Vishwaroop II movie review: Kamal Haasan wastes himself in an extraordinarily ordinary thriller

Be aware: This movie was shot concurrently with the identical forged in two languages, and has been launched as Vishwaroopam II in Tamil and Vishwaroop II in Hindi. Right here is our  assessment of the Hindi model, Vishwaroop II.

When Kamal Haasan is sweet, he’s so good that he has the flexibility to move the viewer to a different realm. From a boy in a forbidden relationship in Ok Balachander’s Apoorva Raagangal (1975) to the nation bumpkin in love with the one educated woman in his village in Bharathiraja’s 16 Vayathinile (1977), and the bitter, brooding, idealistic unemployed youth whose scintillating chemistry with the nice Sridevi scorched the display in Balachander’s Varumaiyin Niram Sivappu (1980), over time he has invested himself in some fantastic roles in fantastic movies – largely in Tamil, some in Telugu – with administrators who had a major level to make.

Kamal Haasan in a nonetheless from Vishwaroop 2. YouTube

There’s not sufficient area right here for an exhaustive checklist of Haasan’s finest works, however it’s going to stay one in all life’s everlasting questions why this inventive large has wasted a lot of the previous 30 years on gimmicky movies as an alternative of devoting himself fully to the uncooked, soul-searching performances he’s revered for – the kind you’ll not discover in his newest enterprise.

Vishwaroop II is the Hindi model of the Tamil Vishwaroopam II, each of which had been shot concurrently with the identical actors and are a follow-up to 2013’s Vishwaroopam/Vishwaroop. Within the earlier movie, Wisam Ahmad Kashmiri (Haasan) is main a double life in New York, as a Kathak instructor who’s, in actuality, a RAW agent. Nirupama (Pooja Kumar) is bored of her marriage of comfort with this older man till she discovers his reality. Wisam’s encounters with the Al Qaeda terrorist Omar (Rahul Bose) finish within the latter’s escape.

Vishwaroop II spends a substantial a part of its pre-interval portion recounting what occurred in Half 1. This proves to be a drag for many who have seen that movie, and whereas I can’t converse on behalf of those that haven’t, the flashbacks are so sketchy that I don’t see how they may have served the aim for which they’re positioned there.

Anyway, within the current day, Wisam, his younger protégé Ashmita (Andrea Jeremiah), Colonel Jagannath (Shekhar Kapur) and Nirupama as soon as once more run into Omar who’s out for revenge towards Wisam whereas additionally planning a cataclysmic occasion within the UK that may put 9/11 within the shade. Someplace between saving the world and himself, Wisam manages to woo his spouse and bond together with his mom (Waheeda Rahman).

Vishwaroopam II is simply too odd to be worthy of an in depth critique. It makes a fleeting point out of Islamophobia, however in a month that has given us Anubhav Sinha’s good Mulk, that argument, although fairly nicely made, is simply too marginal to advantage a dialogue. I suppose you possibly can say the crux of the movie is to remind us that Haasan at 63 has nonetheless received what it takes to be a hero in an all-out business movie, however all of the gravity-defying stunts on this planet can’t masks the superficiality of this storyline, the mundaneness of its thriller components, the shortage of a spark between Haasan and Kumar, Ashmita’s irritating effort to suggest that she is romantically concerned with Wisam (in direction of which finish she even makes a distasteful reference to rape) or the all-round tackiness of the manufacturing high quality.

Kamal Haasana and Rahul Bose in a still from Vishwaroop 2/Image from Twitter.

Kamal Haasan and Rahul Bose in a nonetheless from Vishwaroop 2/Picture from Twitter.

For all its failings, a minimum of Vishwaroop had its slick artwork design (in that dance studio in New York and in Omar’s hideout on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border) going for it, along with memorable choreography by Birju Maharaj and spectacular battle scenes. Right here, the pretend studio backdrops at sure locations are so manifestly apparent that I wished to weep on the considered a legendary thespian even bothering with this venture. Sure, I get that Indian movies are made at a milli-fraction of the price range accessible to Hollywood, however so a lot of our cinematic works look technically wealthy, together with a number of in Haasan’s personal profession, that this excuse doesn’t lower ice.

The mediocrity extends to the story, the storytelling, the analysis, the music and the sound design. In a scene in an assisted residing facility, a nurse is proven virtually pestering an Alzheimer’s affected person to dip into her reminiscence. Even somebody with a primary data of Alzheimer’s Illness will inform you that that’s an absolute no-no. Elsewhere, in a closed room supposedly within the UK, horns may be heard blaring loudly and incessantly exterior – the sound designer seems to have forgotten that consistently honking is a congenital Indian dysfunction and that the streets of Britain are far calmer than ours. The whole forged’s appearing is unremarkable, and the ladies particularly are mere appendages to Wisam. Jeremiah is engaging and agile whereas walloping a villain, however doesn’t have sufficient such scenes within the movie.

The low level of Vishwaroop II is the horrible singing of a quantity titled ‘Tu Srotu Hai’ by Haasan, Kaushiki Chakraborty and Karthik Suresh Iyer. Whereas Haasan shouts in locations to camouflage his battle to sing, Chakraborty and Iyer screech when the pitch goes excessive.

Sadly, Haasan has nobody accountable however himself for this misadventure since he’s the producer, director and author (the dialogues for the Hindi model are by Atul Tiwari).

I really like Kamal Haasan. I do. I used to be a child once I cried for his character Raja as he assured his finest good friend that he was not in love along with her in Ramesh Sippy’s Saagar (1985), one of many few Hindi movies he did that I believed deserved him. I laughed until I died at his antics within the dialogueless Pushpak Vimana (1987). And only recently, when he stepped into Mohanlal’s function in Papanasam (2015), the Tamil remake of the Malayalam blockbuster Drishyam starring Lalettan, he did certainly remind us that he nonetheless has what it takes to play the main man in an all-out business movie with out the crutch of a double function, a triple function, 10 roles, a lover who appears younger sufficient to be his little one, a heavy use of prosthetics or extreme reliance on an motion director which have been the USPs of too a lot of his movies from the 1990s onwards. All he must do is keep as properly bodily match as he’s now, depend on his super appearing expertise, decide reliable administrators and strong scripts. Perhaps somebody wants to write down a thriller thriller on why the long-lasting Kamal Haasan doesn’t get that.

Aside from the shock worth of the acute violence it options and a significant assertion about fundamentalism-versus-education, Vishwaroop II has nothing new to supply. It’s a scar on Haasan’s filmography and a useless bore.

(Also read: Vishwaroopam 2 music composer Ghilbran says songs of the sequel are better than those of first part)

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