• Movie Review

    Taanakkaran (2022)

    In recent times, Kollywood has produced two “Delicious” movies, Visaranai (2016) and Jai Bhim (2021) that highlighted the systematic flaws in the Indian Police system, which is unable to shrug off its colonial origins. Both the films galvanized the public imagination as well. Taanakkaran (டாணாக்காரன்) starring Vikram Prabhu wishes to join the lineup but falls short due to a narrow plot surface and a documentary feel.  Available on Disney+ Hotstar, the film scores a Raw on the MangoIdiots scale. In 1999, Arivu (Vikram Prabhu) is a new recruit to the Tamil Nadu State Police department and joins hundreds of others in the Police Recruit school (PRS). The PRS is run…

  • Kids,  Movie Review

    Turning Red (2022)

    With Turning Red (2022) Disney has done it again, bringing out an animation for the kids that is fun yet with a social message. The story happens in Toronto, Canada where a Chinese girl lives with her parents running a family temple and giving tours. Once the girl gets into her teenage, due to a family curse, she transforms into a giant red panda, did she get cured of her curse has been told in a humorous manner?. It gets a mangoidiots rating of Raw. The film uses the red panda as an allegory for puberty and menstruation, taboo topics for many parents to discuss with their kids. I enjoyed…

  • Movie Review

    Encanto (2021)

    Encanto (2021) is a charming, heartwarming animated film that is a fantasy comedy. Three generations of the Madrigal family live in a magical house named “Casita”. Each of the family members, except the lovely Mirabel, have been gifted with special powers which they use for the welfare of their small community protected by mountains. The film available on Disney+ Hotstar is not to be missed and get a Ripe. In recent years, the quality of the animations are improving by leaps and bounds. In this, a few characters like the superhuman sister of Mirabel, Luisa Madrigal, appear cartoonish. But others like Mirabel with her big brown eyes, large round spectacles…

  • Movie Review

    The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (2005)

    The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (2005) is a science fiction comedy film, an adaption of the classic book of the same title by Douglas Adams, which was originally a radio comedy on BBC. The film tries hard to stay true to the book and borrows some of its original comedy lines too. The story is about Arthur Dent, whose house in Britain is going to be destroyed by the authorities for a bypass project. There comes his friend Ford Prefect, who is writing a book The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. The two escape earth just before it gets blown up by the contractors of an Alien species called…

  • Movie Review

    Ron’s Gone Wrong (2021)

    Ron’s Gone Wrong (2021) is an animated comedy movie about a young boy getting a faulty bot as his friend. It presents a mirror to our current society on the obsession kids are having with their online presence on Instagram or Snapchat and its harmful influence on their overall development. As a movie, the screenplay could’ve been a lot more engaging and fresh. The film by 20th-century studios is available on Disney+Hotstar in India and gets my ‘Raw’ rating. Barney Pudowsk is a young boy (about 10-years-old) living with his single father and grandmother. He is an introvert and has no friends. The other kids in his middle school have…

  • Movie Review

    Free Guy (2021)

    Free Guy (2021) is a sci-fi comedy that is a mashup of Ready Player One (2018) and The Truman Show (1998) in a good way. One of the computer players’ learns he is not human, but a simulated non-living entity inside a videogame, how he saves his virtual world from being destroyed by an evil boss is the story. Available on Disney+ Hotstar it gets my Raw rating. Check it out. Usually, in films that combine virtual and real-world happenings, as we reach nearer to the end, the incidents become convoluted making it difficult for us to separate the real from the simulated. In Free Guy, the screenplay moves smoothly…

  • Movie Review

    Jungle Cruise (2021)

    Jungle Cruise (2021) is a modern-day take of the films from the Indiana Jones series. It is about a young female scientist from Britain going on an expedition to the jungles of the Amazon in search of a tree whose petals possess the power to miraculously cure all illnesses. The film feels like a two-hour ride inside one of the Disney theme parks. With no surprises, it still delivers exactly what you expect and was fun. The film is available on Disney+Hotstar and gets our ‘Raw’ rating – families with children may like more than I did. The lead actors: Dwayne Johnson, Emily Blunt and Jack Whitehall (of the popular…

  • Movie Review

    Pon Manickavel (2021)

    Pon Manickavel (பொன் மாணிக்கவேல்): There was a lot of excitement ahead of this film, Prabhu Deva appearing in a police character which he has never played before, a title taken from the name of a famous police officer who is known across the state for his efficiency and honesty and music by D.Imman. All that couldn’t save a disastrous screenplay. Available on Disney+Hotstar it gets my ‘Rotten’ rating. Pon Manickavel (Prabhu Deva) is an honest and sharp police officer who has resigned from his job after being disgusted with the system. He is called back to duty after the sensational murder of a sitting judge. Much to the annoyance of…