The more I think about Aadukalam the more I like it. Vetri Maaran, Velraj and Danush – Take a Bow.
When the end credits begin to scroll up, Vetri Maaran lists the films that inspired him to make ‘Aadukalam’
Cache - Michael Haneke
Babel - Alejandro Gonzales Innarittu
Amores Perros - Alejandro Gonzales Innarittu
Thevar Magan – Bharathan
Virumandi - Kamal Haasan
Paruthi Veeran – Ameer
I wish Vetri Maaran had shown these films to G.V.Prakash as well, to study and understand how the composers of the respective films have handled the background score.
For a film, that is set in the hinterland of Madurai and that deals with rooster fights, the heroic trumpets (The title credits music, also later used in an action sequence) and Spanish Guitars - that reminds us Ennio Morricone’s scores for American westerns - sound totally out of place.
Yogi B’s Tamil rap, though an alien sound to the film’s universe, is marginally better in synch with the mood of the moments where it is heard in the film.
Ideally, the second half of the film should have no background score. In the second half, the performances, the visuals and writing are brilliant enough to grip the audience. G.V.Prakash’s score gets overtly manipulative and melodramatic. These instrumental background score cues would work well as stand-alone music pieces, but in the film, they are used when not necessary.
G.V.Prakash’s score is not detrimental to the extent of being annoying or distracting. However, with a film like ‘Aadukalam’, the composer should also dare to go a step forward to be more sensible, economical and subtle while writing the score.
I wouldn’t blame G.V.Prakash completely, because, at the end, it is the film maker who approves such a score. I have heard Vetri Maaran’s sky high praise for G.V.Prakash’s background score in ‘Polladhavan’, which I think is another highly overrated score.
What baffles me most is that none of these misfires in the background score dilutes or disturbs the impact of the film. This film and its score made me think about the basic necessity of background score in films. Even with a less than appropriate score, a film manages to be what it intends to be.
If this has happened with a B-grade film made by just another film maker, with music by a lesser composer, I wouldn’t even bother to listen to the score. G.V.Prakash and Vetri Maaran would have sat and discussed for at least an hour about the sound of the score, the instruments to be used and thematic ideas. So much thought has gone into creating something totally inappropriate for the film. And that is the concern. Atleast, the audience, should do their job right. Don't tell G.V.Prakash that his score in the film is as terrific as the film and that it has elevated the film. It isn’t, and it hasn’t.
There is just only one episode, where I felt the score lived up to the film. The background score for the long rooster fight sequence is brilliant. There is just right amount of music at the right moments amidst ample stretches of silence and subtle music throughout this episode.
The first comment on this post had a link to a Video with a BGM that G.V.Prakash has ripped off for rooster fight scene in Aadukalam