Rating: 6/10 (Masala Entertainer)
Ajith Kumar, better known as Thala by his die-hard fans, is arguably the biggest star in the Tamil industry in the current generation opposite Vijay. His latest film Veeram, directed by "Siruthai" Siva has hit the screens. Released for Pongal 2014 clashing with Jilla, how is the film? Find out in this review.
Story: Vinayagam (Ajith) is the eldest of 5 brothers in a village. He does not have a job but has great respect among villagers and will beat them to a pulp if they do not listen to him. He has 4 younger brothers and they all secretly have girlfriends and want to get married. But Vinayagam has a rule that they cannot get married unless he gets hitched first. Through the help of the local collector who is his childhood friend., they find out that he had a crush on a girl named Kopurandevi. They find a girl with the same name and she turns out to be Tamannah. Kopurandevi's family does not like violence because they are already embroiled in a situation of their own. Slowly the romance blossoms between her and Vinayagam but then his real character is revealed towards the interval. How Vinayagam wins Kopu over and solves all her family problem for the rest of this family entertainer.
Performances: It is Thala Ajith all the way. He dances, fights, mouths punch dialogues, and emotes well enough to keep you hooked the whole time. His ever reliable screen presence and dialogue delivery are in full form here. If you want to watch the movie, look no further than Ajith.
Tammanh is alright as Kopurandevi. The guys who play the brothers of Ajith are good. Santhanam and Ramesh Khanna as collectors provide ample comedy in the first half. Thambi Ramaiah is alright as Savarimuthu and makes you laugh from time to time. Pradeep Rawat and Atul Kulkarni are good as the villains. Nasser is good as the heroines father.
Technicalities: Music and background score by Devi Sri Prasad is good. The songs could have been better but the background score makes up for it. Cinematography by Vetri is excellent. The visuals are rich and colorful and he has captured some of the village locations in a stunning way. Dialogues by Bharathan are good and have loads of punch dialogues for Ajith to mouth. The most noticeable scene is probably the confrontation scene with Pradeep Rawat where Ajith talks about the working class caste and whatever he imagines him to be, he will be that class. Fights by Stunt Silva are very good and are full of Tamil flavor. But in terms of reality, they are over the top as in any tamil movie. Story by Siva is routine. Art is fine as the most of the film is shot in houses. Direction by Siva is good. Editing is alright. Production Values by Bharathi Reddy on Vijaya Productions banner are excellent.
Analysis: Veeram is a routine film to be frank. It has a routine story and taking that we have seen in n number of films in the past. But for some reason we as an Indian audience never get bored of seeing the same movie again and again as long as it is told in an entertaining manner. And that is where Veeram succeeds. Thala Ajith carries the film on his shoulders and Siva's screenplay works most often than not. The film has all the masala elements and moves in what you could call a template screenplay.
The comedy in the first half keeps you entertained despite the wafer thin story line and the romance between Ajith and Tamannah is unconvincing and boring. Also Ajith looks way too old to be romancing a girl of Tamannah's age. The film smartly places a fight every 10 minutes or so, comedy all over the place, songs every 20 mins, loads of punch dialogues and mass scenes, and a pulsating bang to keep you hooked throughput.
The 2nd half is worse than the first as the story can't really move forward other than the fact that Vinagayam hasn't changed and is still committing violent acts behind Kopu's back. The reveal and the flashback has been seen many times in the past and the film ends with a routine climax. The film has a lot of fights so it's a feast for action film fans like me.
On a whole, Veeram is a masala entertainer that has all the ingredients to work at the box office. Thala Ajith's perfomance and the masala packaging and racy narration are the plus points of this film.
If you're an Ajith fan, then it's a must watch, and if you're a regular tamil cinema fan then you can give Veeram a shot if you don't mind the routine story. I'm going with 6/10.
* P.S.- If you're reading this and you're a Telugu cinema fan, just know that this film is currently being remade in Telugu as Katamarayudu, Pawan Kalyan's next movie.