Annadurai movie cast: Vijay Antony, Diana Champika, Mahima
Annadurai movie director: G. Srinivasan
Annadurai movie: 1 star
Music composer-actor Vijay Antony’s new release Annadurai is about the suffering of a family of four who fall victim to the unscrupulous practices of a moneylender. It is such a coincidence that just days before its release on Friday, producer Ashok Kumar committed suicide at his residence blaming popular film financier Anbuchezhiyan for forcing him to take the extreme step. Vijay was one of the first celebrities to come out in support of Anbuchezhiyan claiming the industry does not function on usurious loans as against the popular belief. Vijay’s remarks are debatable, as the majority of the film industry says otherwise.
While Vijay completely denies the presence of usury in the Tamil film industry, he knows the pain and suffering that the abusive practices in the moneylending business could bring upon their borrowers. And the result is Annadurai, which is a gigantic misstep in his career. Even as he is still due to deliver a memorable performance in his career, it seems like a massive error of judgment to have played a dual role in the tedious film that leads us to the obvious conclusion that we have known all along. Vijay plays a twin, Annadurai and Thambidurai. Writer and director of this film G Srinivasan seem to have had Sarath Kumar’s character Ayyadurai from film Ayya as his inspiration while writing Annadurai character. And even wanted to create a similar impact on the audience like the 2005 film with his venture. But, he has failed and how.
Annadurai has too many minuses and I stopped counting at 48. The director wants to sell Annadurai character as the embodiment of all goodness of human race. The film begins with Annadurai preaching to a girl, who he saved from her attackers, not to report the crime as everyone will blame her for being out in the night so late. Isn’t he indulging in victim blaming and still we want to accept him as a good person?
Annadurai develops a drinking problem because his girlfriend died in an accident. He drinks so much that he becomes such an embarrassment to his own family. And yet he is passed off as an ideal human being. He ruins the lives of his family members and the loved ones. His brother Thambidurai’s life is destroyed because of him and yet the director expects us to believe in his goodness.
Earlier Srinivasan said Annadurai will take a position in the 50 best films ever made in Tamil cinema list if it was ever made. Unless he is the one who’s writing the list, I don’t have hopes of this film joining that coveted list. Srinivasan’s writing and direction belong to the 20th century, it doesn’t even have the residues of something that resembles the 21st century. The bracelets of hero and heroine getting caught, which is a symbolic way of telling they are destined to be together, that is the style from the 70s.
In another scene, the main villain played by Radharavi wants to frame Thambidurai for the murder of a cop. He kills his own associate in the police department by hacking him to death. And tells his gang to throw his body someplace else and keep a hockey stick next to it. So, everyone will assume it is Thambidurai who killed the cop. How come you may ask? Wait for it. Because Thambidurai used to work as a P.T. master in a school. Yes, one of the major facepalm moments. There were several such facepalm moments in the film that were so ridiculous, they may even make you laugh at times. In one scene, Annadurai surprisingly asks a woman cop, why has she come to arrest the guy who has done two murders without any backup or even a handgun. It was unintentionally funny as he seemed sort of offended by the thought that the woman cop didn’t think he was dangerous enough.
Vijay is terrible in the film as he looks clueless as to how to play a double role. He can’t do better than speaking in monotone and looking sad all the time.
Srinivasan’s idea of good men is so flawed. Preaching girls about what girls should do or not do. Giving money to a beggar. Or being a drunkard or stupid enough to sign a blank document while taking a loan. Causing pain to his own family among others things are definitely not glowing qualities of a good man.