Cast: Dhanush, Kajal Aggarwal, Robo Shankar, Vijay Yesudas, Kaali Venkat.
Director: Balaji Mohan.
The case of Dhanush in a new look does seem exciting however, the fact that this film has nothing more to offer is disappointing.
At first, it’s quite hard to believe that Balaji Mohan, the man behind ‘Kadhalil Sodhappuvadhu Yeppadi’ and ‘Vaayai Moodi Pesavum’ has written and directed ‘Maari’. The outcome of this film is proof that he is not going to conform to a particular genre.
‘Maari’ is clearly based on the example of branded bags of chips. We are all attracted to it by the colorful advertisements that are on display and by the credibility of the star endorsing it. But a mere pinprick is enough to know that the hype is really not worth the quantity or the quality.
The case of Dhanush in a new look does seem exciting however, the fact that this film has nothing more to offer is disappointing. Maari is a local rowdy who is endearingly funny and with friends who double up as his sidekicks, he pesters everybody around him. In the beginning we see a Police Constable narrating Maari’s history to a newly appointed Sub-Inspector. Also, in a sub-plot, we are told that a gang is waiting for the right time to pin down Maari. It is at this point that I thought that the movie would go the ‘Aadukalam’ way in dissecting the notions of jealousy and power politics. Alas, it doesn’t move an inch off of its monotonous presentation.
Like the sub-plots about smuggling of red sanders and pigeon racing, the characters of Vijay Yesudas and Kajal, are half-nurtured. Kajal’s moment of glory is hidden beneath the sheets, likewise Vijay’s character has a major moment, yet these actors’ absence on screen is not missed, similarly, their presence doesn’t add the required weight to support the going ons in ‘Maari’. Vijay has two faces in the movie. One is the irritated face and the other one is the smiling face. So, he is smiling whenever he has scored a point over Dhanush and he’s irritated whenever his plan fails. Their animosity towards each other lacks punch.
Wait… the film doesn’t fall down and scatter mainly because Dhanush carries it on his shoulders like Prabhas carries the Shiva Lingam in ‘Baahubali’ and the funny man Robo Shankar manages to tickle even your serious bone every time he’s present. His timing is perfect and his simple lines have the audacity to ridicule the hero. No complaints there.
Balaji Mohan, in teaming up with Dhanush and Anirudh, for ‘Maari’ shows he can walk the path of masala entertainers. This is masala, agreed. But where is the entertainment?
Rating: 2.5/ 5
Reviewed by Karthik Keramlu
This review was first published on IBNLive.com