Expectations were sky high as Jayaraj presented the grand first look of his Navarasa series film Veeram a few months back. The longing for the movie only got better after they disclosed more details about the involvement of quality technicians in the film. But after watching the film, my first impression about Veeram is that it only has discrete visual grandeur and the screenplay’s awkward pace and the poor acting of the main actors have severely caused problems to the film.

Well I don’t think much of an introduction is needed in giving you an idea about the story. Ilanthalam Chandu is this warrior of the glorious Kalari history of Kerala. Rising to fame and glory after winning a dual, Chandu becomes greedy about what he could achieve as lust and obsession for power started to drive him. The film Veeram depicts that phase of Chandu’s life where his thirst for power drives him to a situation which puts him in a cage of guilt.

The resemblance with William Shakespeare’s Macbeth was one key reason why Jayaraj chose this Vadakkan Paattu legend as his main character. In fact most of the dialogues are taken and translated from the play. The problem with Veeram is also its play nature. Dramatic feel was always there in themes like these and they never looked awkward because of the stellar performances. The director has said that the convincing look of his actors to play the part is essential according to his way of making films. Kunal Kapoor in his masculine look seems fine to be that Kalari Warrior and the girls are also gorgeous enough to be those characters who plants venomous greedy thoughts in the brain of Chandu to create a desire for lusty pleasure. But a theme that deals with the emotional conflict of a guilty person cannot be remarkable without excellent performances.

Kunal Kapoor mumbling Malayalam looked like he was having a chewing gum. And when we hear such clearly pronounced Malayalam from the dubbing artist, it is almost like watching a dubbed film. The same issue is there with the leading ladies as well. Both Davina Thackur and Himarsha Venkatsamy have that ravishing appearance to be these characters, but their acting is amateurish to the core and the lack of sync in dubbing is also clearly visible. At many occasions director tries to avoid face shots of these actors. Other main performers include Shivajith Nambiar and Aaran and compared to others they were much better.

Well I appreciate Jayaraj’s decision to hire all these technicians to give the movie the much needed grandeur. By choosing certain aesthetically convincing locations, the attire of the film has definitely got boosted. The screenplay is written by Jayaraj himself and unfortunately it can’t contain the emotional turmoil. The mood swings of Chandu needed a stronger base and by making it a 102 minutes long film, the much needed depth in to what the character was going through emotionally went missing. The Vadakara slang incorporated inside the theatrical dialogues was an impressive decision. Cuts from Appu Bhattathiri aesthetically build a rhythm to scenes. S Kumar’s visuals help the movie in being big on canvas. The DI aided visual effects aren’t completely satisfying. With the camera largely giving static frames in those combat sequences, the gold tinted visuals weren’t sufficient enough to cover up for the chroma key jitters. Renganath Ravee’s sound design was really good. The background score was also impressive. The fashion sense of the characters is a bit weird and you might want to ask the same questions people asked to Ashutosh Gowariker after Mohenjo-Daro.

Macbeth’s beauty was in presenting the inner conflicts of its title protagonist. But with swift narrative and dull performances Jayaraj just can’t visualize that on screen and thus Veeram can’t attain that perfection it needed.

Rating: 2.5/5

Final Thoughts

With swift narrative and dull performances Jayaraj just can't visualize that on screen and thus Veeram can't attain that perfection it needed.


Green: Recommended Content

Orange: The In-Between Ones

Red: Not Recommended


By Aswin Bharadwaj

Founder and editor of Lensmen Reviews.

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