The first time I saw the trailer of the movie with the title song I got hooked to it..not because it was something very new..but it was a remix of one of my favorite song (mandram vandha thendralukku) from one of my all time favorite movie (mani ratnam’s mouna ragam)..the next time i saw the trailer i ensured to check whether it was isaigyani himself who had done the remix or some unscrupulous yet intelligent music director who had managed to pick one of raja’s best to copy..fortunately it turned out that it was illaiyaraja himself who has done the music for this film of Balki, an adman making debut in feature films..
Needless to say, all the songs of Cheeni kum are good..illaiyaraja has taken his olden goldies and have given it a very contemprary feel to go with the plot of the movie.. Set in London, the movie is about a 64 old man (Amitabh) and a 34 old lady (Tabu) falling in love with each other. After the debacle of Nishabd Amitabh was at pains to explain that this movie is different..and different it was. To me the success of the movie lies in the way in which the romance between this seemingly couple is effortlessly shown. Its almost love at first sight and not so as well. The sequences involving Tabu and AB are a treat to watch. The director has also been naughty in certain scenes keeping in mind the age and the maturity of the lovers to handle the scenes, makes it interesting to watch.
There are three other pairs in the movie : AB and Zohra Sehgal, who plays his mother; AB and Paresh Rawal, Tabu’s father and six years younger to AB, the sequence where Paresh Rawal brings out the age factor each time AB attempts to talk of the marriage is funny and a treat to watch; the last pair is that of AB (yes again!) and Swini Khara (got the name right now, thanks to amit ;)), a nine year old girl who lives next door to AB and is a blood cancer patient, the sequences between these two are engaging and emotional.
The movie breezes past in the first half. The second half too starts well, but as the movie reaches the climax, it becomes a drag and a bit too cliched! I think the director ran out of ideas here. he would have done very well to have some patience, spend some more months thinking to make the later half as interesting as the earlier one.
But in all, Cheeni kum is a good watch. Watch it,
1. for a stunning Tabu making a comeback
2. the Big B – who is at home, be it with a ninety year old Zohra Shegal or a nine year old Saimi Khanna
3. for the beautiful view of London brought to you through the lenses of P.C.Sreeram
4. and ofcourse, for the music of illaiyaraja..( credit should be given to the director here who has seemlessly merged the songs with the storyline of the movie)
(and yes, do ensure u go to a good theatre..i ended up at rex where i felt that there was some trouble with the print and lighting.)