mudhalvan on lsd. lead trio as surface allegory for the political system in which each player effects a collective mutation — a particularly striking image of sai pallavi slung over suriya’s shoulder as he fends off attackers — with an invective a la anniyan for character (d)evolution plus a raghuvaran-arjun-styled interview almost serving as a prequel to the shankar film. certainly more complex than what a first impression might betray.
the mythical golden bird and the leitmotif of redemption: for a film that boasts a sparse, minimalist aesthetic and forces even the hindi speaker to hunt for subtitles, the exposition of this very theme in the final moments (“lakhna was looking to redeem himself”) is jarring. never mind that the vehicle for this redemption, the girl caught in the literal crossfire, at various intersections of oppression, is literally named sonchiriya.
loved the bit with phoolan and the anticipation that builds before her moment on screen. an off-the-cuff schooling on intersectionality.
—mere gang mein shaamil ho ja
—main thakur hoon
—aurat ki koi jaat nahi hoti
there hasn’t been a mahesh babu film i could sufficiently tolerate and this was no exception. daft execution of a ridiculous premise with a dumbing down of virtually every element of filmmaking. the hagiography of the hero isn’t a unique framework in telugu/indian cinema, but unlike in other films, with other actors, where the “mass”, masala moments seem to be born out of some semblance of thought and technique — a well choreographed dance number, or, more frequently, fight scene,…