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Wednesday, 7 October 2015

The Walk – Consummate Cinematic Experience

Director Robert Zemeckis, who is known for making feel-good films, which have inspired millions of people across the globe, has once again provided a wholesome entertainment with his 3D biographical drama, The Walk.

The Walk is all about the real life high-wire artist (Phillip Pettit), who had walked between the Twin Towers of World Trade Center. In short, Robert Zemeckis has authentically captured the joy, agony, thrill and high moments of a man, who believed in his passionate profession and achieved the target in style.

The consummate cinematic experience, which we had seen in Robert Zemecki’s previous films including Forrest Gump, Real Steel and Cast Away is thankfully retained in The Walk too but what makes it more unique is its brilliant visual effects and cinematography, as they have beautifully captured the beauty of Twin Towers.

Perhaps, The Walk is not only a biopic of Phillip Pettit but also a perfect souvenir to The Twin Towers in New York. Although we all know that the protagonist won’t fall down as he is the one, who narrates the story, the visual effects and sound design take us into the film. I would say that The Walk is an edge of the seat, feel-good ride (Yes, you read that right!)

Joseph Gordon Levitt has played the role of Phillip Pettit and has perfectly justified the role of a passionate youngster as he has brilliantly conveyed all the required emotions and takes the film to a different level.  Ben Kingsley as Papa Rudy brings out some comic moments and proves what an ace acting can do for a film!  Charlotte Le Bon, reminds us of Keira Knightley, thanks to the similar look and she has done a phenomenal job as Phillip’s girl friend in the film.

Overall, The Walk is easily one of the best 3D movies you have ever come across. Please do yourself a favor and watch it on a big screen with good projection and effects!

Rating : ****

Friday, 18 September 2015

Everest Movie Review

Director Baltasar Komakur's Everest is based on the real event of 1996 Mount Everest disaster. Generally, audience prefers to see disaster movies because it would provide an edge of the seat ride and most of the times, the execution would be steam-winding with expeditious screenplay and breathtaking visual effects but Everest is an exception.

Yes, Baltasar Kamkur has apparently made Everest as an emotionally charged drama that mainly depicts the euphoria of the climbers as they reach the peak of Mount Everest and their ultimate tribulation, when they come to know that  reaching the base station is almost impossible and all their lives are at stake.

Another interesting aspect of the film is that the mental trauma of families of the climbers have also been registered well. To be precise, Everest is all about two expedition groups and their survival attempts as they subjected grueling climatic conditions that even a wrong step would end up losing their lives.

Jason Clarke has brilliantly played the role of New Zealand expedition group leader, Rob Hall while Jake Gyllenhaal was adequate in the role of another expedition group head, Scott Fischer. Keira Knightley, who was last seen in The Imitation Game and Begin Again, didn't have big scope in Everest as most of the time, she has been filmed in dark angles and offered abstract characterization.

The film indeed has prodigious technical values but wondering why they have opted for 3D, a good old 2D representation would have given the same real film watching experience.

Overall, if you want to know what has exactly happened in 1996 Mount Everest disaster, this film would definitely help but it won't please audience who looks for a roller-coaster ride. The bottom line is, lower your expectations!

Rating: ***

Sunday, 30 August 2015

My Okay Kanmani Moment

All through my life, I always love to observe people. You may call it overhearing and whatever but that's my hobby. Most of the time, I learn many things from these strangers and try to follow the good values from them.
As usual, I went to this favorite restaurant of mine along with a friend. A young couple in their late 20s sat next to us... this girl asks her husband.. "How much is the EMI?"... he shows hand signal "Five". This girl calls someone, later I came to know its one of her parents.
The conversation progressed and she tells her parent that her husband needs 50,000 to pay his EMI bill and it sounds like they agreed. As usual, the usual talk happens and they asks her what she is eating and she replies back...before hanging up "Ithoda pothum verum ethum seiyathinga paa"...
Now the girl tells her husband "50K potruvanga but ithudhaan kadasi, I won't ask my parents again".
This kind of demanding husbands are there in every family. I'm not saying he is bad or ill treating his wife, I'm nobody to judge him, may be he would have financially broken and just asked for her in-laws' support but these kind of things actually diminishing my hope on the institution of marriage.
"How could someone truly love a girl and at the same time, demanding financial assistance from her parents. It's okay to tell them his issue and get the needed amount as loan but squandering the money of his in-laws just because the fact that they would definitely do it for her daughter, can't be a quality of a true man- again not being judgmental about the guy whom I've just seen but this is my humble opinion"...
The couple paid the bill and went off.. cut...
I'm yet to finish my Paneer Biryiani whereas my friend has ordered his butter milk. Opposite to our table, sat a couple who are at their late 60s...
The husband reads the menu louder so that his wife could choose her desired dish.
Husband: "Masala Dosai, Butter Dosai... Ghee roast...Gobi Dosa"...
The wife stops him "Oothapam?"...
Husband smiles, "Oothapam sapdava hotel ku vanthom?"... Wife smiles sheepishly...
He calls the waiter "Mushroom soup one by two kodunga"... wait wait... "oothapam oru plate " (A bright light on the wife's face")...
"Oothapam matum pothuma", asks the husband.. she doesn't have any answer. The husband tells the waiter " Phulka rendu ... panner butter masala vum"...
I was thinking "May be this young couple who had just fought over the EMI bill would someday end up like this lovely 60 year old couple, life could teach them a lot or this old couple would have had heated arguments during their young age"...
I paid my bill and approached the door with a flared up confidence on the institution of marriage...
May be this is my , #MyOkayKanmaniMoment

Friday, 28 August 2015

Thani Oruvan Movie Review

Mohan Raja’s Thani Oruvan is an interesting and intriguing tale between an upright police officer and implacable miscreant, who spearheads most of the organized crimes in the country.

Battle between the good and evil is a tried and tested formula in Indian cinema but what makes Thani Oruvan, an enjoyable watch is the arresting screenplay and comprehensible characterization.

As a fifteen year old teen, Pazhani aka Siddharth Abhimanyu (Arvind Swamy) accepts committing a murder so that his innocent dad, Sengalvarayan(Thambi Ramaiah ) could become an MLA, which would pave way for the life he intended whereas  our protagonist, Mithran IPS (Jayam Ravi) is meticulously following all the crimes to choose his suitable opponents and even sketches a plan to arrest all of them.

At one point of time, Mithran finds that Siddharth Abhimanyu is not an eminent scientist as celebrated by the government ; he is a perspicacious criminal who can’t be clobbered easily. Mithran gets defeated in each and every move because Siddharth is always one step ahead of him. Does our protagonist get a chance to win? Watch out on the big screen…

Easily, Thani Oruvan is one of the best films from ‘Jayam’ brothers. The script is highly original and the packaging is absolutely perfect with zero nonsense in the name of unwanted commercial elements like ‘Kuthu’ songs and crass comedies.  The director excellently sketched the characterizations of his protagonist and antagonist, both are equally powerful and hence the film arrests all our attention.

Subha’s dialogues are razor sharp, especially the lines like “Your choice of friend will show your character, your choice of enemy will show your capacity” and the scene where Arvind Swamy says “Love at first sight… Kill at first betrayal” are clap worthy moments. 

Another interesting aspect of Thani Oruvan is that Nayanthara, the female lead is not merely used as a glam doll, she is having a great scope in the movie and the actress too has portrayed it sensibly.

To point out, the textual romantic conversation between Ravi and Nayan as Arvind Swamy has bugged the former is absolutely endearing. Also, the conversations between Arvind Swamy and Thambi Ramiah are hilarious, there are many such winsome moments in the film and it shows the effort the director has put in penning the script, kudos!

Performance wise, Jayam Ravi is sincere that his tall masculine physique has suited the honest IPS officer role. The actor has improved a lot with his dialogue delivery that whatever he says in the film is convincing, way to go!

But Arvind Swamy is the show stealer, with his chilled out attitude and swag mannerisms, the actor takes the film to a different level, easily one of the well sketched and portrayed baddie role in Tamil cinema. The rest of the actors including Thambi Ramaiah, Nassar and Ganesh Venkatraman have also done commendable job.

Technically, Ramji’s cinematography is picture perfect while Aadhi’s background score is top notch. Overall, Thani Oruvan is a fairly engaging commercial cinema which should not be missed.

Rating : ***1/2

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Jurassic World Movie Review: Predictable but still entertains

Jurassic Park is a classic, thanks to Steven Spielberg and every 90s kids were amused when we saw the mammoth extinct animal (Dinosaurs) became immortal in front of our eyes and the stunning VFX gave goose-bumps to every audience of early 90s.

May be, today’s kids or youngsters would find the above description bit exaggeration because of the advanced CG works prevail but back then it was an out-of-the world experience.

Just like any other Jurrasic Park series here(Jurassic World) too , we see Dinosaurs with awe and our jaws are unintentionally wide open, especially when Indominus (Antagonist or the deadly dinosaur) ferociously waits for its prey and tear the human body apart—the edge of the seat moment was very much there but ‘something’ is missing.

What’s that ‘something’? Director Colin Trevorrow used the same Spielberg strategy to accelerate the tension and there is nothing unique from him so there comes the predictability but still this film is all about entertainment and the breathtaking Jurassic world experience which could be experienced for sure.
Zach and Gray

The two kids Gray (Ty Simpkins) and Zach (Nick Robinson) look cute on the screen and whenever they get into a trap, our heart goes to them. Needless to say Bryce Dallas Howard is hot and cute that you can’t take your eyes off, Chirs Patt is a bad-ass ass Gray said in a scene.

Overall, Jurassic Park is one time watchable for yesteryear kids and the present adults while it might still entertain the present kids, take them along with you so that they could see the world which you saw with priceless amusement.

Verdict- Predictable but still entertains, after all Jurassic World is an experience!


Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Uttama Villain – the battle between ‘fantasy’ and harsh ‘reality’….

The title Uttama Villain (Uttaman- Good Samaritan, Villain – Baddie) itself is an amusing choice, rarely do we come across such contrasting words coined into a title and to those who don’t know—Kamal initially started the film with a working title—Bitter  Chocolate which is again a coin of words with two contrasting qualities.

Not just the title, the entire film and its screenplay have been written in such a way that the transitions between the present portions of the Superstar Manoranjan who is battling with his death and the make-believe ‘Mrithyunjayan’ Uttaman who cleverly or luckily escapes from all forms of deaths –Snake bite, stick blow, king’s sword and the poisonous nail from the disguised Narasiman in the climax are cleverly fabricated in a screenplay that has minute detailing with emotional transitions between these two worlds!

One such example – Arpana (Andrea) who plays as the dignified woman who falls for the married Manoranjan says she cares for his wife Varalaskshmi (Urvashi)who is her patient but she too wants a respectful life—Arpana asks the other two men, a doctor friend and the driver to keep the secret and then both Mano and Arpana hug each other—may be they moved to a ‘love’ state , cut to the next shot—we are shown ‘Kadhalam’ song with Pooja Kumar which sums up what has happened in the previous scene. These kinds of transitions were present throughout the movie.

In another scene Uttaman is kicked into the river with his hands and legs  folded, there is no way he could escape but a fisherman pulls him out with a net and there he is alive, now the film’s director K Balchander appears and ask the crane to pull over, here comes the Manoranjan Kamal who  is bleeding from his nose which indicates that he is slowly dying and the camera moves to a freshly caught fish which is about to die—such symbolic representations prove that this film is not your regular commercial cinema with eye candy songs and racy fight sequences—it demands all your attention!

Another wonderful shot in the film is when Manoranjan asks his biological daughter Manonmani (Parvathy Menon) to read the original letter which he had written to her mother Yamini. As Parvathy reads the letter, she slowly gets to know the truth that his father actually loved her mom so much and he is not the cruel person as she  thinks—in a symbolic representation Kamal removes his Theeyam make-up and now his clear innocent face appears in front of her daughter

(Wow, this particular scene was so much endearing that it will inspire many future filmmakers to conceive such poignant shots)

In the next shot, Kamal’s son Manohar asks whether Manonmani wants a hug as she is emotionally moved and she nods with her moist eyes—there comes Manohar’s girl friend Parvathy who does not believe that both Manohar and Manonmani are actual siblings. When Manohar asks his father to reveal the truth, he mischievously moves out of the room and When Jayaram (step dad of Manonmani) asks him what’s this all about—Kamal says ‘go inside and watch it for himself’.

Apparently Kamal sees the whole site of Jayaram, Manonmani and Manohar through a glass window with a satisfying smile – there goes the dialogue “En Uthirathin Vithai… En Uyir Vithaitha Sathai… Veroruvanai Pagavan enna Poruthudivena” which conveys the meaning “ She is my daughter, she came from me, how on earth I would allow to call someone like you as her father” (Earlier in a scene, Parvathy tells Jayaram is her real father and not Kamal, as she always thought him as an opportunist who ran away from her mother).

The same phrase ‘En Uthirathin Vithai’ also comes as the opening line in the Iraniyan song which is about the demon Iraniyan who doesn’t want his son Prahalnathan to call Vishnu as lord.
Even the characterizations in the present and fantasy portions have some common factors, for example – in reality Kamal’s manager Chokku(MS Baskar) betrays him by not sending his letter to Yamini and also hides Yamini’s letter from him but in fantasy Uttaman or Cheran Senguttavan’s spy is very loyal to him that he keeps the secret until the climax where he says – “Engal Raja dhaan Uttaman aga nadithu ungal Mannaney kondrar”.

The screenplay writer Kamal Haasan maintained the logic in the fantasy portions as well—In a scene when the minister Gnanasampantham yells at the spy that whether his king is actually helping them and Uttaman immediately interferes ‘Rajavidam Amachair ippadi kettal enna solvathu enna ketu vanthrika vendama?’ and the spy humbly look down and tells him ‘Mannaridam naan ivalavu pesiyathey athigam’ –this is a lead for us to understand that Uttaman is the actual king.

The climax of Uttama Villain also ends up with the battle between the fantasy and harsh reality—in real life Kamal(Manoranjan) undergoes an operation to escape from brain tumor but he ends up dying. In fantasy, Nassar (Mutharasan) wants Narasiman’s role which was actually planned for Uttaman and he even placed the poisonous nails for the character, later they (Uttaman and Princess Pooja Kumar) throw honey bees at the king and when he starts scratching his own skin, he dies thus Uttaman’s ‘silly yet clever operation’ actually works out  in the fantasy world.

But in the last shot, both Uttaman and Villain ( Manoranjan)—in fact they have amalgamated into one as the dream film is released now and as an artist both have truly become ‘Mrithyunjayan(s)’, they are immortals through the applause of the audiences .

-Rajasekar S

You can find the edited version of the article here --->

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Mani Ratnam, ‘The king of romance’…oh really? Tell me more…

Mani Ratnam, ‘The king of romance’…oh really? Tell me more…

Mani Ratnam’s O Kadhal Kanmani or OK Kanmani has been released and the film has opened amidst unanimous positive reviews from critics, theater owners are happy and most importantly Tamil cinema audiences extremely delighted as the ‘King of romance’ is back. But should we really confine, the legendary Mani Ratnam only within a small circle called romance?  Come on guys accept the fact… he is much more on that.

I really loved watching and reading all the recent interviews  of Mani Ratnam as he was  busy promoting OK Kanmani but as a fellow movie buff in the media, I sheepishly accept the fact that I’m extremely disappointed for not utilizing the opportunity to interact with him. I know… bad luck but forget that, coming to the point “Every single interview had this question… Mani sir you are king of romance and you are known for making romantic films… yada...yada... yada... “and I could sense the mixed reaction of proud and denial from Mani Ratnam. Yes, Mani is indeed the king of romance but he is also the king of most of the genres he has chosen so far, in his replies to various interviews Mani humbly pointed out "I've tried different genres, you people prefer to like one"

I would profoundly declare, Mani as King of biopic and no other film-maker in the country could make a better biopic than Mani Ratnam. Ah, you want some examples right? Take that yaar.  Nayagan (Varadaraja Mudaliar) , Guru (Ambani) , Iruvar (MGR –Karunanidhi), of course all these films begin with a disclaimer ‘ “All characters and events depicted in this film are entirely fictitious. Any similarity to actual events or persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental” otherwise the great Indian democracy and censor would have banned these epic films - sad state of affairs.

Similarly, Mani is the king of mythological adaptation. Perplexed?  Hey you loved RojaThalapathi and some minority group like me enjoyed Raavanan, right? All these are the inspired from mythological works like Satyavan-Savithri, Mahabarat and Ramayana.

Who other than Mani Ratnam effectively conveyed the terrorism and its ill impacts via  films like Roja, Bombay and Dilse.

There is an extra-ordinary commercial director hidden inside Mani Ratnam. We do love his Agni Natchathiram, Thiruda Thiruda right? And I’m seeing his Kadal as another commercial attempt made by Mani Ratnam for some reasons he couldn't pull it off and the great thing about Mani is that he is accepting his failure, how many directors have guts to accept their failure in media interactions?

No other director other than Mani Ratnam could effective register the political conflicts in the country. His Kannathil Muthamittal is one of the best works which portrayed the state of Tamil people in Sri Lanka, good thing about Mani is that he never blamed Sri Lankan government or LTTE in the film but as a creator he merely registered the pain of those people from which we audience should conclude what is right and what is wrong.

Iruvar and Aayutha Ezhuthu would also come under the political genre, where the latter also had an underlying biopic of George Reddy who is a research student from Osmania university and based on him, Mani sketched the character of Michael Vasanth(Suriya).

After reading all these facts, do you people really want to confine Mani as mere ‘King of Romance’? At least he won’t settle himself with the romantic stories alone.

The ambitious Mani Ratnam would definitely try and explore different genres but when we Tamil audiences let him down with his experimental attempts, he has no other option but to make a safe-bet romantic film. I know, things were not extra-ordinary in Kadal orRaavanan but it’s still better than many other trashes (would have used a offensive word but in order to make the article family-friendly, I prefer trashes) we see every Friday both deserved at least average collections at the box office.

The same happened to another passionate guy called Kamal Haasan, he has given gem of films like Guna, Heyram , Anbe Sivam andVirumandi  and we all know he couldn't make much money from these projects so he gave the audience-friendly comedy movies likePanchathanthiram, Michael Madana Kamarajan, Thenali, Pammal K Sambantham and invest all the profit earned into his next ambitious project.

I’m not really complaining here, as a matter of fact  I equally love the romantic movie and comic movies of Mani Ratnam and Kamal Haasan because they make these films with great sincerity and painstaking efforts like their rest of the movies but I really wish audience will start accepting their out of the box, ambitious attempts as well.

-Rajasekar S

Edited version of this column could be seen here

Friday, 17 April 2015

O Kadhal Kanmani aka OK Kanmani review

There is so much of positivity and poignant moments in Mani Ratnam's O Kadhal Kanmani that the exhilarating energy begins with the title card itself, where we are introduced with the profession our protagonist Aadhi Varadarajan (Dulquer Salmaan) who is an avid gamer.

The super cool animated Mumbai city along with AR Rahman's alluring music elevates the energy to a different level, cut to the present we are shown Dulquer at a railway station and sees the cherubic Tara (Nithya Menon) who is threatening a guy that she is going to fall in front of a train. Soon in their second meet, they talk about their disbelief in marriage, fall in love, enter into live-in relationship but strangely everything is extremely believable.

There is something cute and lovely about Aadhi and Tara as whatever they do in O Kadhal Kanmani is amusingly adorable, all thanks to the authentic characterization and dialogues. For example, Aadhi comes to Tara’s office and asks her out... she hesitates to be the pillion and he immediately says 'Na Venna un koodavey Thallitu nadanthu Varatuma' which puts a big grin in our face, in the other scene both of them decide to stay in a lodge, she asks 'unaala nalla paiyen ah iruka mudiyuma' and he says 'mudiyum aana un kooda kashtam', the entire film is filled with such cute moments which is the biggest strength of O Kadhal Kanmani.

The painstaking effort of Mani Ratnam must be lauded here, unlike other directors Mani’s detailing in the protagonists' professions are simply superb. We see Aadhi narrating his game idea, launching the trailer, we see Tara go to Ahmadabad to know about the ancient architecture yet the romance between the duo is intact, hail Mani Ratnam!  

If Mani Ratnam captures the young urban romance with Aadhi and Tara, the traditional aesthetic romance is conveyed through the Ganapathy (Prakash Raj) and Bhavani pair (Leela Samson), the latter is affected by Alzheimer disease. Interesting thing is that their relationship is not portrayed with melodrama; the energy level is as equal as the Tara and Aadhi pair. A conversation goes like this as Ganapathy narrates how he met Bhavani, Ganapathi: En Friend oruthan aranganathan nu peru periya doct, sangeetham onnum theiryathu aana bhavani ya sight adikavey kacheriku varuvan, Bhavani:  aaha Neenga mattum kannu mooditu paatu kettingala Ganapathi...  the writing of Mani Ratnam is extremely enjoyable... man this guy's life must be filled with so much of romance.

I also really like way the trendy Tara and Aadhi accept the traditional marriage life of Bhavani and Ganapathy is another poignant moment in the film. While searching for the missed Bhavani, Tara feels for Ganapathy and she says 'Ganapathy uncle mathri yaarum avangala pathuka mudiyathu' ....  Aadhi stops her: Adhulam illa, avarey mathriye mathavangalum pathukuvanga . Tell you what.... Mani's writing is  tempting me to write all the dialogues in the film but I prefer to stop here,  by the way watch out for the cute climax!

Discussing about the performances, Dulquer is very natural and the actor is filled with a lot of energy while Nithya is cute and highly spontaneous. Prakash Raj puts in all his experience as the old caring husband while Leela Samson attracts us with her innocent yet charming act.

Technically O Kadhal Kanmani is superior as both AR Rahman and PC Sreeram have given their career best work for Mani Ratnam as the master craftsman himself is in tremendous form. 

The way Mani updates himself is tremendous, especially the end credits roll out with an animation sequence where he tells us the post-marriage life of Tara and Aadhi. In recent times,  I didn't see any other Tamil film with so much of creativity and detailing. 

Mani is back with a bang guys, go for it!

PS:  " Reviews and Ratings should not be confused with Box Office prediction meter, no it's not"
(An edited and added inputs of the review could be seen in

Verdict: Celebration of love

Rating: 3.5/5

Cast: Dulquer, Nithya Menon, Prakash Raj, Leela Samson
Director: Mani Ratnam
Music: AR Rahman
Production: Madras Talkies

Friday, 20 March 2015

Grand welcome to booming technologies and bade farewell to good old screenplay writing?

Grand welcome to booming technologies and bade farewell to good old screenplay writing?

Writing a screenplay, for me, is like juggling. Its like, how many balls can you get in the air at once? All those ideas have to float out there to a certain point, and then they'll crystallize into a pattern” said James Cameron.
Yes, screenplay writing is the most essential entity in film making but after watching recent Tamil films, I feel that our producers are believing that good story line, eye-catchy cinematography, hit tunes and racy cuts, of course a saleable star are more than enough for a film’s success.
I would say that this way of technically sound and weak screenplay approach has started only after the digital revolution. I agree that the digital revolution paved the way for new ambitious directors like Karthik Subbaraj, Thiyagarajan Kumararaja, Nalan Kumarasamy, Balaji Tharaneetharan, Balaji Mohan but the same revolution also brought in a lot of film makers who need more expertise in screenplay writing. May be, the new age directors  might be good at narrating stories or they might be good in conceiving interesting ideas, otherwise they wouldn’t have convinced deep pocket producers but screenplay writing is altogether a different game.
I feel that it is high time that producers should start asking bounded script first so that they will have a visionary idea over the film. Also, if the directors complete writing the entire script before the commencement of the shoot, shooting time will be considerably reduced.
In early 70s and 80s there were separate story discussion groups for production houses. In Tamil they call it as ‘Kadhai Ilaakaa’ which consists of members who are excellent in story writing. There were writers like Panchu Arunachalam (Aarilirunthu Arubathuvarai, Murattu Kaalai, Ullasa Paravaigal, Kalyanaraman), Aabhavanan(Oomai Vizhigal, Senthoora Poove), Aaroor Das (Pasamalar) and many others who are dedicated only for story writing, they rarely directed films and most of the times, they allowed directors who knew the art well to make films. Also some ace directors like Mani Ratnam and Shankar gave a lot of importance to writers like Sujatha and Balakumaran.
In Baradwaj Rangan’s Conversations with Mani Ratnam, the maverick director explains how he collaborated with Sujatha by saying “ Sujatha is a writer. His strength is in short stories, He’s written amazing number of short stories, so if he is able to develop characters and pull things together into a story, the form which he is comfortable with then I can get something out of his stories and put into my screenplay”.

Once Mani Ratnam asked Sujatha to write the starting and ending sequence of Alaipayuthey, to be precise the particular day where Madhavan searches for Shalini and how he meet her at the hospital. Though Mani Ratnam is good at screenplay writing,  he used writers for the betterment of the film. On collaborating with writers, Mani Ratnam says “When working with people, my job is to get the best out of them. Converting a story into film is something I’m doing for twenty years so I’m not really scared of it”. .
I would like to recall an interview of Shankar who is known for his grandeur filmmaking said “ Sujatha’s knowledge about screenplay is unparalleled. When I narrate stories, Sujatha used to record my narration in a cassette and he never utter a single word. After the narration, I have to wait for the bounded script where my thoughts have been converted into words; the entire process was fascinating”.
I would say that the success of Mani Ratnam and Shankar is that they understood the importance of writers, not just for developing characters but also for novel dialogues.  

After Shankar and Mani Ratnam, KV Anand is making use of writers well. Writers duo Suba are having high success rate in Tamil cinema, most of their films are super hits and blockbusters (Ayan, Ko, Velayudham, Arrambam) while only few were loss ventures viz., Maatraan, Kana Kanden. Even directors like Bala and Vasantabalan have started hiring specialized writers like Jayamohan, Nanjil Nadan for their films.
If Mani Ratnam, Shankar, KV Anand are one category, KS Ravikumar is having a different approach in film making. In more than 20 years of his film career, KS Ravikumar only wrote three stories (Varlaru, Padayappa, Kochadaiiyaan) and most of the time, he directed other writers’ stories. Similarly another ace commercial director SP Muthuraman knew that he is good in directing entertaining films and he used other writers’ stories, especially the one that comes from AVM’s Kadhai Ilakka.
Though I really liked Karthik Subbaraj’s Jigarthanda, somewhere I feel that a professional writer’s dialogues would have been more appropriate for the film which is having a lot of scope for sharp dialogues. Mani Ratnam’s Nayagan had dialogues by Balakumaran and we all know that the dialogues of the film are still remembered. I’m not saying that Karthik Subbaraj’s dialogues are bad, it is actually good but if a talented director like him starts working with talented writers, we might get more epic films and more enjoyable dialogues.
On the other day, I watched this little known film called ‘Burma’, which I consider as a potential story and it could have been a classic. Though the director of Burma was good in extracting the best from his cast and screenplay writing, I believe that his dialogues lacked soul. The director has tried to write the dialogues in the romantic sequences as cute as possible but professional writers’ work would have been an additional strength. My point is that dialogue writing is a separate art and  every director necessarily need not to be a dialogue writer. When you are roping in a specialized editor and cinematographer for your film, why not a professional dialogue writer?

If directors start working with writers, they don’t want to concentrate more on dialogues and characterizations; they can extract the best from the writers, who know exactly how to develop characters and writing catchy dialogues. Once screenplay and dialogue is done, all directors need to do is to extract the best work from their technical crew and his cast.
Recently, I came to know that Jonathan Nolan, brother of Christopher Nolan and screenplay writer of Interstellar studied relativity in California Institute of Technology and developed the script for four years.
Christopher Nolan has got a gifted brother who is good at screenplay writing. Similarly, if Tamil cinema’s writers and directors start working together, sky is the limit!
-          Rajasekar S