Moodar Koodam

Language : Tamil.
Release : 2013.
Starring : Naveen, Sentrayan, Rajaji and Kuberan, Oviya, Anupama Kumar and Jayaprakash
Directed By : Naveen
Written By : Naveen
Music By : Natarajan Sankaran.

The amount of exposure to World Cinema Indian Film-Makers and Audience have gained over the past and the advent of technology making the process and life cycle of a film even more affordable, Indian Cinema in general and Tamil Cinema in particular, has started a new trend by focusing more on the content rather than the average Masala films, with senseless hero worshiping and every law of physics known to man being questioned, at the same time emerging successful. This is not only the most wonderful thing to have happened to our Cinema but bewildered the audience as well. Moodar Koodam (Fools Gathering) is one those movies that has contributed to the trend, while also, etching out a name for itself in the “Golden Era” of New Age Cinema.

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An accidental meeting of four strangers and small potatoes in the society, leads to conjure up a plan to rob a house ‘only once’ and then withdraw to the good deeds of life. Although the plan seems neat and straight forward, it never works out to be as simple as said. As per the plan, it had to be an empty house, but doesn’t turn out to be as empty as expected, and the thief’s instead take the owners hostage, which is the exact scenario when chaos meets confusion. Added to this, throughout the course of the day, more people are added into this chaos. With a lot of expectation each one of them try to escape from the hold, but none succeed. Finally to add fuel to fire, two contrasting gangs, the first one from Mumbai, a “New Branch” of the D Company, while the other a local gang from North Chennai, clash face to face in the climax, to figure out their superiority. Ultimately “All’s Well That Ends Well” might be the case, but we wouldn’t know if they lived “Happily Ever After!”

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Naveen has put his heart and soul into a beautiful movie, and adds to the growing list of modern directors, who can churn out box office hits with a completely new cast. The technical aspects of the movie: the production design, the post production, the cinematography and even the screenplay departments have little experience to showcase, but have hit the nail on the head with their first chance! It is not a singular achievement but the entire team has to be given credit for the movie, who have not only relied on content but also used technology to their advantage to get this movie to the silver screen, and they deserve it thoroughly.

The movie has been carefully planned and executed as the director had conceptualized. The unusual screenplay incorporating a unique flashback episode for every character, including the dog and the doll, goes on to show how much Naveen had worked on it and probably how many other bright ideas he would have edited. Although the pace of the movie is slow, there are a lot of bright and shiny spots peppered into it, and a personal favorite has got to be the character of Sentrayan. His unorthodox style, his mannerisms and his flashback all make him the lovable fool. Agreed everyone in the movie had their own unique mannerisms and flashback but none as dissident as him. And to top it all his expressions when he sees the thief for the first time…PRICELESS!

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A fresh graduate gets his first job. He is overly excited about it, to impress everyone around he tries to do anything and everything and all at the same time ultimately leading to a completely messed up day. The newbie here is, off-course, Naveen. Although the movie is worth every accolade thrusted upon it, it’s flawed, only because it tries to get too many things into one movie, like the impromptu boxing match or the big lecture about the haves and the have-not’s or the greatness of the Tamil language or trying to reason their attempt to rob, a number of times, or the unwanted character of a thief constantly speaking about work ethics and a few more unnecessary detailing or diving in depth into the character. All of these, could and should have been edited. The movie does have its dull moments which drags it and sometimes even tests the audience of their patience. Added to this the actors never had the depth in their characters, or any chemistry between themselves, ultimately failing to woo the audiences with any charm. The rookie director couldn’t notice these, as his plate was already full.

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All said and done, Moodar Koodam is flawed and sometimes boring, yet, it would any day feature in my list of favorite movies and Naveen joins a list of directors who in the recent past have churned out successful movies based solely on the content, and brave enough to do that with a relatively unknown cast and crew. This blossoming trend of new age cinema has made sure that the entire world, sit back and take notice at the movies being produced, in the world’s largest market.

Audience POV
1. Amazing flashbacks.
2. Dragging and sometimes boring.

Critics POV
1. Screenplay could have been better.
2. The Director’s Vision, for bringing in a completely new genre to the Tamil audience, is worthy of appreciation.

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