Review by : Behindwoods review board
Starring: Jai, Rahman, Priya, Lakshmi Rai, Santhanam, Sampath, Urvashi
Music: Yuvan Shankar Raja
Production: Dream Valley Corporation
Having established his potential in the cult flick Chennai 28 and the surprise hit Subramaniapuram, Vamanan is Jai’s attempt to experiment with mainstream cinema. Directed by I Ahmed, Jai’s action thriller could have worked if it had a better screenplay. Or simply if it was released earlier, for we have had smarter thrillers in the past few months, the movie’s soggy screenplay seems to be just inexcusable.

The movie opens with the superhot Lakshmi Rai, trying to do a desi Bo Derek, shooting for an emerging-from-the-sea-dripping-wet scene shot using a Radio-controlled helicopter (for the first time in a South Indian film, it is learnt). After filming her in all angles, the device loses control and goes missing from sight. The distressed crew sets out in search of the thing for there are vital portions of the footage lost with the RC. Eventually, they find the helicopter in a tree trunk. They also find footages of a murder filmed by the device whilst on its prowl.

When the committers of the politically motivated murder discover the whereabouts of their recorded act, they set
out to hunt down the parties who own the video cassette. The movie unfolds, thus, in a series of chase exercises and culminates into a climax. The half hour pre-climax serves as the movie’s most thrilling moments, you almost wish the entire movie was handled the same way.

From swift stunts to rapid dance movements, Jai has got it all. And he has got everything right. As the aspiring youngster Anand who gets tangled in a mess putting the lives of his mother and girl friend in danger, Jai seems to be willing to do more for the role. Sadly enough, his skills are grossly underutilized in the movie. Blame it on the script or the director.

Lakshmi Rai’s sizzling screen presence peters out as her character is nothing more than an innocent bombshell victim who gets killed in the maze of things. And Priya is less than impressive. The other roles, played by Thalaivasal Vijay, Rahman and Sampath Raj are satisfactorily etched out. It’s heartening to watch Rahman after a long time on screen. But with Urvashi, it’s not the same. Someone needs to tell her that her chatterbox-housewife style comedy is just so not in; it tires you out more than it entertains. On the other hand, Santhanam and Jai’s combo in the first half serves as a push in the movie’s proceedings, albeit negligibly.

Aravind Krishna’s camera work screams for more attention and feels mediocre in the end. Ditto with Yuvan’s music. The insipid background score complements the dreary and jaded songs.

Vamanan has a story that probably would have sounded promising on paper. What transpired when it made its way to the screens is a product that needed a lot more fine-tuning. The writing lacks the required inventiveness for an action thriller and the screenplay is further weighed down with illogical scenes that stick out like a sore thumb.

Verdict: No great shakes!

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