Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Fresh New Take - Director Vinayan

Fresh, new take

Director Vinayan's Hareendran Oru Nishkalankan is an experiment with young heroes in a superstar dominated Malayalam film industry, writes KK Moidu

Vinayan's Hareendran Oru Nishkalankan is a youthful yummy film starring young generation heroes Indrajith, Jayasurya and Manikkuttan. These three actors made their debut in Vinayan films. Jayasurya and Indrajith made their debut as hero and villain respectively in Oomappenninu Uriyadappayyan. Manikkuttan moved from acting in serials for television to the silverscreen with Boyy Friennd. Bhama and Shirin join them in the female lead roles in the film.
Indrajith plays the title role of Hareendran, a young computer engineer. He runs a software company and dreams of making millions from his IT business. The film narrates the problems faced by him at a crucial juncture in his life and that questions his professional and personal honesty.
Gopala Krishnan aka GK (Jayasurya) supports Hareendran's activities. They like the fast and modern life, but have a lot of differences between them. They have a common aim to make it big in life and that unites them.
Manikkuttan plays a different role as Alex, better known as 'Stalin' Alex, who is an electrical engineer. He is also a political leader and sports a beard and glasses in the film. He has quit his present job and works in a newspaper to sustain his principles. Alex is in his 20's but behaves like a 40-year-old. For Manikkuttan, this is first time he plays a serious role.
Bhama, who made her debut in Lohithadas's Nivedhyam appears as Indhulekha. Indhu, an engineering student, is the love interest of Alex. She enters Hareendran's life at an unexpected time and that changes the meaning of his life forever.
The other female lead, Shirin, who made her debut in Moonnamathoraal plays a vibrant role as Pooja, opposite Jayasurya. Pooja is the only daughter of businessman Vasudevan. He is a Gulf returnee and turns out to be an alcoholic. Vasudevan depends on his daughter's earnings and that makes GK his main enemy.
Other artistes of the film are Jagathy Sreekumar, Cochin Haneefa, Salim Kumar, Saju Kodiyan, Rajan P Dev, Narayanan Kutty etc.
In Hareendran Oru Nishkalankan, Vinayan deals with the young generation who want to enjoy every moment of their lives. He also maintains suspense in the film by focussing on the fate of people who are accused of committing a crime — that happens without their knowledge.
The film tells the story of present-day youth who work in the booming IT field in India. It also goes into the unwillingness of political parties, especially the leftists, who do not accept the current socio-economic changes around them.
Director Vinayan himself pens the dialogues of his elder son Vishnu's story. Vinayan has given the necessary time for the basic plot to develop to suit the layout of a full-sized film.
Hareendran Oru Nishkalankan is produced by Satheesh Nair under the banner of Nandikesh Film. Bernie-Ignatius sets the tunes to the lyrics by Vayalar Sharath Chandra Varma, Prabha Varma and Rajeev Alunkal. Cinematography is done by Venugopal and G Murali edits the film.
Vinayan is a director who experiments varieties and shoulder's new challenges. His attempts to be successful with so-called variety has not triumphed always.
He has tasted success, though, with films like Vasanthiyum Lakshmiyum Pinne Njanum, where Kalabhavan Mani played the male lead as a blind man. The box office victory of the film gave Mani, who always played second fiddles to superstars, a star image. Mani fetched the National Special Jury Award for his portrayal of the blind man. Vinayan once again casted Kalabhavan Mani in the lead role in Karumadikkuttan which also became a hit, despite the absence of superstars.
Other directors, who make films with young and good looking heroes in action and romantic roles, struggle for survival in the industry. But Vinayan films, with not so good looking heroes, have created wonders at the box office. This proves Vinayan's credentials as a director.
Vinayan's Oomappenninu Uriyadappayyan was made with debutante Jayasurya in the lead in a mute and deaf role. No other director had the courage to experiment with this type of film with a newcomer as the hero and another fresh face as the villain.
Vinayan has also been successful with established actors like Mammootty with whom he made such superhits as Rakshasa Rajavu and Dadasaheb.
He made continuous hits even when the Malayalam industry was in the doldrums because cinema houses were flooded with soft-porn films with actresses like Shakeela and Maria.
Vinayan's 25th film Albhuthadweep (Wonder Island), has been his bravest effort so far. He selected dwarf actor Ajay Kumar (Undapakru) to play the hero in the movie, though Undapakru has never played a hero before. Vinayan thus rewrote the concept of hero in Malayalam cinema.
Prior to Albhuthadweep, Undapakru was seen only in bit roles and on television in comedy programmes. The film’s storyline was as different as its cast. It was about an island full of dwarfish men and normal women. Vinayan arranged for 300 dwarves from various parts of Kerala, Gujarat and even Bihar.
One of the main reasons for Vinayan’s extraordinary success could be the fact that he goes for variety while selecting stories. But his efforts are not always fruitful. He failed in his experiments with the last couple of films like Black Cat, Adhisayan and Boyy Friennd, although he got noticed for some reason or the other.
Black Cat was Vinayan's first film along with Suresh Gopi.
Sci-fi thriller Adhisayan was noticed as it was the debut of Bollywood actor Jackie Shroff in Malayalam cinema. Another attraction was the central character played by a six year old boy Devadas.
Boyy Friennd was embroiled in controversy because Vinayan used computer wizardry to show superstars Mammootty and Mohanlal in a song sequence in the film without the permission of the actors. This visual feat was achieved by the technicians who used masks on the actors. Both Mammootty and Mohanlal complained to the Association of Malayalam Movie Artistes (AMMA) about Vinayan capitalising on their popularity to promote his own film.
However, to the surprise of critics, Vinayan started his next project after completing his present one as he never finds difficulty in finding a producer.
Before the release of Hareendran Oru Nishkalankan, Vinayan hit the headlines once again — Amitabh Bachchan, the greatest star of Indian cinema, will make his appearance in a Malayalam film directed by him. The film will be produced by Satheesh Nair and BS Nair will have Big B in the role of a retired police officer.
The film will also star half-a-dozen young popular Malayalam and Tamil heroes in other key roles.
According to reports, discussions are going on regarding the availability of dates of the megastar. If Vinayan succeeds in casting Big B in his forthcoming film, it will not only be the biggest achievement in his career, but also a great moment in the history of Malayalam cinema. Otherwise, it will drag Vinayan into another controversy which goes hand-in-hand with his career right from the start.

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