Alex Pandian Review - First Day First Show
PUBLISHED DATE: 11/Jan/2013
Alex Pandian Review - First Day First Show
Alex Pandian is an unapologetic masala mixture of mindless action, double-meaning comedy, titillating songs, superficial romance, shallow sentiments, cardboard villains and weak characterizations held together by tweet-size story. That pretty much summarizes Alex Pandian.
Alex Pandian is about a convict who kidnaps the CM daughter for money, falls in love during the process, later changes his mind to save her from an army of enemies who have a sinister plan against the people of Tamil Nadu. Alex Pandian is directed by Suraaj who used the same formula as his previous movies such as 'Padikathavan', 'Maapillai', "Marudamalai", etc. Studio Green has produced this movie with the single objective of pushing Karthi to "Mass" hero status. Did they succeed?
Karthi's pursuit of 'Mass'dom
Karthi has literally got an on-your-face introduction scene aimed at pleasing the masses. The opening fight scenes are jaw-dropping and Karthi appears to have pulled off some difficult stunt sequences. Even though we don't understand the motive for the fight, the opening fight is picturized and choreographed well. Karthi's comedy timing with Santhanam is the highlight of the movie. Karthi continues to show notable improvement in his dance moves and also appears more confident in making animated expressions in songs. Karthi's dialogue modulation is good as always, despite showing some monotony.
Santhanam continues to maintain his unbeatable form
No doubt, first half is a complete laugh riot. Full credits to Santhanam and Karthi's unbeatable comedy timing. Santhanam continues to maintain his top form in this movie. The story in the first half single threads on Santhanam trying to protect his 3 flirtatious sisters from Karthi's antics. Karthi and Santhanam's one-liners give a thunderous start to the movie. Santhanam gets full marks and key reason for keeping us engaged during the first half. However, it is still a surprise how the censor gave a clean "U" certificate allowing double-entendres such as the lewd dialogues in the carrom board playing scenes with Santhanam's sisters.
Impact-less Cast of Characters
Anushka hardly appears during the first half. With hero's help, she escapes from the enemies in the opening fight sequence and once again during the interval fight sequence. She goes missing-in-action during rest of the first half. Anushka, who appears to be a bit bulky, doesn't have much to do other than being carried around by Karthi and for doing standard "DSP" dance-routines. Other than Anushka, there are 3 sisters of Santhanam repeatedly flirting with Karthi in song and comedy scenes throughout the first half.
Comedy department has done their job well. The movie has 3 comedians (Santhanam, Lollu-saba Manohar and Manobala). Karthi's comedy with Mano Bala in the second-half largely falls flat and is of poor humour. The stark contrasts between the first and second half comedy scenes clearly highlight the limitations of Karthi when performing without Santhanam.
There are close to 8 full-time/part-time villains (Suman, Milind Soman, Prathap, Santhanabarathy, Saravanan, director Raj kapoor, familiar looking villain acting as Samiyar and a new-face villain acting as Saravanan's brother). None of them make any impact, whatsoever.
Music and Technical Value
Music Director Devi Sri Prasad (DSP) continues to deliver kuthu numbers along the lines of "Singam" songs. DSP's BGM focuses more on knuckle-cracking sounds as Karthi fights the villains. Camera work by Saravanan during the first half and opening stunt sequence are fantastic. Stunt and dance choreographers have worked hard to portray Karthi as "mass" hero.
Suraaj - Story, Screenplay and Direction
Director Suraaj repeats his action-comedy genre once again in Alex Pandian. The first half is entirely dominated by Karthi and Santhanam's comedy scenes, even though the scenes are totally unrelated to the story line. The villain blocks are abruptly forced in between the comedy sequence without any logic or coherence. Right when the director starts focusing on moving the story forward in the second-half, the movie starts faltering big time and slips to abysmal depth by the time the end credit (finally) rolls.
Bottom-line and Verdict
Suraaj, Karthi and Studio Green have made this formula movie under-estimating the intelligence of Tamil audience. Karthi is keen on pursuing the path that our Tamil "mass" heroes have shunned of-late. Encouraged by the success of Siruthai, Karthi seems to be fully convinced that this is his path to massdom in Tamil and Telugu film industries. From business perspective, Studio Green may recover the money during the long Pongal weekend. But, the real question is whether such movies actually do any good for Karthi's career in the long run. People's verdict will validate whether Karthi is on the right track in his choice of movies.
FDFS Rating -