Nothing Scary About Spooky Flick

Published: 31st May 2015 06:02 AM  |   Last Updated: 31st May 2015 06:02 AM   |  A+A-

mass

Not very funny, not very scary, and not very original, Venkat Prabhu’s attempt at crafting his first supernatural-comic-vendetta flick, turns out to be a disappointing and a boring affair. Taking inspiration from various films and not integrating them in a coherent manner seems to be the main problem. The director weaves in a hotchpotch of situations, the screenplay is sloppy and narration is jerky. The characters are one too many and the genuinely appreciative moments are few and far between.

The film opens with a couple of con acts by Mass (Suriya) and his friend Jet, the duo breaking into a group-dance number soon after. Incidentally, the ambiance in a later group-jig in a cemetery with some zombies, seem straight out of the The Night of the Living Dead. Mass’s life takes a turn after he and Jet meet with an accident. On recovery Mass discovers that he has acquired a psychic power. The twist related to Jet (Premgi trying hard to be funny) is a fine touch. Mass finds himself hounded by unhappy ghosts who seem to be having an agenda. It would take a few more scenes for Mass to realise what their agenda was and how he would tackle it. The ghosts, about a dozen of them (including the likes of Karunas, Sreeman etc.), are a dull listless lot, most of the time seeming like they were posing for group photographs. The editing at many places seems to have been done in frenzy, the shots rushed through. The plot seems to be a mishmash of ghost-films like Ghost Town and The Frighteners with a touch of The Sixth Sense thrown in. It’s in the second half that a semblance of interest seeps in, the narration turning from the comic to the vendetta-mode. The appearance of a somber devious spirit Shakti (Suriya) and his manipulation, puts Mass in further trouble. The mirror  scene where Mass tests whether the image on the mirror is his, is an interesting one. And so is actor Jai’s brief appearance, and the reference to his character in Engeyum Eppodhum. Suriya sports two avatars. As Shakti he is cool and menacing, carrying himself with a lot of style and attitude. As for his rest, we have seen him in better form in his earlier films. It becomes an emotional drama towards the end, with a bit of interest generated here. The screenplay could have been simpler and clearer.

The director’s earlier films have had interesting and shaded women characters. But Nayantara has been totally wasted, her character Manini a nurse in a hospital, strolling into the frame whenever the director seems to have remembered her. There are quite a few issues touched here. Like the Sri Lankan problem, the plight of children, and hawala transactions.

It would have been an ideal film for children if only there weren’t scenes of gruesome violence. Like the gory one of a mother and her little daughter being torched to death. A scene definitely not for the faint hearted! Massu... did raise some expectation. But it has turned out to be a downer with very few salvaging moments.

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