110 episodes

A generation of impostors brought up on cinema. The Other Banana podcast is primarily Deepauk M(@complicateur), Aditya(@gradwolf), Anantha(@anantha), and Ashoka(@ABVan).

We discuss films – mostly Indian – and analyse them in turn, roughly on a bi-weekly basis.

The Other Banana The Other Banana

    • TV & Film
    • 4.9 • 10 Ratings

A generation of impostors brought up on cinema. The Other Banana podcast is primarily Deepauk M(@complicateur), Aditya(@gradwolf), Anantha(@anantha), and Ashoka(@ABVan).

We discuss films – mostly Indian – and analyse them in turn, roughly on a bi-weekly basis.

    Venkat Prabhu's Chennai 600028

    Venkat Prabhu's Chennai 600028

    A film like Chennai 600028 needs no introduction but here is an attempt anyway - a small gang of first timers and amateurs, however privileged by their industry backgrounds, came together to make a movie on amateur cricket - street cricket to be precise - and male friendship. Venkat Prabhu bandied together Shiva, Premji, Nithin Sathya, Aravind Akash, Sampath, Jai, Vijay Vasanth, Ajay Raj and of course, Yuvan Shankar Raja to create a film whose infection charm and fun might have been felt during the set but with a few jitters as SP Balasubrahmanyam and his son SPB Charan put their money into it.


    The film completed fifteen years recently and what opened lukewarm with so many newcomers are all names today we always associate together as a gang and not by individual, went on to become a sleeper cult hit. To celebrate these fifteen years of repeat watches, Aditya, Anantha and Balajee get together to talk about the film and the memories associated with it.


    Cinema Express Editor in Chief and podcast friend and guest Sudhir Srinivasan interviewed Venkat Prabhu for the same occasion and it came up during our discussion. The interview is linked below


    Participants:


    Aditya


    Anantha (also editor of this episode)


    Balajee


    Venkat Prabhu interview with Sudhir Srinivasan - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGhNELP6fsc

    • 1 hr 13 min
    The promise of 83… and the eventual disappointment

    The promise of 83… and the eventual disappointment

    In the latest episode of the podcast, we discuss the recent Bollywood  movie 83 – which retells the story of India’s miraculous victory in the  1983 World Cup.

    Talking Points:


    A missed opportunity to recreate the cricketing miracle that was 1983
    The conspicuous absence of India’s victory over West Indies at Berbice
    The complete erasure of Mohinder Amarnath’s golden season
    Ranveer Singh and Jiiva – and their game attempt to approximate Kapil Dev and Krishnamachari Srikkanth
    The film not setting the context for the 1983 World Cup
    The lack of a genuine bad guy – which makes the movie search for antagonists
    The factual inaccuracies in the movie – including a big faux pas in the final scene
    The movie explaining scenes way more than showing them through storytelling
    The cinematographic techniques – long-shots combined with close-ups and highlight reels
    The nationalistic tone that runs through the movie
    The Malayalam movie 1983, which takes a completely different approach to recreating the miracle of 1983
    The Indian cricket ecosystem’s inability to create cultural value and works of art



    Participants:

    Siddhartha Vaidyanathan (@sidvee)

    Aditya Shrikrishna (@gradwolf)

    Anantha (@anantha)

    Related:

    With Obvious Storytelling, ’83’ Is an Opportunity Lost to Show Underdog India’s Famous WC Victory – Tanul Thakur – The Wire

    83 Loses Itself In The Excesses Of Euphoria – Rahul Desai – Film Companion

    Lead image from here.

    • 57 min
    Tamil Male Stars and Promising Young Filmmakers - How does it work?

    Tamil Male Stars and Promising Young Filmmakers - How does it work?

    The recent big announcement in Tamil cinema is the collaboration of director Nelson (Kolamaavu Kokila, Doctor, yet to release Beast with Vijay) with Rajinikanth. Since the time Rajinikanth collaborated twice with Pa. Ranjith and once with Karthik Subbaraj, there have always been calls for the biggest stars - meaning male actors who guarantee huge weekend openings at box office - to work with young, promising filmmakers making a different kind of cinema, themselves a coterie that came into being around 2008 in Tamil cinema. The list of filmmakers has only grown since then and it's been a great decade. From calls for Kamal Haasan at his height of stardom and experimentation to work with some of them to Rajini working with them and Vijay collaborating with Lokesh Kanagaraj, and Ajith with H. Vinoth (and we've had more than a decade of Dhanush-Vetrimaaran), fans believe this is a treat. Currently we have upcoming films like Lokesh Kanagaraj's Vikram with Kamal Haasan, Vijay's Beast with Nelson, Vetrimaaran's Vaadivaasal with Suriya and Pa Ranjith's film with Vikram to name a few.


    At The Other Banana, we wondered how healthy these pairings are for Tamil cinema? An industry notorious for the way it manages production and budgets, do the numbers make sense and does the quality suffer? What is the equation between the star actor and the filmmaker? What do they get out of each other and are they satisfied? Who are the biggest stars today, who were the stars we thought could take Tamil cinema to great heights in 2005 and where are they today? What do distributors feel about this subject? Do the filmmakers matter to them the way they do for fans?


    To talk about all these things and more, reporter and journalist Subha Rao joined us. Subha has covered Tamil cinema for close to twenty years now and she has been at the forefront from the days of Rajini-Kamal to today's Ajith-Vijay. Young kids might find it hard to believe but there was a time when Ajith used to give interviews and Subha has interviewed him among others like Vikram et al. We've linked to some of her recent and past works before. She comes armed with a wealth of knowledge and experience and stories from distributors and filmmakers and what they think about this topic. Listen on.


    Participants:


    Aditya

    Subha

    Anantha

    Ashoka


    Edited by Ashoka


    Show Notes:


    Subha's Ajith interviews from back in the day here and here.


    Subha's piece on female superstars referenced in the episode.


    Subha's essay on Allu Arjun and Pushpa, and how the former became a huge star.

    • 1 hr 8 min
    Director Series: Mysskin's Pisaasu

    Director Series: Mysskin's Pisaasu

    After a long break, we return to our Director Series on Mysskin. In this episode we talk about Mysskin's 2014 film Pisaasu starring Naga, Prayaga Martin, Radha Ravi et al. The film broadly falls under the horror genre but with its filmmaking and inherent philosophy subverts the genre in many different ways. Add to this, Mysskin's next film is a sequel to Pisaasu starring Andrea.


    To talk about the film Aditya is joined by two distinguished guests.


    Sudhir Srinivasan returns to our podcast to talk about his favorite Mysskin film. Sudhir is a film critic and editor of Cinema Express. He had earlier joined us to talk about Aayirathil Oruvan


    Amrutha is a Visiting Assistant Professor in Film and Digital Media Studies at the Department of English Language and Literature at Wofford College. She obtained her doctoral degree from Department of English at MSU last year, with her dissertation on 'Situating Tamil Cinema'. Her PhD advisor was Dr. Swarnavel Eswaran who is a friend of the podcast and joined us for an episode to talk about Andha Naal.


    Edited by Aditya and Anantha.


    References:


    Amrutha quotes from Kogonada's 2013 video on Neorealism in the podcast. We recommend Kogonada's Columbus and he also has a film coming up in March 2022 - After Yang.


    Previous episodes on Mysskin series:


    Onaayum Aattukkuttiyum.


    Yuddham Sei.

    • 1 hr 19 min
    Raj B. Shetty's Garuda Gamana Vrishabha Vahana

    Raj B. Shetty's Garuda Gamana Vrishabha Vahana

    As the title suggests, Raj B. Shetty's latest Kannada film Garuda Gamana Vrishabha Vahana contains its share of mythological undertones. But the film is more than just that almost reinventing the gangster drama at an epic scale with very curious passage of character developments. Set in Mangaluru, it tells the story of Hari (Rishab Shetty) and Shiva (Raj B. Shetty), the backstory of how they climb up the ladder of crime in the city and the eventual souring of the relationship. The film's conspicous homo-eroticism was noticed by many and how well it does what it does with it and the film's complete disregard for women in its universe has been topics of debate.

    For this episode, we have full house of The Other Banana team - Aditya, Deepauk, Anantha and Ashoka discuss the setting, the relationship between Shiva and Hari, what the film does well and what it does not, the character of Brahmmaya played by Gopal Krishna Deshpande, the writing and filmmaking in Garuda Gamana Vrishabha Vahana.

    Episode edited by Anantha

    Links:

    The Raj B. Shetty interview with Baradwaj Rangan

    Our episode on Raj B. Shetty's Ondu Motteya Kathe

    • 57 min
    2021 - The Year in Review

    2021 - The Year in Review

    Its a full house for the last pod of the year; all 4 of us talk about movies/series of 2021: what we watched, what we liked, what we didn't and what we hope to see more of in the coming year. It is a freewheeling chat covering regional content from South India and a lit bit from around the world.  

    ...oh and a Happy 2022 from the crew! 

    Participants:

    Deepauk

    Ashoka

    Aditya

    Anantha

    Episode edited by Ashoka.

    • 1 hr 34 min

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