Through the trash taking of ‘yennai’ that sounds like oil in thamizh to ‘another live ramp walk of family-packman Ajith’ the much awaited Ajith 55 was watched last night. The usual whistles and shouts of ‘thala’ as the hero’s name appeared in opening credits started the movie directed by Goutham Menon who, like Ajith, needed a big hit to keep himself from ‘derailing’. Here are my thoughts.
The only word to surmise her role. Just like million other Indian movies, the actress gets a minor role consisting showing up, smiling, touch-n-say romance and 2 minutes of dialogue sans smirk. She looked beautiful and did what was expected.
A missed chance
An opening scene that showed her being independent and confident woman gets followed up by barrage of monologues in awe of Ajith that even the ardent fanatic of the star would get belittled. The airplane scenes were very unfounded and the proverbial hero worship just made me cringe. Paltry jokes on her height and smiles of having a good time with Ajith’s daughter to the background tune sans dialogues were passable.
Not sure how she bags prominent roles such as opposite Superstar in Linga and in here is confusing as she doesn’t bring in much except fight for screen-width against the hero.
With the usual dashing looks, perfect dressing and lesser romp walks that single-handedly brought down movies like Asal, I, a once huge fan of this actor liked his performance.
His narration brought grip during the early parts of movie with his father Nasar while the same sounded like news reading during the end, especially before the much-required one-on-one with the antagonist.
The best segment came in when he travels the beautiful North East India introducing his daughter Isha the diverse cultures that India is blessed with. The father-daughter chemistry worked perfectly and was pictured beautifully. I was happy the director did not use Isha’s loss for sentiment overload.
A respectful wish from a long time fan – Ajith, you still look great and the charisma that we expect shows up glowing, but please, for the love of god the last time I’m asking, lose the family pack next time around, so you can dance well, do action sequences better well and show a greater performance we require. I can’t take this lethargy from the actor anymore.
The best of the lot – with the limited screen time he was given, the antagonist Arun Vijay built the perfect villainy against the steadfast Ajith. He has built his body up for the role, dances well, and emotes perfectly to the mood of the scene. He shines bright that brought out the ‘o he has always acted well,he just doesn’t get good movies’ from tons of people.
From Minnale through Kaaka Kaaka to vinnaithaandi varuvaaya, the director’s portfolio shines of versatility matched by few in the current movie scene. Known for the action sequences and romantic scripts the director has made a fine movie.
I use the word fine, instead of great because of the missed chances.
1. Trisha’s broken first marriage, a single-mother with good footing in arts could have been used in portraying strong and progressive woman with a second marriage that is still taboo in many parts of India
2. Anushka – the independent woman who mocks the arranged-marriage ‘can you sing for me please’ BS of the yesteryear loses grip the first instance her eyes fall on ‘salt-n-pepa’ looked Ajith. This was mind-boggling as many would’ve assumed the actor to be a married father and not go to lengths of meeting up in a coffee shop and literally offer herself to someone she just ‘googles’.
3. Romance – strong point of Goutham Menon’s work that’s often sprinkled with poetic lines shows up in the movie.But considering the other subjects of father-daughter relationship, revenge-meets-deceit, romance takes a back seat, and few scenes felt ‘we’ve seen this before’. The raw emotions and practical dialogues that made Madhavan-Shalini’s chemistry in Alaipayuthey an evergreen one is something that the movie lacks, with us remembering little more than Trisha’s perfect styling and makeup.
4. Hero worship – the cringe worthy dialogues from Anushka when her gaze falls on Ajith the first time ever, shows the director is not brave enough to question the norm. This rises to a point of being a sell-out when similar lines gets uttered by Trisha. Yes Ajith’s fananatics worship him only next to superstar and yes these are considered ‘necessary evils’ of Indian cinema, but Goutham Menon is someone who made a big impact through perfect portrayal of a cop in Kaaka Kaaka. I expected more from him.
5. Vivek – where is the social-conscious hilarious comedian we were entertained in Saami,Run and countless others?
A fine movie that could have been great. 7.5/10