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  • Pariyerum Perumal

    Pariyerum Perumal

    ★★★★½

    seamlessly structured around santhosh narayanan's greatest ever collection of songs -- every song transformative, every lyric or accompanying dance (as in`engum pugazh thuvanga', whose affective power within the film's context possibly surpasses even that of the more celebrated `karuppi' and `naan yaar') suggesting an opening out of the film and its protagonist to newer, deeper emotional dimensions, the kaleidoscopic textures of their soundscapes around which the drama arises from and unfolds on a land, born as much of the tenderness…

  • Andhadhun

    Andhadhun

    ★★★★

    the terrifying hilarity of a camera casually panning to a masked person waiting as their potential next victim makes them coffee, a blind man as unreliable as he is hapless, with as many secrets beneath his bunny head walking stick as there are behind his sunglasses, a hand (with a ring!) sticking out of a suitcase, a murder set to beethoven's fifth, all of these pieces and more put together with breathless invention -- to the point where the film's…

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  • Kaala

    Kaala

    ★★★★½

    a living, breathing record of an urban milieu -- reconstructed with the vibrancy of color, music and rebellion -- shots of alleys, domestic interiors and every sound bringing forth the multiplicities of voices, perspectives and personalities of its dalit community.

    at the center of it is, of course, rajni, a screen presence and symbol imposing enough to potentially define/devour/debilitate everything around him. somewhat startlingly (at least for someone yet to watch kabali), kaala begins and sustains a tense dialogue between…

  • Jab Harry Met Sejal

    Jab Harry Met Sejal

    ★★½

    if not a lot else, harry elaborately cleaning up in an airport washbasin is one detail i enjoyed. no one can look or smell good getting off a long flight, not even srk.