@Iraivi & @Velainu_Vandhutta_Vellaikaaran – Movie Review

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#IRAIVI – Movie Review

Following the successes of Pizza & Jigarthanda, Director Karthik Subbaraj is back with his team in ‘Iraivi’. As the title and promos say, ‘Iraivi’ is the story of few ‘woMEN’.

First things first! ‘Iraivi’ is such a gutsy movie by Karthik Subbaraj that deals with so many relative topics such as gender discriminative relationships where the male is always in upper hand, how women are treated / looked at in our society, women liberation and gender-biased sex opinions in our social order.

The director sets the mood of the film right from the title card showing some of the central female characters and their expectations & idea about life. It has been evident from the beginning itself that Karthik Subbaraj did not want to do a commercial flick that just entertains; he has been very clear on that. Yes, the film has been targeted at a very narrow set of audience. Though the plot and theme is universal, the progressive thoughts all through the film might not work for everyone; Karthik Subbaraj knew that well but still he wanted to give a sensible film with thought-provoking questions. He has made ‘Iraivi’ as genuine / bold as possible! Hats off for that, Karthik!

It takes so much of guts to write such a dialogue on Kannagi (Simha’s doubt in classroom). Not every director will be courageous enough to write a character like Malarvizhi and show her relationship with Michael as it is. The dialogues have been so contributively placed in many pivotal scenes. The climax dialogue ‘Naama enna pombalaiyaa… Poruthuttu, sagichuttu porathukkku?’ sums it all; it puts the whole story in a line! The conversation between Mazharvizhi and Michael’s uncle and in the scene where Michael asks his wife about Jagan are worth-mentioning. There is even a dialogue about that questions god’s superiority – ‘Manushan kumbidaradhaala dhan saami’kke mariyaadhai’. ‘Iraivi’ is one film that showed the effects of a creator dying in the hands of liquor so intensively in the recent times (after Mayakkam Enna in 2011). There are director’s poetic touches in many scenes such as where both Arul and his wife gets up suddenly between their quarrel hearing their kid’s wake-up sound, Michael’s kid calling him as ‘uncle’ instead of ‘dad’, the ‘good daddy’ conversation between Arul and his child and so on. Director Karthik Subbaraj has mentioned in his interviews that Clint Eastwood is one his favourite filmmaker. ‘Mystic River’ is one of the greatest ever films in English which would leave a great impact on the viewer; it was directed by Clint Eastwood. The final moments of Iraivi do have shades of it and it can be taken as Karthik’s tribute to his favourite filmmaker.

The ensemble cast and the technical excellence is the biggest plus point of ‘Iraivi’. S.J.Suryah, Pooja Devariya, Vijay Sethupathi and Anjali are the show-stealers. At last, S.J.Suryah has got a role that lets him prove his acting skills, which he has used effectively. Pooja Devariya delivers her best in the meaty role offered. Vijay Sethupathi and Anjali have done an excellent job as like always. After some underwhelming performances in his recent films, Bobby Simha is back in form with a measured performance. Kamalinee Mukherjee is back in Tamil cinema after a long gap, making it a memorable role; thanks to her dubbing voice that suited her very well. Other supporting actors including Radharavi, Cheenu Mohan, Karunakaran and Vadivukkarasi have done their part very well. After ‘Irudhi Suttru’ this year, Sivakumar Vijayan has done a fantastic job in cinematography. Santhosh Narayanan’s songs and background score are a great pillar for ‘Iraivi’.

Overall, ‘Iraivi’ is an exceptional attempt that aims at providing a different cinematic experience rather than just entertainment. The film is low on entertainment quotient and it might not do well in B & C centres. The film is leisurely paced and takes its own sweet time to settle; it is definitely not a recommendable choice for people who expect masala stuffs or a racy screenplay. Karthik Subbaraj knew it very well and still he has made it so uncompromisingly, only because of the hopes on his target audience. Do watch it in theatre and enjoy 🙂 Whether it will be a successful film or not, ‘Iraivi’ will be a significant attempt in our industry. Ways to go, Karthik Subbaraj (y)

Rating: 4.25/5

Verdict: A master piece with intense, progressive thoughts. Must watch for all woMEN!

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Director Ezhil’s new comedy venture ‘Velainu Vandhutta Vellaikaaran’ stars Vishnu Vishal & Nikki Galrani in the lead roles. The film has been produced by Actor Vishnu Vishal himself along with Director Ezhil and Fox Star Studios.

Comedy films in our industry can be categorized into three types – First, films that have a strong script and relies completely on that (say Thillu Mullu or Panchathanthiram or Naduvula Konjam Pakkathai Kaanom) Second, films that does not have a proper story but has adequate comedy scenes that are well-packed (say OK OK, Varuthapadaatha Vaalibar Sangam, Rajini Murugan, Kanna Laddu Thinna Aasaiyaa) Third, films that have nothing but comedy actors who keeps on talking absurdly and failing disastrously in entertaining us (say films like VSOP, YA YA, Oru Oorula Rendu Raja, All In All Azhaguraja). Yes, your guess in cent percent right! ‘Velainu Vandhutta Vellaikaaran’ falls under the third category, which has got nothing to entertain or engross its audience.

Looks like Actor Vishnu Vishal wanted a change from doing unconventional quality films like Jeeva, Mundaasupatti, Indru Netru Naalai; this time he wanted to try a complete commercial outing that targets the B & C audience. There is nothing wrong in that. But, he could have chosen a script that was tolerable at-least. One cannot stop wondering how did he agreed to act & produce such a crap piece of work. Not just he alone, a giant production house like FOX STAR STUDIOS has funded this film; I do not think that the team would have even listened to the script. Does these corporate firms choose films based on scripts or do they sign projects just looking at the filmmakers’ previous hit ratios?

This film ‘Velainu Vandhutta Vellaikaaran’ has 2 or 3 scenes that evokes laughter instantly, whereas the other 50+ scenes will make you yawn or do a face palm. It is one such film where the director expects the audience to laugh aloud for whatever the comedian blabbers or by using a comical background score. There are some handful one-liners in the film which looks funny, and the rest are so absurd and annoying. The maximum level of creativity that we can expect from the director in terms of humour is someone chanting a mantra as ‘Om Greem Ice Cream’ or a Husband reacting for the automated voice response which tells ‘Neenga azhaiththa nabar veru oruvarudan thodarbil irukkiraar’ about his wife. The protagonist often calls himself as ‘Naan Velainu Vandhutta Vellaikaaran’ (which means am like a foreigner when it comes to commitment / dedication in my work) so, what does he do in the film? Literally nothing, other than making a fool out of his friend by getting him married to Pushpa or sitting in his tailor shop & chit-chatting non-sense. The second half and the last 45 minutes are so pathetically written that the director did not even know what to do to make it as a film that runs for 2+ hours. We have a Tasmac song in the second half which comes out of nowhere suddenly, for no reason! Towards the climax, just for the sake of adding an item song and to cover-up the shallow content, the film has an episode of ‘a gang of ghosts doing meditation’ :/

A decade ago, Director Ezhil has made hit films that starred Vijay, Ajith and Prabhudeva. Later, after giving some flop films, he started doing comedy films like Manam Kothi Paravai, Desingu Raja and Vellaikaara Durai. The problem is not with him; the problem is with our audience who makes even films like Vellaikaara Durai to gross decent collections :/ This is what encourages filmmakers and producers to make more and more such senseless products.

Rating: 1.75/5

Verdict: A below average mindless entertainer that does not serve its purpose!

Reviews by: Rahman

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