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Movie Review: Villain (2002) Back to Movie
Rate movie A movie review by Balaji Balasubramaniam
Fans Rating: 78%%78%% 78% (238 votes)
Movie Still New directors have proved pretty lucky for Ajith in the past with their movies(Vaali, Dheena) giving him a much-needed career boost at the right times. But sticking to new faces as directors has also led to duds like Citizen and Red in the recent past. Desperately looking for a hit, he now seems to have shifted his loyalties to established directors who have a few hits to their name. He made Raja with Ezhil and for Villan, has teamed up K.S.Ravikumar, one of the longstanding and most commercially successful directors in the Tamil field right now Their association results in an unabashedly commercial but admittedly entertaining venture that should give Ajith another box-office success.

Shiva(Ajith), a bus conductor by profession, is in reality a Robinhood-style thief, who steals from the corrupt. Thangam(Meena), a member of the group that helps him, harbors feelings for him while Lavanya(Kiran), a college student, falls for him in his conductor avatar . Shiva's MO to escape detection is to pose as a physically and mentally handicapped person. But the money he steals is actually distributed to associations that help the handicapped all over Tamilnadu. The reason for his double life? He has a handicapped twin brother Vishnu(Ajith) with whom he has shared a lot of suffering and so knows what such handicapped persons go through. Shiva arranges for the organization that helps the handicapped to receive a large sum of money. But he becomes incensed when he learns that Sundaramoorthy('Pepsi' Vijayan), who was responsible for Vishnu's physical handicaps, is set to become the head of this organization.

K.S.Ravikumar has been in the film industry long enough to gauge the pulse of the viewers and so throws into the movie all the ingredients needed to ensure box-office success. Villan has a charismatic hero with a sympathetic cause, two heroines for the glamour, a sentimental flashback, a good sprinkling of comedy, a menacing villain the audience can hate, enough stunts to satisfy the fight lovers and duets in foreign locations. This ensures that all segments of the movie going audience has something to enjoy in the movie. Most importantly, KSR puts these ingredients together in an entertaining fashion overall. So the movie may be illogical, simplistic, cinematic and manipulative but it is rarely boring.

Ajith's heists are neither incredibly clever nor complicated but are interesting enough to keep us involved. Out of the three robberies, the one at the airport is well picturised and involves a nicely-choreographed stunt sequence too. The screenplay has been constructed well to allow Ajith to escape from each robbery with the help of the police. The fact that the handicap at the home is the the thief's twin is a nice surprise and answers atleast partially, the question of how he has escaped detection for so long. But the movie drifts aimlessly until 'Pepsi' Vijayan's entrance as the villain. He is completely heartless and earns our revulsion and induces cheers when he receives his final payoff in a suitable manner.

K.S.Ravikumar plays to Ajith's ego by having all the girls fawn over him in an exaggerated manner. But these scenes have been done in a light hearted manner and so do not irritate us much. The scene where Ajith uses this fact to break up Kiran's strike is quite funny. Thankfully there is no separate comedy track but the frequent meetings between Ajith and Karunas take care of the comedy aspect. Karunas' confusion and his harassment at the hands of both Ajith and the police raise many laughs.

Ajith's flashback is heavy and sentiment-laden but has the capacity to move us at a couple of places. The kids themselves are charming and we cringe when the handicapped boy is attacked by 'Pepsi' Vijayan. The scenes at the home for the handicapped are brief but touching. As in Aalavandhaan, the flashback very cleverly answers several questions about Ajith's actions. His idea to use his brother as his alibi and the birth of his motivation to help all the handicapped persons are very nicely depicted. The way Ajith's parents are brought back into the picture later is also nice and the segments with them have some nice touches.

A much trimmer Ajith does well when acting as the handicapped and his gestures and facial expressions are impressive. Kiran appears garish with an overdose of make-up in almost all her scenes and her dresses in the duets look quite vulgar. Meena is subdued most of the time. Ramesh Khanna and co. have a few funny lines and exhibit good timing. 'Pepsi' Vijayan has the perfect face for playing villain and is quite menacing while 'Pyramid' Natrajan, who has had some good roles recently, is wasted. Vidyasagar seems to have taken a break after Run. Most of the songs like Hello Hello... and Padhinettu Vayadhu... start off in a catchy manner but the songs themselves are quite mediocre.

Rate movie A movie review by Balaji Balasubramaniam