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Tuesday, December 01, 2020

National Film Awards 2017: The tiger won the first National Award for action, not Mohanlal, not Peter Hien

Mohanlal's fight sequence in Pulimurugan is a combination of computer generated tiger and international stunt actors.

Written by Nandagopal Rajan | New Delhi | Updated: April 7, 2017 4:50:15 pm
Mohanlan, Pulimurugan, national award, Pulimurugan national award, 64th national award, Mohanlan stills Mohanlal performed the stunts in Pulimurugan without the help of stunt doubles.

A disclaimer before I start. I am a big fan of Mohanlal and pretty much whatever he does goes down well with my dark Mallu mind. But then I’m not going to gloat over him getting another mention in the National Awards, but how his movie Pulimurugan pushed the envelope on action sequences in Indian movies.

Movies down south have always packed a bit more punch when it comes to fight sequences and led the way on how to make cars jump in the air when the hero punched the ground instead of the villains. Hindi movies have been able to watch and learn.

However, Pulimurugan was not inspired by Tamil films, for the action sequences seemed like something straight out of a movie shot in Hong Kong. No, there was no Jet Li or Chow Yun Fat to take on Mohanlal’s mouche twirling, lungi swirling action scenes. But Peter Hien’s thinking was clearly what you would have expected while going to watch a Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon.


Though Mohanlal, the middle-aged star that he is, chose to do all his stunts himself, the award would not have come for that. The star of the movie was clearly the computer generated tiger which gave a tough fight to Mohanlal, paw for paw. There was also a parade of international stunt actors in the climax, making a beeline only to be overpowered by the animal-like agility of Lal.


While Baahubali too had some stunning action sequences, there was no award last year for action director and stunt choreographer. Pulimurugan’s achievement can surely push Bollywood’s dishumdishum industry to think of more than Ajay Devgn doing splits on 100cc bikes.

Also read | 1971 Beyond Borders movie review: This Mohanlal film is ill-conceived, powerless

While it is still hard to find clips of the final scenes of this blockbuster movie, there is a good reason for you to go and see the movie, maybe just for the fight sequence. Only if you can, no fight.

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