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Pokkiri: Watch only for Vijay, Asin
Shwetha Bhaskar
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January 15, 2007 17:42 IST

Watch Pokkiri only if you are a fan of Vijay and Asin because there's nothing more tedious than a badly made remake. The Tamil remake of the Telegu smash hit, revolves around Tamizh (Vijay), a local 'freelance rowdy' with good intentions. He falls in love with aerobic instructor Shruthi (Asin), who is financially supporting her younger brother and widowed mother. The movie becomes more violent after Shruthi becomes the target of the lust of the local paan chewing police inspector L Govindan (Mukesh Tiwari), who is as corrupt and seedy as it gets.

Tamizh allies himself with a local gang. However, when Shruthi sees his ruthlessness while executing his ruffian tasks first-hand, she becomes extremely distraught and confused about her lover's true nature.

A series of brutal encounters between rival gangs forces the head of the aforementioned faction, the kohl-eyed international don Ali Bhai (the normally dignified Prakash Raj) to fly down to Chennai from Dubai. He has a "passion for killing people" and enlists Tamizh's support for the same. However, he gets arrested by the more morally upright elements of the police force and also gets subsequently released when his goons kidnap the police chief's (Napoleon) college going daughter and threaten to ruin her life irrevocably. From here on, the plot suddenly goes into fifth gear, with a series of surprising twists you probably wouldn't have seen coming (especially since by this point, one would have, in all likelihood, lost all enthusiasm, developed a headache and gone to sleep).

In all, Pokkiri has three types of scenes all glued together in a completely random fashion: (1) Vijay beating up goons, (2) Vijay and Asin involved in their blossoming romance and (3) someone making lewd advances at one of the women in the film.

A poor attempt at comedy by Vadivelu in the midst of all this confusion does not go well with the audience.

A combination of a weak story line, stilted script and mediocre dialogues failed to recreate the success of the Telegu original.

The fight choreography by Fefsi Vijayan shines at rare instances, but is monotonous on the whole.

The songs by Mani Sharma, which pop up one by one unfailingly before you have barely recovered from the last one, are ho-hum.

Prakash Raj is dramatic, to the point of over-acting. Character actor Mukesh Tiwari does a remarkably effective job of coming across as a genuine creep. Nasser does well in his miniscule role.

On the whole, the movie is held together purely by Vijay, whose baby face good looks and understated style, is one of the two saving graces (the other being Asin) of what is otherwise a thoroughly agonizing film.

Director Prabhudeva, after gaining the much-coveted rights to remake this film in Tamil amidst heavy competition failed to do justice to the film.

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