â€œWhy is it that Tamil and Telugu dubbed films have taken Kerala by storm? It is only because of the way the songs are picturised and the glossy packaging. Similarly we are trying something that will attract our youth.â€
That is the analysis from Director Jayaraj on what is happening in Kerala. It is no secret that movies like Pokiri, Shivaji, Dhoom 2, Om Shanti Om and various dubbed Telugu movies have done very well in Kerala while many good Malayalam movies have flopped miserably. Most of those hit movies lack story and are an insult to human intelligence, but it is a fact that they did better than most Mohanlal movies.
Then is it just the way songs are picturized and glossy packaging that matters as Jayaraj says? If so “By the People” should have been a major hit. Kamal and Joshi have tried songs filmed in foreign locales, but even that did not help. So what can be done?
Says Alex George of Central Pictures: â€œThe only way to stop the tidal wave of Telugu and Tamil films is to make films like â€˜Of the Peopleâ€™ on a limited budget to bring back our youth audiences.â€
Viewers go to see movies like Shivaji and Dhoom knowing that they would not have any decent story, but would have extravagance to compensate for it. The extravagance is not just in the way songs are visualized, but in almost every aspect of the film. The stunts, though highly cartoonish are stylishly presented. The heroines, often Malayalees, are seen in minimal clothing, which is something even the most glossy packaged Malayalam films don’t have.
If you try to make movies in a limited budget as Alex George says, that poverty will be evident through out the movie. For example, the cost of filming the Athiradee song would be the cost of two Jayaraj movies. Malayalam films cannot be big budget and so that has to be compensated withÂ something of a decent story or something “fun” like what happens in Shafi movies. If you just film glossy songs, people will be happy watching it on TV. To get viewers to the theater, you need something more.