Why Baasha/Padayappa will always be better than Endhiran

Over the past few days, I’ve watched Annamalai, Baasha, Arunachalam, Padayappa and Endhiran. What I’ve realized is that it is impossible to replace Baasha and Padayappa. In my opinion, Endhiran doesn’t even come close.

When Endhiran had just released, my co-author of this blog, T and I had a small discussion as to whether this film would stand the test of time. Would it be remembered in 5-10 yrs? Will people remember the scenes and dialogues. Neither of us were sure..but we definitely were awed by the film and thalaivar’s supreme acting, so we went to watch it again within 2 days. I hadn’t watched it since then..until yesterday. And while watching it, I realized, yes, the movie is brilliant, the music is awesome but there’s something missing. Maybe that something was an intro song, a save-the-world hero or maybe it was the fact that this was a director’s movie and Rajinikanth was just an actor in the movie. We aren’t used to that. We want someone who is bigger than the movie, we want someone who we can look up to, but that wasn’t to be found in Endhiran. The scientist character was too normal and earthly to be played by thalaivar.

Now, whats so special about Baasha and Padayappa that makes them better than any movie which comes out today? Or for that matter, even Muthu.  There hasn’t been a single song which captures everything about Rajini, like this one does.

And the charisma that he exudes in those films is unmatched. The black sheep scene was outstanding. But it doesn’t come close to this.

And, while talking about Baasha, one cannot miss this video.

I’m sure and can bet my life on this, most if not all the people who’ve watched this scene can remember even the train background which comes up as soon as Rajini beats up the first guy. That’s how memorable these films are.

Yes, a major part of these movies was hero worship. But they were really good commercial films with good stories unlike vijay or ajith films or dare I say, Dasavatharam. These directors weren’t the best, but they knew what the people needed and how to make their films last in people’s memory for a long time and Endhiran definitely does not do it. It hasn’t been 24hrs since I watched the movie and I can’t remember most of the scenes in the film. Endhiran does not satisfy a rajini fan like padayappa does. It doesn’t show you the rajini you want to see. I would spend a $100 to see rajini in a role like padayappa but would definitely think twice before doing it if he were to play an NRI or a scientist.

Or Maybe, just maybe its the fact that we grew up with films like Baasha and Padayappa and they’re closer to the heart than anything that has come since then, even if they’re better that those.


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The Tale of 37

What does one do when one runs out of alphabets to name standards? One gets into alpha-numeric of course! Which is exactly what a certain school in the city did and that’s where this incident takes place; in the busy classroom of 11 D8.

The classes had begun a month ago and the first mid-term exam had just concluded. The Maths paper was reduced to 100 marks from the usual 200. This was due to the fact that the teachers themselves were attending evening classes for skillfully aiding students during the Chemistry public practicals using the “Skillfully Aiding Students in Chemistry Public Practicals” book from Wren and Martin. The Maths paper had been corrected the previous day and the teacher was distributing the papers.

The period when a teacher distributes papers in class is often chaotic. The marks are publicly announced ordered by the roll numbers. You have students collecting papers, students collecting insults from the teacher and best friends trying to reduce each other’s marks. There is so much noise in the vicinity that one could scream, “UNNIKUMAR!”, should Unnikumar be the name of your teacher, and still escape with a rock solid alibi of recounting your friend’s total. 2 girls on the same bench were sincerely crying for having scored 92.5 and 93 respectively. The 3rd girl from the same bench was sincerely laughing at the other two. 3 guys, of whom 2 had already received their papers, were waiting for the last guy’s turn.




23: Dai, how did you end up with 92 da?

12:  Show me your paper. I’ll see if there’s any mistake.

23: Don’t think there is. Why don’t you show me YOUR paper?

12: Er..here you ago. Parava illa vidu da. Mid-term and all one mattera.

23: Says the guy who got 92. Bitch. How do you two always end up in the 90s?

37: Er…I haven’t got mine yet. Let’s not assume anything (there was a suave/smug look on his face)

23: Dai. You and all minimum 95.

“29…..62….This and all one marka. Attend the 7 pm classes from tomorrow!

12: Aamam why are his eyes red?


23: Yaaru avara (pointing to the teacher)? Must’ve not slept well I guess.


At this juncture the last of the friends took center stage and rushed towards the front.

“….71….Expected better from you”

Disillusioned, he returned to his bench. His friends pounced on him

12: 71aaa! Give it here.

23: Dai chanceey illa da… Let me have a look

37: Wait. Let me see what happened.

The 1-marks hadn’t betrayed him. The 2-marks seemed friendly for the most part.  He had lost his way in 2 of the 5-marks but he had been expecting those. The solitary 10-mark smiled at him with a big tick. No, there had to be some mistake. With determination he started recounting. He reached 71 and to his surprise found that there was still some distance to cover. At the end of it he had started smiling and went up to the teacher once again. “Total mistake sir.” He said triumphantly. The teacher looked at him and turned towards the girls’ side. “Anusha” he said, adjusting his pants, “check his total.”

37 went forth to her bench at the back. She checked the paper. Amidst the chaos that was the classroom she recounted and said in a barely audible voice. “88 thaaney.” 37 nodded. Anusha turned towards the teacher and said, “Correct only sir.”

He returned with the paper in his hand. The class was still chaotic and his mind started to wander. He had the paper with the “correct” total in his hand. Should he really do this? Was it necessary? He passed the paper to the teacher, who looked at the 71 and asked, “How much?”

37: 90 sir.

The teacher was surprised. He shouted, “Silence!” and the class went quiet. 37 let out a breath from his mouth. “Anusha” said the teacher, adjusting his pants, “What is his total?” 37’s hands had become wet now. Anusha replied, “88 sir.” and sat down.

Normally the teacher would have had no qualms in beating the boy to within a inch of his life. The situation had changed these days. One could either hit a boy and end up on the front page of the Hindu Education Plus or one could politely discipline the boy. And so politely he did.

What do you think I am? You must ask and I will simply give the marksa?..

37: No sir.

Your boots I must polisha?

37: No sir.

Whether what I am talking is lies?

37: No sir.

Vekkama illa?

37: Yes sir.

How much did you actually get?

37: She said 88 sir.

“Here take it.”

And he threw the paper with the modified total to the ground. The entire class was watching him. Some of the students didn’t quite understand what had happened. Their friends took it upon themselves to point their fingers at 37 and explain the situation to them.

37 took the paper and returned to this seat. He hid his face in the paper not wanting his dignity to be naked in the open. Roll number 37 was no longer in his prime.


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The Honourary Member

There was this movie which arrived during the Pongal season; Siruthai. It was a big hit. I caught up with the movie fairly late. All the reviews of this “family” movie mention that SOME of the scenes may be crude but no one has bothered to elucidate as to what exactly they mean. So for the benefit all those who haven’t seen this movie yet and those who have seen the movie but are secretly sadists and punish themselves on a daily basis I shall try to put forth in words what some of these crude scenes are.

WARNING: Offensive Content.

ANNOUNCEMENT: All the points mentioned below actually happen in the film. Nothing is exaggerated. If anyone can prove that I have distorted any facts then for the next Mic Mohan’s movie that comes out, the tickets will be on me. (Softcore pornography does not count as a legitimate film)


1. The villain of the film engages in inter-species fetish pornography i.e., he drinks a cow’s 1-bathroom (If anyone actually believes that the above mentioned process has any medicinal value then kindly isolate yourself from civilization and send your Curriculum Vitae to urinesampler_recruits@guineapigs.com)

2. The hero shaves the heads of middle aged women for comedic purposes (Technically he shaves only half their heads but….shudders……you get the general idea)

3. A group of ara-trouser wearing small boys enter the hero’s house and when they come out, they are all naked and the hero has their ara-trousers in his hands chasing them off. (I can’t even think of anything witty to write here…..sometimes…words….I….never mind….)

4 Immediately after the above scene happens the hero is seen fighting the children’s mothers….not verbally…but beats the hell out them….(I am sure that by this stage you’re expecting irrefutable proof so…)

5. The comedian goes 1-bathroom on the sands…..

6. The villain taunts an entire village by informing them that what runs in their body is not blood but rather his 1-bathroom (Is anybody else noticing a disturbing pattern among the scenes…)

7. Hips:
I’ll be honest. This isn’t the first time hips have made an appearance in films. But DAMN IT there was some context to them in the earlier films!! There was a reason they existed. For example the hero’s girlfriend, who was actually from usalampatti, needed oil to remove the sulukku. A better example is when some innocent kids come to you and ask you how the Bambaram operates. In which case you, being the future Deputy CM and whatnot, are obliged to show it to them.

The hero in this film, though, wants to touch it because….well he wants to touch it…that’s about it. So he proceeds to do so and you know what….the heroine actually enjoys it……and as a result Tammanah’s hips are given a “Special Appearance” credit when the film’s titles roll at the end.

So these are just a FEW of the crude scenes from the movie. After watching this film I have actually come to a conclusion about the hero of the film. Let us first plot a few points from his movie career. This man, Karthi, has in a matter of 5 or so films :-

1. Die half naked (they could have just killed him with an aruva to his throat….but no…they have to strip him first for some reason…).
2. Support a mad king who beheads midgets as sacrifice to his God.(see Aayirathil Oruvan uncut version) and
3. Get into cat-dog fights with middle aged women while shaving their heads and undressing their little children.

You see what he is doing. He is using all the powers vested in him to preserve the depravity of the idlivorous. So for this noble task I anoint him a honourary ubermachan.


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Narayana and the First Drink

Narayana returned home after a hard day’s work. The logging industry was reeling under the impact of new legislation. “Damn you Jairam Ramesh!” he muttered as he entered the house. The day had been quite eventful. He had to break up a tussle between one of his customers and the area’s MLA. With a throbbing headache he sat in his chair as his wife served him coffee.

The group of friends entered the place looking for the drink. It was the first time any of them had left their elders and wandered off alone. They were all very young and were being led by the youngest. He had been warned by the elders not to take the first drink alone. They spoke of the mythical giant object which would crush them from the sky were they not careful. Frankly he did not care for such warnings. He just wanted to have his drink. For too long his older friends had taunted him. Not anymore. “I’ll show them. I’ll clip their bloody wings of pride.” he thought to himself as he entered the place.

Having finished his coffee Narayana informed his wife that he was going to to rest for a while. He reached the bedroom. The windows were open. “HOW MANY TIMES DO I HAVE TO TELL YOU TO CLOSE THE WINDOWS IN THE EVENINGS!” he shouted at his wife. He closed the window himself. Resting in the bed he turned on the TV. Some Sarath Kumar film was running.

The friends after searching elsewhere found what they were looking for. They moved in delight towards the drink’s source. They had heard a loud bang nearby but were too consumed by the drink to think about it. The leader of the group felt proud for finding it in the first try itself. They reached the location, dug in and started drinking.

The movie had been proceeding in a leisurely pace. Narayana grunted. He felt an irritating sensation. He looked down at his right hand. WTF!

The drink was sensational. Everything that his older friend had said of the drink had turned out be true. It was pure bliss. He could not fathom how they could eat or drink anything else when something like THIS was available. It was at this moment that he noticed it. The Horror! The mythical object had appeared out of nowhere from the top. It was huge. It crushed half his friends. They died on the spot. The other half, including him, managed to move out of harm’s way. They scrambled to go back to their home. He had been wrong all along. “I will never leave without my elders henceforth” he told himself.

Narayana was furious. He went to the bathroom and washed his hands. He searched for the spray. He found it beneath the wash basin and returned to his room in seething anger.

The group was shocked. They could SEE the way they came in but were unable to go out. It was if an invisible barrier prevented them from going back. But he could clearly SEE the trees, the open sky and the flowers. He could not believe what evil stood between them and their home. He pushed with all his might. But no, the barrier still prevailed. He was stil pushing when he realized that he had difficulty in breathing. He started twitching. He noticed that his friends felt something similar too. As the seconds passed he found it became harder to breathe. He realized that this was the end. His last thought was of the drink and whether it was worth his life. He realized it wasn’t.

Narayana opened the window, threw all the kosus out, closed it and went back to seeing the movie.


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We are the champions!

The emotion cannot be described completely in words. We have waited for this day since the minute Mohd Kaif won us the Natwest trophy. That was when we started to believe that there were players other than sachin. It didn’t matter that sachin didn’t score a lot last night. He played the backfoot punch through covers, he played the straight drive that gives us orgasms..That was enough. And when you saw tears from his eyes, you know you cried. I did and I am bloody proud of it.

If you’re around my age, you definitely do not remember the 1992 world cup that much. In 1996, when you saw kambli cry, you didnt understand what it was all about or you probably didnt watch it if you, like me, turned the TV off when India were 98/2. In 1999, there was the century against Kenya, the 140. There was the 183 by Ganguly and another 140 odd from dravid. But you knew something was missing. You didnt believe we could win. But it was there in 2003. The belief came after the 125 allout against australia. The huddle had started. And GOD was playing in a different level all together. Even Nehra got a 5-for against england then. But when Zak bowled that first over, you knew we were doomed and when McGrath got sachin, that was it. You didn’t care too much about 2007, the whole thing was useless..

And then came the man. MS Dhoni. Captain of the team since 2007. He has won the world T20, took us to the top of the test rankings and now this, the only thing that sachin needed.

I’ve told many of my friends that the day sachin retires, I’ll stop watching cricket. But after yesterday I think i might just prolong it a little more.

Thank you Sachin. Thank you MSD and thank you virat kohli for that punch line.


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Cricket Merchandising

One of my friends kept this as his facebook status a few days ago:

Bleeding blue….

This was after India had defeated Australia in the quarter finals of the Cricket World Cup 2011. Thinking that he had come up with this catchy phrase on his own, I did what any guy would do when he sees his friend doing something incredibly original and creative; I made fun of him. It was only later that I realized that he was referring to this make-money-quickly-worldcup-trending campaign from Nike.

Looking at the video and the apparent frenzy that it has generated I realized that cricket merchandising is not being exploited properly by the good people of media and corporates. I mean, we are a nation that will donate our liver to the alcohol research foundation if it means we can spend a day in the company of Sachin Tendulkar (I believe several of us are already doing it already.) Damn it! We deserve to be exploited with greater passion.

So I’ve come with a small list of ideas using which we can help cultivate cricket merchandising better :-

1. Player Playthings: This is so obvious that I can’t be believe that some IIM graduate hasn’t thought about it already. A new line of toys modeled after our cricketers with a button at the back. The button has different actions based on the cricketer. For example a Ravi Shastri doll, when pressed, will mutter useful phrases like, “Tracer bullet”, “Going the Distance” and “Stays Hit.” A Sachin doll when pressed doesn’t talk anything but performs cricketing actions like hook, sweep and make Shane Warne cry in his sleep. A Yuvraj Singh doll would point its bat at you and laugh at you for not recognizing its awesomeness earlier and lastly, a Javed Miandad doll, when pressed, would just jump:

2. Page C: It’s shameful to see Cricket grouped together with other sports in the newspaper. It deserves its own page. So I give you, Page C; combining glamour and sport into one deadly cocktail. Considering that the word “Privacy” doesn’t exist in the media dictionary this one should be easy. Ever wonder where Sachin gets his haircut or who’s that girl standing next to ? Fret no more as Page C will have all the details. Right from interviews with the esteemed hairdresser mentioned above to Exclusive Gossip (“Which cricketer attended Robbie’s party and what they wore during the occasion?”) to a weekly column on Cricketer’s personal lives (What games does Sreesanth play in his Wii besides Dance Dance Revolution?!) and finally a daily analysis on why “Sachin is God!” Chennai will get its own version of Page C where R.Ashwin will be dissected, right from his preferences of dosai (Plain, Masala or Set) to his choice of films(with both Rajini and Kamal fans standing nearby for…future course of action)

3. AigaLand: Cricket’s answer to Disney Land. A huge theme park located in the heart of Mumbai consisting of various joy rides, houses of horror, a temple and a theater all related to cricket. Among others, the joy rides will consist of a roller coaster titled “Pakistan” which follows no sane pattern and moves about in all direction, a house of horror special titled “Grab that Cup!” in which the Cricket World Cup is just 3 steps in front of you and you try to reach it while suffering from the illusion that people are trying to choke you and finally a Rocket simulator titled “There and back again” in which the rocket keeps going up continuously, reaches outer space, loses fuel eventually and crashes back to earth with the debris landing in Australia.

4. A new entertainment channel titled, “FUnda..Cricket..Krazy..” I think the title pretty much explains the channel’s content and the target demographic. Todally !!!!

and last but not least..

5. Movies: More films like this one below, nuff said.

Warning: If it should be that one of these ideas becomes a reality and some punk MBA guy gets credit for the “innovating marketing” idea….I shall hire the services of ex-RAW agents and carpet bomb the MBA guy to oblivion.


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