Director: Kamal Haasan
Producers: Raajkamal Films International and P.V.P Cinema
Writer: Kamal Haasan
Cast: Kamal Haasan, Rahul Bose, Andrea Jeremiah, Pooja Kumar
Music: Shankar Ehsan Loy
Rating: * * * ½
Plot: Nirupama (Pooja Kumar) marries an elderly Kathak dancer Vishwanath (Kamal Haasan) not because she loves him but only to get a green card and complete her PhD. After fulfilling her motive, she needs a reason to separate from Vishwanath. Hence, she hires a detective to keep a look on Vishwanath as she doubts him having an affair. But since the tactic goes horribly wrong, Nirupama realizes the mystery behind her husband’s actual profession!
Review: There are good films been made every now and then but there are very few which can be described as landmark films of Indian cinema. Kamal Haasan’s Vishwaroop (Hindi dubbing of Vishwaroopam) is certainly one of the rare films that deserve such distinction for various reasons despite the fact that it falls short of being a classic. In fact, it also won’t be an overstatement to say that India finally has its own action flick of international standards.
Talking about the shoddy controversy surrounding the film, there is not a single frame that can be termed even close to offensive to any community. The ones who are up in arms against Vishwaroop are either too dumb or too evil!
Every great film has a solid base in the form of a watertight story and Vishwaroop is no exception. The movie tells a fascinating tale about terrorism from the point of view of a mysterious central character. In the initial moments, you are hugely surprised to find only light humorous moments.
But once the plot point is introduced, you are in for an intriguing roller coaster ride. It starts from Haasan’s sudden fight scene which can be described as one of the best seeti-bajao moments in recent years! You are also left amazed by the realistic portrayal of Afghanistan. Truly an example of brilliant set designing! Haasan has also shown some experimentation in the form of abrupt freeze framing and replays of some scenes which works very well!
As mentioned at the start, the film isn’t entirely superlative. The story doesn’t quite take off in the second half, although this doesn’t give rise to boredom in any way. Haasan also misses out on including more clap worthy moments which was surely possible due to the subject and the central character’s heroism. Such a moment was definitely needed in the climax which doesn’t provide the punch that one expected. But this in no way turns you off due to the memorable moments earlier and the fact that the makers reveal their plan of making a sequel.
A word of caution for the weak hearted: The film would have done without so much of gory violence. Although it deals with terrorism, there was no need to show hands being chopped off and a body half cut off in an explosion in such a mass oriented film.
The movie wouldn’t have become what it is without Sanu Varghese’s brilliant camerawork. The same amount of praise should be given to the background score and editing. Music wise, the powerful title song rightly suits the film and Haasan’s character. Apart from this, the track ‘Jung Hai’ is worth mentioning.
Kamal Haasan carries the film on his strong shoulders and how! He is brilliant and completely believable as a secret agent. Getting into the psyche of a character is what is shown by him. He also plays a completely opposite character of a Kathak teacher and is remarkable even in that! Rahul Bose stuns with one of his career best performances despite Haasan’s constant presence.
Andrea Jeremiah lends perfect support to Haasan and so does Shekhar Kapur. After Gangs of Wasseypur, Jaideep Ahlawat once again impresses. Pooja Kumar, the foreigner male in Haasan’s team and the rest of the actors are likable too.
Overall, Vishwaroop is a memorable cinematic experience which shouldn’t be missed. Given its content, it should do well at the box office even in Mumbai and north India.