Wednesday, December 19, 2012



Friday, December 7, 2012


Drama 'Scope'

Malayalam cinema regains vigour

Malayalam cinema regains vigour
Rose Mary John
Neethu S Kumar
Remya P P

 The last few years have seen a dynamic change in the Malayalam movie industry. Despite the cold war among various associations in the industry, it produced a number of good films and witnessed the entry of new directors and actors.

 The ‘Malayalam Cinema Today’ section of the 17th IFFK showcases this new spring in Malayalam Cinema through seven movies which portray lives realistically. The films listed in this section are ‘Ozhimuri’, ‘Chayilliam’, ‘Askashathinte Niram’(colour of sky),’ Friday’, ‘Indian Rupee’, ‘Ee Adutha Kaalath’(In recent times), ‘Ithramatram’.

 ‘Ithramatram’, directed by K.Gopinath is the cinematic adaptation of Kalpatta Narayana Menon’s novel of the same name. It depicts suddenness of death and how it impacts people through the story of Sumitra(Sweta Menon). The brilliant acting of Biju Menon and Sidique enrich the background score by Thomas Kottukappally. K.G.Jayan’s hypnotic cinematography ensures that the chill of the Wayanad air is infused into the ambience of the film.

 Director Madhupal’s film ‘Ozhimuri’ penned by Jaya Mohan dwells on divorce in the matrilineal system that prevailed in the Nair community in Southern Travancore. Lal, Asif Ali, Bhavan, and Mallika enact the central characters. The cinematography of Azhakappan lends depth to the visual effect of the film.

 Dr.Biju’s ‘Akashathinte Niram’, India’s only entry in the competition section of the recently concluded Shanghai International Film Festival explores man’s mysterious bond with his habitat and its elements. The film narrates a young burglar’s unexpected journey to a pristine isolated island. Indrajith excels as the protagonist while Nedumudi Venu and Pritviraj play catalytic roles.

 Set against the backdrop of the backwaters of Alappuzha, Lijin Jose’s debut film ‘Friday’ talks of birth, death, and life on a Friday. The film has Fahad Fazil, Ann Augustine, and Tiny Tom in lead roles.
 ‘Ee Adutha Kalath’ (In recent times) is a black comedy film written by Murali Gopi and directed by Arun Kumar Aravind. Kerala State Award winning cinematographer Shehnad Jalal handled the camera. It shows the life of six different people living in a city.
 Renjith’s film ‘Indian Rupee’ is a satirical take on today’s youth who are constantly on the lookout for means to make quick money. Pritviraj, Tini Tom, Thilakan, Jagathy Sreekumar, and Rima Kallingal lend life to the characters.
Manoj Kana’s ‘Chayillyam’, a movie that explores the ‘Shades of Red’ that make up the feminine psyche has also found a place in this section.   



Festival that unites - Editorial

Festival that unites 


      As the 17th International Film Festival of Kerala opens today there is no doubt regarding the benefits it has done both to the film makers and film lovers of the state, over the years. The festival has been a platform for all film enthusiasts to get together, watch films, discuss and appreciate them. It inspired our young film makers; for a film lover it offered novelty, variety, and class. If our critics waited for the festival with academic interest, the movie goers awaited it for entertainment and fun.

 With over two hundred films to be screened in over a dozen categories, this year’s festival, too, promises to be a grand treat. The hosts could be proud this time as two of the fourteen pictures in the competition section are in Malayalam. Last year none of our films could make it to the competition section.

 To the credit of the organizers three theatres-Kairali, Sree, Kalabhavan- have been renovated. Kairali theatre has been revamped to form a new mini theatre Nila. With this the number of government owned theatres hosting the festival has risen to four.  State of the art audio facilities have been installed, offering multiplex like experience.  The care taken to renovate the washroom facilities at the theatres also deserves appreciation.

 It is unfortunate, however, that year after year the delegate registration remains a concern. This year, the newly introduced exclusive online registration has drawn much criticism. This system, many people think, is complicated as it requires several follow ups. The decision to restrict the number of delegates, and to discard open forum, an interactive session with the film makers and the public have also caused much furore.

 The film festival is neither an exclusive stage for the film critics and serious film makers nor an event solely for public entertainment. A right mix of both these has been the highlight of the festival for years. In that sense, it is no good to take any steps that may alienate the spectators, waning the much acclaimed public participation.

'The Ring' will start it off this time

'The Ring' will start it off this time 
Ashiqha Sultana

 Alfred Hitchcock’s silent movie ‘The Ring’ is set to be the opening film at this year’s International Film Festival of Kerala. The 108-minute film will be screened at the Nishaghandhi open air auditorium with a live Orchestra playing the music and background scores instead of the regular Dolby digital surrounding system.
 ‘The Ring’ is Hitchcock’s one and only original screenplay which is first released in 1927 that have been restored by the British Film Institute along with Hitchcock’s nine surviving silent films.
 The story is a love triangle melodrama set in the world of boxing, a milieu that fascinated Hitchcock. The title of the film refers not just the boxing ring, but to the wedding ring that unites up-and-coming contender Jack “One Round” Sander (Carl Brisson) and his girlfriend Mabel (Lillian Hall Davis), and to the threat to their relationship symbolized by an arm bracelet given to Mabel by Jack’s rival, Australian boxing champion Bob Corby (Ian Hunter), which eventually becomes a symbol of the love triangle at the centre of the film. The cast of the film includes Carl Brisson, Lillian Hall-Davis.
 The plot of the film not that thrilling, but what is exciting to watch is Hitchcock’s growing confidence in the medium; the tension cranks up powerfully at key moments, especially towards and during the final fight sequence. But mainly this is a film to be enjoyed for its details. The symbolism of the various “rings” in the film, the unusual framing and the nascent special effects.   It is clearly influenced by German Expressionism and also it influenced later fight films.
 Boxing is a sport which has been the plot for several great films. This must be because boxing works so well as a metaphor for many other “fights” faced in life.

IFFK: Action begins today

IFFK: Action begins today

The city of Thiruvananthapuram is all set to welcome the week long fiesta organized by Kerala State Chalachitra Academy on behalf of the Department of Cultural Affairs, Government of Kerala. For each and every soul who shares a genuine passion for film, the 17th edition of International Film Festival of Kerala will screen about 200 films from various parts of the world. The festival will take about 7000 delegates through the undefined, but spectacular path of cinema in the coming week.
 Chief Minister Ommen Chandy will inaugurate the festival at Nishagandhi open air auditorium at 6pm. Actor Mohanlal will be the chief guest. Union Minister Shri Shasi Tharoor, Health Minister V.S. Shivakumar, Mayor K Chandrika, K Muraleedharan MLA and V.Shivankutty MLA will also be present for the ceremony.
 ‘The Ring’ directed by Alfred Hitchcock is the opening movie of this year. This 1960 horror classic will be accompanied by the live background scores by Peter Conway management, London.
This year the films are categorized in sections such as Australian Indigenous films, Vietnam films, Srilankan package, Adolescent films, Competition films, Top angle Indian cinema, Indian cinema today, Malayalam cinema today, Homage section and Retrospective.
Eminent Australian filmmaker Paul Cox is the Chairperson of the International Jury to adjudge Suvarna Chakoram and Rajatha Chakoram awards. The members are Burkinabe film director Pierre Yamaego, Anne demi Geroe, Govind Nihlani and Dang Minh Nhat. The Netpac Jury includes Park Sung Ho, Tina Lokk and Jayantha Chandrasiri. Gyorgy Karpati, Narjes Torchani and Subrahmanyan Viswanath are the members of FIPRESCI Jury.
 In the retrospective section films of Paul Cox, Pierre Yamaego, Alain Resnais, Akira Kurasowa and Brazilian actress Helena Ignes and Sathyan will be screened. The 17th IFFK will pay homage to famous film personalities including Tilakan, Appachan, Vindhyan, T Damodaran, Jose Prakash, C P Padma Kumar, Asok Mehta, Chris Marker and Kaneto Shindo. 14 films are on the race for the Suvarna Chakoram out of which two is Malayalam.

IFFK Newsletter 'Spotlight' PDF Version

Download PDF HQ Version of IFFK 2012 'SpotLight'


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