Premam is nothing new, the same old stuff.

Love is inexplicable for George David (Nivin Pauly) in Alphonse Puthran’s pun-filled entertainer “Premam.” We get it from the way in which the guy fumbles for words while writing a clandestine love letter for Mary, in the film’s hilarious intro.

Like the butterfly which dots honey from the tulips, Premam has an old school charm to it that I found irresistible right from the word-go. And, like the bitterness it leaves in its wake – it has moments of heartbreak as well that may leave a lump in your gorge. Alphonse’s second coming post “Neram” is brilliantly acted and synthesized, but, more than acting, beyond anything else – it’s charm lies in its sheer craftsmanship, the boyhood genius that Alphonse is.

One would get a scoop of familiarity when the film’s conventional denouement leads to George eventually tying knots with Celine (An evangelistic Madonna Sebastin) that after having flopped with Mary and Malar. Who is Celine? Doesn’t matter because we know who George is, and know his side of the story.

Thankfully, Alphonse is adamant is telling that story only not in dwelling deeper into the emotion which very few, except maybe a renowned poet, could explain in mere words or pictures. It is perhaps best left inexplicable a feeling as for George, as it is for us.

Arguably the minor downfall of Premam lies in the safer approach which Alphonse took to finish off an otherwise daring work. I say that not because I didn’t like the ending, but because perhaps there was a catch to leave the film with an open ending, much in the tradition of “Kabhi Haan, Kabhi Naa” the once classic SRK starrer which dealt with a similar theme. Maybe this explains as to why Premam is no cup of tea for the Purists out there or the neg-headss. More on that later.

The parallel narratives to George’s tryst with love, are in fact where Premam’s real soul lingers. The friendship which George, Koya and Sambhu hold onto forever is not just easily relatable but one that spans across years and years if not generations. Bulk of the film, although titled Premam, revolves around the trio’s ballyhoo back in their law college days; an oddball narrative which strikes the right chord w.r.t humor, rebellious action, colorful songs, brilliant camera work and double entendre – plenty of them.

I liked the portions where George, Koya, and Sambhu loiters around Malar (an effortless Sai Pallavi) with the Physical Trainer (an excellent Soubin) and Professor Vimal (an understated and deadpan Vinay Fort) accompanying them. Even as nothing much changes in terms of character development, we discover what is behind the veneer of these people. And, upon seeing that, it’s even evident Alphonse has a knack for creating engaging conversations too in a film that demands quite a few.

In the highlight scenes of Premam; George and Co contemplate Vimal Sir’s supposed likeness towards Malar, all zeroing in on that laughter evoking jibe in the Engineering classroom, wherein the latter’s Java class turns out to be “Mava.” (Slip of the tongue)

Much later in the film, though, we realize that even as the years’ change and the times go by – their histrionics still revolve around George, the plans they make for their best buddy. You tend to relate to these portions because that is how it is in real life – people doesn’t change, nor do circumstances although times do change in a big way.

Sadly, irrespective of how much money Premam might have spun at the box office; watching the film now in TV or elsewhere one gets the feeling the neg heads in Kerala didn’t quite appreciate the film completely, as well as one, would have liked.

The neg-headss has a problem with the sheer predictability or with Premam’s basic premise being “the nothing new, the same old stuff.” Even those who liked the film to some extent damn with faint praise – “it is the same old wine in a new bottle.” (Really?)

The neg-headss have watched too much sabotage of boy meet girl-girl meet boy boosterism it seems. And, in the process maybe they have forgotten what Love is in real life too; that love can be mundane, understated, meandering, hit and miss/the “nothing new, and the same old stuff” as we saw in Premam.

The film’s gargantuan running time of 2 and a half hours is a bit of a problem, but, hey, you wouldn’t mind getting sucked into this drama even after 150 minutes of Charade. Sucked in, like listening to a Bohemian Rhapsody in a lost highway or a Dom Cobb in a Limbo. Or, “Malare ninne Kanathirunnal” the same humming tune in your lips as it’s in mine – shot exquisitely right in the epicenter Kodaikkanal. What entertainment, you would have to be a cynic not to like this. Period.

Dr. Strange Love: How Messi almost messed it up but started to love the ball all over again.

When Brazilian football stood at a standstill at the 2014 WC semis against Germany: you reminisced the words of the great Pele, who had once dubbed this game “Jogo Bonito.” (Read Beautiful)

You remember those two magical words, also when you see Lionel Messi take the field.

I might be among the trillions of Messi fans, who breathes a sigh now especially since the Barcelona star has resumed national duty, having marked his return with a beautiful goal.

This whole “Messi quitting” national duty and “Messi coming back” farcical saga hasn’t gone all that well in some footballing quarters, has it?

How can Maradona ascertain with 100% surety that Messi was faking the whole thing, is beyond me.

The maverick footballing legend has termed his protégé southpaw’s actions as “grandstanding.” Can we move on still, Diego?

The last thing both Messi and Argentina wanted was to see their superhuman footballer, who had infamously scored the so-called hand of god goal, open his golden mouth. (Pun intended)

What if, such afterthoughts might be one of the contributing factors as to why Messi decided to call it a day in the first place?

No wonder why it sent the wrong signal to some of Messi’s distractors and forced them to bring about CR7 into the discussion spree. Messi vs Ronaldo is an endless debate in the cyberspace, as perennially mythical I think, as the egg vs chicken conundrum.

While elevating Cristiano, people tend to use Messi’s so-called inability to handle criticism as a focal point.

To all those who even dare to say such a thing; I’d recommend you to read at least his Wikipedia bio. In fact, you won’t need Wikipedia to know that Messi has handled criticism better before.

For a player who was dubbed physically inadequate to play this much demanding game; he has come a long way into being the world beater today.

Messi had a hormone condition in childhood, where both doctors and pundits had prophecied that taking up Football would eventually ruin his career.

History should be kind to prophesy, for this prodigy from Barcelona has been able to convert such so-called “inadequacies” into “innate traits.”

The trait of playing the game in the only way it should be played, without rash tackling and fouling. With nimble feet and sheer aesthetics.

To quote Gary Linekar from twitter who says – “It’s such a joy to watch Messi. The greatest.” Indeed, it is!

I need not paraphrase Messi’s repertoire or hyperlink some of his famous goals in the blog, to make an argument for him.

Still, a mini-tribute blog such as this one, is still incomplete, though, without referring at least one great goal from the Argentine.

What’s amazing is that Messi has made a career out of scoring oft-repeated dribble goals, which are made to look rather distinctive by the sheer skill of the man.

The greatest Messi goal, then, is the one against Bayern in the CL semi-final: one of the greatest goals I reckon, ever in club football.

Just a simple nutmeg past the best in defense JeromBoatengng, and a lovely little chip up & above the trailblazing – you know who🙂

The stalwart goalie of Bayern had made a habit of leaving the last line of defense by charging down the centre of the pitch hastily, with ridiculous ease up until then. But, for once he hesitated in his career, and that was enough for Messi to send it sailing past the goalkeeper. (Followed by pandemonium in the stadium.)

It’s difficult to capture the essence of that goal in a line or two because no adjectives would suffice to sum up the sheer brilliance of Messi. Hindu’s opinion writer Nirmal Shekar had once copped-out by likening it to what a French filmmaker had said about Vaslav Nijinsky – “His body knew, his limbs had intelligence.”

I suppose it’s actually the other way around – “His limbs had intelligence. And his body just reacted, instinctively.”

In other words? Simply MIND OVER MUSCLE.

Quick read – Congrats Ravi Ashwin on 200 scalps! Many more to go!

Despite being all but straight forward, seems like Ravichandran Ashwin’s “carrom ball” has been a cause for mystery for quality batsmen from around the word, abroad especially.

Is there any mystery in a ball that looks just like a fillip of the index finger on our TV screens, at the least?

Well, maybe I’m being too much of a snob. The guy has 200 wickets already, and that too only the second man in the face of the earth to even do so!

As I pen this down from a speeding Kerala express – Ravichandran Ashwin has achieved this feat – kneeling his opponent Nein Wagner with that now famous fillip of the finger🙂

Without a fuss, without even breaking a sweat – he has slowly climbed up the ladder!

When the red cherry smoothly descends its way down into the dust mines of the sub-continent, cuts back and across from leg to off in a jiffy and tickles along the off bail in the process – it’s quite the sight to behold.

In hindsight, this is perhaps what they all call – the spin balling equivalent of Wasim Akram’s around the wicket burst.

When Akram balled those two magical balls in the 1992 world cup, to get rid of Chris Lewis and Allan Lamb in two successive delivery, you said “Wow! the guy could ball.”

And here’s Ashwin with 200 scalps in the bag.

What the statistics say is that how many of those 200, was earned by that Ashw-fillip?

In response to this, Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar would tell Ashwin – “Who cares dude? These 200, 300 etc., are mere numbers at the end of the day.” In his lowly and muffled Parsi accent, that is🙂

But, in the context of how it all happened – India playing its 500th test against the Kiwis in Kanpur – the importance of that number goes beyond the so-called nominal value.

After all, how many Indian bowlers have reached that figure?

I could only remember 5 to 6 – read Kapil Dev, Anil Kumble, Harbhajan Singh, Bishan Singh Bedi, Zaheer Khan and Javagal Srinath. And maybe, just maybe, within one year or so – one might as well consider the lanky Ishant Sharma too into that list.

The Importance of 200 is relative like all sporting achievements, let alone cricket.

For a batsman achieving 200 in a single innings may be its the zenith, a cause for sheer jubilation. For a bowler, though, 200 is only a mere passing point in what is arguably a long journey.

In subcontinental terms alone – if you don’t quite manage to even achieve that feat, you are quite the sore loser. People would look at those figures as that of an underachiever’s.

Imagine being a legend of Cricket in the uncovered pitches, and not even getting enough chances to stomp pass that figure? (Tells you why they regard Sydney Barnes, Fred Trueman etc., as all time greats)

And, imagine cyberspace babies scrolling past the annals of Cricket maybe in a future time, and look up Ashwin’s figures in the cold statistics?

The way he’s been performing now, I guess such people would take for granted that he’s “the greatest.”

Which isn’t quite the case mind you, for the time being at least.

Since the turn of the century – Ashwin’s strike rate of 51, coupled with 19 5-wkt hauls, 6 ten for’s and an Indian record of 6 Man of The Series awards – would tempt a cricket illiterate to rank him even above the great Murali!

It’s amazing to see that he has a better strike rate, average and 5/10wkt hauls than Murali did since the “turn of the century.”

What’s even more amazing? It is simply, despite taking his first wicket in a single innings in as many as 14 overs or so – Ashwin still somehow manages to maintain that strike rate! (Not good in Maths? Come in Join the club🙂

Performing well in this streak of thirteen test matches would do a world of good to his confidence, I guess.

But can he amass something similar or provide stability by stemming the run flow like Kumble did all his life in alien conditions – is yet to be discovered.

I’m sure Virat and Ashwin know that fact.

And I’m also sure, in between taking all the showering praises that may come his way – India’s talisman spinner is rubbing hands and getting ready – to face the same bunnies (read ABD, Warner, Smith, Root, and Williamson) in their respective home turf.

To be quite frank, Williamson hardly put a foot wrong in this game to Ashwin, a fact which is indicated by the number of runs he scored in both the innings combined. (100+)

He’s just got beaten by a bowler who’s performing way beyond anyone had imagined him to do so. Which tempts me to even say – in the process of getting the better of his opponents – Ashwin perhaps have got the better of himself too.

Is “Rajni” the cinematic equivalent of “Aladdin’s” Genie?

Okay! Let’s get this straight. It’s only when Pa. Ranjith stages spectacular action sequences featuring that gushing soundtrack “Neruppu Da” composed by Santhosh Narayanan, that Rajni’s Kabali even takes off the hook! The film is just half of what was promised in the teaser better still, it is a fascinating case for budding marketers in cinema. Do I mean to dissuade you? Hell, not! In case if you are familiar with south Indian cinema, especially Rajnikanth – not in a million years!

Patrons of Rajni could be rest assured Kabali offers fun good time at the movies. Rajni’s ad-lib one-liners, his staccato laughs. His fights and emotions. The way he totes his gun – you get to see them all in Kabali. The moment you step into the mix of a jam-packed crowd, you’re in for a full-on entertainer with people bustling in, rooting, hooting and clapping for their favorite star right throughout! The film is a marginal improvement on Rajni’s previous live-action avatar in Linga, but bare in mind this ride comes with speed bumpers too. The core of the plot that pits Rajni’s titular character opposite puppet-prop Malaysian Dons, for instance, is plain boring. They seem to have walked straight out of a magazine cover, and all you see in the film is Rajni tearing them apart!

At its initial screening during July in New York, Kabali got the nod from Rajni. He said – “Makkal would like this” to the director, ‘makkal’ meaning his legions of fans all over! What’s interesting is that Rajni believes the movie is minus his regular stereotypes, an argument which appears rather contradictory the moment you walk out of the cinema halls. When the teasers of the film released in May this year it created a havoc in and around the country, especially in social media. People were waiting in anticipation for its release with corporate giants even booking tickets for their employees, and the families of the employed🙂

Think about this, won’t you? Wonder what would have happened if Rajni were a cricketer once in a distant past? Maybe we would have got national holidays when India plays in the world cup finals or something! The trailer got gushing reactions from virtually everyone, mainly because it sports Rajni in a salt and pepper look, wearing a grayish jacket, and playing a Malaysian Don who speaks for the oppressed niche community in Kuala-Lumpur. For the first time in his acting career, here was Rajni playing a role that suits his age. Pa. Ranjith the director of the film, likened Rajni’s role in the film to his vintage characters in classic such as “Mullum Malarum.”

Is the movie as good as Mullum Malarum or is it even as good as the teasers promised? NO! I had to get that out at first. At worst, it is a disappointment of colossal magnitude. At best, it’s a campy trash movie which could best be termed “mere guilty pleasure.” And as I said before it is an advertisement for new-age digital marketing in the world of cinema as well. To what degree you like or dislike this work may rely upon how much you like “Rajni’s version of mass.” Adjectives are there in plenty to describe him – Eccentric, Quaint. Full of swagger and style. I prefer using the word “INDELIBLE.”

The story begins with the release of “Kabali” from a Malaysian prison – which kinda looks more like a Rehab or something than, say, a prison. Where most prisoners would hobble off having served jail time for 25 years, Rajni’s “Kabali” gets a hero’s send-off from the inmates. In the scene that proceeds afterward, you see him doing a saunter, sporting a Rayban, a grayish blazer and that classic salt n’ pepper beard which we saw in the promos! The blazer which he wears in Kabali is not just a blazer, but a symbol of pride. These people are immigrants from Tamil Nadu who have or had been oppressed by the gang lords in Malaysia, those hasty industrialists take sadistic pleasure in downtrodding the poor.

To the center of a no-nonsense plot enters Don Tamilnesan played by Nasar the leader of the pack who mentored Kabali, in his formative years. When Tamilnesan gets murdered on his car, Kabali takes charge of his gang mafia against the wishes of Veera played by Kishore, and Tony Lee played by Winston Chao. The two main villains in Kabali sashay in here and there, as mere puppet-props. Although the center of attention is none other than Rajni himself there is B-town diva Radhika Apte in an extended cameo as Kabali’s wife and Dhansika as a henchman filled with hidden motifs. They are all outstanding, but this is a Rajni movie. We’re here for him. For his laughs and stare. Whatever he does on screen is an understatement actually, boasting off such screen presence – you would hoot and clap for it immediately! (Patrons just listen to what Akshay Kumar has to say about Rajni while working on Shankar’s ambitious new project, Enthiran 2/2.0)

The best of Rajni feature in the initial parts of the movie. The bit where he proclaims himself as “KABALI DA!” to a local ganglord or that scene where he rams his car over one of Veera’s henchmen. Even your wildest of imagination can’t trump the reality! What follows is a revenge saga full of twists and turns, tender emotions, stunning action sequences, and ad-lib one-liners. Unfortunately, the script on offer is a lame one. And Pa. Ranjith wastes too much time and energy on building character arcs, archetypes and “plot” in a Rajnikanth movie! Get over it, won’t you?

However, the same mustn’t be said the action scenes which are killer good. And when combined with Narayanan’s “Neruppu Da” you get the movie equivalent of “rock the house.” Above all Kabali would be remembered for setting a trend for promoting Cinema through social media. It is being said that S.Thanu, the producer cum distributor of the film, sought the help of new-age technology in the form of Qubewire; a web key management system that enables film distribution at a faster than lights speed.

Having spun 300 crores plus net in its first weekend itself, patrons of Rajnikanth is now looking forward to seeing the net figure shoot upwards to maybe 600-700! Suffice to ask this – Is Rajni the cinematic equivalent of Aladdin’s Genie? Jokes apart, to describe the experience of watching Kabali I would borrow the film’s trending catchphrase – MAGIZHCHI. It’s not an expletive, it means CHEERS!

Celebrity Crush: The benefits of having “good looks.”


In a vintage episode of Siskel & Ebert, Roger Ebert, and Richard Roeper were arguing about the caliber of a Hollywood celebrity. “You like her because she is a bad actress?” quips Richard. Ebert quips back – “No Richard, I like her because she is a star! And unlike you, I think that she has that quality to make you look at her for over 2 ½ hours.”


Nazriya Nazeem, a pretty girl with a pair of beautiful, bambi-esque eyes proved to be a hit in south India till she ceased to exist! Her keys to success shall be attributed to good looks and clever choices of characters that were only a mere extension of herself!

Now let me give you a tweet-sized profile of Roger Ebert – Columnist with The Suntimes, Celebrity. Film critic who championed Independent Cinema. A winner of the much coveted Pulitzer Prize too. But as you could see in most of his reviews – his genius made him vulnerable to women’s beauty. And thereby, at times he lost objectivity!

In another one of their famous banter, Ebert recommended “Into The Blue” because he thought it was a case of studying the anatomy of star Jessica Alba. “She looks pretty and that’s thumbs up!” was the iconic Ebert screen rant! Whereas, his colleague Roeper panned the film for exactly the same reason “Yeah Roger you could live with that! But she can’t act, could she?” The funny thing is you could understand where Roeper is coming from. And you feel Ebert too, because, truth be told we all do have that blind spot for women, don’t we?

Think about how many stars survived in film industry just because he/she had natural “good-looks.” The answer might be too many! I tend to think Aishwarya Rai is a model first and then an actor. Same with Katrina Kaif, Jacqueline Fernandez, Hansika Motwani, Nayanthara, Samantha, Kavya Madhavan, Kajal Aggarwal and the rest. But there has been many actors in the industry who ticked both the boxes of being a terrific actor cum solid performer, and “good looks.” We can’t keep that out of the equation, can we? Unless, of course, its Iranian cinema we are talking about not the cinema from India. Or the cinema from Timbuktu.

Now, I know a story. One of my friends from Mouthshut told me this. Once in the summer of late 1990’s, a famous Bollywood director told a famous actor to remove makeups so that they all could shoot an intensely emotional scene. To the surprise of the entire crew including the director; the actor said she wasn’t wearing one! The movie is Shool. The director? Ram Gopal Varma. The actor? Well, you guessed it right! It’s Raveena Tandon. (Courtesy: Earnestaster)

Suffice to say for an actor to become successful in films most predominantly, she should look good. You might be Meryl Streep in terms of your acting skills but still, you can’t get in there if you don’t look pleasing to the eye. “Look good, act ok and perform incredibly.” Those are the three golden rules of getting hired in B-Town or any other industry for that matter, in India! If your repertoire is filled with nimble feet, music (any kind) and a good diction in vernacular then, well, that increases your chances by a notch! Is it just that? Not quite. “An inherent quality to remain endearing is another vital aspect.”

No matter who you are or what role you perform, you should still have to look ditto girl-next-door. People who do initially and then learn the craft of acting gradually, remain there for an eternity.Examples are there in plenty – Kareena Kapoor, Deepika Padukone, Kangana Ranaut, Aishwarya Rai, Priyanka Chopra, Vidya Balan. For people of a certain vintage even Karishma Kapoor, Shri Devi, Sushmita Sen and Madhuri Dixit would do. More recently people like Nirmat Kaur, Alia Bhatt, and Huma Quereshi as well. I like Kaur’s smile which is infectious! And Quereshi too, who has a gorgeous sex-appeal! But what baffled me was divas like Shraddha Kapoor and Amrita Rao, literally disappeared from the scene for a while despite looking pretty, and performing pretty well. Is it all down to pure luck, then? Don’t think so.

Did we ever wonder why men with good looks don’t earn the same degree of success, as their women counterparts? There have been people who got into the coffer but has there been anyone who stayed there? I guess the answer is NO! It’s one of the cinema’s great mysteries. (Maybe that explains why some of the men in Bollywood doesn’t marry the women!)

If true beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, then I would rather say make your eyes attractive. Bambiesque like an Ingrid Bergman, or even a Nazriya Nazeem. Nazriya may not be good at what she does, but least she could look good and perform superbly. Through films such as Om Shanti Oshana, Bangalore Days, Raja Rani and Mad Dad; she has proved that she is a natural. And like Ebert said she glows on the screen, just like a diva! In the case of men. Well, then you just need to be an actor. Period. Or else somebody might be discussing Housefull N’th sequel in the Opera House Mumbai, next month or next year or maybe even the next decade. In other words? No need of acting skills – just ham it up! And one more thing – keep your tummies in check, won’t you?

The scent of success!

Prologue : Ever wondered what is the scent of success? What it smells like? Anything rosy? Something like reverence? Here I share an interesting anecdote that gives a different perspective altogether for success. That it needn’t reciprocate with the all-conquering, gung-ho euphoria as we encounter in the movies. In other words? It can also be subtle. Read on!


Venue : Agricultural University, Thrissur.

Occasion : Business Plan Finals.

Date : July-August, 2012.


What does success smell like?

The stage was set, the final denouement has arrived. All those hours of mock-presentations. All the brainstorming sessions. Q&A. And now it boils down to this one-hour long, blitzkrieg. To be honest we were both enamored and bewildered by the sheer enormity of the occasion. Understandably, so. The process started way back in March and it took a long hoick for us to get to that stage, as the lone representatives of Gems B-School, Thrissur. Suffice to say it, winning that event would have been a big deal as it whittled down to only four from a possible 20, all from the South of India. And there were some big names along the way too, which we usurped – DC MAT, Rajagiri, SCMS. We were fourth on the roster.

It was a quaint session where three presentations came and went in a jiffy. Nothing happened. Nobody asked questions, no jibes from the judges. When we came to the stage after a long hiatus, people were clapping and cheering us all the way. They were all slumbering along till then, some even Facebooking but alive and kicking alas! Maybe its got to do with the way we spoke or the product we chose. Who knows! Maybe because it was the last one of the lot and the most lively. The moment passed. We did our best. And one hour later – we were ready for the presentations. Don’t know why, but somewhat uncharacteristically our class teacher was pretty buoyed up that day. We all shared a pun – how many times have we got reprimanded?

Seeing her kindred spirits, I thought we’re going to win at least a consolation prize but the dignitaries on the dais were biased and hence, we lost. Not even also-rans but LOST! We were left in a gasp and walked away empty handed, not knowing what to do next. But in that moment of desperation and exasperation; our class teacher took away all the honors by being a sport. She gave a pat on my back and told us that she’s proud of what we’ve achieved – irrespective of the verdict. For us rookies that worth gold! We gained experience, exposure. But most importantly, we learned a stoic lesson on team building and the importance of recognition. Now, tell me, what does success smell like?

The Third Man “A classic style meets substance cinema”

Starting from 1940 and ranging up to the 1960’s, Hollywood have produced some of the greatest mystery thrillers ever made. Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window, Vertigo, Notorious. John Houston’s The Maltese Falcon. Billy Wilder’s Double Indemnity and Orsen Wells’s Citizen Kane which is still considered by many as the greatest film ever made. Good God.. !! No wonder why they called it the Golden Age of Hollywood cinema.

Although there had been so many mystery classics produced in Hollywood during that period, my favorite happened to be a 1949 atmospheric thriller called “The Third Man” starring Orsen Wells and Joseph Cotton in the lead roles. The Third Man is a Graham Greene novel set in Vienna, produced and directed by Carol Reed.

The movie starts with a background narration (I never knew the old Vienna before the war…) of the old Vienna, which is now officially the capital of Austria. The narrator explains Vienna was separated in to 4 parts, each occupied equally by Americans, British, Russians and The French. The narrator also makes references to the infamous Black Market, an infinite period post World War II, where people made business of their own without paying the duties or taxes in all nook and corners of the streets. The director wastes no time and sweeps through the whole city in one shot as we are quickly introduced to one of the main characters, an American named Holly Martins (Joseph Cotton), a pulp fiction novelist who came to the city to meet his best friend Harry Lime (Orsen Wells). Martins, apparently, was broke and was out of money (happy as a lock and without a cent as described by the narrator) and Lime has offered a help promising the former some sort of a job.

On his arrival, Martins learns that Lime has died in an accident that happened just 10 minutes before he reached there. Then we are lead towards a Citizen Kane like mystery thriller, where Martins tries to investigate the whole story by going around the neighborhood and meeting people that are capable of explaining him about might have happened to his old friend. One of them is a police officer named Calloway , the officer in charge played by Trevor Howard. Calloway tells Martins, that his friend Lime had his connections with the Black Market and is an evil man and advises him to depart quickly taking the next train back home.

But Martins isn’t giving it up easily as he finds out that Lime had a girlfriend named Anna a small time stage play artist played by Alida Valli. Holly starts to fall in love with the women and things gets really convoluted when he learns out that Harry is not dead and is most likely hiding down under the sewer tunnels. The realization struck him soon after regarding what Calloway said about his old friend *the black market* is probably true.  Will they catch The Third Man or will Harry Lime make his way out safely..?? Watch the movie to get the answer.

Apart from the obvious, iconic performances from its leads, which I have to admit, is pretty amazing all on its own I recommend this movie for 3 reasons.  Yes, three major reasons..

1.       The famous pre-intervention sequence when Holly meets Larry letting go the truth about his existence and this simple little speech that follows afterwards.

2.       The Brilliant art direction involving killer point of view camera angles, lightings and some of the most expertly photographed sequences ever put on film.  And…

3.       That fabulous Jarring Zither music score composed and edited by Anton Karas *who apparently did the same in one of the casinos of Vienna* which just suits perfectly to the action and the going zone in the movie from start to finish.

I never mention these kinds of things in my reviews but I have to say about this one though.. Because Third Man is a movie that worked on so many levels — A perfect example of what they call the style meets substance cinema that is not only an excellent piece of art but also a great and magical entertainment..!!

The movie not only gained cult status but also gave birth to one of the most unforgettable screen villains of all time. Think about, it’s only in the third half the movie do we get to see the villain and when we do, it’s one of the greatest entrances in movie history… !!

It’s an unforgettable sequence which made the movie from good to great.. What do we have here..?? We have a small corner of the street. A meowing cat in the doorway. The Big Giant shoes, the suspicious Holly shouting “come out!! Come out!! Whoever you are”. The light signals turning straight on Harry’s face, that cheeky smile appears with a black hat on top of it and a women shouting from the first floor as if she just saw a couple of kids playing hide n’ seek in the streets..!!

There lies the sheer craft and beauty of filmmaking for you – An astonishing Meta feat capable of being naughty, funny and diabolical all at the same time..!!

Apart from its thriller aspects (obviously you’ll come to know who lives and who doesn’t) “ The Third Man” is nothing but a long speech on a big wheel overlooking Vienna and it’s Orsen Welles who delivers that speech..  I’m referring to the scene when Harry justifies himself.. He says..

In Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love–they had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock.

What’s amazing is that they never produced cuckoo clock in Switzerland. What’s even more amazing that Graham Greene never wrote those lines in his original script !! It was written by Orsen Wells himself..  That’s why he is always remembered as “ The Ultimate Auteur ” of cinema.. Great villain.. Great speech.. Great movie..  Two thumbs up.. “The Third Man is a must watch..!!”