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Engrossing ’80s: Subramanyapuram

Story, screenplay and direction: Sasi Kumar
Cast: Jai, Sasi Kumar, Ganja Karuppu, Swathi, Samudhirakani and many others.
Music: James Vasanthan

Subramanyapuram by debutant director Sasikumar is the surprise package of this summer. Sasikumar, who had worked as assistant director with Bala and Ameer, has made a film which is engaging because it has reality as its hallmark. He has deftly etched the characters and recreated the period of 1980s.

The story, set in the ’80s, takes place in Madurai Subramaniapuram, a suburb of the city. It revolves around five friends including Jai (Chennai 600028 fame), Kanja Karuppu and Sasikumar. The jobless youngsters keep frequenting the police station as they get involved in petty fights and brawls. Their release from the police station is usually aided by their neighbor Samudirakani whose elder brother happens to be a former councilor. Meanwhile Jai falls in love with the councilor’s daughter, who reciprocates.

As the story proceeds, the councilor is deprived of a top post in his party by a member from the opposite camp. The development upsets Samudirakani, who plays a trick to provoke the trio. They are forced into killings and gruesome fights as their newfound mentor wants to use them for his purpose.

The film moves ahead, portraying the violence and the repercussions in the lives of the protagonists.

The strong points of the movie are its characterization, flawless performances, art direction, smart execution, and realistic treatment. Debutant director Sasi, who has also donned an important role, has chosen a straightforward narrative style, which banks more on a realistic approach rather than melodrama. The shocking twists towards the climax make the viewer reflect on love and friendship in the backdrop of power games, money power, and family sentiments.

The script justifies the twists towards the climax, while the performances by Swathi and Ganja Karuppu add credibility to the proceedings.

Its flaws include the narration, which drags a bit in the middle. The developments forcing the friends in to the crime are predictable and unimaginative.

It is Karuppu who steals the show with his amazing portrayal of the character that has gray shades. This is easily his best performance so far.

Debutant music director James Vasanthan does add some value to the film.

Cinematography by Kathir, one of the strengths of the movie, and the art director have ably captured the look and feel of ’80s of Madurai.

Sasikumar has shown signs of a fine filmmaker in his very first venture. He has dared to experiment with a period subject with a horde of new actors. By making it a successful experiment, he has widened the avenue for such experiments. Kudos to the young director.
— Courtesy Chennai Online.


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The Parrot’s Beak: A Sikh American Passage
In this month of India’s Independence, we salute an Indian American heroine. We present an autobiographical sketch by Kartar Dhillon.

False Premise: Indo-U.S. Nuclear Deal
The U.S.-India nuclear accord is actually testament to the large-scale failure of the Indian Department of Atomic Energy, writes M.V. Ramana.

Infotech Nepal: Berkeley Meet
The Computer Association of Nepal-USA organized a two-day conference at the UC Berkeley, writes Bineet Sharma.

IIFA Awards 2008
A Siliconeer Exclusive Photo Essay

EDITORIAL: A Sikh American in California
SUBCONTINENT: Cell Phones: India Worried
ETHICS: Dow and IIT Bombay
SOCIAL WORK: Goodbye, Polio
ACHIEVEMENT: Eagle Court of Honor
SPORTS: Sania Mirza in Bay Area
TRAVEL: Alamos, Mexico
CULTURE: Srikanto Acharya Concert
AUTO REVIEW: 2008 Nissan Altima Hybrid
RECIPE: Khasta Kachori
TAMIL CINEMA: Subramanyapuram
COMMUNITY: News in Brief
BUSINESS: News Briefs

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