Dasavatharam (The Ten Avatars) Reviews
The movie starts with as 12 AD century conflict between two sects ? Vaishnava and Shivaite, where Nambi (KH1) is tied to a statue of God Vishnu and drowned in deep sea. Enter 21 AD century Govindraj (KH2) is a scientist in US under President Bush (KH3) working on a virus. If exposed it can spread rapidly and kill millions. An ex-CIA agent Christian Fletcher (KH4) is a terminator type villain kills Govindraj?s Japanese wife to get the virus pack for bad purposes. After a mishap, by mistake the virus is transported to India. Fletcher joins hands with a translator Jasmine (Mallika Sherawat), to track down Govindraj in India. Govindraj is queried by Indian Intelligent Official Balaram Naidu (KH5) on the airport, where a Punjabi pop-singer Avatar Singh (KH6) is also present. Govindraj escapes and meets Andal (Asin) whose 90 year old grandmother (KH7) drops the virus pack in a God statue. Govindraj and Asin are chased by Flecther and Naidu. In the process they meet a tall Pathan Kaifullah Khan (KH8), a Dalit leader Vincent Poovaragan (KH9) and the Japanese (brother of Govindraj?s killed Japanese wife) Shinghen Narahashi (KH10) who helps Govindraj to kill Fletcher.
The movie?s first 20 minutes of 12 AD century are brilliant in its conception, idea, execution and gives goosebumps to you. The remaining movie is typical run and chase story ? with latest hi-tech visuals and fast moving camera work. It reminded me of desi version of Borne Ultimatum series.
This movie is Kamal all the way. Kamal is too self indulgent and that comes across through out the movie, and I think that is its weakness. The best Kamal is the 12 AD century Nambi ? and worst in looks is the real Kamal - Govindraj ? who tries to play a young man at his 54 years of age, and that does not suit. All other get up and make up hide his age factor so it is fine to see them. Having said that ? Kamal as an actor is brilliant in all the 10 roles. He plays every role with conviction and apt. All of them are good. It must be a real nightmare to shoot sequences where there are at times 4 Kamal on the screen.
Kamal is an experimental actor ? and his every new venture is longly awaited. Not all of them click at the box office. Lately, Kamal likes to make this chase and run type of movies and hopes that people will like the pace and tempo (remember Mumbai Express?). But not necessarily. In the movie at times I was so engrossed in trying to figure out who is Kamal, I could not enjoy the pace and fun of the movie. That knowledge of ten Kamal was hindering the viewing process. Mallika Sherawat looks great ? but has a very short role ? would have expected a bit more. Asin is beautiful, but her character is too talkative and irritating.
The songs and music is good. The cinematography and hand held (moving & shaking) camera work ? though comtemporary ? is okay. Editing is too fast paced. The last scenes of Tsunami are extra-ordinary shot.
The movie is 182 minutes long (3 hours). Obviously comparison would be made to Rajnikant Sivaji movie. Both are pucca commercial masala movie with all Tamil ingredients. But I found Sivaji a bit more enjoyable. But because of Kamal?s great effort I would not hesitate to give it the same stars as Sivaji.
(Stars 5 out of 10)