Movie Review – Kabali

Posted: August 3, 2016 in Movie Reviews
Tags: , ,

The first disappointment was the amount of non-fans present in the theatre for a First Day First Show. I, who didn’t take the bike to theatre and my friend who didn’t bring his north Indian friend to the theatre were so disappointed seeing the environment. Our only relief was the two 5000 walas burst at the start of the cinema.


Once you are in, the environment sets. Brilliant music for Thalaivar’s title cards and if that wasn’t enough, his name appears thrice before the start of the film. The film starts with Rajini in Jail reading ‘My Father Balaiah’. Now that it has become mandatory for me to read the book. The book’s title is not a blink and miss one. It was kept intentionally for some time and that too in a page where we could read some powerful paragraphs. Ranjith right away tells who the boss is.

Once out of Jail, Rajini goes to the pet shop and does a gesture. You see a sudden movement of car smashing a pet shop and Rajini walking inside like a lion who doesn’t care who owns the territory. It’s all style, style till here which as usual Rajini does with élan. We get the first human element and I get to firmly sit in my seat to eat the compulsory popcorn, cake and coke when he dines in Amir’s house which Amir jovially commenting about his wife’s food and Rajini defending her were well needed break. The scenes leading to his house where he imagines here wife gives us the first lag. Old fashioned and clichéd. But quickly there is another revenge scene, the car one. It’s only gestures in the first half and you need not teach anything to Rajini about gestures. For me the car scene is the best one of the movie.

Only post that we get to know the reason why Rajini has chosen to become a don and the flashback. To be honest the flashback wasn’t very inspiring. It’s only because of Rajini we even get interest to watch it. Romance too doesn’t work at all in the flashback. Even though not a well-directed scene, a few incidents in the film would have never happened in any other Rajini film. For example the scene where Meena (Riythvika) asks Rajini how did his wife like her was epic which overshadows the bad daughter sentiment which happens before that.

Till the first half the best thing about the movie was how human Rajini was. When Meena is being used by a drug seller he sees and doesn’t do anything, when Thamizh Kumaran (Kalaiyarasan) asks about why he killed his father, he doesn’t say a punch dialogue. When was the last time you saw Rajini apologizing. I loved this human aspect of Rajini.

Even though Rajini makes a reentry in the second half there wasn’t anything surprising in that. Rajini taking bullets is one of the cheapest way to induce emotion in audience. Because we all know he’s going to come back. In fact no events work in the film. The dad daughter twist, the wife twist, the way he curbs down Lee were all illogical and a big letdown. If not for Rajini I don’t know how people would have been able to bypass the scene.

Even though the sequence where he searches his wife started on a boring note. I loved the way it develops. There is a solid two second trolley in shot for each place giving us a glimpse of hope that Kumudha (Radhika Apte) would be there. Isn’t it always like this? When we wait for someone and keep looking at the door, everyone gives us hope that it would be the person we are expecting. What was even better was Rajini standing alone and lamenting. How the next day would be, his bodyguard knocking in the middle and he shaving to meet his wife. How human, how dadly.

Kumudha introducing his family to villain was an ode to feminism. I loved the way how the whole family embraces violence. Rajini is not sad because his daughter is an assassin, Kumudha is not sad because both his husband and daughter kill people. That’s the way their life is, that’s how their life will be in future too. Climax just adds to it. The scene where he asks Rajini to dress well was also very well made. Now that’s one more reason to dress well.

Yogi (Dhansika) scores in all scenes except for the ones where she irritatingly keeps calling ‘appa’ without any love. It’s like talking in English and addressing their dad as ‘appa’ just for cuteness sake. Loved the way rest of the sidekicks were used in the film. Everyone had a story and nothing happens out of the blue.

Ranjith does a Tarantino in the climax. That too to the level of flying a finger off and a one handed shot gun. And the senior don being name Ang Lee. All these seem to be more than just mere coincidence. Is that Ranjith’s way of paying tribute to his inspirations? If so very well done.

Even though there were scenes which were lackluster, everything gets elevated by Santhosh Narayan’s music. Especially Neruppu Da theme but not only that, the whole episode of Rajini getting together with his wife had superb background score.

During pre-climax, I was getting an overall opinion about the movie and what I was about to talk to people but with that one final shot Ranjith again proves who’s the boss. Was it done so hurriedly so that people would miss if they blink?


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