When Tamil film actor Vijay shuffles off his mortal coils, the coffin lowered, the last heap of soil flung on the decorated box and the tombstone erected, the epitaph will most likely read Punnaku Pandi – Failed Comedian.
With a zany knack for picking films whose only qualification is that they must be bizarrely nonsensical in every sense, Vijay has in recent years earned the wrath and scorn of all sentient, thinking beings in his relentless, shameless frenzy for pelf in the near term and political power in the longer term.
Be it Villu, Kuruvi or some of Vijay’s older films like Madurey, Sivakasi, suffice it to say that they plumb the dregs of the cinema world.
What starts off as pursuit of a heroic career in films will undoubtedly collapse for Vijay in a limp Vadivellian finale.
Take for instance Vijay’s 2005 movie Sivakasi.
Never has there been as asinine a spectacle on the screen. And unlikely there ever will be, unless, of course, Vijay has a hand role in it.
We consider it a Hail Mary miracle we survived the Sivakasi ordeal.
The movie starts off badly enough with cops hauling a bad guy called Pallaku Pandi into a police lockup and the incensed man stripping his clothes and displaying his crown jewels to the assembled newsmen and photographers, who recoil in revulsion at the sight.
Repulsive as the beginning might seem, the film gets exponentially worse by the frame.
By the way, can someone expound on why in most Vijay films the bad elements invariably look like pigs after a leisurely gambol in the Cooum. Well, how else can you make Vijay seem handsome to movie-goers. 😉
With a hideous fig leaf story of an ‘orphan’ welder in Chennai surrounded by a bunch of cronies (including a no-good lawyer and a pygmy) mouthing dialogs like Sivakasi lookae thani, with the Mallu midget Asin and her ‘twin’ as his accomplice in crime and some of the oddest fight scenes that would give even Bond, ahem James Bond pause, Vijay lunges for the viewers’ throats in this lengthy nightmare.
The only parallel we could think of for Vijay’s ceaseless brutality was the horrible hyena in Yann Martel’s Life of Pi tearing into the half-dead zebra before Pi’s fear-struck, agonized, anguished, helpless eyes.
Like the prolonged agony of the zebra, the grief of Sivakasi viewers (the countless Piscine Molitor Patels) is extended. For close to three infinitely long hours.
In a just world, Sivakasi alone would be enough to exile Vijay to an Indian Kalaupapa or a Helena, far from human habitation. But since Incredible India is the setting for the monstrous crime, this bozo is feted for his magnificent feat.
As if all the heretofore nonsense were not enough for 100 lifetimes, in the second half the director introduces a weird twist into the Sivakasi tale.
An unlikely twist that only a mundharikottai a.k.a. Perarasu can visualize involving a young boy Muthappa in Nattuarasankottai village and his evil older brother Udhayappa (grownup version played with some degree of credibility by Prakash Raj).
Folks, only in Kollywood can a zero answering to the roll-call of Perarasu be so (ir)responsible for such a story, screenplay, dialogs, lyrics and, possibly the worst crime after the Holocaust, direction as well.
What’s an Indian movie without that mainstay of music, right?
The solace of many a bad Indian movie is the soothing balm of music.
Alas, in Sivakasi the musical effect is one of striking nettles on bare, tender skin.
The music and the accompanying picturization in Sivakasi are so horrid that they beggar belief.
As if one Vijay on the screen were not bad enough, we have the silly multi-image photographs in the song Ye Vaada Vaada featuring the hero and a covey of girls in short costumes. The multi-image nonsense reappears later in the Deepavalli Deepavalli song as well.
Not since we heard of some chimps escaping their confines and going berserk on a vat of toddy, have we seen such simian antics like Vijay and Asin in the song Deepavalli Deepavalli (you can watch this nonsense in this YouTube video here)
Horrific, Emasculating Stunts
And what can we say about the amateurish, sickening fight scenes featuring Vijay in a snarling, frothing frenzy vanquishing hordes of heavily-armed baddies time and again bare-handed except that it drove us nuts and sent us rushing for solace in a bottle.
Be it the first fight with Pullakku Pandi’s henchmen after their leader is arrested, the second emasculating fight with Pandi where Vijay inflicts severe damage not merely to the baddie’s torso but to his cock as well (no kidding here on Vijay robbing the man’s manhood) or the later fights in Udhayappa’s house, they are such sick shit that can be purveyed only by Vijay.
Now, don’t even ask us about the caliber of acting of this satanic duo (Vijay and Asin, who else) in the film.
Suffice it to say, they wouldn’t pass muster anywhere except in the cesspool of Kollywood.
In exchange for the torture Vijay inflicted on our tender souls with this garbage, we’ve decided to re-baptize the bozo herewith as Punnaku Pandi, a twist on the bad guy we meet at the beginning of the movie.
If this be a Faustian bargain, so be it!
That dung like Sivakasi were made and released in theaters a mere five years back is but a reflection of a deep malaise in the Tamil milieu out of which such trash emerges.
After all, doesn’t art imitate life.
Sura Review – Colossus of Nonsense
Vettaikaran Review – Punnaku Pandi & the Dysentery Before Sura
Thirupaachi Review – Punnaku Pandi and the Capture of Bin Laden
Madurey Review – Punnaku Pandi and the ‘Negro Problem’
Sivakasi Review – Punnaku Pandi and the art of Nonsense
Kuruvi Review – Nonstop Nonsense
Villu Review – Revoltingly Bad