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Sambhar Mafia - Cooked To Kill!

Monday, May 23, 2005

BLEAK OUTLOOK?

I started reading Outlook magazine sometime in the mid 90’s. At that time it was a refreshing change from the dominant India Today. During those days Outlook had a breath of fresh air as they were trying to establish a foothold in the market. The fact that they gave attractive gifts for subscription plans was one of the reasons why I subscribed to Outlook. Somewhere down the line they started drifting away and these days have started dishing out utter crap. Outlook (part of the Rajan Raheja Group) have been pioneers in their own way as they entered new segments like Personal Finance (Outlook Money, used to be called Intelligent Investor earlier) and Travel & Leisure (Outlook Traveller) which never existed earlier.

The latest issue of Outlook has a cover story on the last 10 years of Indian cinema. Hindi cinema in particular has been experimenting with a wide variety of themes (skinny flicks, serious ones like Black & My Brother Nikhil, crossover movies etc). I decided to read the section on Tamil cinema. S Anand of Outlook’s Chennai Bureau had received lot of flak from the Blogosphere for his recent article, which talked about older heroes holding sway in Tamil cinema.


In his latest article titled “Politics Tamil Cinema Eshtyle” S Anand has gone one step further and done some stupid analysis on the casteist basis on which Tamil movies are made. I’m sure Anand is writing such controversial stuff just to help Outlook achieve higher sales. I never expected somebody to dissect a hit movie like Kadhal in this manner. I guess Balaji Shaktivel (director of Kadhal) deserves to be treated in a better manner. Majority of the movies will be based on “rich girl meets poor boy” theme and if Anand is asked to comment on this he can write reams about the backgrounds of the hero and heroine. After reading this article I came to know that Manirathnam’s Roja had an anti-Muslim bias.

Anand’s verbal diarrhea doesn’t stop here. He goes on to say that Manirathnam movies run only in A centres and they don’t have much substance. Although this could be true, doesn’t he know that A centres have more number of urban / educated people and hence they are likely to support movies with substance. Anand says that Alaipayudhey couple (Madhavan & Shalini) move into an unfinished building decked with Fab India furnishings. Why is he giving free publicity to Fab India? Looks like Anand wanted to settle some scores with Manirathnam and hence used this as a forum to do that.

The only place where Anand scores is with his reference to Vijay’s limited acting abilities. Anand winds up by saying that “Tamil cinema remains an embarrassment confined to Tamilnadu”. If this is the ground reality why did Anand write 3 pages about Tamil cinema?

Request to Outlook - Chennai is home to lot of good journalists. I hope you can pick somebody from this bunch. Even some bloggers might be interested in the job.

PS: I continue to read Outlook because their online edition is free :-)

10 Comments:

  • lol at Anand's article... it was funny how he says that balaji sakthivel was trying to maintain caste equations through his film kaadhal by not showing the hero and heroine sleeping with each other... door color-a vechi caste analysis panni Anand sir asathitaaru ;-)...
    also, don't see where he gets the idea that thankar bachan's movies "imply the caste ethos"...
    i agree with your comment about roja... i also don't see how he came to the conclusion that kannathil muthamittal was against sri lankan tamils or against adoption...
    also, this was the first time i have seen the term "middle castes" used... at first, i read it as middle class...
    another one of anand's funny lines was "caste overrode their tamilness"...

    By Anonymous kumaran, at 6:40 AM  

  • anand shud have gone crazy.his last article on 'old heroes' in tamil cinema had given him good publicity status. shud be the first nut to give opposite opinion about 'roja', 'KM' and "Kathal'. Balaji Sakthivel's powerful script and the real scenes in the movie is a strong lesson to all the viewers. it's a way of teaching u can say. what is wrong with films if they speak abt caste in a good way or if they reveal its culture ? where is he from ? is he from ireland ? guess, outlook wud get lot of feedbacks reg. his article which shud kick him out from his seat.

    By Blogger crsathish, at 8:17 AM  

  • Outlook started as a refreshing change in the 90's. But then they became the mouthpiece of Congress party and later the " Investigaive Journalism" types .

    I have met Sandipen Deb, the editor of Outlook and he is an amazingly simple and humble human being.He admitted a lot of what they were doing was to "differentiate" themselves from India today and cater to the new age audience.

    The article on tamil cinema is uncalled for. If they argue that the standards of tamil cinema has gone down then there is an element of truth in it. But to play the casteist card in cinema is despicable.

    Any day , I would prefer India today to Outlook .

    By Blogger Cogito, at 9:46 AM  

  • Tamil cinema remains an embarrassment confined to Tamil Nadu. - WTF?

    By Blogger anantha, at 9:49 AM  

  • Kollywood always gets the short end of the stick, do you know why?

    That is where the real talent is and in history, the most challenged have always been not co-incidentally the most gifted.

    By Blogger thennavan, at 11:58 AM  

  • BTW, is this the same Anand who had reviewd Anbe Sivam in Outlook and termed it as a bad movie!! There was one line in that review which confirmed what little doubts I had on his sanity - he said something to the effect of how Madhavan performs his role by promoting his brand Pepsi! (And the actual scene was one where Madhavan is running away from Kamal, and walks across a FP vending machine.)

    I agree with Thennavan completely. In a weird way we should be happy that guys like Anand give the needed "dhrishti" to tamil cinema. :)

    By Blogger Sridhar Raman, at 2:26 PM  

  • Amen! to Anti... he just said in a line what i felt like saying.. particularly.. WTF???

    (written a post based on this. Could you pls install Trackback, Kaps.. wud be very helpful)

    By Blogger Chez, at 3:16 PM  

  • Outlook sucks. It is full of biased apologists, and it is just a propoganda machine of the communists. I used to read the magazine, but at one stage the crap was just too much to take. But, then what else can you expect from the "The Hindu" group?

    By Blogger Nachiketas, at 3:44 PM  

  • But, then what else can you expect from the "The Hindu" group?


    _ are you thinking of Frontline, perhaps?

    By Blogger tilotamma, at 5:43 AM  

  • S. Anand is a known Hindu hater. The current editor of Outlook, Vinod Mehta has strong leftist leanings. N. Ram, the editor of Frontline is a soft-proclaimed Marxist. Both Outlook and Frontline are mouthpieces of the communists. Both magazines have been known to provide spaces to radical leftists and anti-Hindu propagandists both from India and the west for regurgitating their hateful filth.

    By Anonymous Manas, at 9:38 AM  

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