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Poi Review

Review by IndiaGlitz [ Monday, December 25, 2006 • Tamil ]
Poi Review
Uday Kiran, Vimala, Geethu Mohandas, Vimala Raman
Prakash Raj

How do you start a review of a movie that is unconventional and does not have anything formulaic that the industry has grown up on? How do you recreate the story of a movie, which is sure to arouse extreme reactions. Poi, let us make this clear right at the start, is not your quotidian movie with its practiced ebb and flow.

Poi is a kind of film that only a man who is over 100 films old can dare attempt. It stems from the urge of a man who has done and seen it all. It takes extreme guts to attempt something that KB and Prakash Raj have. But the only problem with such a movie, and extra strong characterization, is that an average fan may either like it too much or, on the other hand, cannot connect with it. But KB being KB has done what he likes always - make a strong statement on the truisms that his life is bed-rocked on.  He always likes to make emphatic life-statements through his characters. Almost all his movies have a strong belief in honesty, truth and non-violence - it is a concomitant of a man who is a creature of the idealistic 50s and 60s. If his Madhu of Edhir Neechal was a triumph of innocence and happiness, his band of five musketeers in Vaname Ellai was a study in diverse social forces that shape a nation while his Sathyamurthi of Unnal Mudiyum Thambi was all righteous indignation against the established forces.

So where do you slot his Kamban of Poi? He is a creature of the times, full of robust fun and smart-Alec ways. Like in every other movie of his, KB has shaped his woman protagonist with unique moral fiber and a steely resolve that are at once impressive and inspiring.

Poi, KB's 101st venture, is verily a story of Kamban (Uday Kiran) and Shilpa (Vimala) who end up in Sri Lanka for different reasons. Kamban is in Lanka because his father, an upright politico is hounded out by venal forces in TN while Shilpa is very focused on her career. How do their paths cross? How do they reconcile to the emotional roller-coaster? What happens to the man who comes into the picture as a third angle? No, this is no triangular love story.

To talk of Poi in terms of story would be too simplistic and facile. Like in every KB movie it is the detail and context that provide the meaning and import. It is the nuanced humor, as opposed to creation of comedy, that is spread and filled in every frame.

KB as ever has managed to wrest wonderful performances from his cast. Uday, despite not being from Tamil, has shown a very fine understanding of his character. He understands the complexities and the various dimensions of Kamban and threshes out a very believable performance. He is also very energetic and enthusiastic in romantic scenes. Vimala is a good addition to the ranks of smart heroines who are not content with being just bimbos. She plays the career woman with a rare finesse. Geetu Mohandas, Renuka and all the others are very enterprising. They naturally reflect the intelligence that KB fills his characters with.

But it is KB and Prakash Raj who deliver the humdinger of the show -- to talk about it in detail would be telling the surprise package.

The film's backdrop, Sri Lanka, is unique and adds to the story and structure. This is again trademark KB touch. And as ever, he romances the beach like no other contemporary director in India has. If hills and rivers are muse for Manirathnam, KB then `freaks' out in the waves of a relentlessly philosophical sea. It is typical KB smartness to incorporate the tsunami angle to the story.

Vidyasagar's music is another strong backing for the movie. Every song has a flavor and have a context in the script and the lyrics are also very vital. However, the re-recording could have been better. The camera also captures every detail and nuance with amazing clarity.

But the mast

Rating: 0 / 5.0

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