Saturday, 7 January 2017

Tamil flavours occupy foreign movies in Chennai International Film Festival

I should say that the 14th Chennai International Film Festival (CIFF) is that one event that could let people understand that art is beyond boundaries.  Despite the country, language, culture and the race from where they have their origin, the foreign movies screened in CIFF  have lots of instances that Tamil audiences can relate to.

Greek movie Ouzeri Tsitsanis (A Cloudy Sunday) directed by Manousos Manousakis spoke in length about the kind of relationship a Christian man had with his Jewish love lady. The movie is set in the backdrop of World War II in the city of Thessaloniki, Greece. During this time, Nazi occupation was rigorous in the country and Jews were evacuated from the country. In this movie, two plots run side-by-side, a poetic love story and life of the musician Vasilis Tsitsanis.

The love plot was reminding of the sequences in Gautham Menon made Simbu starrer Vinnaithaandi Varuvaaya where the emotions between the lead pair runs with much similarities and the race of the two plays a spoil sport in the relationship. Followed by this, the movie also takes us to the memories of KV Anand made Dhanush’s Anegan during the evacuation sequences. The Burmese commotion and Nazi dictatorship situation from the two movies relate in every single frame that affects the situation
of the lead pair finally leading to a betrayal at the end.

Meanwhile, in Ma’Rosa, a Fillippino drama was a complete family-flavour. It makes the audience leave the screen with a heavy heart. Ma’Rosa is about a bad situation that could be faced by any family in two nights and how they get through it. Rosa and her husband Nestor run a petty shop in Manila where they also do narcotics dealing by selling ‘Ice’ (crystal meth), a drug. The couple get arrested by police who demand a huge sum for releasing them. The couple’s three children go through difficult situations to raise the money and free their parents.

For an instance, their daughter visits her aunt who Rosa treated as an enemy. Cursing Rosa, the aunt, simultaneously gives her money for the bail to pay the corrupt police that takes us to the feel of the affection between sisters despite the family conflicts.

While one of their sons goes for a homosexual intercourse with another man to earn money to free his parents that almost leaves the audience to burst out in tears accompanied by an insane feeling inside.

Similarly, in one scene, the character of the police men who arrest the couple reminds us of the movie Visaaranai of Vettrimaran where cruelty is completely portrayed. Likewise, the movie ends up in a note on the significance of a strong bonding in a family which Ma'Rosa understands by seeing another family that runs a petty shop in the climax.

Movies of CIFF has been roping in Tamil audience as they too have the same flavour of love, care, family and brotherhood emotions which has been making the festival an emotionally successful one.

Santhosh Mathevan,
Chennai, January 7, 2017.

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