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Sunday, 22 January 2017

HIndie Awards 2017: Best Actor [Male] in a Leading Role [Indian Language]

Best Actor [Male] in a Leading Role 

[Indian Language]

The supposed big one in any language, in any award show, no matter the better performance; but, I play, fair.

As such the second ranked Indian Language acting award of the night. Last year Basabdatta Chaterjee scored the big win for his subtle, nuanced and sober turn in Bengali love poem Asha Jaoar Majhe.

So who gets it this time round, here are our nominees...

Dulquer Salman as Krishnan for Kammatipaadam

The young progeny of the legendary Mammotty has slowly begun to build a hell of a performance oriented career.  Last year he shone in two blistering and widely different performances in Charlie and OK Kanmani.

This year he dazzled in Kali, as a brooding young man with a short temper.

However it was the time transcending performance as Krishnan that stood out. Playing the character across three generation and myriad of complexities in life, Salman ably portrays the initial innocence, drive and the latter angst and desperation in the sordid tale of friendship and deceit.

Unlike most actors who reflect the change in expression, dialogue and mindset; Salman equally puts effort in the physical, there's a changed stance to his action sequences as a young man and an older one. Yet the internal is never forgotten, the alertness of the characters emotional space is what makes Salman such an intuitive and genius actor with a brighter future ahead.

SJ Surya as Arul Dass for Iraivi

As the aloof drunk husband and passionate filmmaker looking for one last chance, Surya in spite of his character becomes the heart of the film. So when the climax hits, black poison seeps into the heart and the performance comes full circle.

Playing a drunk with ease, while also exuding passion for his pet project from all his pours; Surya is absolutely endearing, you believe it from his eyes when he mentions how his second shelved film is his baby and without it being born [released] he cannot move on.

His journey then becomes a necessity to follow and fulfil, Surya aids as much as he gets as a performer and that belief is relayed in the actions of his co-characters.

It's a performance that illicit a wide range of emotions and a smooth change between them thanks to the astute sharpness of a performer such as Surya, a turn unexpected but welcome all the same.

Nana Patekar as Ganpat Belwalkar for Natsamrat

Your heart weeps when Ganpat is broken down by absolute madness and the loss of his wife cries 'Koni ghaar deta ghaar' ['Is there any home for me'].

It's a scene that echoes very best of both King Lear and Nana Patekar. At this point in his career, the man is a master of his craft and as effortless as effortless can be.

What is more thrilling is that the effortless performer translates his style into a film that is very much theatrical in scope, it's a mixture of two worlds that match once in a blue moon when Nana Patekar graces us with his presence.

It's sad that such a fine performer has been reduced to a footnote in Hindi cinema, well what is their loss is Marathi cinemas absolute gain.

Vijay Sethupati as Michael for Iraivi

What a year it has been for Vijay Sethupati?

From shining as the Mass hero he is in the aptly titled Sethupathi to the conflicted lover, friend and husband in Iraivi.

Vijay Sethupati is living proof that one's starry and massy appeal need not come against their acting aspirations.

In Iraivi, he gives an absolutely measured turn. If Surya is the whisky then Sethupathi is the soda that comes with it, dry and subtle yet adding a flavour tat prevents from complete intoxication yet leads to another high.

It's a performance well calibrated that the characters evolution from a scorned lover and loyal friend into a caring husband and fearful scared man comes so smooth that there's no discernible difference but a well charted evolution in the slowly breaking body language.

Sethupati is close to the peak of his abilities and Iraivi is another wonderful leap forward.

Shashank Arora as Naman for Brahman Naman

In Shashank Arora; Q and Naman Ramachandran find a game actor who is willing to go all out in occupying the slimy, sleazy, idiocy of their protagonist Naman.

Arora mixes a cocktail of both high pitched crazy comedy and talented smarts, playing both the goofy and the straight laced. He never misses his comic beat, but especially important is that even without actually overtly doing so; Arora sheds this comedic touch and presents the uglier truth of a naive and arrogant Naman despite still living in his bubble of Brahman superiority.

It's a blistering turn, sometime overshadowed by the comedic touches of others, yet it is still far well rounded.

And the Winner is...

Shashank Arora as Naman for Brahman Naman!!!

So there you go, the big leading actor winner. Still not the top of the list though.

Up Next: Five women came from all walks of life and languages and one walks out the winner!!!

'Nuff Said,

Aneesh Raikundalia

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