First things first, K.Balachander’s original script for this film ‘Maro Charithra’ had all the ingredients to make a beautiful love story. Although, he has been credited for the original story of this film, the modern day adaptation is altogether a different story. It’s amateurishly written and Ravi Yadav commits a blunder of not understanding the very essence of what had made Balu, Swapna such iconic figures in the original film. The new age Balu (Varun Sandesh) is high on testosterone, puts on a wannabe accent, has ruffled hair and has a misguided sense of love. On the other hand, Swapna lacks individuality and behaves like a kid who would throw a tantrum to make her point. The love letters of yesteryear are replaced by webcams and iPhone which could have been put to a much better use. Swapna is in love with Balu, so much that she would go all the way to Las Vegas to have ‘fun’, but wouldn’t tolerate him kissing her in public. If only, the modern adaptation had been truly modern!
Comparing Varun Sandesh to what Kamal Haasan has done in the original would be blasphemy. Let’s just say, Varun Sandesh should have seen the films at least 100 more times to understand Balu’s character. The only parts of the film where he gets his act right is when he moves away from Swapna. Alas, these scenes are few and far between in the film. Anitha, the debutant with perhaps the broadest ever smile, is a major disappointment. Although, she does try to make an effort to act in the film, her voice makes it impossible to take her seriously. The selection of the artiste responsible for Anitha’s dubbing is perhaps one of the biggest blunders committed in this film. Adarsh Balakrishna’s role in this film is mediocre. But before you write him off, watch for his last scene in the film. It deserves a place in the annals of history. The character he portrays (Maddy), does something which has never been done before!
Mickey J Meyer’s music in the film is good; especially the music for ‘Ye Teega Puvvuno’ continues to haunt you for a while. Thaman’s background score is alright. Marthand K.Venkatesh’s editing could have been better in the first half. Ravi Yadav, the cinematographer is fairly impressive especially in the songs. However, when he dons his director’s hat, there is a lot left to be desired. He could have avoided setting more than 50% of the story near Niagara Falls. After a point, the actual falls are replaced by visual effects which make the whole set look flimsy. Better luck next time, sire!
The modern adaptation of ‘Maro Charithra’ could have easily been inspired from films like ‘Padamati Sandhya Raagam’, ‘Ananda Thandavam’, since both of them deal with families which had just moved to USA. However, ‘Maro Charithra’ (2010) is neither of them, nor is it anywhere close to the original cult classic. It’s a film which doesn’t even come close to showing some respect to both K.Balanchander’s film and your intelligence. Maybe, Balachander himself would have done more justice to this modern adaptation had he directed it. For now, there are several lessons we can learn from this film:
Rule 1: Think twice before adapting a cult film.
Rule 2: Don’t forget Rule 1
Rule 3: If you have any doubts, refer to the above two rules.
Two thumbs down for this modern day adaptation of ‘Maro Charithra’. It’s just another mediocre film which shares the same name as that of a cult film.
‘Happy Endings’ have never been this tragic!