I am Sam Review – Will Vikram Pee All Over Himself?

Michelle Pfeiffer’s character Rita Harrison: Can you grasp the concept of manipulating the truth. Not lying, just a little tweak here and there.

Sean Penn’s character Sam: No

Source: I am Sam

Deiva Thirumagal Review – Rotten Stolen Trash

Since the Internut is rife with rumors that Tamil star Vikram’s upcoming movie Deiva Thirumagan aka Deiva Thirumagal is based on I am Sam (2001), we watched the decade-old Hollywood film last night.

Well, after seeing Sean Penn deliver a jaw-dropping performance of an autistic, handicapped man with the intellectual capacity of a seven-year-old who struggles to regain custody of his seven-year-old daughter all we can say is that in the acting department Vikram has so far proved himself  unworthy of licking the bottom of Penn’s boots.

We arrived at that dreary conclusion after sitting through a bunch of Vikram movies including Gemini, Anniyan, Raavanan, Bheema and Kanthasamy (all made after I am Sam released).

Will Vikram’s performance in Deiva Thirumagal match Sean Penn’s remarkable work in I am Sam?

For the definitive answer to the above question, we’ll have to wait for the Tamil film Deiva Thirumagal’s release. But given Vikram’s past lackluster record it’s gonna be a daunting if not impossible task.

Simply put it, Vikram is a podiyan (a kid) compared to Sean Penn. Like what y’all are to Einstein.

You folks get the point, right? 😉

I am Sam – Good Moments, Bad Moments

We wouldn’t call I am Sam a gem of a movie. By God, certainly not.

It has its good moments and it has its awkward moments.

The script is sloppy in part, the court room scenes are ridiculous, the little girl sometimes talks in a grownup tone and the movie tends to drag in the second half.

But it’s still an eminently watchable film.

Where I am Sam stands out is in the extraordinary performance by Sean Penn with strong support from Dakota Fanning and Michelle Pfeiffer and in the great interplay between the father-daughter and father-lawyer.

Right from the opening scene when you see him rearranging the sugar sachets at a Starbucks to the joint reading sessions in bed with his daughter, the ‘surprise’ birthday party for the young girl, the court scenes and in the numerous interactions with his lawyer Rita Harrison (Michelle Pfeiffer), Sean Penn’s Sam holds you in thrall to his superb performance.

There is not one scene in I am Sam where Sean Penn’s acting seems affected or less than commanding.

Reminiscent at times of Dustin Hoffman’s Oscar-winning role in Rain Man (1988).

Is it any surprise then that Sean Penn won a Best Actor Oscar nomination for his outstanding performance in I am Sam.

Dakota Fanning plays Lucy, Sam’s charming and sensitive seven-year-old daughter who senses early on that her dad is different from other dads.

The little girl is a dynamo of talent and kudos to I am Sam director Jessie Nelson for extracting a fine performance from one so young.

The young girl picked up a bunch of awards for her endearing performance.

Dakota Fanning and Sean Penn share amazing chemistry and make a great father-daughter pair.

The story centers around the struggle a handicapped man faces in regaining custody of his young daughter after she’s taken away by the Department of Child and Family Services.

A daughter born of a short-term relationship with a homeless woman, who disappears soon after giving birth.

Battling a rigid state bureaucracy would be a hard struggle even for a normal man with a good income. But for a handicapped man earning $8 an hour it would seem like a battle lost even before the uphill fight can begin.

That is, unless you have the power of love and a lawyer ‘who never loses’ on your side.

Michelle Pfeiffer brings great energy to her role of the caffeinated lawyer struggling to balance family, motherhood and her job.

Humor comes in the form of Sam’s four handicapped friends who crop up now and then to liven up the movie with their zany utterances.

SearchIndia.com strongly recommends y’all watch I am Sam before seeing Deiva Thirumagal (Vikram, Anushka, Amala Paul). The Hollywood film is available at Netflix.

Related Stories:
Deiva Thirumagal Review – Rotten Stolen Trash
Vikram all excited about ‘Nanna’

23 Responses to "I am Sam Review – Will Vikram Pee All Over Himself?"

  1. rakeshbaba   May 25, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    Even though Vikram is no where near Sean Penn, he is the best present Tamil actor, when compared to podi payyas like Vijay, Surya, Dhanush (except superb performance in aadukalam), silambarasan, even experienced Rajnikanth and Kamal Haasan,and less experienced Karthi (2nd best actor in tamil).

    SearchIndia.com Responds:

    If you watch I am Sam, you will realize the enormous chasm that lies between Sean Penn and Vikram. It’s like the difference between Namitha and Meryl Streep.

    • iamsumu2   May 26, 2011 at 5:59 pm

      Yes I agree, Meryl Streep cannot do an item song like Namitha 🙂

      Jokes aside the ‘I am Sam’ remake sounds like a setting for over acting by Vikram.

      SearchIndia.com Responds:

      As we said earlier, the Deiva Thirumagan promotion video is a piece of shit. Not a good augury.

      If you’ve Netflix, we once again recommend you watch I am Sam before seeing Deiva Thirumagan.

      BTW, just returned from the French/Arabic film Incendies. Superb!

      • vjcool   June 1, 2011 at 1:03 am

        Meryl Streep…. seen only a few films, but loved her in them. The Devil Wears Prada was delightfully self centered… Out of Africa. well adventurous . I’ll recommend ‘Out of Africa’ .. then there is the silly ‘Death becomes her’

        SearchIndia.com Responds:

        Just finished watching Spirited Away.

        Wasn’t too impressed overall.

        For one, it’s too long. Second, the script seems wobbly with its forays into side stories.

        Perhaps, our expectation was too high given Miyazaki’s reputation. But it was definitely not bad.

        • vjcool   June 1, 2011 at 1:18 am

          forgot Kramer vs Kramer, remade as Akele Hum Akele Tum which I liked before I saw K vs K..

          now searching for Akele Hum Akele Tum, I found this

          SearchIndia.com Responds:

          Such flagrant theft. What a shame!

          We hope Aamir Khan never ever wins an Oscar or any other respectable award considering how much he’s profited from theft.

        • vjcool   June 1, 2011 at 5:56 am

          Spirited away didn’t stay with me much (think its the culture angle) , than Castle in the sky or kiki’s delivery service or even Princess Mononoke. well, I know I’ll make the whole list as always.

          But it still has a lot of memorable moments and the music which was fantastic. I think you would have liked Castle in the sky better.

          SearchIndia.com Responds:

          We don’t think it was the culture angle because we see so many foreign (non-English) films and still enjoy them. It was the length and the side stories – No-face, Lin, Haku, Babu, Yubaba, Boiler-Room guy ….

    • rakeshbaba   May 27, 2011 at 12:12 am

      if u r not willing to watch “deiva thirumagan”,thats fine.

      But please try to watch “aadukalam”,a rare Tamil movie

      SearchIndia.com Responds:

      Sure. Will buy the Aadukalam DVD the next time we go to an Indian store.

    • Twig   May 27, 2011 at 9:52 am

      Enna Rakesh baba! Kya baath karing?

      Greater than Kamalasana? No way.

      Karthi is the best for me.

      • rakeshbaba   May 27, 2011 at 12:39 pm

        @twig- i accept kamal is better than karthi,but when u compare recent kamal movies(dasavatharam,unnaipol oruvan and manmandhan ambu) with karthi’s(paruthiveeran,aayirathil oruvan and naan mahaan alla),karthi stands tall.
        In all kamal movies listed above, kamal tried to make a big commercial entertainers, instead of showing superb acting skills(anbe sivam,guna and moondram pirai).

        kamal you become too old,lets see will talented selva raghavan will bring back your charm in upcoming “viswaroopam”

        SearchIndia.com Responds:

        You write: Kamal you become too old,lets see will talented selva raghavan will bring back your charm in upcoming “viswaroopam”

        Selvaraghavan opts out of Viswaroopam

        • rakeshbaba   May 28, 2011 at 3:17 am

          hmm,bad luck kamal,you will lose again badly

          SearchIndia.com Responds:

          Kamal Haasan is a spent force. He should consider setting up a Tea shop in Vannarapettai and retiring from the movie business to save himself from further ignominy.

          In a million years, Kamal Haasan can’t get a millionth the charisma/star-power of Rajinikanth nor does he have the capability of writing a good script.

          Hell, even after stealing from a 1948 Hollywood film Kamal Haasan messed up Manmadhan Ambu.


          Kamal Haasan may have good qualities in other spheres but certainly not lately in the movie business.

        • prasath.j   May 30, 2011 at 1:30 pm

          I dont think so.

          Selva is a kid when compared to the directorial abilities of kamal. Remember “Hey ram” & “Virumaandi”. Both are masterpieces. One film (Aayirathil oruvan) is just not enough. Forgot his other scraps like kk,7G R etc.?

          It’s even more ridiculous to compare the acting capabilities of kamal & karthi. Forgot his “thev.. paiya”? He has a long way to go!

          The word “consistency” seems to be alien to SI. Just 2/3 good films of a mediocre actor like karthi and 2/3 bad films of a good actor like kamal should not be the yardstick.

          SearchIndia.com Responds:

          1. You write: The word “consistency” seems to be alien to SI.

          We agree with your tacit argument that consistency is to be viewed over the longer horizon.

          But would five years be a reasonable period to judge an actor? Yes.

          Over the last five years, Kamal Haasan has delivered four films Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu, Dasavatharam, Unnaipol Oruvan & Manmathan Ambu. Every single one is utter garbage.

          2. Now, could you please tell us why Kamal Haasan has stooped down to stealing?

          Have the creative juices completely dried up in Kamal Haasan?

          3. You write: Remember “Hey ram” & “Virumaandi”. Both are masterpieces.

          Puhleeze, let’s not throw around words like ‘masterpiece’ carelessly.

          Hey Ram and Virumandi were good but certainly not masterpieces.

          As SI said on 2010/12/24 in response to one of your earlier comments: To say, Kamal did four fine films in 1974, 1983, 1994 and 2001 doesn’t wash. Got to deliver each time. No resting your oars.

          People pay ticket-money every time for quality, not for quantity.

  2. boopalanj   May 25, 2011 at 5:25 pm

    I’m Sam is a fine movie.

    And, sure as hell, Vikram won’t match it.

    [did you see the trailers?]

    SearchIndia.com Responds:

    We saw this crappy YouTube promotional/marketing video for Deiva Thirumagan now Deiva Thirumagal.

    Vikram’s mannerisms are so affected in the video. Unimpressive.

    Vikram is a much over-rated actor. He appears good only because he’s compared with the other jokers.

  3. sam   May 26, 2011 at 12:15 am

    After reading your above article, I think it is safe to conclude that Deiva Thirumagan is a illegal copy of I am sam.

    Disappointing to say the least! Kuppa thaan panringa, atleast sondhamavadhu pannungada!

  4. boopalanj   May 26, 2011 at 9:29 am

    I’m sick of these “inspirations”.

    Can’t believe a 100 crore population lacks story lines, real life incidents, and fine performances, and always borrows from other platforms.

    Lazy and slavery mindset.

    SearchIndia.com Responds:

    Say that another million times!

    And hopefully someone in Kollywood will listen.

    • 1012900   May 28, 2011 at 2:28 pm

      Even more infuriating fact is that the dumb asses here plainly refuse to accept the fact that 99% of Indian movies are stolen shit!

      All they say is that the Tamil movie was just “inspired” and that the director had made a good work about it! When I hear these numb nuts talking like this, I can’t help but wonder what the f*ck is wrong with them. Ignorance at its peak!

      Unless the viewers change their mindset, these dumbass film makers will continue churning out shit!

      SearchIndia.com Responds:

      Sadly, the stolen and/or stupid shit formula is working vis-a-vis Indian films.

      • 1012900   May 30, 2011 at 9:23 am

        Movie fans can only pity the standards of Indian movies and its so-called fans who happily lap up such trash!
        Have you watched Vaanam? Saw a few scenes on TV. I have this feeling it’s different from the usual trash. Even Simbhu’s acting seemed much better when compared to his other movies. If I’m right, you wrote a positive review about Vedam, right?

        Vaanam is a remake of Vedam. This is one movie which I won’t hesitate to see. But the only jarring note is the frightening thought of enduring the utterly silly ‘Evan di unna pethaan’ song. Gosh, I almost had a migrane watching and listening to it. The lyrics were absolutely meaningless and the line ‘Who the heck is your daddy, daddy…?’ was the peak of nonsense. And it’s not a surprise that this shitty song is a big hit with the people of TN. Another headache inducing song is “Who am i, who am i?”. That said, I feel there is something called a STORY in Vaanam.

        SearchIndia.com Responds:

        You write: Have you watched Vaanam?….If I’m right, you wrote a positive review about Vedam, right?

        No, and we most definitely don’t intend to.

        Yes, we did see Vedam.

    • Naveen   May 31, 2011 at 2:02 pm

      Have you seen “Shatranj Ke Khilari”? Beautiful movie laced with fine humor both literal and metaphorical.

      The DVD is available in Netflix. http://www.satyajitray.org/films/shatran.htm

      SearchIndia.com Responds:

      Added Shatranj Ke Khilari & moved to top of Netflix queue.

      From Satyjit Ray’s rich oeuvre, we’ve seen only Charulata so far.

  5. logu   May 28, 2011 at 6:55 am

    The film’s theme music (the music you hear in the background in the trailer) also is lifted from Kamalhaasan starrer Sigappu Rojakkal (music in the climax when kamal is behind the bars). In an effort to shrug being branded as ARR’s nephew GV prakash is on a copying spree………..
    watch it from 10:15 to 10:40(really a brilliant and rare performance by kamal)

    SearchIndia.com Responds:

    Very similar.

  6. முனிAndy   May 28, 2011 at 10:50 am

    I have never posted a comment on this site before, but I have to say that acting like a retard ain’t that tough. Every one of us has done that at one point or another.. in real life.

    SearchIndia.com Responds:

    1. Thank you for your first comment (of AM hours today, we mean). 😉

    2. You write: acting like a retard ain’t that tough.

    True enough, but only if you’re speaking figuratively. They should have released Deiva Thirumagal in the U.S. today to capitalize on the long weekend.

    BTW, these days the language police and the politically correct exemplars of the Homo Sapiens species take great umbrage to the use of the word retard.

    We get lengthy diatribes (via e-mail) even when we use the word Black to refer to Blacks or describe a fat waitress at an Indian restaurant as fat. The moral rectitude of these pillars of society is killing us!

    • StrYngLad74   May 29, 2011 at 1:15 am

      @Andy: “but I have to say that acting like a retard ain’t that tough”

      But will Vikram go “full-retard?” As RDJ’s character in “Tropic Thunder” would pontificate…”You never go full-retard.”

  7. gk   May 31, 2011 at 11:12 am


    SearchIndia.com Responds:


    • Naveen   May 31, 2011 at 1:55 pm


  8. Dr.Logu   May 31, 2011 at 2:18 pm

    Not surprising especially when a dipshit like Vijay has it before his name………….Don’t get surprised when some Malaysian Mayrpudingi University confers Dhanush, Simbhu, Kombhu with a honorary doctorate in future!!!

    SearchIndia.com Responds:

    We’re awarding you a Ph.D for Commenting of the Highest Order for alerting us to Osama bin Laden’s tryst with 72 virgins.

    BTW, we’ve also edited your user name to Dr.Logu. 😉

    • Dr.Logu   May 31, 2011 at 10:25 pm

      Lol… I’m bowled over your honour!!!

      There are more deserving candidates than me in this blog for whom it needs to conferred with out any delay.

      SearchIndia.com Responds:

      Well, the others can stand in line and wait their turn.

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