Cast: Rajinikanth, Anushka, Sonakshi Sinha and Jagapathi Babu
Director: K S Ravi Kumar
Music: AR Rahman
Plus – Rajini, the action block on train
Minus – Script, music and running time
Superstar Rajinikanth is back. Amidst controversies and being in the news for over a week, his ‘Lingaa’ managed to reach the silver screen just in time for his birthday. But was it worth the wait?
After a gap of four years, Rajini makes an appearance on the big screen (We aren’t considering ‘Vikramasimha’ here as it is more an animation film than a proper Rajini movie) and expectations were definitely sky high. We have learnt long ago that expecting logic from the Superstar is being illogical yourself. But when you start watching his film, all you want is action, Rajini’s style, powerful one-liners and if possible being over the top. Candidly speaking, ‘Lingaa’ has all that, but not in abundance, much to the disappointment of the fans.
That said, ‘Lingaa’ is a film that takes you into déjà vu as you have seen it all before. There’s that template of many Rajinikanth films you have seen before. The film begins with some comedy, moves into some more comedy and then gradually seeps into an emotionally charged flashback. Here’s a gist of the story: Lingaa (Rajinikanth), a petty thief, is the grandson of Raja Lingeshwara, the King of Gadwal. The Raja had done a great deal of good to a village, Singanoor, by constructing a dam for them. Well, that’s it! The rest of the story is a drama weaved surrounding this concept.
Interestingly, for a film that is embroiled in controversy over plagiarism charges, nearly 15 minutes (a robbery scene that involves a jewellery exhibition) from the first half is a rip off from 1966 film ‘How to Steal a Million’. Period.
‘Lingaa’ is a let-down due to many other reasons. First of all, the story is a tried and tested formula, as discussed earlier. Secondly, in spite of being a run-of-the-mill story, it could have been told well, and in that department it terribly fails. The third thing is that director Ravi Kumar’s imagination seems to have been limited. Neither does he give us something new nor does he give freshness to stuff we have seen before.
Rajinikanth, as usual, is in his element. His signature laughter, thrusting dance moves and larger-than-life stunts are plentiful. However, what feels amiss is his style- though there are a few scenes like Rajini jumping off a bike onto a hot air balloon in a typical Superman style and kicking the goons atop a train. While you are gratified by a few such sequences, in the end you are left desiring more. Director fails to project the style that everyone wishes to see from a Rajini film. What is commendable, however, is Rajinikanth’s dressing. Youngsters will definitely want a piece of that!
Anushka is just eye candy but manages to do a good job playing a journalist. Sonakshi Sinha’s south debut will definitely prove fruitful for her, considering she has an interesting role and also gives freshness to the screen.
Jagapathi Babu is definitely a misfit in this film and doesn’t match up to Rajini’s energy. Even the foreigners (who play the British) are a drawback.
When AR Rahman is part of a project, no matter how the film is, we expect the music to be a highlight. But once again, here’s another aspect of ‘Lingaa’ that’s a setback.
‘Lingaa’ has been dished out to satisfy the cravings of Rajini fans, die-hard fans rather. Others, would like to watch it only if they like seeing the matinee idol on screen!
Reviewed by Pranita.
This review was first posted on http://atinarp.blogspot.in