OK Kanmani- Love at Lightening Speed……..??? Mesmerisingly So!!!!

The Baap of Style and Uber cool romance returns! Many and I mean many had written off the great Mani Ratnam after two flops (namely Kadhal and Ravan), thus making his latest movie OK Kanmani all the more significant. Mani Ratnam being the celebrated filmmaker that he is, decided to answer in the way only he can. By returning with a film that throws cliché out of the window and delivering a crackling romance. Casting Dulquer Salman and Nithya Menon is another masterstroke. Both of them add the required gravitas to the film enlivening it up in the process. And then we have the man of all seasons Prakash Raj and the luminously beautiful Leela Samson playing the older couple.

The contrast shown in the ideologies of the free spirited young couple and the very much in love older couple is the film’s USP and without being preachy or sermonic at any point, Mani Ratnam drives the point home.

The story is about Adi and Tara, who meet by chance and fall head over heels in love. Both are ambitious, commitment phobic and define the new age romance perfectly. Adi moves in to Ganpathy’s (Prakash Raj) house as a paying guest and in turn embraces Bhavani, his Alzheimer stricken wife. How then does Ganpathy’s devotion for his wife change Adi’s outlook towards marriage and commitment is the core of the film.

One of my favourite scenes is when music plays the deciding factor in ganpathy agreeing to let Tara stay as a live in partner to Adi. That brings me inevitably to the music of the film. And where do I start. That I am in awe of Rahman would be an understatement. I am taken aback by the man’s consistent attempt to treat every film on a different level and give it a unique soundscape is what makes him legendary. The music is the soul of the film and the fine blend of EDM and Carnatic is eargasmic. The legendary PC Sreeram returns to Mani Ratnam’s gang after that unforgettable classic ‘Alai Payuthey’ and soaks every frame in lilting colors.

Nithya Menon is an old favourite. And apart from her dishy looks and fresh screen presence, the lady owns the role and makes us believe in tara. Dulquer Salman as ‘I care a damn’ Adi is a revelation. As a yuppie who dreams at 90 km/hr he is a class act.

But but but……above all this is a Mani Ratnam film and the man hits the bull’s eye. I am a fan and I desperately wanted a film that leaves me walking out of the theatre with a smile. This one though sent me dancing out. Thank You Mani Ratnam…..!!!!!!





Lekar Hum Deewana Dil- Could have been a Gem of a film, only if it had tried hard enough!

Let me start with what I was expecting from the film. With such pedigree behind this film, I was expecting sheer magic to unfold on screen. First of all, it was Imtiaz Ali’s brother who was making his directorial debut. Add to that Raj Kapoor’s grandson who was all set to carry his legacy forward. If that wasnt enough, add the greatness of AR Rahman to the mix and what you have on paper is a film bursting with spunk. What I got was a bland, boring film which didn’t have even an iota of originality to it. I walked out feeling cheated by a team which promised the moon, but sadly failed to even take off.

LKDD-1Two college friends turned lovers elope and get married when they realize the girl is getting into a forced life of matrimony. In wilderness, they realize they are not quite made for each other and return back to their families to duly begin the procedure of annulment. This takes up half the film. The procedure of annulment and in between how the two hearts start beating for each other forms the rest of the story. There, which of these even the words I mentioned above sounded original? Liberally picked up from classics like Saathiya and his own brother’s Socha Na Tha, Lekar Hum Deewana Dil is a disaster.

Armaan Jain in his first film proves why he will forever remain Raj Kapoor’s grandson and nothing else. The boy doesn’t boast of a single acting bone in his body and is ill equipped to handle such a complex character. Deeksha Seth in comparison is terrific in a role which required a mix of authority, madness and restlessness.. Probably a bunch of films down south added to her experience. Arif Ali as the director has a nice story to narrate, but some how fails to translate it on screen.

LKDDAmidst all that mess, the one man who stands tall is AR Rahman. Only if Arif had selected better tunes. Nevertheless, ARR whips up a crazy score which has some terrific songs and some plain average songs. The sun soaked locations of Goa and the jungles of Chhtisgarh have been shot well by Laxman Uttekar and that helps making the film look visually grand.

Nevertheless, with such a terrific team behind this film, all we get is a disastrous mess. I really hope Arif learns from his mistake and serves us a dose of originality in his next offering.