Velli Moonga’ is not the film that takes the house down with vulgar belly laugh, but it’s a fine comical that’s a total cash winner. The story is not exceptionally novel either & yet it scripts quite a few stirring witty jiffies that are splashed all the way through.

Jibu240914_mThe movie holds its own ground even in the burst of new gen cinema that’s generating waves at the moment. The film proves that films – old school or new – will go on to bill if the language that it tells comes straight out of the heart.

PosterBiju Menon stay alive on the borders of Malayalam cinema doing second lead or negative roles in superstar films until directors learned he has a knack for comedy. Ever since then he is given an equal billing with the hero. As Mamachan he excels in a role tailor-made for him. Aju Varghese delivers bounteous backing and leaves his streak on a few scenes.

vellimoongaHaving arrived with limited titles, here is a surprise winner that’s enjoyable and possibly the finest choice in the midst of the latest ones.It has a platform which many flop films had in the past and an unconventional hero heroine equation. Even with these odds Vellimoonga succeeds in becoming a clean entertainer by having creative humor all over the script.


SALT (chemistry): The comic sequences between both Biju Menon and Aju Varghese.
MANGO (what’s fresh?): A well narrated comedy that is not wildly exaggerated.
TREE (strength): A wholesome entertainment with humor that is genuine & not a mad caper.

Rain Man

varsham (1)

Direction : Ranjith Sankar
Cast : Mammootty, Asha Sarath, Mamtha Mohandas, Prajwal Prasad, T G Ravi, Irshad & Sudheer Karamana.


After several half-hearted struggles during recent years, Mammootty has finally hit the bullseye in director Ranjith Sankar’s ‘Varsham’. Mammootty loans his heart and soul & comes up full-circle with a sensitively fresh performance that will leave your eyes wet on quite a few instances.


This pacifying shower of sympathy and generosity is definitely Ranjith Sankar’s best work yet. It is an exceptional story of spirit and a mournfully moving narrative of kindness. One monsoon that each one of us need to get fortunately soaked in.


Ranjith Sankar has made a name for himself by conveying a social message through his films. This time he sequences his firearms on the non-banking financial companies that rip off the common man by loaning money at a ridiculous rate of interest and taking families to the lip of suicide.


It is a revised style of those typecast movies from the past, but even then it has been presented well.
Numerous scenes are weepies, but they loan an air of matter as no other film in the immediate past has been able to. Reasonably orchestrated, these renderings are appealing, deeply moving, rich and original.


SALT (chemistry): Varsham carries the brand of Ranjith Sankar which is heightened by Mammootty’s company.
MANGO (what’s fresh?): The act by the performers and their selection for the movie.
TREE (strength): Flashes that take benefit of the stand-in expertise of Mammootty.


Winners & Losers


Happy New Year
Direction: Farah Khan
Cast: Shahrukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, Abhishek Bachchan, Boman Irani, Vivaan Shah, Sonu Sood and Jackie Shroff

happy-new-year-posterThere has at all times been this dispute of the common-sense and the no common sense. The inspirational and the masala. It is vibrant since previous years that the so called “No brainers” rule the box office when it comes to Bollywood.

Be it the Ajay series (of the likes Golmaal, Singham), Salman series (of the likes Ready, Dabangg), Akshay series (of the likes Rowdy Rathore, Housefull)… Yes & the largest of them all till date Dhoom 3.


So what’s mutual here in this Ocean’s eleven indianised? They all are amusing while it lasts, but it might not leave the viewer with the sense of having watched a film that is truly exceptional.

There are two kinds of people…

One; those who correspond to Shah Rukh Khan & Two: those who share the same amount of distaste to Shah Rukh Khan.


This latest entry into the Blockbuster-100crore club-No brainer (all the same) is only n only  for Shah Rukh fans. All those Anti SRK who walk into this Farah Khan gala will feel mixed up and will gather the final joke of Happy New Year is on you, the viewer. They will obviously bring home more disgust for this longtime Super Star of Indian Cinema.


Disagreeing to them are the loyal fan base of King Khan, who hanged on to see their idol; his trademark dialogues, his hyped 8-12 packs, his charming romantics & his now iconic standing pose. The movie originates, develops and finishes with Khan. Adding to the fun is the ever loving Boman, the innocent Sonu, the chilled out Vivaan, the beautiful and funny Deepika & the surprise package of the movie; BachanJr. Abhishek is at his comic best, perhaps a show that averages with Bol Bachchan. Suggesting a road BachanJr should dome alongside more.


There is nothing wide of the mark with Happy New Year if all that you are eyeing for is a good old timepass, entertainment & Shah Rukh Khan. The film grips your attention till the end credits. Happy New Year offers Shah Rukh fans ample reasons to stay inside the hall. Happy New Year is a film which all solid Shah Rukh fans will force you to see as it has all the basics of the popular Shah Rukh films.


SALT (chemistry): Farah Khan teams up back again with Shah Rukh Khan.
MANGO (what’s fresh?): Jackie Shroff excels in a villainous role.
TREE (strength): Its grand, beautiful, exotic locations across Dubai & all the SRK moves which fans love.