Ponniyin Selvan: Part I

Ponniyin Selvan: Part I ★★★★★

there was a brief moment before watching this film that i began to temper my expectations. i was reading kalki’s books (currently most of the way through the second) and i figured that it was just too impossible an undertaking to adapt it. but this didn’t let me down in the slightest. 10 movies wouldn’t be enough for the scope of the epic, but mani truly captures its essence without taking a literalist interpretation—kinda like villeneuve in dune but without really taking away any scenes or plot points you wanted depicted on the big screen. loved the way he interpreted vanthiyathevan to be a complete horndog with proper chat and good banter, he just like me fr. and everybody is at their best—the performances, AR/soundtrack/score, set design, LIGHTING (!!!), dialogue, but this review especially shouts out trisha and aishwarya’s performances. they completely carried. i was blown away by their scene together—easily my favorite scene of the year.

my one criticism is almost not even a criticism—besides the final boat scene, every shot was truly spectacular; but i was almost pissed at how quickly mani was making cuts. this has become ratnam’s style at this point but id be obsessed with a frame and two seconds later it would cut to another gorgeous one. just hold one for 10-20 seconds!!!! it’s magnificent!! i know you can do it, you did it in nayakan!!! you don’t need 5 million beautiful shots you can just have a couple thousand!!

s-tier ratnam

edit: i see people being frustrated that this isn’t baahubali. lmfao. grow a brain.

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