The Kerala State Film Awards 2015: Complete List of Winners

After a lot of delay and controversies the Kerala State Film Awards 2015 (for films of the year 2014) has been announced earlier today at Thiruvananthapuram. Nivin Pauly and Sudev Nair bagged the trophies for Best Actors. Nazriya Nazim won the the Best Actress. Ottal is the Best Movie, while the Best Director award went to Sanal Kumar Sasidharan for Oralpokkam.Continue reading “The Kerala State Film Awards 2015: Complete List of Winners”

The Best of Malayalam Cinema in 2014: A Perspective

While doing a similar exercise around the same time last year I found it hard to do the analysis of the year that’s coming to an end in terms of Malayalam Cinema’s output. This was especially true while compiling my list of the best 10 films of the year, but this time around the process has been a lot simpler. In a way it is a little alarming as that means the quality of films has dipped a bit as there haven’t been too many films to short list and fight among themselves for a spot in the compilation. While the year began on a cautious note thanks to the satellite T.V. deals not happening like before, resulting in many films from late 2013 waiting in the cans finally releasing one, by one, eventually the year still saw 163 releases (apparently 150 straight releases and 13 dubbed releases). The year saw a few films doing very well commercially, not all of them featuring big stars. Also as usual a few good films were given the miss by the audience despite the good reviews.Continue reading “The Best of Malayalam Cinema in 2014: A Perspective”

The Best of Indian Cinema in 2014: A Perspective

At the very outset I wish to express that I personally felt that 2014 was overall an ordinary year for Indian Cinema. It was largely devoid of truly path breaking content and Hindi Cinema in particular was very disappointing, especially the second half of the year. This is even more alarming considering that the 1st quarter of the year saw some decent films like Dedh Ishqiya, Hasee Toh Phasee, Highway, Queen and true blue indie films like Ashim Ahluwalia’s Miss Lovely, the long pending Om-Dar-B-Dar of Kamal Swaroop and Rajat Kapoor’s Ankhon Dekhi. The last among the films mentioned (Ankhon Dekhi) in particular was a delight, more on that later. But with subsequent weeks throwing up disappointment after disappointment, I had almost given up on the year but thank goodness for the last 2 Fridays of the year which brought in some relief. 19th December saw Raj Kumar Hirani’s Aamir Khan spectacle PK release, one of the most awaited films  of the year while 26th December saw Anurag Kashyap’s long pending Ugly release. PK for me is Raj Kumar Hirani’s weakest film, but it is still an earnest film and Aamir thankfully is good in the film. So while I have no problem with the film’s spectacular success, I do oppose the way the so called moral and religious police are dragging it into an unnecessary controversy.Continue reading “The Best of Indian Cinema in 2014: A Perspective”

Iyobinte Pusthakam Movie Review: Amal Neerad Merges Style with Substance, Finally

Amal Neerad entered the Malayalam film industry with some amount of promise. After being a cinematographer in a few Hindi films, he turned to direction with the Malayalam film, Big B (2007). Big B had its share of supporters and critics alike and Amal hasn’t shied away from the fact that it wasn’t an original film. The film went on to redefine style as seen in Malayalam Cinema and appealed especially to fans of Mammootty. But with similar attempts in Sagar Alias Jacky Reloaded (2009-Mohanlal), Anwar (2010-Prithviraj) and an outlandish Bachelor Party (2012), it became an overkill and a lot of people including yours truly started getting disappointed. What was even worse was seeing more and more filmmakers adopting a similar approach and failing even more miserably (take for example Aashiq Abu with Gangster earlier this year). Continue reading “Iyobinte Pusthakam Movie Review: Amal Neerad Merges Style with Substance, Finally”

Iyobinte Pusthakam: Trailer

Iyobinte Pusthakam Poster 1Cinematographer turned filmmaker Amal Neerad is more known for his films being high on style quotient but not so high on the content as such. Which is why his short film, Kullante Bharya which was recognized as one of the better parts of Anchu Sundarikal, the anthology Malayalam film last film, came out as a surprise to all those following Malayalam Cinema, Amal Neerad is now back with his latest film, Iyobinte Pusthakam (Iyob’s Book) which is produced by him along with Fahadh Faasil. Written by Gopan Chidambaran and Syam Pushkaran, Iyobinte Pusthakam has an ensemble star cast comprising of Fahadh Faasil, Jayasurya, La, Isha Sharvani, Padma Priya, Reenu Mathews, Lena, Vinayakan, Chemban Vinod etc. The music is by Neha S Nair & Yakzan Gary Pereira while cinematography is by Amal Neerad himself,sound design is by Tapas Nayak and editing is by Praveen Prabhakar.Continue reading “Iyobinte Pusthakam: Trailer”

Anchu Sundarikal Movie Review: An Anthology film with a Heart

Anchu-SundarikalAmal Neerad who started off his filmy career as a cinematographer in Hindi Cinema, moved to Malayalam Cinema when he turned filmmaker with Big B. Subsequently he went on to make films like Sagar Alias Jacky Reloaded, Anwar and Bachelor Party.Continue reading “Anchu Sundarikal Movie Review: An Anthology film with a Heart”

Anchu Sundarikal: Trailer

5 SundarikalAnthology films are in vogue now & Anchu Sundarikal (5 beautiful  women) is one such forthcoming Malayalam movie. The brainchild of cinematographer turned filmmaker, Amal Neerad, Anchu Sundarikal looks at women of 5 types- mother,daughter,lover, wife and actress through 5 short films.Continue reading “Anchu Sundarikal: Trailer”

Bachelor Party-Sneak Peek

Cinematographer turned filmmaker Amal Neerad has been known for making larger than life but stylish Malayalam films like Big B, Sagar Alias Jacky, Anwar etc and he’s now back with his latest film, Bachelor Party which has an ensemble star cast . Continue reading “Bachelor Party-Sneak Peek”