Hari's Reviews

Hari's reviews on books, movies, television and more

Vaanchinathan (2001)

Created: Sat Mar 20 21:10:18 2010 | Last modified: Sat Mar 20 21:17:58 2010

Rating: *******---

Year: 2001
Language: Tamil
Starring: Vijaykanth, Prakash Raj
Direction: Shaji Kailas
Music: Karthik Raja


Vaanchinathan is the story of a super cop - pure and simple. Action packed all the way, it features Vijaykanth beating the holy hell out of society's bad apples (including a local rowdy, a corrupt and casteist politician and a villainous newspaper magnate). His method is simple: as a policeman, he gets his loyal subordinates to execute the bad guys on the spot - provided they can give him a good enough explanation for the death to be filed in the report. What stands out most in this movie is that it doesn't feature a single court-scene throughout! For a cop who brings the bad guys to justice, he sure deals with them in his own way and there's nobody to question his methods either. Even his superior officers in the police force fear and respect him as he goes about in his own independent way (sometimes not even wearing the police uniform while on duty!)

Probably the best thing about this movie is that it eschews realism in favour of pure entertainment. The clashes involving the cop and the baddies are fast paced and exciting and the viewer has absolutely no worries about the end result - Vaanchi emerges from all his scraps without a single scratch. The dialogues also pack plenty of punch and keep viewers amused without troubling the intellect too much. And of course, it is focussed too - except in one sequence where Vaanchi's sister is poisoned by her husband (the brother of the newspaper magnate Prakash Raj), there is absolutely no room for soppy family sentiments. Even that scene is fairly short and disposed off quite quickly and Vaanchi doesn't waste any more tears on her afterwards. There are a few songs in this movie, but they are nothing to write home about and they have absolutely nothing to do with the main storyline.

All in all, this movie is for a fan of Vijaykanth or somebody who just wants uncritical, mindless entertainment for a few hours. It wouldn't appeal much to a critical viewer who looks for realism and a degree of sophistication. And that's where it scores too - it has clearly targetted the audience it wants and catered to that need. It does not preach boring messages, deal with real-life difficulties or tire the viewer with any kind of soppy sentimental drama. Personally I enjoyed this movie quite a lot for what it is.