90ML review:Relevant but presented in a titillating manner!
What works for Oviya in 90ML is that her character stays true to her off-screen image which was established through Bigg Boss show
Critic's Rating: 2.5/5
Friday 1 March 2019
Oviya, Bommu Lakshmi, Shree Gopika, Masoon Shankar, Monisha Ram
Tamil cinema seldom makes films about unapologetically amoral characters. Director Anita Udeep's 90 ML talks about feminism, liberation, and sexual issues of modern women. But the director often gets muddled, as she confuses feminism by glorifying boozing and smoking. The young girls in the film also crack double meaning jokes which are partly funny, mostly crass.
Rita (Oviya) enjoys her life to the fullest, she has a live-in partner and moves on to a new apartment. The film is all about how Rita changes the lives of five women who have their own challenges in life. For Thamarai, (Bommu Lakshmi) her rogue husband and his dangerous henchman job is a big headache. For the middle-aged Kajal (Masoom Shankar), her husband has an extra-marital affair after the couple cannot spend much time in bed due to their daughter(!!) Then there is Paaru (Shree Gopika ) whose husband cannot forget his past love and hence, they find it hard to start a family. We also have Sukanya (Monisha Ram) who falls in love with another girl but the society and parents are against their wedding.
The film would have been an excellent feel-good drama if director Anita Udeep had addressed the issues of her female characters without glorifying drugs and alcohol. But now despite handling a relevant topic, it’s hard to connect with these girls or empathize with their condition when the director seems to be putting all her effort to distract you with their antics in the name of feminism! After a point, we forget the personal problems of all the five characters and starts seeing them as a bunch of addicts who shows the victim card to be in the fun zone.
Interestingly, all five girls have performed well. In fact, Bommu Lakshmi and Shree Gopika has overshadowed Oviya in many scenes. The other two girls Monisha Ram and Masoon Shankar are just adequate. What works for Oviya is that her character stays true to her off-screen image which was established through Bigg Boss show. While the first half of the film is watchable, the second half tests our patience with the screenplay and endless stretches.
STR’s music is the film is a big plus, as the songs and background score are noteworthy. Especially, the ‘Marana Matta’ and ‘Friendi da’ tracks. Aravind Krishna’s camera has beautifully captured the nightlife of Chennai in style and songs have been presented on par with western stylish music videos. The crisp runtime of 124 minutes is another advantage of the film.
While the trailer showcased 90 ML as an adult-only film, the director has tried to convey a lot of issues like alcoholism and drug culture that exists in today’s society. On the whole, the film is thin on plot and purpose but it’s got many moments that’ll surprise you but presented in a titillating manner!
90ML review: Relevant but presented in a titillating manner!