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Aadhi Bhagavan

Aadhi Bhagavan
Jayam Ravi, Neeetu Chandra
Yuvan Shankar Raja
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Letís hand it to director Ameer. With very little substance to play around, his new action film Aadhi Bhagavan needed a charismatic actor to lend dramatic weight to the film and clearly, Jayam Ravi is perfect as he carries the film on his strong shoulders.

Tamil cinema seldom makes films about unapologetically amoral characters and this film is not for the faint hearted as it is gritty, dark and almost all the characters have grey-shades.

The first half of the film ambles through an hour or more with a bit of mostly insignificant narrative detail to establish the characters. It is only in the second half that the film gets down to serious business as the action moves to Mumbai.

The film opens in Bangkok where Aadhi (Jayam Ravi) is a rich suave smuggler and smart alec whose intention is to make money by doing all nefarious activities. He bumps into Karishma ( Neetu Chandra) a girl in distress, helps her, turns her savior and finally falls in love with her. The naive girl using her charms brings him to Mumbai and then we know that she is Rani Sampada lover of Mumbaiís dreaded don, who is on a mission!

In Mumbai, Aadhi is chased by police, politicians and a big illegal mining mafia as they think he is Bhagavan( Jayam Ravi) the effeminate bad guy. How Aadhi takes on them forms the rest of the wafer-thin-story. The highlight definitely is the fight scenes shot at Jaisalmar Fort leaving the audiences to think that there may be a sequel.

On the downside, Aadhi Bhagavan is unapologetically long, tiring and predictable in the first half and some serious trimming will help. The songs of Yuvan are nothing to write about but background score make up for it. There are couple of loose ends, which we didn't expect from a seasoned director like Ameer.

Watch the film for the stylish performance of Jayam Ravi as Aadi and Bhagavan. It is easily among his best recent performances and he has brought the two characters alive. Neetu Chandra is perfect for the role, has equal footage with the hero and she delivers a stunning performance. Her hand-to-hand combat scene with Ravi in the climax fight is a major plus for the film. Sudha Chandran, Babu Antony, Saiju Kurup and others have insipid, walk-in roles.

On the whole, Aadhi Bhagavan is not great cinema but it's got many moments that will surprise you.

Verdict: Average


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