Anniyan '57

The Three Faces of Eve - 1957

This black and white classic
is perhaps the first movie to deal with multiple personality disorder (MSD). It is quite possible that this is the first of its kind in world cinema as it is based on a book (of the same name) that documents the first diagnosed case of MSD. Jeanne Woodward plays the titular character(s). She convincingly enacts the three different personalities housed in one body. Through a better part of the movie, it is a conflict between Eve White, a dull mother and her alter ego, Eve Black who appears to be nothing short of an yesteryear Paris Hilton. As the psychiatrists try and understand the coming and going of these two personalities, Eve is alienated from her family. In what was, to me at least, an interesting plot twist, the third personality emerges and deals with the other two in a manner which confounds the doctors even further. However, it was no surprise to me that Jeanne Woodward won the oscar for her performance. Any novel character that sets a trend must be awarded.

Anniyan - 2005

It is not too difficult to draw the parallels between "The three faces of Eve" and "Anniyan". I think Shankar should be seen as the quintessential I.T director. No one uses a template much better than Shankar. He has successfully blended the proven character of a reformer into various movies that deliver.
Gentleman - Shankar's template with a medical college entrance scandal expose.
Indian - Template + Bribery + Varma Kalai
Mudhalvan - Template + Corruption + One Day CM
Anniyan - Template + Corruption + MSD
Shivaji - Template + Education system + Rajini

Shankar excels in the way he delivers the template ever time but I.T makkal yaavarum cut and paste makkale...

Despite being a fan of his movies, I can't help wonder what Shankar is going to get 'inspired' by next. Will it be based on the Bourne series with an amnesiac social reformer? A futuristic social reformer a la Terminator who travels back in time to get rid of some corrupt elements? The possibilities are as many as the number of formulaic movies out there.


  1. Interesting post! When I watched Anniyan, I was reminded of Sidney Sheldon's Tell me your dreams. Again a Triple Personality Disorder plot.

  2. As bolly-Kollywood grapewines have it, Shankar has been signed up by SRK for his next home production called "Robot". Obviously it will be multi-lingual. May create a new record for being the most expensive Indian movie!