Sunday, August 25, 2013

Madras Cafe - Review

1. I have very rarely been disappointed by a Hindi movie in the last few years. Madras Cafe is once again a professional product. If you didn't know, the movie is about Indian involvement in the Lankan civil war culminating in the assassination of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.

2. The movie is entirely believable and not like some shitty Hollywood CIA trash. While the movie concentrates on the characters (many of whom we can make out in real life), a wider angle of how the events are seen by people is missing. Considering a journalist is available as a main character, they could have easily avoided the CCTV effect. They tried using TV news bulletins for this but that was clumsy. They could have gotten a real Doordarshan news reader from that time.

3. Casting is pretty good for most characters except perhaps John Abraham!

4. However, they don't seem to have made much attempt to get the costume and language of Lankan Tamils right. Maybe I'm looking for Kannathil Muthamittal type portrayal which may not be close either. However I did visit parts of northern Lanka few years back and this movie's costume designer could have tried a bit harder.

5. Finally, the story. This movie has tried to present such a balanced view that no one can complain. Infact this movie seems way more charitable to Prabhakaran than what even his apologists could have asked for.