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Movie Review: Gemini (2002) Back to Movie
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Fans Rating: 79%%79%% 79% (91 votes)
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Gemini (Vikram) is a rowdy who lives only to -- well, be a rowdy. His biggest enemy is Teja (Kalabhavan Mani), who is from a different territory. They spar often. He also has a deep-down good heart, however, and when a poor cook (Manorama) comes to him and asks for a job, he doesn't deny it to her. Into the midst of this altercation comes, predictably enough, love. Gemini meets a girl named Manisha (Kiran), and falls head over heels in love with her. Since she goes to evening college, Gemini joins the evening college as well, despite the fact that he isn't even a high school graduate. During the course of the college year, Manisha falls in love with Gemini as well, liking him for his feigned soft-spokenness. Enter a new honest police commissioner (Mouli) who promises to crack down on crime and then follows through by arresting both Gemini and Teja. He arrests Gemini right in front of Manisha and when she sees his true colors, she hates him. When both the rowdies promise to reform (Gemini authentically and Teja as a ploy), Mouli lets them out. The rest of the story has Gemini trying to get back together with Gemini, and trying to keep his promise of reforming to Mouli, despite the fact that Teja keeps pressuring him to become a rowdy. Eventually, however, when Gemini's right-hand man is killed, Gemini, in anger, goes to kill Teja and pick up his life of crime once again. Will he? Or will this reformed rowdy stay rowdy?

O.K. Despite other reviews on the Net, I very much looked forward to this movie for several reasons. One: it's Vikram, and I'm a Vikram fan. Two: it's Saran, and I'm a Saran fan (yeah, I loved Alli Arjuna, so sue me). And three: it's running like a Rajinikanth movie in India, becoming a blockbuster so huge no one expected it. After I saw it, I thought, "This is running like that?" I mean, it's not a very bad movie (though I wouldn't even classify it as a good one). Vikram makes a good action star, and while Kiran is annoying, there are a few good jokes with Dhamu and Vayapuri, and the storyline isn't too bad (in fact, it's sometimes quite clever, like the way that Kai informs Gemini that he's about to be stabbed, even though he's bound and gagged). It's watchable, at least. But problems? Yeah, they abound. I don't like Kiran too much. The now-expected Saran "surprise" at the end (coming from Manorama) really isn't worth anything more than an "Oh, okay, now back to the story," and the story has been done before (and by Saran, too, in Amarkkalam, a story of giving up rowdyism for love) and better, too. When the movie shines is not when it's actually going through its storyline, which feels more like a chore, but when it's making snide comments and references to things outside the movie. When 'Kalabhavan' Mani and Vikram both imitate the "Kaasi" character, it's hilarious, because they've both acted as Kaasi. It's also interesting to watch Vikram -- a genuinely good actor -- morph from rowdy to blind-dumbbell mode. But those shining moments don't come often enough. The bad guy, while 'Kalabhavan' Mani acts well enough, comes off as an endearing softie -- perhaps because of the whole mimicry thing. And the love story -- nothin' special. A few of the evening college scenes could be fun, but they're not. And the songs, ehh, average. But you know what, after watching this movie, I had a thought. Rajinikanth became Rajinikanth not by trying to be, but it just kind of happened. Vijay and Ajit are both trying too hard to be the next Rajinikanth -- and are therefore failing spectacularly in that goal. I think Tamil cinema may have found the next Rajinikanth, and it seems to be in another guy for whom it's just kind of happening: we've found him in Vikram.

Average. The worst songs are easy: "Katta Katta," "Thalaikeelaa." The best songs: maybe "Kaadhal Enbathaa" (sad). Nothing's that great, though.

Diehard Vikram fans, watch it in the theater. The rest of us can watch it on video and not miss a thing.


Copyrigh 2002 Vijay Vanniarajan
Republication of this and other reviews by the same reviewer is expressly prohibited without the written consent of said reviewer.

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