Okay..Let me dive in straight to the crux of the matter - 3 idiots is A CLASSIC ..can be watched ANY NUMBER of times & enjoyed as much each time :) ...Nanban is purely a one-time watch...
I dunno..blame it on the fact that I've seen 3 idiots way too many times...OR..the fact that it is not for no reason, Bollywood's highest-grossing movie ever...3 idiots wins any day :)..
To put it very succinctly, AS A MOVIE, 3 idiots is ANY DAY, FAR, FAR BETTER...DON'T EVEN BOTHER OR ATTEMPT TO COMPARE :D ...but when it comes to the experience of watching in the theater, Nanban has the edge :)..
3 idiots is AWESOME ..Nanban is GOOD..:) Even though you've seen 3 idiots like every other day...I would still say...go watch Nanban ONCE in a SHADY, CREEPY theater ..(this is very important..mark my words..You will be terribly disappointed in a multiplex )..watch it in the most LOCAL theater ever...with hordes of Ilaya Thalapathi fans...& you will thank your stars you chose to watch the movie! :)
Ok...first of all....people who know me well / read my blog regularly, know that I am a staunch Ilaya Thalavali hater :D...When I heard that it was Vijay who was doing the remake...just like many shocked people all over the world...I could only say "Holy Ravioli !!!!!!!" & "facepalm!"...& when I heard SJ Suryah was gonna be a part of it too, my cousin Arun didn't know what to feel worse for: Vijay or Suryah! :D
MARK MY WORDS - I would've watched this movie IN THEATER ONLY under 2 circumstances:
1. If Shankar or Gautham Menon was directing the movie (forget the music director..even if they had done it with Srikanth Deva, I would've watched it!! )
2. If Harris Jayaraj was the music director (I wouldn't have cared even if Joe Stanley or Perarasu directed it :D ..I would've watched it solely for the songs & BGM ...I'm a Harris addict:) )
So director Shankar and Harris Jayaraj gave me 2 solid reasons to watch the movie First day :) :) ...& of course, the ever-dependable..the ever-awesome..the-ever dear Vijay theater, gave me the 3rd reason :) ...
A little about Vijay theater:
Ever since I moved to the Vijayanagar part of town, Vijay theater has been A REAL SAVIOR :)...It is quite unknown to many people...This is probably the ONLY theater in Bangalore, which is situated away from A ROAD :D ..It is located in front of what seems to be a drain covered with concrete slabs..like a staircase...so riding a bike on that road-like thing everyday..would be the easiest way of breaking your back :D ...& driving a car on that road...would be the cheapest way of experiencing Dubai's desert safari :D ..But it is not advisable to go by car...because there is no parking space for cars in the theater :D ...There's space ONLY for 2-wheelers & autos..:P ...So yeah..on one side of this road-like thing is the theater...on the opposite side is a small tributary of the drain...beside that is a slum...On the other side of the tributary is waste land..where you can have a glimpse of a lot of pigs & piglets or sheep...gorging themselves with all the garbage & filth..:)
So the crowd is generally: Me, if Sundar accompanies me, then him :P, the creepiest, shadiest drunkards & loafers you can find ( ok you can include me & Sundar also in this category itself! :P :D )...about 2-3 women (2 grandmas..may be 1 rural woman)..that's it!! Ticket rates are AWESOMELY cheap :) :) ...& so are the interval eats..:) ...Previously, I would watch every movie in Nataraj...But WITH AGE COMES LAZINESS :D ...& hence, Vijay theater it is! :D
Ok...that's it about the theater...let's get to reviewing!! :)
Story & direction:
3 idiots = Nanban
The story is A SCENE-TO-SCENE, FRAME-TO-FRAME, WAVEFORM-TO-WAVEFORM copy of 3 idiots :)...There have been ABSOLUTELY NO CHANGES whatsoever...to the story...At some places, even the camera angles & costumes are the same :) ...Wise decision, Shankar...He did the right thing! First of all, with an unpredictable Ilaya Thalapathi at the helm of affairs ( By unpredictable, I mean, doing a non-action, feel-good movie isn't Vijay's cup of tea) ..Shankar would've got the biggest raps & drawn the most flak...had he tried something different & had it bombed...So it was probably better, after all ..to play safe!
So yes..take away the songs from the movie...& it SIMPLY DOES NOT feel like a Shankar movie AT ALL ! :)
3 idiots >>>> Nanban :D
Ok ..don't tell me I'm being biased because I don't like Vijay ...But come on, you SIMPLY CANNOT compare Aamir Khan's performance with Vijay's :D ...Aamir was SUPERB in this movie...he redefined what was called a NATURAL PERFORMANCE :)...He just played his part SO EFFORTLESSLY :) ...He really LIVED his character of a cool dude..
Coming to Vijay ...though I would usually love to say Vijay sucks :P ...I must admit, he has done a very good job in this movie :) ...It is REALLY REFRESHING to see Vijay FINALLY, BREAK-FREE from mindless masala ...& do a feel-good movie without even a SINGLE fight-scene...He is very good in the emotional scenes...& more then Vijay, I definitely HAVE to admire Vijay's fans :) ...I mean, it just leaves you amazed..as to how even a single word uttered by him elicits & evokes SO MANY WHISTLES & HOWLS ...DEAFENING ONES !! :) ...So, Vijay fans in local theaters really make the movie a very good one-time watch! :) ....But he seems to have underplayed himself a lot ..& obviously, doesn't quite exude the same charm as Aamir...:) ....
3 idiots >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Nanban
Illeana cannot act for nuts...Kareena is currently THE BEST actress in Bollywood, IMO...Not only does she look like a million bucks ( Zoobi Doobi .. my my!!
!! :D :D) but has also delivered a performance NOTHING SHORT OF FABULOUS! ( esp. in the scene where she tells the story of her brother's death to her dad! )
But Illeana makes up for her lack of acting ...in "Ask Laska" & especially, in "Irukkana" !! BOY OH BOY OH BOY!! :D :D ( < drools excessively, tongue sticking out till the floor, dehydrates > :D )
...Shankar, I forgive you solely because of "Irukkana"...
Mona Singh / Anuya
3 idiots > Nanban
Anuya is good ..but Mona Singh is SLIGHTLY better :)
Raju / Senthil:
3 idiots = Nanban :)
Sharman & Jiva have both acted their parts wonderfully well ...Sharman scores in the sentimental scenes...Jiva scores in the comedy scenes :)
Farhan / Venkat:
3 idiots >> Nanban
Srikanth's performance hardly has any impact ...Madhavan is again, A REAL NATURAL :) ...Srikanth leaves a little impact only in the scene where he tries to convince his father ..about his photography ambitions ...Other than that, his character doesn't really linger in your mind ...Madhavan as Farhan ..will always be fresh :) without any expiry date! :)
3 idiots >>>>>>>> Nanban
Sathyaraj as a cranky professor is a good choice ...he is known to be a good actor...but he has underplayed his role!! Prakash Raj would've been a better option! Boman Irani's performance in 3 Idiots is really chanceless & impeccable (it was my favorite in the movie! ) ... Just his mere looks & eyes ooze strictness & discipline ...& his lisp dialogue delivery is pure brilliance!!!! One would really think Boman has a lisp in real life too!!! It is a character you would be scared of ...but not get irritated with ...:)
Sathyaraj hardly exudes any strictness ...His lisp dialogue delivery looks very made-up ...You get irritated with the character very soon ...He is neither scary, nor admirable...really disappoints!!
You would except a solid performance from a veteran, but somehow ..Sathyaraj & Shankar have got this one wrong...
Chatur / Srivatsan
3 idiots >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Nanban
Omi Vaidya's comic timing just cannot be matched :) ...Srivatsan just doesn't manage to evoke the same amount of laughter...
Ok ..I'm gonna go song by song for this one...
Behti Hawa Sa Tha Woh = En friend aa pola yaaru machan?
Ok ..In case of 3 idiots..more than a superstar ..it was a fabulous actor playing the role...So there was no need of any punch-packed intro song ...So Behti Hawa Sa Tha Woh is a wonderfully soft number, which talks about missing a dear friend ...& retains the mood throughout a song ...A very commendable job by Moitra..
But in Nanban..you really have a superstar at the center..more than an actor...so the intro song had to be punch-packed ( pallavi )...& at the same time, retain the sentiment of missing a dear friend (charanam) ...So Harris Jayaraj has done an AWESOME job with this one :) full marks ...Every appearance of the line "en friend ah pola yaaru machan?" evokes deafening whistles & howls all over! :)
All is well > Heartiley Battery
Ok ..For this one..I'm gonna give a SLIGHT edge to the Hindi version ..because the lyrics, although colloquial ..do make some sense :) ..In Heartiley Battery, some of the lines are too immature and don't make much sense! Beat-wise, both songs are awesome..Chorus-wise...both songs are too good :) ...Heartiley battery has good dance moves by Vijay..All is Well maintains the mood throughout ..I felt Heartiley battery loses some steam in the charanams...Nevertheless, an awesome song by Harris :) ..an awesomer one by Moitra :)
"Give Me Some Sunshine" > Endhan Kan Munney
Okay ..TUNE-WISE..PICTURIZATION-WISE...BOTH ARE AWESOME !!! Brilliant tunes by Moitra & Harris ....I give "Give me some sunshine" the SLIGHTEST of edges :) ..just because of the lyrics in the chorus :) - Give me some sunshine, give me some rain, give me another chance, I wanna grow up once again :) ...SUPERB! :)
"Zoobi Doobi" = Ask Laska
Okay ...Tune-wise ...Zoobi Doobi has got a very simple tune...and an extremely simplistic feel to it ...It's not too complicated ...Whereas, Ask Laska has got a super-awesome tune...It is, by far, one of Harris Jayaraj's BEST compositions till date...So tune-wise, I give it to Ask Laska...
Sonu & Shreya have done a brilliant job ...So have Vijay Prakash & Chinmayi :)
Zoobi Doobi scores over Ask Laska slightly in the video :P ...Sorry Shankar, I would rather shamelessly drool over a SUPERHOT Kareena dancing in rain :P ..than Vijay & Illeana in grandiloquent sets & colored trains...Ok, that sounds very lame :P ...Jokes apart, The video of Zoobi Doobi, though very simple..was out-of-the-world refreshing for its time :) ...But video-wise, Ask Laska ...is typical Shankar fare...the flowers remind you of "Kumari" from Anniyan...& the colored train gives a "Randakka" feel...the prince-princess stuff reminds you of "Vaaji Vaaji"...Illeana is HOT :P ...but Kareena is SUPERHOT :D
"Jaane Nahin Denge Tujhe" < Nalla Nanban
Ok ..Jaane Nahin has got a wonderful tune & it is one of the best-ever songs sung by Sonu Nigam...No other singer could've bought in the magic he did ...in this one ...Brilliant stuff by Moitra & Sonu ..
However, Nalla Nanban is, WITHOUT A DOUBT, Harris Jayaraj's BEST composition in recent times...EXTRAORDINARY !! :) So I will give it an edge over Jaane Nahin...:)
I don't like the song...This song is MAINLY to focus on Illeana's enviable figure, titillate males ...& it has DONE EXACTLY THAT !! :D...She is at her hottest ever in this one :D...Like I said earlier, this song makes up for Illeana's no-acting show all along...:)
As an album, Nanban has a variety of singers..whereas 3 idiots seems to rely HEAVILY on Sonu Nigam..I would say both are equal ..& more importantly, living up to an album like 3 idiots isn't easy..I am sure I, at least, would never be able to live up to it if I were to compose..I will wilt..
Harris Jayaraj has done it! :) Kudos to him!
Harris Jayaraj has done it! :) Kudos to him!
3 idiots <<<< Nanban
To the best of my memory, 3 idiots mostly had the instrumental versions or humming of the songs themselves...Nanban, in addition to different versions of the songs, did have 2-3 memorable pieces - especially the ones in the hospitals, the emotional scenes & then the trio's attack on Virus' house & the subsequent escape. BGM isn't Harris' best at all, but apt for the movie! :)
So that's it folks ...
1. Watch Nanban once, in a real local theater with Vijay fans at their peak of whistling & howling...and you won't be disappointed ! :)
2. Those who haven't watched 3 idiots will love this movie & watch it at least 3 times in theater I guess.
3 Those who see this movie in a multiplex..in a hospital-like silence ..are sure to fall asleep!