The name, or I should say Brand Rajinikanth, is an indelible part of Tamil cinema. While the other heroes of the 80s and 90s were busy playing cops, businessmen and lawyers, he chose to represent the people of the lower class, like autokaaran Manickam, paalkaran Annamalai or the coolie Tamizharasan.
And though he played Tony Stark minus the suit in Sivaji, he calls himself a humble postman saying, “Kanna naan PM; PM na Post Man, makkaloda panatha makkal kitaye sekravan.”
Now, twelve years later, we get ZEE5’s Postman, which has an ardent Rajini fan as the lead character, and the series is filled with references to the Superstar.
The episodes are named after his iconic lines like ‘Natpu na enna nu theriyuma’, ‘Katham Katham’, and ‘Thirumbi vandhuten nu sollu’, and the two major timelines in the story kickstart on the date of Baasha’s release and Rajini’s political announcement, respectively. But these references do little to salvage this weakly-written and amateurishly-made 10-episode series.
Postman does have a promising start — the period portions set in 1995 are convincingly-shot, and I immediately burst into laughter when the Rajini fan who has been in coma for twenty-three years wakes up to hear his idol’s political announcement and faints the next second, saying, “Thalaivar arasiyalku ippo dhaan varara?”
I also quite liked the cute portions which involved Raja’s (Munishkanth) daughter Rajini (Keerthi Pandian; no points for guessing how her character got her name) reciting punch dialogues standing beside his bed, hoping that would fix him.
I got as curious as Rajini when Raja decides to handover the letters which have been kept undelivered for more than two decades.
Though this excitement gets sustained for the first two episodes, the haphazard casting, overboard performances, bizarre dialogues, and sluggish screenplay all take turns butchering the promising premise of Postman.
The details and realism in the initial episodes vanish all of a sudden and there is no more redemption to this story.
It’s strange to see an able actor like Munishkanth looking clueless most of the time and even the evident efforts of Keerthi to add life to the proceedings are in vain, owing to the lacklustre writing.
Postman has an inexplicable connection to the medical field. Almost all the episodes have a hospital scene and the primary characters are all either doctors or patients for no discernable reason. At one point, I even started to wonder if the makers could have named it 50 Shades of Doctors, given how many of them there are.
Such exercises helped stave off my boredom. Still, the enjoyable first couple of episodes kept alive my hope that something interesting would pop up to rescue the series. But unlike Postman Raja, the series, Postman, never gets out of its coma.
|Director: Prashanth Gunasekaran
Cast: Munishkanth, Keerthi Pandian