REVIEW: PETTA, KGF PART 1 and MARY POPPINS RETURNS
Ten days into the New Year, and no Bollywood release which I have watched. But I did watch three movies, one from Hollywood (MARY POPPINS RETURNS), one from Sandalwood (KGF PART1) and one from Kollywood (PETTA), and rather than write three separate reviews, I will try to put the reviews in a single post. Will this be the trend for future reviews? I don’t know about that as of now!
The only feature that is common with these three movies is that all of them will be solid box-office hits. We know that with a certainty for MARY POPPINS RETURNS, which is already approaching $300 million; KGF PART 1, which has zoomed into the Rs 200 crore club are declared hits. And I am predicting that PETTA will also be a super duper hit.
And then there are commonalities between the Sandalwood and the Tollywood productions. The Sandalwood production has been simultaneously released in four languages, Kannada, Telugu, Tamil and Hindi; the Tollywood production has been released in Tamil, Hindi and Telugu. Both are slickly shot revenge dramas, both are nearly three hours long and both feature hundreds of killings. In short, they are not family dramas. On the other hand, MARY POPPINS RETURNS is a feel good, delightful sequel to the brilliant MARY POPPINS made about 50 years back. Whereas the premise in MARY POPPINS RETURNS is that good deeds beget good results, the other two being revenge dramas deliver a message that evil begets evil. There is also a rather unfortunate take away from the South Indian Productions that justice is better delivered by superhuman heroes rather than by the institutions.
MARY POPPINS RETURNS has Emily Blunt playing Mary Poppins and although the film revolves around her, the script manages to give all the other players valuable screen time. And it also features Meryl Streep and Dick Van Dyke ( who was the lead actor in the Mary Poppins original) in bit roles, good music and of course, the cute children and the magic woven around the tale. Certainly a must see for all children and adults who like to be transported to a magical world.
KGF PART 1 is the most expensive Kannada film made till date and as the title indicates, it is the first part of I don’t know how many parts! Featuring the popular star Yash, it has the lead man in every frame. Sadly, Yash carries only one expression throughout the movie: an uninterested grimace. The movie moves back and forth and does take a serious effort to follow. But the nonchalant attitude displayed by Yash seems to have driven his fans to a frenzy and so despite there being hardly any story, the action sequences and the skilful editing and the cinematography make this appear as a technologically advanced production.
PETTA is strictly for Rajnikanth fans and after the disappointing 2.0, it comes as a huge relief. Rajni is back at what he does best and which has made him the darling of millions. Although liberally strewn with violence, there are streaks of humour which are introduced by the young director Subbaraj. And twists in the tale, lots of Rajni dance numbers and good performances by Vijay Sethupathy and Nawazuddin Siddique (his first appearance in a Tamil movie), foot stomping music by Aniruddh Ravichander make this the best Rajni movie after ENTHIRAN. But is that saying much?
MARY POPPINS RETURNS: 4 out of 5; KGF PART 1: 2.5 out of 5 ;PETTA: 3.5 out of 5
January 10, 2019