Monday, October 4, 2010

Endhiran

We saw Endhiran movie last Friday. I don’t want to give a review here. Lot of people have already given their reviews. I want to write here what went through my mind while watching the movie:

Rajni started his movie career as a villain. If this is his last film, he will end his career as a villain.

This is a regular Tamil masala movie with comedy, songs, dance, romance, and fights. While I am enjoying this for entertainment, suddenly I see this super quality special effects which are certainly better than any Hollywood films.

The reverse is also true. While I am enjoying this super quality special effects which are certainly better than any Hollywood films, I am brought back to the real world with comedy and songs.

A. R. Rahman music? I think he has done a better job in other films. One stand out song is Kilimanjaro.

Cinematography by R. Ratnavelu is excellent.

Director Shankar failed in the second half. The whole movie is focused on special effects and Rajni only. No good story. The good turns bad and the bad turns good. The good gets trashed in the end. I did not feel so connected in the second half with the story.

Last 45 minutes will give hard core Rajni fans a thrill of a lifetime.

We saw this movie in San Jose, California. Rajni fans are Rajni fans wherever they live. When his name was shown on the screen and whenever Rajni walks (in his own unique style) the whole theater went bonkers - shouts, claps, whistles, and more shouting of “thalaivaaaa” (Oh my leader).

The movie was disconnected for 4 times in the first 15 minutes. I think the theater’s projector did not work well.

There was English subtitle on the screen. But the English lines were delayed by about 6 minutes. Therefore, non Tamil speaking audience could not follow the screen and the dialogue.

Good to see quite a few Japanese in the audience and a lone white woman.

Sunday morning read the following in the web and other magazines:

A song-and-dance sequence (Kilimanjaro) was filmed in Machu Picchu (A very favorite place of a friend of mine.)

Special effects were done by Stan Winston Studio which provided the animatrics for films like Jurassic Park and Avatar.

All the stunts have been choreographed by Yuen Woo Ping, the Hong Kong based action director who created the high-adrenalin stunts of classics like Kill Bill and Matrix.

Slate, an American magazine wrote about this movie and Rajni, on September 27, 2010. The following is the title and the beginning paragraph:

SUPERSTAR Rajinikanth!
The biggest movie star you've probably never heard of.

Jackie Chan is the highest-paid actor in Asia, and that makes sense. But the No. 2 spot goes to someone who doesn't make any sense at all. The second-highest-paid actor in Asia is a balding, middle-aged man with a paunch, hailing from the Indian state of Tamil Nadu and sporting the kind of moustache that went out of style in 1986. This is Rajinikanth, and he is no mere actor—he is a force of nature. If a tiger had sex with a tornado and then their tiger-nado baby got married to an earthquake, their offspring would be Rajinikanth. Or, as his films are contractually obligated to credit him, "SUPERSTAR Rajinikanth!

I agree.

50 comments:

  1. Good article.

    Personally I am not a big fan of Rajni and for that matter AB either.

    I liked the last part...2nd highest paid actor...

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  2. I saw it this Saturday. Oh boy!!! The workers in the theater couldnt comprehend te hullaballoo and the excitement.

    All 4 screens were airing Endhiran. Whistle, noise, shouts, cries....Rajni fans are Ranji fans as you say; wherever they are.

    "If this is last film.............."

    This statement itself is an insult to Rajnikant :-P How can this be his last movie!!!! He has just started!!

    AR Rahman music is techno and trans. Fit for a sci-fi sort of movie. But certainly not his best. If you observe, there were no melodies. "Kilimajaro" was better. I was fooled; as I expected the movie to be shot in the mountain of Kilimanjaro in Africa. But it was in Machu Picchu; the entire song. I thought they would go to Kilimanjaro later part of the song, didnt happen.

    Special effects take Tamil cinema to the next level. I hope at least henceforth Indian movies are not restricted to mean "Bollywood/Hindi" movies alone.

    No one in India has such mass appeal than Mr. Rajnikant. All said and done about his antics; Rajni is Rajni. Will audience accept anyone else shooting 100+ guns at a time? or fire bullets from fingers?

    He defies all logic; thats Rajni.

    The film has created history I read. They I think have got back their money.

    Shankar - he capitalizes Rajni's mass appeal really well. Nothing much to say about Aishwarya Rai.

    I liked the last snippet. Paunch? Does Rajni have a paunch? He is a fit man!! isnt he? Only he can come out in public with bald head and sans make-up. Who else dares?

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  3. Thanks for your comments A. I am glad you liked the Slate Magazine write up.

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  4. Thanks for your comments Insignia. Most probably you and I have seen this movie in the same theater. So you would know the reaction of the fans here. I was also expecting Kilimanjaro to be filmed in Kilimanjaro. Personally, I am glad they filmed this song in Machu Picchu. Ever since my friend fell in love with Machu Picchu and told me about it, we were planning to go there. Now the plan has changed into a “must do”. Most probably next summer.

    You are right. From now, international audience won’t refer Indian movies as Bollywood movies. They would start referring them as Kollywood movies.

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  5. Nah! I didnt watch it in San Jose. I saw it in Fremont :-)

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  6. SG! Tell me something else - interesting... not cinema please

    Tell us a story from childhood days or about your college days or something that is real, fun and more enchanting than animated version of "heroism" from Tamil Nadu please...

    Am I too harsh? Hope not... Having a bad day I guess...

    ~ NRIGirl

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  7. Thanks for your comments Insignia. Murphy's Law at work. Had I written you may have seen this in Fremont, you would have really seen this in San Jose. Any how, thanks for letting me know where you saw this movie.

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  8. Thanks for your comments NRIGirl. I know you are OD'd on Endhiran.

    Having a bad day? Want something real and interesting from my past? You got it. Please read my post titled "School Experience" dated August 14, 2009. You will be pleased. Here is the link:

    http://sg-shootthebreeze.blogspot.com/2009/08/school-experience.html

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  9. Good review ... how can this be his last movie? He is still in his prime ...

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  10. Thanks for your comments Geeta.

    I think I should address this reply to you and Insignia.

    I did not say this is his last movie. I said my thought while watching this movie was, IF this is his last movie, he would end up as a villain as the way he started his film career as a villain.

    Now, come to think of it, this will be his last movie. My logic? If he acts in another movie, that has to be better than Endhiran. Is there anyone going to make a movie like this in India? Spend more than Rs.165 crores? Pay Rajni more than Rs.45 crores? Also, he takes rest for 3 to 4 years between movies. He is 61 now. By the time his next movie starts to shoot, if at all happens, he will be 64.

    I am sorry he is no Ashok Kumar.

    I will bet one dollar to both of you that this is his last film.

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  11. Of course this will not be his last movie :-) .. i am not his fan ,but loved the movie .. it wasnt as mindless as i thot it would be .. surprisingly the songs grew on me as i started listening more to them..

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  12. SG,

    The IF itself is an insult is what I said :-) How can you even IF Rajni? :-)

    Hahahaha

    He is like wine, improves with age. So even if his next movie is at 64, I am sure there are talented directors in Tamil film industry who would have a story for Rajnikant.

    Forget the budget and opulence, but he would have a story for him.

    And yeah, lest he decides to jump into contesting election; we can expect a movie :-)

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  13. Thanks for your comments Bedazzled. We loved this movie. We are going back coming Thursday to see this movie again.

    Would you also like to accept a one dollar bet (like I offered to
    Geeta and Insignia)?

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  14. Thanks for your comments Insignia. You are very clever at evading the issue. Hahaha. I know that. Are you accepting the one dollar bet or not?

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  15. Evading...am I?

    I accept the 1 dollar bet :-)

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  16. Thanks for your comments Insignia. Keep a crisp one dollar bill in your purse at all times. You know I don't accept a soiled bill.

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  17. 'The movie was disconnected for 4 times in the first 15 minutes. I think the theater’s projector did not work well.'
    'The movie was disconnected for 4 times in the first 15 minutes. I think the theater’s projector did not work well,'

    About the subtitles also...how can they be so irresponsible? These things happened in California? Unbelievable.

    'SUPERSTAR Rajinikanth! The biggest movie star you've probably never heard of., Hahaha!

    machu pichu sounds like 'achchu pichchu'!

    I wonder if I should make the effort to go to watch this movie, SG! I doubt!

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  18. Endhiran fever is on..... My hubby and son have gone to watch it . I stay away from all these stuff. Let me see how was the reaction in the local theater.

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  19. I am yet to see both the movies reviewed by you.

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  20. Rajni's movie is always a treat to not only south Indians,,,but aal the audience around the globe....Its almost one of the very difficult tasks to grab a movie ticket of a rajni film for the very first show .
    who would belive that this king of tamil is not of tamil origin!!??

    Truly Ranjni..rocks!

    err..Endhiran rocks!

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  21. everyone and everywhere people are talking about this..I am not a Rajni fan, so I will stay away from the movie as well as making comments anywhere..I have already got angry glares from people when I said why I should be watching this movie :)

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  22. did you know rajnikanth can strangle you with a cordless phone and when he does push ups he does not pull himself up..he pushes the earth down :)

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  23. Apologies for my ignorance but if you don't ask, you never learn and therefore remain ignorant. I don't think I have ever seen a Tamil masala movie but I have seen what we here in England classify as Bollywood - are they in anyway similar? I'm presuming so as you mention singing and dancing but then again I am probably completly wrong. Apologies again, I hope you don't mind me asking.

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  24. Thanks for your comments Sandhya. Human error happnes in any country. Yes, the projector malfunctioned for the first 15 minutes in California.

    I know some people are turned off by Rajni.

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  25. Thanks for your comments Chitra. If the audience reaction in California was this much crazy, I would how the reaction would have been in Tamilnadu theaters.

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  26. Thanks for your comments Rama. I think Endhiran is worth seeing to view the special effects. They are excellent.

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  27. Thanks for your comments Revathi. Rajni is very lucky and he has the backing of God. Otherwise how would a dark skinned guy, with a squint eye, and who speaks Tamil with an accent can become a famous superstar?

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  28. Thanks for your comments Neha. We all have been OD'd on Rajni. I would suggest watching this movie only for viewing the special effects.

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  29. Thanks for your comments Sulagna. Ahh that's nothing. He can catch an oncoming bullet and throw at the person who shot him. That bullet will go to that person in the same speed. If that person turns right to run, the bullet also will turn right.

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  30. Thanks for your comments Tracy. In India, movies are produced in all the languages. But major film industry is in 2 cities. One in Mumbai (Bombay) (called Bollywood). Another one in Chennai, in the Kodambakkam area (called Kollywood). Bollywood and Kollywood produce similar movies but in different languages. Bollywood produces Hindi movies and Kollywood produces Tamil movies.

    In foreign countries, they classify all Indian movies as Bollywood because Mumbai is more “known” than Chennai.

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  31. SG, i might be one of those rare species, but I did not like Avatar.. do you still recommend me this movie?

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  32. Neha,

    In your position I will not see this molvie. There is no story. It is all Special Effects-Rajni-Special Effects-Rajni.

    All publicity, including interview with celebraties, are "bought" infomercial.

    In the olden days, when a movie could run only for 70 or 75 days, the hero will pay and send his fans to see the movie for the next 25 days. This way, he can claim his movie ran for 100 days.

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  33. I like human movies more.this has all plastic including Aishwarya:)

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  34. I am no fan of Rajni. And he is an evergreen hero - and will remain so as long as we have such crazy fans in India.

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  35. Thanks for your comments Samvedna. I appreciate your straight forward comment.

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  36. Thanks for your comments Radha. Crazy fans just in India? It is all over the world. You should have been here when we saw this movie in a theater in San Jose, california.

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  37. SG,
    Here crazy things are going on,Paal abhishekam for Rajni's banner,feeding the poor ( acceptable) eating food from the floor with out using leaf or a plate,all in the name of the great super star.

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  38. we have been wanting to watch this movie, but the ticket prices are so exorbitant @the bay area. We will wait for some more time to watch this movie. Let all the hype die down. What else do you expect from a Rajini movie - perfect masala and family entertainer and I am sure Endhiran justifies every bit of that. Did you watch it at the IMC 6 theatre SG?

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  39. Thanks for the update Chitra. These are all pre-planned publicity. Did you see most of the actors praising this movie in SunTV. These are paid infomercial. How come I don't see Kamal Hasan, Vijay, Ajit, and Vikram?

    Sun TV has infomercial from political leaders. Then how come I don't see anything from Stalin and Azhagiri?

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  40. Thanks for your commens Anu. yes, the prices will come down once the hoopla is over. Yes, we saw this in the IMC6 in San Jose. I think, for you, Fremont may be nearer.

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  41. You are most welcome Tracy.

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  42. I agree with that american mag's article too :D
    I love Rajni saar. I plan to watch the movie this weekend *fingers crossed*.

    Kilimanjaro is the only song thats good and I hope the picturisation is good. Expect ARR to be back wth something better sigh...

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  43. all I can say is that you are a true Tamilian with Rajnikanth in his heart. :)

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  44. Not a big fan of Rajini, but I've been hearing nice reviews for the movie. Maybe I should check it out :D Nice post, SG.

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  45. yes,agree with you..,he is the incredible actor,,,,may be thats why we call him ..THE THAILAVAR..!!!!!

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  46. Saw the movie today, it was okay, just as you had reviewed it, I am not a big special effects fan, but I like Rajani Kant, the second part was quite boring as you said.
    Surprisingly there was no whistling, I think in Madras side one may hear of such things, not in Bangalore, although he is a Bangalore man.
    But craze for the movie will continue, though we easily got the tkts, booked it through the internet around 1.30 in the afternoon for the 4.45pm show, there was not much crowd. But I think it might be full on the weekend.
    Anyway thanks for the correct review.It was a good break from our routine. My husband remarked, that we were going to the movie exactly after one year, for on the same date last year, we saw the movie Wake up Sid in the same place. Strange there has been no good movie worth seeing in the last 1 year.

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  48. hii

    nice review! esp the last part :P

    that song kilimanjaro is funny i think.. a line goes like 'o mere jangalwasi, aadiwaasi sayyian' lol!!

    waise Rajnikanth has his own unique style that is charming :)

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  49. hI SG,LONG TIME ,didinot visit ur blog ,u have so many entries .I WATCHED THE HINDI VERSION ,robot,and the songs sounded pathetic.even i feltas if it was "not the rehman thing".but movie was excellent.it was one and only rajn sir who carried this movie.otherwise such special effects have come earlier too in indian cinema.the last end was very dramatic.that roller coster rajni with multiple rajnis.

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