'Vantha Rajavathaan Varuven' movie review: Simbu-starrer, Sundar C directorial a tiring rehash of rehashes
A remake of Telugu film 'Attarintiki Daredi', the film seems more like a remix of two older Tamil films filled with problematic humour and self-indulgent dialogues mounted on a wafer thin script
Sigh, what do I write about a film like Vantha Raajavathan Varuven? Wait, let me rephrase that. What can I write about it that doesn’t sound like a creaking, ancient gramophone?
That was the challenge I set myself as I walked out of the theatre. It is quite a task, especially when Vantha Raajavathan Varuven feels like the end product you get when you throw Poove Unakaga and Minsara Kanna into a blender and all the more ironic that it is a remake of the Telugu film Attarintiki Daredi! (I haven’t watched it and right now, I am thanking my stars)
Problematic humour, objectifying women, self-indulgent dialogues -- even VRV’s flaws aren’t original; so much so, that, if I pick bits and pieces from my previous reviews it would still make absolute sense.
You know it’s a Sundar C film when it begins with a shot of the heroine’s midriff. Now, I am used to heroine characters being one-note, but VRV pushes the boundaries. Both Maya (Megha Akash) and Priya (Catherine Tresa) are given characters who don’t seem to know what they are doing. For a considerable time, we see Priya flirting with Adithya aka Raja (Simbu) and in precisely ten seconds, we are told that she has a boyfriend and now, Simbu is the matchmaker.
Until then Maya is constantly at loggerheads with Adithya, but now, of course, they fall in love with each other. Considering that Priya got a song and there are two songs with the both of them, it is only fair that Maya gets a song as well with the hero. (Vandha dance adathan varuven?) After all, isn’t that why we have female leads? Also, I am not really sure what is with Sundar C and two-heroine films. (Vandha rendu heroine odathan varuven?)
Vandha Raajavathan Varuven has three comedians -- VTV Ganesh, Robo Shankar, and Yogi Babu -- who play ‘whose turn is it to get thrashed for comic effect’. It is almost like they pass the baton to each other at various stages of the film. (Vandha adivanga than varuven?) And also, if you have Yogi Babu in the cast it is mandatory that he bears the brunt of a few body shaming jokes. I am not sure who is laughing at these jokes anymore.
The film proclaims the story to be a battle between Raghunandhan's (Nassar) anger and Nandhini’s (Ramya Krishnan) tenacity but the spotlight remains firmly on the hero. And with that VRV also ticks another box by wasting a bevy of powerful actors in roles that don’t deserve them.
Not that it’s new, but self-referential films should be a legitimate genre with Vandha Rajavathan Varuven being the latest addition to the list. After Rajinikanth, Ajith, Vijay, Simbu jumps on the bandwagon and does a list of things that his fans like him for.
In the beginning, these jokes and references do work. But you hit the saturation point pretty soon. You know his alias is named Raja so that they can use Simbu’s dialogue from Chekka Chivantha Vaanam. For the number of references, they might as well have named the film ‘Vandha reference-oda than varuven’. Or considering how Adithya seems to have wads of cash on him all the time, probably 'Vandha cash-oda than varuven’ would work as well. But I am digressing.
Honestly, Simbu does try his best to present his most effervescent self on screen. (He takes a fair share of the jokes on himself, brownie points for being a sport). He gets several action sequences, belts out moves that he is known for. But none stay in your mind as you walk out, thanks to a wafer-thin script that is stuck in a done and dusted template.
It isn’t that Sundar C can’t do it because after all, this is the same man who gave us Ullathai Allithaa and Kalakalappu amidst several other hits. But isn’t it definitely time for him to step out of his template and explore and probably say, Vandha pudhu idea odathan varuven?
|Film: Vantha Raajavathan Varuven
Director: Sundar C
Cast: Simbu, Ramya Krishnan, Prabhu, Nassar, Catherine Tresa, Megha Akash