spit: Vikram, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Trisha, Jayam Ravi, Karthi
Director: Mani Ratnam
evaluation: 4 stars (out of 5)
Reducing a complex five-volume novel into a two-part film is a remarkable feat. It takes smarts. A large group of it. If any director has that trait in the desired action, it is Mani Ratnam. Bonin Sylvain – Part 1which is an extensive historical epic and varied in the visual range, is proof of this.
The sprawling and astonishingly complex is an ambitious, almost flawless adaptation of a much-loved literary work that demonstrates exactly why it is such a grueling cinematic project that the likes of MG Ramachandran and Kamalahasan could only make unsuccessful attempts to piece it together. .
Needless to say, the tale imposes huge artistic and artistic demands on Ratnam, his cast and crew. They have proven equal to the daunting task of achieving the volume, pace, and stylistic flourish that the story demands and allows the image-making technology available.
This certainly does not mean that the veteran filmmaker surrenders himself a lock, stock, and barrel to the lure and power of computer-generated images. Ratnam is too good a craftsman and storyteller to rely excessively on the fascination with the kind of unbridled visual effects that have driven modern Hindi films like Baahubali, RRR, and KGF.
Ratnam does not resort to sensory or visceral overspeed, instead drawing strength from the clever text he wrote, B. PS-1 is as much a treat for the eyes as it is for the mind.
Discard the excesses of visual effects and ground historical fiction in a realistic setting with the goal of capturing the massive sweep of Kalki Krishnamurthth’s 1955 cult novel that traces the age of the Cholas.
It took the story six and a half decades to reach the big screen. The wait was worth it. PS-1 in Tamil has dubbed versions in Hindi, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam in theaters across the country.
in 167 minutes Bonin Sylvain – Part 1Some clips seem pleased that the introduction of a full cast of characters and historically intense detail should be confined to two three-hour films.
Editor A. Srikar Prasad, whose proven skills are tested to the limit, ensures that the story contains enough breathing spaces not to be swept into accidental incomprehension.
Once the prologue is over and all the main characters are lined up, PS-1 enters the swing of things. It offers an exceptionally smooth journey through a thrilling series of events – fierce battles, palace intrigue, lost love, defeated soldiers seeking revenge, and brave resistance – that score high points in Chola History in a relatively concrete and immersive way.
The most noteworthy aspect of PS-1, besides the consistently impressive performances by the cast led by Vikram and brilliantly supported by Karthi, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Jayam Ravi and Trisha, among others, is the production design by Thotta Tharini and the well-considered selection Locations lenses brilliantly by cinematographer Ravi Varman. The story unfolds in spaces that catch the eye without being fanciful the way settings of historical epics of this type usually tend.
PS-1 He summons the spatial features of the tenth century to perfection – whether structures made of stone, the interiors of forts and palaces, or ships and boats at sea. But photos never look like they were made on a computer. PS-1 is a wonderful tactile film that stays rooted in a specific period without having to create improbable cardboard cut-outs that hang somewhere between boyish understanding of design and boyish imagination.
Likewise, the film’s dramatic character – the ailing Emperor Sundar Chola (Prakash Raj) and his three offspring, Crown Prince Aditha Karikalan (Vikram), his younger brother Arulmuzhi Varman (Gayam Ravi, who appears late in the film under the guise of the title character) and sister Kondhavai (Tricha) And their assistants and opponents inside and outside the kingdom – they are never less than human.
They deal with tangible feelings even as they grapple with challenges of great proportions. The characters, whether they are Chola family or common stock men, seem believable even when in oratorical mode, transitioning seamlessly from unfamiliar wisdom to chatty banter.
The PS-1 is a historical epic that draws audiences in without resorting to juggler art, with an air of frank faith masterfully tuned. Its charm lies only in its multi-layered cinematic properties.
Mischief is in full swing in the expanding Chola Empire with Nandini (Aishwarya Rai Bachchan), wife of deceitful Finance Minister Priya Bazovitarayar (R. Charatkumar), after she vows to destroy the kingdom. She holds a personal grudge against her former lover, Adita Karikalan.
The plot, involving the brother of the Finance Minister, Sheena Bazovitarayar (Radhakrishnan Parthiban) and a group of royal tribal leaders, aims to overthrow Sundar Chola and place his nephew Madurantaka (Rahman) on the throne.
Sensing the grave danger awaiting us, Aditha Karikalan sends his best friend and trusted assistant Vandhiyathevan (Karthi, who steals almost the entire first half of the film thanks to the character’s gift of gossip and emotional antics) with a message to Emperor Sundar Chola.
Courageous and cheerful Vandiathivan evades the elements in the king’s court as well as the survivors of the defeated Pandian army who have come out to avenge their slain king Virapandian.
While power-hungry or deserted men in love are largely talkative, PS-1 is true to the source material in that it gives equal importance to the women in the story. Besides the beautiful and strong-willed Nandini, the strong and articulate Chola Princess Kundavai plays an important role as the story progresses.
Kundavai was not only sent by her father to pacify her older brother Aditha Karikalan, she also ordered Vandhiyethevan to travel to the Sinhalese kingdom with a letter to her brother Arulmozhi. Two other women in the plot – Vanathi (Subhita Dolipala), who dreams of marrying Arulmushi, and Ship Samothirakumari (Aishwarya Lakshmi) – don’t have much to do in this part of the wonderful composition. There will likely be more in store for them in the sequel.
The action-packed and action-packed first part of the drama ends at a point in the story that leaves many questions unresolved and points out what could constitute the core of Ponniyin Selvan – Part 2, slated for release in 2023. The film inevitably packages a lot in a very short time but it doesn’t fail Never in looks and sound – AR Rahman’s songs and background form the backbone of sound design – like a meticulously designed and executed cinematic work.
PS-1 iBoth exhilarating and enriching. Another dose would be perfect.