Sunday, February 03, 2013

Vishwaroopam (Guest Review -Arnab)

Exclusive review from our Guest Reviewer - Arnab Goswami

Vishwaroopam (Hindi) 2013

AG rating : 70

An espionage drama where not everyone is who he seems to be.

The film

The film has Kamal Hasan screaming from it in every frame. A highly engaging espionage drama to the brim, every scene is filmed perfectly and aesthetically. Talking about the film is incomplete without talking about Kamal Hasan. Truly, he is the greatest talent India has ever produced. No one comes even a million kilometers close to him. With all the hype that Aamir Khan gets about being an all rounder, he is but a child compared to Kamal. He has given his heart and soul to this film and there is no doubt about that. However, the film suffers from a curious problem. It is beaten by itself. While the film starts off superbly and almost all of the 1st half is extremely engaging and Kamal bowls us over with his stupendous acting and screen presence, the 2nd half of the film, alas, fails to live up to the promise of the 1st. Kamal Hasan draws hoots and thunderous applause at his transformation from the classical dance teacher to the agile agent and his first action sequence is truly mind blowing and I personally applauded for him too. However it is the 2nd half which was an issue to me. When broken down into its individual components, the 2nd half is absolutely perfect both technically and cinematically but when put together, it collapses instantly like a stack of cards. The iron clad fist that held the amazing 1st half together seems to have withdrawn its support in the 2nd. To me, the 2nd half felt disjointed. Though everything was present and in top form, it failed to connect to me and somehow, the 2nd half lacked the urgency and thrill of such a spy thriller. The fault lies with the screenplay of the 2nd half. It sorely lacks the urgency and the thrill and felt somewhat disjointed to me though individually the action, the score, the acting, etc all stand out.

The acting

Once again, this cannot be stressed enough but Kamal Hasan steals not a show but the all the multiplexes and single screens of the country and I am pretty sure of the world too. His classical dance teacher is every bit as sincere as his enigmatic and mysterious RAW agent. Rahul Bose is the only 1 who manages to stand his ground. All the others are completely overshadowed though the actress who plays the wife is good too.

The action and effects

Nevertheless, vishwaroopam is the best espionage drama in the history of Indian cinema if one manages to forgive the 2nd half and concentrates solely on the 1st half. The action actually bests Hollywood and I am not being partial here. I prefer Hollywood when it comes to such kind of cinema but the action bowled me over still. I have never seen such sharp graphics and effects in any indian cinema and undoubtedly Kamal and his team have spent their money exceedingly well. And the result shows. The sound mixing and production also deserves kudos.

The music

Shankar Ehsaan Loy is the next best thing that has happened to vishwaroopam. The songs are treat and so is the background score. They have triumphed again.

The cinematography and screenplay

While the screenplay suffered in the 2nd half, the cinematography was unaffected and coupled with the excellent screenplay in the 1st half, it was an amazing visual treat for the eyes. The flashback sequences though, even in the 2nd half were brilliant along with the superb 1st half.

The AG verdict

The film deserves a watch and if you are game for espionage thriller with a light heart and stupendous action, then surely go for it. If not, then vishwaroopam deserves a watch just for the greatest actor of Indian cinema, Kamal Hasan!!!
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