Hey TC readers, I saw a film that I was quite excited for - Iru Mugan directed by Anand Shankar and starring Chiyaan Vikram, Nayanthara, Nithya Menon, Thambi Ramaiah and Nasser. The story is about an ex-Raw agent who is called back into action when an old threat re-emerges and threatens the world again.
The Good. Chiyaan Vikram, as always, steals the show. He is this generation’s Kamal Hassan. He plays a dual role in this film as both the hero and the villain. The hero role is good to the extent of the character he was given – I’ll explain further when I get into the negatives.
The villain role is where Chiyaan Vikram shines. It is such a change of pace for him and it was awesome to see him explore that type of character. Every time I saw the villain, I caught myself rooting for him which says a lot.
The other actors, from Nayanthara to Nasser, were good in their respective roles. The action in the film is well paced and shot. The director's decision to go with realistic fight sequences gives the film a more authentic feel that is needed to tell a story like this. Even when the film went with larger than life fights scenes, it was for a reason and these scenes stood out without being overdone.
The music by Harris Jayaraj is great, especially the “Halena, Halena” theme song (not the actual song). The direction is a fresh of breath air; he uses shots and a film style that is rare in Tamil cinema. There are no quick cuts or anything – every shot is there for a reason and a purpose.
The Bad. The script as a whole is extremely bumpy. It peaks and crashes at random. When I reached the 3rd act, I thought I was in a different movie. The film lost traction, causing it to give an unsatisfying end to the film. The hero character, Akhilan, is a hurt man who can’t trust anyone anymore. He loses hope in himself and the agency he worked for.
In the script, they fail to show that it starts with him as that character. Somewhere along the way, he becomes an everyday masala hero you would see in a Perarasu film. Chiyaan Vikram never gets a chance to explore that part of the character; he falls into that classic mold of heroes in Tamil cinema alongside the other characters. They all start strong but fall into the respective molds of their characters.
The Ugly. The use of the female characters. Nayanthara and Nithya play raw agents who are strong and independent - or at least they are supposed to be. Nithya is Chiyaan Vikram’s partner. While she is supposed to help him with the case, she does absolutely nothing. She actually makes things worse at some points. Whenever she gets into trouble, Chiyaan Vikram has to save her. She has literally nothing to do except to look pretty.
Nayanthara is pretty much the same character, but she is shafted more in the film when the producer or director made a choice to cut out an entire fight scene involving Nayanthara. She was built up to be a strong character but fails astronomically. The only difference between both characters is Nayanthara had a cool theme song.
Overall, the film tried something new. Even though it failed at some points, it is an OK film if you are a Chiyaan Vikram fan like me. The action, music, and some of the comedy and acting overall is good. However, the bad script and undeveloped characters (especially the female characters) fail to save this film.
I give this film a 6/10.