The frequency of good movies reduced drastically during early 90s, then we saw the slow growth during the mid of 00s. This is a list of makers of few must-watch films of this generation. Each one has made an influential contribution to the development of the film industry.
Let us forget Mani Ratnam, the godfather of modern filmmaking, the man who revolutionized & influenced Tamil cinema and a generation of audience, and S. Shankar, who created the Indian and Mudhalvan, who drove the development of widely used special-effects technology in Indian cinema, who done more for the film industry with technology and innovations than anyone else, a master director when it come to big budget films.
1. Bala – He is on top of the list for the sheer brilliance of his craft and the profound darkness of his themes. He shows a world which is close to us yet so unfamiliar. His movies are so incredible, different yet amazing. Every dark and tragedy film will be compared to Bala because he is the master of the moments. Also has brought some unseen ‘actors’ into the top ‘acting’ status working outside the commercial formula. Must See: Nan Kadavul, Paradesi.
2. Kamal Haasan – The man who is making Tamil film audience to fall in deep hunger of ground-breaking movies. One of most cerebral filmmakers. Challenging and bombastic. Bold subjects, intensive research, wild wide canvas, and overlapping dialogue differentiate his movies. He should start making more movies. Must See: Hey Ram, Virumaandi
3. Mysshkin – His movies take you to an entirely new world. No one can make a movie like this guy. The background score, presentation of scenes, and unique characters in his movies do the magic. His unexceptional way of storytelling, his camera movements and angles, shots are just amazing and always keep his audience intrigued. You can immediately tell a Mysshkin film from others. I’ll call him the most experimental filmmaker. Must See: Anjathey, Yudham Sei, Onaiyum Aattukkuttiyum
4, Vetrimaaran – Amazing writer with amazing character designing ability. Human nature and emotions seems to be a recurring factor in his movies and provides great watchability. He is yet to make a bad film. Hearing great reports about his upcoming film ‘Visaranai’ as well. A film to look-out for. Must See: Aadukalam
5. Selvaraghavan – He has moved from genre to genre. He gave Tamil cinema its one of the most recognizable gangster ‘Kokki Kumar’. He is master in connecting the audience with the other side of human emotions, on a deeper level. Must See: 7/G Rainbow Colony, Puthupettai
6. Gautham Menon – A poetic filmmaker. His movies unfold with such confidence even when he betrays the trust of audience by killing off one of the heroines in the mid way. He is travelling through that narrow line between commercial and artistic, often see sawing. He brought a Hollywood style to the Tamil action masala/dramas. Must See: Kakka Kakka, Vaaranam Aayiram, Vettayadu Vilayadu
7. Sasikumar – The long shot, climax scene of Subramaniapuram, is enough for keeping a space in the list. The film shows a truly innovative director who can make wonders matching those classic French movies. Must See: Subramaniapuram
8. Ameer Sultan – No matter how deeply he made Paruthiveeran cut …., he just brings the kind of performances only the best filmmakers can extract from actors. He gave two of the un-disputed modern day classics. Must See: Raam, Paruthiveeran.
9. Seenu Ramasamy – Has never gone into the commercial side, rather sticks to the topics he could pull off beautifully. He doesn’t have huge commercially successful films on his profile but his very style and plot has gained him a fan following that is increasing with each film. Must Watch: Thenmerku Paruvakatru, Neerparavai
10. Pa. Ranjith & Karthik Subbaraj – The makers of Madras and Jigarthanda, two of the most promising directors in Tamil. Pa. Ranjith has already started rolling the biggest gamble of his career – Kabali with Rajinikanth. Because of the contrasting movies they made as their first and second, we will have to wait for their next films before judging them but is unavoidable for the influence they made with their respective movies.
Special Mention: AR Murugadoss – To stand out in a path chosen by the most, needs something special. He is weak in song placement while being strong in making and presenting a good plot based on real life mixing well with masala to take the content to the mass audience. Murugadoss consistently brings interesting subject matter for his films. His films are highly commercialized but the subjects he handled make him special. Must See: Thuppakki, Ghajini.
Special Mention: Ram – Sentimental but not sappy. Artistic, and intellectual. His Katrathu Thamizh is a must watch.
Special Mention: Balaji Shakthivel – The independent minded filmmaker debuted with an action film, Samurai, shifted his gear to movies that showed wide range of human emotions. A very skilled artist. Must See: Vazhakku Enn 18/9 and Kadhal.
Waiting for second films: 1. Nalan Kumarasamy and Thiagarajan Kumararaja
Cinephile. Learning the art of filmmaking. Script Writer. Director.