Out Of Theatre

Kanchana 2

Out Of Theatre
16 Apr, 2015 2 hrs 48 mins U/A
Raghava Lawrence, Taapsee Pannu, Nithya Menen, Kovai Sarala, Rajendran
Synopsis

While Kanchana dealt with the struggles of a transgender, Kanchana 2 deals with a disabled person

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  • Critic's Review
  • Times of India
Synopsis: A TV channel's crew goes to a deserted beachside bungalow to stage a horror show but the place is actually haunted and the ghost(s) in the place possess the director and the cameraman in the team.

Movie Review: In a way, the Muni films are like the Fast & Furious franchise, initially dismissed as something appealing only to a particular group of people but starting to gain increased acceptance among the paying audiences and even critics. Yes, they are silly, over-the-top, over-long and loud (both literally and filmmaking-wise) but there is also some fun in the whole enterprise, which manages to pack in the masala movie must-haves — comedy, action, thrills and sentiment — quite satisfactorily.

Kanchana-2 contains everything that we have seen in Kanchana and more. There is Raghava (Lawrence in comic mode), who is scared of ghosts and goes to extreme lengths (his bedroom resembles a tantric's abode and he even has a watchman in his loo) to protect himself, much to the chagrin of his mother (Kovai Sarala). Raghava is possessed by not one but many ghosts. There are exorcists who control these ghosts. There is a sympathetic backstory for these ghosts who are only seeking revenge against the men who wronged them. Here, Ganga (an effective Nithya Menen), a disabled woman, is killed along with her lover Shiva (Lawrence in mass hero mode), and friends by the moneylender Marudhu (Jayaprakash), who wants to marry her to his mentally ill son. There is a rousing pre-climactic song that sets the stage for the final showdown between the forces of good and evil. Heck, there are actors who we have seen in the earlier film —Kovai Sarala, Sriman, Mano Bala and Mayilsamy — who appear either in the same role or in a new role in this film. So, the only difference is the set-up to this tale. Here, a TV channel executive (Suhasini in a rather perfunctory role) accepts a pitch by her director (Taapsee) and sends in a crew to shoot a ghost show to counter the spiritual shows that have catapulted their rival to the top.

The showpiece sequence in the film is a scene where Lawrence appears as all the ghosts. It's also the most fun because this is played chiefly for laughs with Kovai Sarala and Renuka being the hapless 'victims'. The comedy is broad and low-brow, banking on gay humour and the reactions of the characters when they are spooked by the presence of the ghost. It becomes too childish at times but you laugh nevertheless. As for the scares, much of it involves cutting to a close-up of a character getting scared and zooming out in the next shot to show the ghost being face-to-face with them. This technique does become tiring but there is fun to be had in predicting how and when the ghost will reveal itself to the characters.

The flashback portion in Kanchana dealt with the struggles of a transgender and here, it deals with a disabled person. However, despite Nithya Menen doing a good job, this portion was more impactful and even moving in the previous film. The climax is also sort of a letdown as it takes place in CG land and the gravity-defying action sequence has a cartoonish feel to it and doesn't affect us. And, despite the popularity of the series with children, kids might find some of the scenes too upsetting, so parents consider yourselves forewarned. Still, the film does what it promises — we chuckle, cower, cry and at times, cringe.
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