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Vishwaroopam Review

Vishwaroopam
Deepa Garimella / fullhyd.com
EDITOR RATING
4.0
Performances
Script
Music/Soundtrack
Visuals
8.0
4.5
7.0
7.5
Suggestions
Can watch again
No
Good for kids
No
Good for dates
No
Wait to rent it
Yes
There is something wrong with a movie if the interval feels like the end, and the end feels like the interval.

Vishwaroopam is a Kamal Hasan film minus the megalomania. Which, in retrospect, was a bad idea, since the movie is now only slightly more interesting than a documentary on making documentaries. To call Vishwaroopam a "thriller" would be about as accurate as calling Manmohan Singh a stuntman, so you can put the seatbelts away.

Kamal Hasan opens his act by playing an effeminate dance teacher Viswanath, whose exaggerated femininity makes his wife, Dr. Nirupama (Pooja Kumar), cringe. Nirupama, "understandably," has an extra-marital fling with a boss who makes shady payments to the Middle East. Nirupama has no clue that something is wrong.

Meanwhile, she has also set a private eye to snoop around in Viswanath's life. The private eye stumbles upon something strange, but things get stranger from here on.

Vishwaroopam deserves appreciation for dealing with the issue of terrorism head-on and in such detail. The film spends half its time in an Afghan hideout - where people speak Arabic and not the strange Telugu-Deccani mix that our directors would have us believe - and these are the meatiest parts of the story. Rahul Bose shares the limelight with Kamal Hasan here, in a poignant narrative that weaves together two sides of the terror coin - the morbidity of jihad, and the tragedy of the death of innocents.

The terror outfit in question comprises men and boys who are groomed from a very young age - as depicted by a little boy who hasn't learnt to shave yet but can recognize the make of a gun while blindfolded. The men look at themselves as warriors, and not as antagonists of world peace. Behind their seething bitterness is the pain of loss, and a need for "revenge".

Kamal attempts an intelligent conversation about the subject of terror, but he doesn't make it very interesting. He's telling us things about terror we already know, in a way that doesn't exactly change your life. The whole spy thing is not very thrilling anyway. One of the few times Kamal excites audiences is when he breaks out of his womanish act and suddenly starts kicking butt. For a movie touted as an action masterpiece, such moments are too few and far between.

The movie, on the whole, has the consistency of molten lead - it is dead s-l-o-w. By the time the interval lumbers in, you feel a week older. Ironically, the movie's ending feels incomplete, and there is no sense of closure when the credits roll.

Kamal Hasan, well, is as Kamal Hasan as Kamal Hasan can be. There are no facial contortions, thankfully, except for the dance teacher segment, which, frankly, can be freaky to watch since the man has aged now. In the rest of the movie, though, he is disappointingly understated.

Rahul Bose has a lot of screentime, and is good to watch. Nasseer is a fine actor, as always, and Shekhar Kapur is good, but doesn't have much to do. Pooja Kumar is expressive, but her dubbing can get slightly artificial and annoying.

Kamal's attention to detail is pretty evident in the way the Afghan villages have been recreated and shot. The villages look legit, the mountains are gorgeous, the dressing is authentic, and the bombing scenes have been executed well. However, the parts that are shot in New York (or whatever was passed off as NYC) are bleak, wintry and gloomy, lacking the vibrancy of Middle Eastern turf.

The songs aren't distractions, and are suitably woven into the movie. The title song can become an earworm, though.

Meanwhile, all the fuss over all the "objectionable" content is misplaced, unless you think discussing al-Qaeda is taboo. (Although, if you ask us, Manmohan Singh might want to protest against his voice being mimicked in a phone conversation between Vishwaroopam's protagonist and "the Indian PM"... for being more life-like than in real life.) The violence and the depiction of blood are quite graphic (while not very aesthetically shot), and you might want to keep the kids at home.

Watch Vishwaroopam if you're a die-hard Kamal Hasan fan. The rest can wait to catch it on television.
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VISHWAROOPAM SNAPSHOT
Vishwaroopam (telugu) reviews
USER RATING
8.0
3 USERS
RATE
Rating is quick and easy - try it!
  • Cast
    Kamal Haasan, Pooja Kumar, Andrea Jeremiah, Rahul Bose, Jaideep Ahlawat, Samrat Chakrabarti, Zarina Wahab, Nassar, Shekhar Kapur (Special Appearance), Miles Anderson, James Babson, Upendra
  • Music
    Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy
    1 user says this is wrong.
  • Director
    Kamal Haasan
  • Theatres
    Not screening currently in any theatres in Hyderabad.
TOP COMMENT
GoKo on 31st Jan 2013, 3:05pm | Permalink
This is an absolutely must watch only on a cinema screen. TV can not show the vastness of Afghan scenes. Dear Deepa, your review can be freaky to read and disappointingly overstated on points that were never bad to start with. First fighting sequence itself is enough to tell you what this movie and its position is. This movie can be benchmark in-terms of production values, originality and slick editing. I dont think this movie was slow. You must learn to sink into the plot before making judgement. Anyway, I do not mind watching it again in an IMAX screen which can justify the rich visuals.
4
0
VISHWAROOPAM USER REVIEWS
1 - 10 OF 10 COMMENTS
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USER RATING
8.0
3 USERS
Performances
Script
Music/Soundtrack
Visuals
NA
NA
NA
NA
Can watch again - NA
Good for kids - NA
Good for dates - NA
Wait to rent it - NA
JOEL on 25th Mar 2013, 11:17am | Permalink
Deepa your review is wrong
this is the best movie and we can watch it again.
FIRST YOU GO AND WATCH THIS FILM IN THEATRE. IT IS IN AURO 3D SOUND EFFECT WHICH MAAKES YOU THRILL. THIS FILM IS INCOMPLETE BECAUSE THERE ANOTHER PART WHICH IS KNOW IN SHOOTING PROGRESS AND THIS FILM IS NOT SLOW AND YOU WATCH THIS FILM AGAIN AND AGAIN...
THIS FILM IS AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

THIS WILL TAKE INDIAN FILM INTO ANOTHER LEVEL. WATCH IT IN THEATRE IT WILL MAKE YOU PLEASURE!!!!!!!!!
Sage on 6th Feb 2013, 7:43am | Permalink
Hey Deepa, agree with your review (almost) however it deserves a better rating.. Ive been a regular follower of movie reviews in fullhyd, and the thing which ive noticed is for a dubbed movie (however good it is) you guys end up giving a low rating (any regional feeling :P) Eg: Rangam, Thupakki ..
Kishore on 9th Feb 2013, 7:45pm | Permalink
Whatever it be, she is easily the best Telugu film reviewer today.
Deepu on 9th Feb 2013, 6:30pm | Permalink
I agree with it. I have also been noticing this. Fair mind set is part of the game here.
Josh on 8th Feb 2013, 12:33am | Permalink
Thanks for saying that. I really believe DG is a telugu elitist that way. She keeps insisting that the 'tamil flavour' (her own term) in someway makes very well made movies quite inferior to the stupendously stupid inane fare our filmmakers dole out.
GoKo on 31st Jan 2013, 3:05pm | Permalink
This is an absolutely must watch only on a cinema screen. TV can not show the vastness of Afghan scenes. Dear Deepa, your review can be freaky to read and disappointingly overstated on points that were never bad to start with. First fighting sequence itself is enough to tell you what this movie and its position is. This movie can be benchmark in-terms of production values, originality and slick editing. I dont think this movie was slow. You must learn to sink into the plot before making judgement. Anyway, I do not mind watching it again in an IMAX screen which can justify the rich visuals.
Mahesh on 30th Jan 2013, 2:45am | Permalink
Ramblings on deepas review--------
Its really unfair deepa, on one hand u give performances-8..script-4.5..sound track-7...visuals-7.5, on the other hand how on earth u can give 4 as editorial rating?!!!!!......its a wonderful movie with a superb screenplay...the tempo has been maintained till the end...its a definite thriller with an intelligent plot;;;;....u say that the movie is dead slow, oh not at all...every detail of the plot was so meticulously shown that u are illusioned to feel it as slow...ur illusion is amplified by ur accoustomeness to local commercial potboiler movies with a racy screenplay;;;;;.....and u complain that the movie ending is incomplete...yes its incomplete bcoz the franchise has a second part in the offering which is mentioned at the end credits n also it was mentioned by kamal in all interviews...this wrong observation of u shows how half mindedly u watched the movie............please go to a movie without a prefixed mind n then write reviews.....all in all vishwaroopam is a worth watching movie setting a high standard for indian cinema both technically n screenplay wise...world terrorism is shown from point of view of both antagonist n protagonist where either of them feel to be at war with the evil...must watch...............
RATING
8
Pradeep on 28th Jan 2013, 8:42am | Permalink
We need to learn to watch movies. There are so many great things in this movie. It is unbelievable we refuse to grow up. Not that this movie does not have negative aspects. Come on guys Give KH a break. Certainly this movie has taken Indian movie industry to the next level.
Nari on 26th Jan 2013, 12:44pm | Permalink
kamal should stop making movies
pandit on 25th Jan 2013, 9:12pm | Permalink
Kamal Hasan looks g-a-y.
Chinna on 25th Jan 2013, 9:06pm | Permalink
Really annoying to watch this movie. Seriously ppl make anything and make audiences fool & bag more money. Time will come when audiences get tired of these kind of fooling around and they wont watch anymore fool stuff.
Rajni on 25th Jan 2013, 9:04pm | Permalink
bundle movie
Vikram on 25th Jan 2013, 8:08pm | Permalink
love it..KH a real artist...
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