New Delhi: ‘Kabali,’ the much-anticipated Rajinikanth starrer hit the silver screens on Friday. Kabali had been making headlines way before it was to hit the silver screens. Every Rajinikanth starrer has its own enormous orbit and Kabali is no different.
Offices declared a holiday on Kabali’s release date so their employees could enjoy the first day first show of their superstar; in some halls Rajinikant’s Kabali was running round the clock. Much before its release date Kabali was also being compared to Salman Khan’s ‘Sultan’ which has broken all records at the box-office. But with Kabali already having made more than 200 cr on just advance bookings, will Sultan have to remain content at second place?
Kabali fever was running so high before it release that the news of Kabali being ‘leaked’ forced Cyber bureau to shut down 196 service providers and more than 220 websites, known for hosting pirated links, were banned.
Finally, Judgement day arrived on Friday 22 July and Kabali was all ready to surprise its fans.
But the biggest question that arises here is – Has the movie lived up to its expectations?
Will the expectation aspect really bother Rajini fans who had been eagerly waiting for the big release? This may seem redundant to Rajini fans. The movie is out now and so are the emotions of the fans.
The following 5-minute read should help you decide whether to buy your Kabali ticket at your nearest theatre.
Kabali is basically a patchy pot-boiler that rides on the shoulders of the southern megastar who can do no wrong, but an overdose of unexpected violence tends to spiral the movie out of control.
In the movie Kabaleeshwaran (Rajinikanth), a dreaded Kuala Lumpur mafia don, has already served a 25-year jail term. He walks out of prison and receives a hero’s welcome. Rajinikant plays his own age in the movie Kabali, although there are passages in the film that show a younger version of the actor while it traces his rise and his relationship with his would-be wife.
As Kabali goes about his mission to clean up the Kuala Lumpur underworld dominated by sex traffickers and drug peddlers, the audience receive tiny capsules of information about his ascent to power and about the major personal setbacks that he has suffered along the line. These include the violent death of his wife Rupa (Radhika Apte), a spirited plantation worker who helps Kabali in his struggle to secure greater dignity and higher wages for Indian migrants working in the fields like slaves.
The much predictable first half has been overshadowed by gory gang wars whereas the second half is livened up just a tad by emotionally charged moments, including one that hinges on the protagonist discovering that he has a daughter (Dhansika). Director Pa Ranjith adopted a larger-than-life approach to the issue of workers’ rights and racial tensions.
Kabali, which was also being compared to Rajinikant’s previous blockbuster ‘Baashha’ a 1995 Indian Tamil language action film written and directed by Suresh Krissna. However, Kabali failed to re-create the magic of Rajinikant with its weak storyline.
As the teasers suggested, Kabali is an action-packed drama and the director ensured that the audience feel the thrill of on-screen Kabali. The body count in the movie is extremely high and a lot of blood is shed, but Rajini, as always, has the last laugh. The 150-minute screen time is devoted to melodrama and other characters, all who try to build up the invincibility of the hero. The swagger that was there in ‘Enthiran’ is missing.
However, paying tribute to the demigod of cinema, Kabali doesn’t need anything but Rajinikanth on screen for it to work. As a film though, it falls short on many levels — the storyline is almost predictable, and no amount of hero worship can cloak that fact.