AR Murugadoss and Vijay have previously given two powerhouse entertainers, and we get recurring elements this third time. But these elements fall flat here. A heroine who again gets a song right after the interval only to be predictably forgotten, and a repeat of Thuppaki‘s “I am waiting” (for the lack of a creative interval block), are a couple examples of repetitive mistakes in this trilogy of sorts. I want to know who is actually asking for these duets or heroine “relief”. Can we have a poll for this please?

The first half is a mere a blip in the screenplay. The film barely moves after the conflict. Masala can work even in a one-off moment of a larger narrative. Like the lead-up to a fight, or the tragedy that motivates the hero. But in here, all of these elements feel like they have been forcefully injected for a certain reaction. There are conceptually rousing scenes, like the one with the bikes, but they don’t feel as powerful as imagined. A lot of reasons are at play here. Girish Gangadharan’s small-scale sensibilities don’t seem to translate well to the mass-y format. Or maybe Santosh Sivan and George C. Williams (the best DoP to have shot Vijay, hands down) simply set higher standards. Rahman does only as much as repeating the two good tracks in the album, “Toptucker” and “Oruviral Puratchi”. Amidst all these perfunctory jobs, Vijay holds the film with his presence, but not without moments where even he tends to go over-the-top. Varalaxmi pitches in with a firm performance, but her relevance comes far too late into the proceedings.

Can’t deny that most of us know exactly what we are walking into, right from what might be the negatives to what’s going to work. It has almost come down to a point where there is no point in watching these films without the first-day atmosphere, which ends up being the only takeaway.


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