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Muni: ‘Thrill Bill’: The Fear Factor
Movie review

Muni Movie Review

Cast: Lawrence Raghavendra, Rajkiran, Vethika

Direction: Lawrence Raghavendra

Music: Bharadwaj

Production: Saran (Gemini Production)

It’s after a long time that a horror-thriller-supernatural kind of film has hit screens in Tamil Nadu. It is a genre that was considered almost dead or as one that was monopolized by B grade English movies dubbed into Tamil and given some crazy titles. Along comes Muni and proves that an intelligently made movie of the horror-supernatural genre still has takers, a lot of them.
Muni is a story that revolves around Lawrence. The only son to his parents, he is brought up in an overprotective manner and grows up hearing lots of stories about spirits, ghouls, banshees, draculas and ghosts of all other types. As a result he ends up as a coward who is afraid to venture out of home after dark. Lawrence and his family have to shift their residence. The new house has something eerie about it, Lawrence and his family are not the only ones living in the house; there is someone else- enter Raj Kiran. You don’t get to see Raj Kiran, but only a mutilated half burnt corpse which takes a special liking to Lawrence and enters his body. Some of the scenes involving the half burnt form are good enough to send a chill down the spine of even people with a rock solid heart.
The first half comes to an end after keeping you riveted to your seats for over an hour. It casts a spell, the ghost does not get off your mind, the first half is ‘Thrill a minute.’
Then the second half commences, there is a let down of sorts here. Even though the first half scares the wits out of you, it does not tire you. You are asking for more excitement in the second half. But then the flash back of Raj Kiran, the person assumes prominence on screen. This was one part that should have been done in a very crisp manner. But what we get is a rather extended sequence with a generous sprinkling of comedy. Not that the comedy is boring, it is enjoyable; but we are just not in the mood for it. The comedy scenes involving Raj Kiran have a negative effect on the scary image that had been built around the ghost in the first half and when narration returns to real time you don’t feel as intimidated by the spirit as before.
The climax fight between Rahul Dev and Lawrence involving the use of a lot of magical aids (a la Harry Potter) has been very well shot. Watching this kind of a fight usually makes us feel like fools, this one does not. By the time the final credits roll by the director has redeemed the pitfalls at the start of the second half.
Lawrence turns out an energetic performance. He looks convincing in every frame and does more than expected. He does not fail to delight in the dance sequences; he lets himself go all out especially in the Kula Kula Dracula song (innovative lyrics: courtesy Pa Vijay). Raj Kiran’s experience shines through. He is menacing as the spirit and does well in the comic scenes in the flashback. Kovai Sarala makes an impression after quite some time.

Technically too the movie maintains high standards. Good camera, professional editing all add to the viewing experience. Bhardwaj’s music does not disappoint, however it is S.P.Venkatesh’s BGM that is the real clincher. It adds to the suspense and tension in the first half; full marks. The sound effects too, using a technology new to Tamil cinema are top class.
Let’s sum it up this way. Muni is not a movie that you cannot afford to give a miss. It’s not a classic but it is different, daringly and scaring. If you are the type who loves to be jolted off your seat, Spielberg style or the one who likes getting spooked then this is the right movie for you.

Muni: Thrilling ride; hop on and enjoy.
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