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IANS Review: Hari’s ‘Yaanai’ delivers on its promise to entertain (IANS Rating: ***1/2)



Film: Yaanai (showing in theatres); Duration: 155 minutes

Director: Hari; Cast: Arun Vijay, Priya Bhavani Shankar, Samuthirakani, Aadukalam Jayabalan, Yogi Babu, Ramachandra Raji, Pugazh and Radhika

IANS Rating: ***1/2

Director Hari is undoubtedly a master when it comes to making commercial entertainers. He is very good when it comes to narrating family dramas laced with action sequences and he proves it yet again with his latest offering ‘Yaanai’.

You know pretty much what to expect from a Hari film — a close knit adorable family, a notorious goon who is looking to hurt the family in some way just to settle scores with the hero and a powerful hero who looks to protect his family even though some of the other members of his family are not as understanding or affectionate as he is.

Despite knowing fully well that is what the film will offer, one still comes out entertained by the time the film ends and that is exactly where Hari scores as a director.

The central idea is the same, but Hari’s films stand out simply because his narration is fresh and intense and his presentation interesting. These factors make each of his films come across as being different and entertaining. ‘Yaanai’ too is no exception.

The film is a proper commercial entertainer that has as its soul a good, proper script. The film allots space in equal measure to family drama, romance and some really intense action sequences.

The story of ‘Yaanai’ is set in the southernmost tip of Tamil Nadu, where two powerful families, each headed by Samudram (‘Aadukalam’ Jayabalan) and PRV (Rajesh), respectively, are at loggerheads with one another.

Samudram has two sons (twins played by Ramachandra Raji) while PRV has four sons. Of the four, the first three (played by Samuthirakani, Bose Venkat and Sanjeev) are born to his PRV’s first wife while Ravi (Arun Vijay), the fourth, is born to his second wife (Radhika).

Both Samudram and PRV happen to be good friends at one point. But a particular development leaves one of Samudram’s sons killed and the other in prison. An enraged Samudram and his family hold PRV and his family accountable for this loss and seek revenge.

Under these circumstances, trouble erupts inside PRV’s family and Samudram’s son, who has just returned from prison, looks to capitalise on the misfortune that has befallen PRV’s family. Does Ravi manage to thwart the evil designs of Samudram’s son to destroy his family? ‘Yaanai’ gives you the answers to questions like this.

Just like how Hari’s narration and script are a big plus, his casting is also perfect. Arun Vijay as the vociferous but affectionate fourth son delivers a solid performance. Samuthirakani as the eldest brother is equally good and comes up with a spectacular performance that raises the credibility quotient of the film.

One other person whose performance needs to be mentioned is Priya Bhavani Shankar. She makes the character of Jeba Malar look absolutely adorable. The romantic portions between Jeba Malar and Ravi are neat, clean and dignified and are a treat to watch.

Yogi Babu’s jokes evoke laughter and provide some much-needed relief in an otherwise intense, emotional story.

On the technical front, G.V. Prakash’s music is mellifluous and Gopinath’s cinematography is breathtakingly beautiful. In particular, Gopinath’s shots of two water bodies being separated by a thin stretch of land are just captivating.

The film in all is just a proper good mass entertainer that delivers!


Danny Boyle saw Anil Kapoor’s ‘Taal’, offered him ‘Slumdog Millionaire’




Actor Anil Kapoor revealed that Danny Boyle saw his film ‘Taal’ and his performance in it that made the Hollywood filmmaker offer him the hugely successful film ‘Slumgod Millionaire’.

Anil also shared that he was destined to do this film as it was first offered to actor Govinda and then it came to him.

As the film, which also stars Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Akshaye Khanna, completes 23 years of its release on Saturday, Anil took to social media to share some pictures from the shoot and pen a note.

“23 years of Taal! I will forever be grateful to have been a part of this iconic movie. In many ways, I was destined to do it, as my role was first offered to Govinda but ultimately came to me.”

“It was Taal that Danny Boyle saw and my performance in it that made him offer me Slumdog Millionaire, I thank my lucky stars for the love and support of the phenomenally talented showman @subhashghai1 saab and for 4 hugely successful milestone films with him!”

‘Taal’ released in 1999. The musical romantic drama is directed by Subhash Gahi. It was also dubbed in Tamil as ‘Thaalam’.

‘Slumdog Millionaire’ was nominated for ten Academy Awards in 2009 and won eight, the most for any film in 2008.

The British drama film is loosely adapted from the novel ‘Q & A’ by Indian author Vikas Swarup, telling the story of 18-year-old Jamal Malik from the Juhu slums of Mumbai. Starring Dev Patel as Jamal, and filmed in India, it also stars Freida Pinto.

As a contestant on ‘Kaun Banega Crorepati’, Jamal surprises everyone by being able to answer every question correctly, winning 20 million. Accused of cheating, Jamal recounts his life story to the police, illustrating how he is able to answer each question correctly.

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Kareena opens up on her iconic character Poo having her own movie




 Kareena Kapoor Khan’s over-the-top Poo from ‘Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham’ is one of the most memorable and loved roles from the actress’s career. The Bollywood diva herself finds it unbelievable that even after 21 years of the film’s release the character is still relevant amongst all age-groups.

Kareena’s character Poo is not only known for her taste in fashion but also one liners such as “Kaun hai yeh jisne dobara mudke mujhe nahi dekha”, ‘P.H.A.T – Pretty, Hot And Tempting’ and “Tumhe koi haq nahi banta ki tum itni khoobsurat lago. Not fair” among many others.

Asked if she feels that Poo deserves a movie to herself, Kareena, in conversation with IANS, said: “Oh God! Like I think now this character is so relevant with this generation more than it was then.”

Kareena talks about what makes the character, which comes from Chandni Chowk in New Delhi and then moves to London with her sister essayed by Kajol and brother-in-law played by Shah Rukh Khan, have such a massive fan following.

“I think for the way she is, the way she talks, the kind of millennial Gen-Z kinda words that she uses connect somehow.”

The 41-year-old actress added: “So, I think it is because of that more than anything else. Let’s see a film someday, who knows.”

Kareena’s latest release is ‘Laal Singh Chaddha’ starring Aamir Khan. The film is an adaptation of Tom Hanks’ iconic movie ‘Forest Gump’. It also stars Mona Singh and Naga Chaitanya.

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Jubin Nautiyal: Rarely do we get the opportunity to sing for a young college album




Singer Jubin Nautiyal is all pepped up as his song ‘Naya Pyaar Naya Ehsaas’ from the film ‘Middle Class Love’ is out.

Jubin Nautiyal says: “Rarely do we get the opportunity of singing for a young college album. The film revives the genre for Hindi movies. I had such a great time working on the track Naya Pyaar Naya Ehsaas. It’s bound to take everyone back to their memories of first love. The innocence and warmth of the song will bring a smile to your face.”

Director Ratnaa Sinha recreates it for her upcoming ‘Middle Class Love’. The first song of the film’s album is titled ‘Naya Pyaar Naya Ehsaas’.

The song is written and scored by Himesh Reshammiya, and is sung by Jubin Nautiyal and Palak Mucchal. The song brings back the nostalgic vibe of first love, the first brush with romance and the joyous emotions it evokes.

Talking about the track, Himesh Reshammiya says: “This song will remind everyone of their first love. The song speaks about the feelings that one experiences when in love and how first love will always have a special place in your heart.”

“I have channelled my personal experiences with the music and I hope it touches everyone’s hearts.”

Palak Muchhal adds: “The melody of the song will touch the right chord with the audiences as it brings back the feeling of first love. It’s always a pleasure singing for Himesh Sir and I had such a great experience working with him and Jubin on this song. I hope this song makes everyone relish their fond memories of love!”

Director Ratnaa Sinha adds that Himesh has delivered a very wholesome album to me which is in sync with the film’s theme.

‘Middle Class Love’ stars Prit Kamani, Eisha Singh, Kavya Thapar and is directed by Ratnaa Sinha. The film is jointly produced by Anubhav Sinha’s Benaras Media Works and Zee Studios.

‘Middle Class Love’ is all set to release on September 16.

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