‘Tabali’ a horrible remake of ‘Tsotsi’ (Kannada film review)

March 1st, 2009 - 2:12 pm ICT by IANS  

Film: “Tabali”; Cast: Akash, Meghna Bhagavatha, Charulatha, Sangeetha, Sadhu Kokila, Neenasam Aswath and others; Screenplaywriter-Director: N. Lokinath; Producer: M. Puttaswamy; Music: Neel; Camera: Krishna Kumar; Rating: *
Director N. Lokinath claims the story of “Tabali” is his own, but the critics feel that the film is a remake of South African movie “Tsotsi”, which won best foreign film Oscar in 2005.

The 95-minute “Tsotsi” was about the reformation of a ruthless gang leader who kidnaps a child by accident. “Tsotsi” was a rivetting drama about the triumph of love over rage, but Loki has done a shoddy job of transforming a wonderful film into a forgettable film flick called “Tabali”.

The film has been released in the same week when the entire film fraternity is busy celebrating 75 years of the Kannada film industry.

“Tabali” comes as a shocker for the ordinary film fans and more so for those cinema enthusiasts who were impressed with the sentimental narrative in “Tsotsi”.

With two flops “H2O” and “Y2K” behind him, Loki should have tried to make amends with his third film. But he has again fumbled in presenting a good film despite having a winning story on hand. He could have done a better job by just copying the original. But the so called commercial compulsions seem to have led him to add some crude comedy, and unimpressive song and fight sequences.

Loki’s imagination goes haywire in the song sequences. Besides the misplacement of songs, Loki has failed to present them properly. One song on Lord Maadesha is hummable, but it doesn’t have any connection to the story. All the other songs are badly choreographed.

The director has also failed to do justice to the important characters in the narrative. Meghna Bhagavatha and Sangeetha have not been properly used. Sadhu Kokila’s comedy sequences are irritating.

Neel’s musical is unimpressive. Veteran Krishna Kumar’s camera work isn’t up to the mark either.

The positive point is that debutant Akash has done a neat job. Charulatha, who has returned to Kannada film industry after a long time, shines despite a brief role.

While “Tsotsi” was an unforgettable film, its badly made Kannada remake version “Tabali” is a total washout.

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