Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Super Deluxe review: “Quirky & brilliant in equal measure!!!”

After the enthralling experience of “Lucifer”, I presumed that the last weekend would be a rather sedate affair spent stocking up my pantry apart from watching IPL & the Miami Masters (by the way, the GOAT won it…polichu mone!!!).  However, that’s when I realized that Thiagarajan Kumararaja’s “Super Deluxe” had hit the screens on Friday & I was more than eager to check it out as it had an enviable star cast, not to mention Thiagarajan took the industry by storm with his debut venture “Aaranya Kaandam” in 2011. I had seen the stills of the movie & it had attracted my attention, so I was pretty much sure that I was in for a roller coaster ride. But how impactful it would be was something that I never fathomed.

The camera opens with a woman having an illicit relationship with her ex-lover & due to her misfortune, he dies on the bed while they were indulged in coitus. That female happened to be Vaembu (Samantha Akkineni) & just as she was wondering as to what to do with the corpse, her husband Mugilan (Fahadh Faasil) returns home. Similarly, there are three other parallel tracks which doesn’t quite link directly with any of them but still has some sort of an effect. One of them involved a godman Arputham (Mysskin), who believed that he was destined to be the Lord’s special one as he had survived the tsunami. In another track, four sexually frustrated teenagers seek porn for gratification only to realize that the star in it, Leela (Ramya Krishnan) was the mother of one of them. The final track involved the wait of a six-year-old Rasukkutty (Ashwanth Ashokkumar) for his father Manikam (Vijay Sethupathy), who to the family’s dismay had become a transgender & assumed the name of Shilpa.

As I mentioned earlier, Thiagarajan made his mark with his debut venture which had both the critics & movie aficionados go gaga. His latest venture is no different as it has a multi-layered brilliant script with the screenplay written by him & a host of individuals such as Mysskin, Nalan Kumarasamy & Neelan K Sekar. Each of them has proved their credentials in the past with exceptional movies adorning their CVs. Over here as well, we get to see their brilliance as they present their takes on amorality with respect to life, masculinity, infidelity & spirituality. All the stories have been excellently presented with due thought given to the dialogues & screenplay (though I felt that by watching it just once we might not imbibe all of them). I absolutely loved the shrewd placement of certain items like the type of movie posters pasted in the CD shop & at another place (revealing more will be a spoiler). Similarly, the choice of dialogues & songs in the background when the characters spoke, or thought was outstanding.

Despite a running time of close to 3 h, I am pretty much sure that once you allow yourselves to be engrossed in it; then it doesn’t take a toll on you. But even then, I still felt Sathyaraj Natarajan could have made the latter half crisper coz personally I wasn’t quite interested with the sci-fi part. Just like the director & his screenplay army, there are a few other technicians who deserves special mention. This includes P.S Vinod & Nirav Shah who has done an outstanding job with the visuals & the saturated colours that they had used across the frames. When it comes to music & BGM, Yuvan Shankar Raja wows us with an exceptional job with the clever placement of his father & legend Illayaraja’s songs as well as his own subtle background scores and silence.

Frankly speaking, it’s hard to choose the best performer among the lot as each one of them were equally brilliant. Since we already know the capabilities of Sethupathi & Fahadh, I will prefer to first talk about someone who absolutely floored me & that was the small kid, Ashok. His naturality & innocent smile makes us love him and introspect as to how uncomplicated children are. I really expect him to bag a couple of awards for this performance (maybe even on a National level). Sethupathi continues to render us speechless with his breath-taking act & this was yet another one. Only very few main stream actors (reminds me of Jayasurya in “Njaan Marykutty”) would be ballsy & capable enough to take up such a role, so hats off to him. I haven’t followed Samantha’s career keenly but from the ones that I have watched this was undoubtedly her best performance ever. After the sly, crazy & authoritative husband in “Kubalangi Nights”, here we have a fantastic Fahadh don the role of a cheated husband with absolute conviction who has no option but to help his wife. The roles that were given to Ramya Krishnan & Bhagavathy Perumal (as SI Berlin) will stun everyone as we would have never thought of such kind of a casting & both have given standout performances. As for the rest of the cast, Gayathrie (as Jyothi) Mysskin (as Arputham) & the teenagers have all done their parts aptly.

Verdict: It’s undoubtedly one of the most unique movies that I have ever watched & I absolutely loved the thought that has gone into the story as well as the execution. It would be fair to admit that I might not have been able to assimilate whatever Thiagarajan wanted to project coz I feel it’s a movie which becomes more comprehensible with repeated viewing. It is both unapologetic & blunt of what it wants to convey but at the same time it keeps us entertained. In short, a must watch!!!

Rating: 4/5


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