Monday, 24 October 2011

The Cult Of Santhosh Pandit

I am a big malayalam film buff.Due to time constraints I may not be able to watch latest malayalam movies,but I try to keep track of latest releases and their box office fate.I was surprised when I came across a news that a film called "Krishnanum Radhayum" starring Santosh Pandit has opened to bumper response.Even when the two big M's are struggling to get a big initial,then who is this Santosh Pandit?.I was curious and did what most of the people do these I came across the cult classic video song "Raathri Shubharathri".Of course the video was entertaining and it proved that Santosh Pandit has a skin which a rhinoceros will feel envy of.but more than the video what attracted my attention was the comments which followed the video.Malayalees are generally a gentle,peace loving people but it seems everyone here is venting their  fury with the choicest of Malayalam words your grandma wouldn't want to hear.Why this outrage?..Even though no one will admit,but deep inside everyone has a dream,to become a superstar,say those thunderous dialogues,bash up the villains and save the heroine.But truth is most of us do not have the guts to work towards that dream.Santosh Pandit at least try to do this in his own unique style,it is another matter whether his work measures up to the current standards of the society.May be it is ahead of its time,may be not.

Why this sympathy for Santosh when everyone seems to be hell bent on bashing him?The interviews he has given.He seems to genuinely believe that he has created a masterpiece.At least he gives that impression.Nothing wrong in that.Honesty counts.If it is other than that and he is hoodwinking all of us then he is world's best actor.At any day I will take a honest "Krishnanum Radhayum" than pretentious craps like Christian Brothers,20-20 or China Town.As far as the question of talent which is pretty much subjective,I will say that he do have talent as far as music direction is concerned.The song sung by Chithra is a genuinely good one.Even though the tunes of songs are pretty much generic,the orchestration is well worked out with some good flute work.

Santosh Pandit may or may not remain as a superstar,but Santosh Pandit phenomenon is here to stay.As internet enters more households,you expect a barrage of youtube videos of wannabe Santosh Pandits in near future.Hope that some genuine talents come through,some future Bharathans and Padmarajans

Sunday, 9 October 2011

The Dante Club Matthew Pearl Novel Review

The Dante Club is an interesting mystery novel where a group of poets try to solve the mystery behind a series of gruesome murders.It is a debut historical mystery novel by Matthew Pearl.Here the background is Boston of 1865.A group of poets which consists of Longfellow,Holmes,Lowell and Greene(called fireside poets) want to bring to the American public,English translation of  Italian poet Dante's divine comedy.But Augustus Manning,treasurer of Harvard fears that the excessive violence in Dante's poetry will bring chaos into the society so try to dissuade the poets from this task.But they are determined to complete this task since they feel that they have an obligation towards American public who should be made aware of the  beauty of Dante's poetry.Then a series of gruesome murders occur where the victims are tortured and to their horror they find parallels to their work about Dante and these murders.The novel takes you through the stages where the poets assume the role of investigators and try to unravel the identity of the sadistic,unhinged serial killer.

The basic premise of making real life literary heavyweights to be the detectives them self is an interesting concept,but which can fall apart if not executed properly.In that sense I will say Pearl has come out with flying colors.One can see that Pearl is in awe of these literary figures and has done his research well to make it seem real and authentic.He has succeeded in recreating the Boston of 1865 and its history convincingly so that even a lay person who is not well versed in the history aspect will find the mystery aspect interesting and would love to know more about the fireside poets,Dante and the civil war which all served as the background of that period. The book is a page turner and keep your attention throughout.At the same time Pearl is able to give a depth to the main characters where one see the poet's burning passion for their work,their dedication to see their work come to fruition,but at the same time their compassion for the victims,their acceptance of coming in terms with the destruction of human life on wake of their work ,all these conflicting emotions captured in excellent writing for most of the part which can be considered to be of high literary quality. 

My Rating: GOOD