Banner: Sri Surya Movies
Cast: Vikram, Trisha, Prakash Raj, Sherin, Raguvaran, Ashish Vidyarthy
Direction: N Linguswamy
Production: A M Rathnam
Music: Harris Jayaraj
After waiting eagerly for two years anticipating an exciting film from the new pair of Vikram and Lingusamy, Bheema leaves a mixed impact! The trouble with the film is like sending Rahul Dravid a solid middle order batsman to open the innings, something which he is not used to. Similarly Lingusamy the director, with a proven track record for making commercially viable feel good family stories asked to make an action film on gang wars of Chennai!
Sekhar(Vikram) son of an honest police man grew up in small town Rameswaram, admiring the dare-devilry of a local ‘goonda’ Chinna (Prakash Raj), a man who was daring at the same time caring. Right from his childhood Sekhar’s role- model was the kind hearted Chinna who later became a top gangster with human emotions even though he is an extortionist and a killer. Sekhar joins Chinna’s gang, and climbs up the ladder to be his most trusted henchman. Meanwhile a turf war breaks out between Chinna and the dreaded don of the city Periyavar (Reghuvaran) and his sons.
Thanks to brawn and brains of the one-man fighting machine called Sekhar, Chinna and his gang is able to lord over the city which results in a gang war with the Periyavar gang. The new police commissioner (Ashish Vidyarti) declares his own private war against the gangs and forms an elite group of young police officers to exterminate the gangsters through carefully planned encounter killings. Meanwhile Sekhar falls in love with Charu (Trisha), which complicates things further. All this leads to a bloody shoot out in the end resulting in total mayhem, as the rule of the law takes its course.
It is an action thriller, but for a thriller it’s pretty lukewarm as the plot is predictable and doesn’t once take you by surprise. The film has a wafer thin story line that does not get to the emotional core of the characters and that’s why we’re often unable to empathise with them. However, the saving grace is Vikram’s knock out performance.
The film lacks a solid story with no twists, and instead it tests the patience of the viewers as it turns out to be a mix of fight followed by a song, and again breaking out into another well choreographed action scene that dissolves into yet another song in Switzerland and followed by more stunt scenes!!
At the end of half-a-dozen fights and songs that comes regularly are some sporadic scenes which stands out like a drunken Sekhar confronting the police commissioner at a birthday party in a hotel where he speaks his mind out, the scene where Chinna and Sekhar kidnap Periyavar while he sleeps and when he wakes up finds that he is miles away from his home or the scene where the gang under the guidance of Sekhar in a comic way forces Chinna to marry his childhood sweet-heart Padma (Lakshmi Gopalasamy). These are the small gems in Lingu’s script, which otherwise goes haywire.
Trisha’s character is half-baked and lacks soul especially the first scene in which she falls in love with a gangster! Later she follows Sekhar and gets a slap from him! Normally Lingu’s heroines are all strong characters who appeals to the lady audiences for their grit, but here the heroine has nothing much to do. Prakash Raj tries his best to energize his gangster role with some human warmth. Reghuvaran pitches his ‘I-don’t-overact’ act again, while ‘Thalaivasal’ Vijay is impressive as Saamy the conscience keeper and trusted aid of Prakash Raj especially his heart rendering dialogue in the climax.
Ultimately, it is Vikram who breathes life into the film. He looks sensational with his toned body, killer looks unarguably delivers yet another outstanding performance of his career. Physically agile, he tempers the recklessness of his character with restraint and pours plenty of heartfelt emotions into the film’s more dramatic moments. See the film only for him.
R.D Rajasekhar’s camera is terrific, especially the action scene in the dark building. Harris Jayaraj’s pleasant tunes are a major plus, but song placements are not correct. In the Mudhal Mazhai song it looks like they forgot to take a choreographer to Switzerland? Another highlight is Kanal Kannan’s well crafted action sequences the market fight in the first half being the pick of the lot.
Lingusamy should have paid more attention to his script instead of trying to extract more heroism from his larger-than-life hero. And the biggest weakness is that his hero always wins and the opposition just does not have a strong enough villain to counter him. It ends up as a one-sided Australia versus Bangladesh cricket match!