2.0 / 5.0
By: Rajarajan V.S.
***** SPOILER ALERT !!! *****
Reportedly, this is the second outing for Vijay Sethupathi and Gokul. Idharkuthaane Aasaipattai Balakumara worked big time then and turned out to be a cult black comedy. The major reason for that is Gokul knew what he was doing with Sethupathi and stuck to the basics of the genre. In the case of Junga, Gokul does not know what to do with the ‘star’, Sethupathi. Pity on the director.
It is disheartening to watch a top-notch actor like Sethupathi drowning in the shallows of the character. We can literally sense his two-minded state of being on screen through his eyes as to whether Gokul’s abrupt mix will work or not. Their bad, nothing really works except for a handful of comedies. Sethupathi’s dialogue delivery is not clearly audible in most places and he shouts out certain dialogues which is kind of noisy.
Neo-noir, black comedy, spoof, romance, masala – Gokul sprinkles all these genres, but only as a garnishing at the cost of the recipe. Every aspect of the movie is inconsistent because Gokul’s focus keeps wavering throughout. What is touted to be a star vehicle, does not put the star on the driver seat.
Junga being a penny pincher (probably a spoof of the Prabhu starrer, Budget Padmanabhan) because his ancestors wasted all their money at the cost of being dons; the enjoyable transformations of the one who plays Junga’s grandmother, the north Madras slang of Saranya as Junga’s mother and Yogi Babu’s typical sense of humour; the set pieces involving people hopping on to Junga’s jeep, murdering a rapist, the Vito Corleone spoof and tamarind rice on aeroplane – these are some of the handful of instances in which we invest our interest considerably.
Madonna’s presence is a mystery. Sayyeshaa showcases a dance extravaganza and shows off her fair skin. May be she never knew she had to act in first place. The production value seems to be high. They have gone all the way to Paris (not the Chennai Parry’s – this is a comedy in the movie) to shoot more than a hour long footage, well, that is the second half, which is mundane to the core. At least, they could have spent that money on a editor who actually knows how to edit a feature film. Pity on the producer.
Speaking of the second half, the entire stretch is all about insanity. Junga swims across the country in a river and they also mention that the temperature of the water body is below 0 degree Celsius; a car chase involving costly, first class cars and all that we get to witness is the cars in motion and the noise of tyres screeching; a silly mafia sequence that comes out of no where.
The runtime of about 160 minutes is a test of patience. Junga is a star vehicle that neither knows its path nor its destination. Come on, who would board such a vehicle. If already boarded, getting down half the way is better off. Or regret for being on-board for the second half.
Cast: Vijay Sethupathi | Sayyeshaa | Madonna Sebastian | Yogi Babu | Saranya Ponvannan | Suresh Chandra
Crew: Writer / Director: Gokul | Cinematographer: Dudley | Editor: V.J. Sabu Joseph | Music Composer: Siddharth Vipin
Production: Vijay Sethupathi Productions – Vijay Sethupathi, Arun Pandian
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