A Blog on Cinema

Our Own “Bourne Tarantino”


Reader James had posted this as a comment, we thought that it merits its position as a post – vc.

Quentin Tarantino is a genius. He’s a man who was able to get under the umbrella of “greatest filmmakers”, although he never did any snobby art-house fare. His films are clearly influenced of the B-movies of the 1970s. He paid homage to the crime films with Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction, to novelist Elmore Leonard with Jackie Brown, to Hong Kong action, Samurai “chambara”, and spaghetti western, with the Kill Bill volumes, to exploitation films with Death Proof (part of Grindhouse), and to the spaghetti western with Inglourious Basterds. Although he works in genre movies, he creates his own stuff from his influences and transcends the limits of the genre. This man is a creative genius, the only film that was adapted (from a novel) was Jackie Brown. Everything else was created by this guy from scratch.

Now here in this interview with Amal Neerad , he mentions Tarantino winning the Golden Palm at Cannes for Pulp Fiction and I assume he creates a justification there that what he’s doing (making Sagar Alias Jacky Reloaded and his other films) is right. But what he doesn’t realize is that Tarantino is way up there and Amal is way down somewhere. As an analogy, Tarantino is making chocolate, and he makes ones of great quality. Amal wants to make chocolate as well, but he makes the worst bunch.

Good film makers create original visuals, the others copy without giving credit.  I think in Amal’s SAG , this particular scene is influenced of a scene from the Bourne Identity (if its not influenced the scene do share similarities). Now compare that with this scene from the Bourne Identity. In SAG there is just an unnecessary use of the background score which just gets to annoying. Along with that weird editing and slow-mo on Mohanlal walking and fighting.


  1. What Tarantino emulators fail to do is see WHY Tarantino movies work….it’s b/c of the CHARACTERS and the DIALOGUE…..also..Tarantino has a very conservative film making style (long takes, etc…fractured timelines…rapid-fire editing…and stylish action do not make a Tarantino movie…Amal Neerad is closer to Michael Bay or someone of that ilk…..that being said, I thought Sagar Alias Jackie was fairly entertaining…Big B was a peice of crap though (they abandoned the emotions of the beginning to make it into a Mammootty karate fest)

  2. Amal Neerad should have remained as a cinematographer which he knows best.. But all his films have a certain style and punch that can’t be compared with any other director in malayalam presently…
    To succeed, the only thing he needs is to bring a good writer and stop writing scripts himself..
    Anwar and BigB had a sort of promise in them and with a good screenplay both these would have been big hits.
    Anyway Bourne or “Born” Tarantino.. Good expression

  3. I agree with you Filmbuff, Amal Neerad is closer to Bay or probably Tony Scott in style. Amal Neerad is better fit at making music videos than feature films. Though I disagree with you about SAG, I found it annoying.

    Tarantino is very influenced by Howard Hawks, so he has a more traditional style.

  4. @Filmbuff: My dear friend you are the first person I have heard saying that Sagar alias Jacky was better than Big B!! Setting aside all the Mammootty and Mohanlal talks, let me say why I felt Big B was better… First and foremost Big B had a credible story to say (though thanks to the Amal Neerad and others unceremoniously copying Four Brothers) and secondly because Amal had a reference in Four Brothers the characters in the movie were more likeable and identify-able…

    SAG lacked any story and had Mohan lal’s style and Amal Neerad’s cinematography skills to back upon… Further this movie was bowed down with the expectation that it was a sequel to one of Lal’s best movies Irupatham nootand.. As a matter of fact most of Lal’s sequel movies except for Chenkol has suffered this issue. And to top it all, the slo-mo sequences which were kind of new for people in Big B was used to devastating effect in SAG and now in Anwar, that people have started teasing Amal that he does everything in his real life as well in slo-mo…

    As a matter of fact both Big B and SAG did not fare well in the Box office, but of late, Big B is doing good in its second rounds in the Television where as SAG has failed there as well.

  5. Just said SAJ was entertaining….but ya I wouldn’t put it in the good category…Big B didn’t entertain me at all…but I think we are all in agreement that Amal Neerad is a hack….i’m all for visual storytelling….but there’s the rub..STORYtelling..using visuals to convey narrative content or character info…there’s no method behind Amal’s technique…it’s empty

  6. I lost all respect for Amal Neerad once I saw “Four Brothers”. I had seen and loved Big-B earlier for its visual style.

    I had heard Big-B is kind of “inspired” , but only when I saw it i saw how it is a scene-by-scene lift-off from Four Brothers. No change, whatsoever apart from the fact that Detroit becomes Fort Kochi, a basketball match in the ghetto area becomes kabaddi in anddhakara colony.Dialogues, sequences etc are all virtual copies !Inspiration is one thing, and doing a total lift is a whole different ball game!

    Well, I can only hope he’ll eventually come up with something original, a script totally non-cliched and interesting, told with the same visual style..

  7. Pingback: Our Own “Bourne Tarantino” – Part 2

  8. I think these guys have done a better job with their short film, its better than any of Amal Neerad’s films.

    The fact is clear that Amal has a lot to learn. He has only done mediocre “Student films” so far.

  9. The power of editing. At 7:15.

    These “amateurs” have shown something very cinematic at a very low budget.

    I feel like directors in Malayalam cinema don’t use their editors to the maximum effect.

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