Friday, 23 July 2010

Oru Naal Varum: FAMILY HIT (Indian Express Review)


Below is the review of Mohanlal – Sreenivasan’s new movie Orunal Varum posted in Indian express by Unni R. Nair

Orunaal Varum was an eagerly awaited movie as it was after a considerable gap that Mohanlal and Sreenivasan (who is as popular as a scenarist as he is as an actor) were teaming up. The duo had last come together to deliver Udayanaanu Thaaram, which went on to become a blockbuster. This time, they were playing key roles in Orunaal Varum, which had T.K. Rajeev Kumar as the director and was being produced by Manianpilla Raju. And since Sreenivasan was in charge of the script too, the film was expected to do great. Slated to release in May, the film got delayed and made it to the theatres last week. Having got good reviews, families are flocking to the theatres to watch it. The Mohanlal-Sreenivasan team had always been the favourite of family audiences and youngsters alike. 

Orunaal Varum is one of those films that takes a peep into the lives of the ordinary people, the aam aadmi and how they are fleeced by corrupt government officials. Sreenivasan plays a thoroughly corrupt Town Planning Officer while Mohanlal appears in the first half as an ordinary person who is forced to go after the Town Planning Officer in a bid to make him approve his plan for building a home. Of course Mohanlal’s character goes a different route later and so does the plot too. But the plot is well-constructed and the element of satire well worked out. The film retains the interest of the audience till the end. Sameera Reddy plays Mohanlal’s heroine while Devayani is cast opposite Sreenivasan. Suraaj Venjara-moodu, Nedumudi Venu and Siddique play key roles in the film, which has Sreenivasan penning the story and the script too. M.G.Sreekumar is in charge of the music while Murugan Kattakada has penned the lyrics. The film is doing well at all centres, especially with the family audience. 

Manianpilla Raju, popular actor-producer has made Orunaal Varum under the banner of Manianpilla Raju Productions. He also does a cameo role in the film. When asked about the response the film has been eliciting at the box-office, Raju says, “The family audience has accorded a warm welcome to the movie at all centres. We are very happy about it. However, the film was censored on April 7 and we had planned to release it on May 7. But, we could release it only in July; it got delayed by two months. This was due to the strike, the issues that had vexed the Malayalam film industry and had brought everything to a standstill.” This has affected the film’s box-office prospects. “We had planned to bring it out during the summer vacations. If that had happened, it would have done really great. We won’t get the summer vacation audience any longer. And moreover the holy month of Ramzan too is approaching; during the month of fasting, it’s usually a low turn out at the theatres. That makes things bleak for us. Still, it’s good that the family audience has taken it up and Orunaal Varum will soon turn out to be a hit. The delay, however has cost us a lot, in terms of money itself.”

Asked about the budget, Raju says, “Including the print and publicity costs, the film cost me around Rs. 4.35 crores”.

The film released on July 9, but indications are that Orunaal Varum will emerge a hit.

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