Feb 7, 2009
Naan KadavuL - Give a miss
This is the first Bala movie that I watched in theater. With or without expectations, this movie sucks. I felt like I was watching a movie on the physically handicapped who are exploited and forced into begging. Arya's role in the movie is just a tad more than a guest one. The story appears disjointed, with the story of the suffering handicapped people and Arya's segment connected only by a bare thread of the location.
After witnessing the depressing story of the 'begging industry of India' in 'Slumdog Millionaire', we get to watch it much more elaborately in this movie. I felt that it was definitely overdone, with Bala's famous liking for morbidity going way too far. Beyond a point, their sufferings made me feel sick. The scene involving 'the man with the scary face' could have been handled quite differently. The closing minutes of the movie have some badly edited scenes and the climax appears to be rushed. The only positive aspects of the movie are the performances by Arya and Pooja.
The climatic one-to-one fight between the protagonist and the antagonist appeared to be very amateurish and cinematic to me. The latter knows the fate of the three people who went to attack the former, but still he goes against Arya bare-handed and single-handedly. Pooja's migration from the hill cave to a church and then to the hands of the villain is not explained; especially the last one could have been avoided, saving a lot of pain. The climax was quite undigestible since it reflected the pessimistic mindset of the director.
The technical aspects of the movie are quite good. Music is OK. The long scene in the police station involving look-alikes of MGR, Sivaji and Rajni was quite unnecessary, what with an overdose of such artists in various TV programs, except for a few seconds of an unhappening twist that is to follow. I found one aspect very ironic. Jeyamohan, who is the dialog-writer for this movie, had strongly condemned Sivaji's style of acting in his blog exactly a year ago. In the police station, someone tells the Sivaji-lookalike that he wishes that Sivaji had taught what acting is, to the contemporary actors. Jeyamohan has even removed that attacking post from his blog.
Back to the movie - the only thing that connects this movie with Bala's earlier ones is that he portrays (again) a dark side of the society. Whereas the previous ones had some humanity in them, here it is all dark and violent. True, the guy and his assistant who are in charge of the temple beggars have some soft corner for them. Other than that, it is hard to explain why Arya is shown attacking some people in Varanasi and why he is angry in the movie all the time. And, Arya appears to be too muscular and fleshy for someone who hardly eats any food and is shown surviving only on Ganja.
You might like it if you are a hardcore Bala fan.