Darbar movie review: An explosion for Rajinikanth fans, an implosion for others | Bollywood Life

Darbar movie review: An explosion for Rajinikanth fans, an implosion for others | Bollywood Life

Making a superstar film is extremely difficult in India. And if you’re name is Rajinikanth, then the task becomes all the more demanding because unlike an Ajith, a Surya, a Jr. NTR, an Allu Arjun or a Shah Rukh, Hrithik Roshan and Amitabh Bachchan in Bollywood, every Rajini film must be filled with massy moments and his trademark mannerisms; no way can he ever try his hand at other genres (Mani Ratnam’s Thalapathi back in 1992 is the only exception.) Even Salman Khan or Vijay are permitted by their fans to do mix it up at times, but no such leeway is offered by Thalaivar’s devotees. This could also be why other than Petta that released last year, no film of his since Ethiran (Robot) back in 2010 has managed to exploit the superstar’s charisma for modern tastes.Related StoriesDarbar Celeb Review: Sivakarthikeyan, Karthik Subbaraj and others are in awe of Rajinikanth’s charismatic and stylish performanceDarbar LEAKED! Tamil Rockers releases Rajinikanth’s film online within hours of releaseDarbar Twitter review: Fans deem Rajinikanth’s film as a BLOCKBUSTERIn this challenging scenario, avant-garde Director A.R. Murugadoss, a seld-proclaimed, diehard Rajinikant fan himself (then again, who isn’t), throws his hat in the ring, making his task all the more testing by giving Thalaivar to don the khaki uniform after 25 years. Does the ace Director and one of the world’s biggest moviestars manage to pull-off a fine balancing act in Darbar for both the fans and neutral viewers? Well, sometimes they do, at other times they don’t. Read my full Darbar movie review below to know more…What’s it about Darbar presents Rajinikanth as Aadhithya Arunachalam, a cop with grey shades, who doesn’t hesitate to take the law in his own hands. After being transferred to Mumbai as the commissioner of police, he sets out to clean the city of its rampant drug and flesh trade (honestly, the problem is far from as bad in Mumbai as the film shows it to be, but I’m willing to overlook this in a Rajini movie), which puts him in the path of Ajay Malhotra (Prateik Babbar) and his father, Vinod Malhotra (Nawab Shah). How Arunachalam’s willingness to get his hands dirty to get the job done seals both Ajay and his fates, and how it brings dressed international mobster Hari Chopra (Suniel Shetty) into the frame forms the rest of the plot.What’s hot Darbar is a Rajinikanth show all the way. The superstar is in terrific form, carrying almost the entire film on the combined strength of his mannerisms, body language, punchlines, inimitable gait, irreplaceable posture and indomitable swag (collectively known as Rajini-isms) alone. It helps though when your Director loves your charm and is enamoured with your nostalgia, not to mentioned is armed with a legendary DOP (Santosh Sivan) who knows exactly how to play with lighting and camera angles, plus a composer (Anirudh Ravichander) who’s score accentuates each frame. Among the supporting cast, Nivetha Thomas, who plays Arunachalam’s daughter, Valli, is the only one who makes a mark.What’s not As much as it’s adorable to see how Murugadoss understands the legend of Rajinikanth, he fails to tweak his archetypal gestures for modern sensibilities, which is likely to alienate a whole generation of viewers. It’s precisely what most Directors have failed to do this decade, and what, probably only Karthik Subbaraj got spot on, last year in Petta. As much as I’m a Thalaivar fan, even I have to admit that some things do feel fated. Also, it’s painful to see how a highly talented actress and superstar in her own right, Nayanthara is given precious little to do, unlike how Atlee had made her stand out alongside Vijay last year in Bigil.Moreover, what’s the point of casting Suniel Shetty if he only operates from the shadows till the climax and us reduced to a mere gimmick as the antagonist. The rest of the cast, including Yogi Babu — whose comedy falls flat — are saddle with caricatures characters and cliched lines. All this wouldn’t have been that much of a bother though had the screenplay not been a that of a done-to-death revenge actioner, with zero imagination. A. Sreekar Prasad’s editing does absolutely nothing to mitigate these issues.BL Verdict Darbar is by a diehard Rajinikanth fan for diehard Rajinikanth fans. Watch it if you love watching Thalaivar unleashed. I’m going with 2.5 out of 5 stars.Rating :2.5 out of 5ByRussel D’SilvaPublished: January 9, 2020 3:04 PM ISTFollow us onGoogle NewsDarbarNayantharaRajinikanthSuniel Shetty Comments – Join the Discussion

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