Vikram Movie Review: A star-studded action feast
Like a Petta for Rajinikanth, Vikram promised to be a fanboy’s tribute from Lokesh Kanagaraj to his idol, Kamal Haasan. Add to that, you have two powerhouse of talents in Fahadh Faasil and Vijay Sethupathi. Then there’s a cameo by Suriya. Also there’s the Kaithi connect. How could have someone brought these elements into one film? Let’s see.
By now, it’s known that ‘Vikram’ is part of the ‘Kaithi’ universe’. Like in the Karthi-starrer, this film also begins with a drug bust. The stakes are higher this time as the estimate is around 2 lakh crores. So you can imagine the threats. Kalidas’ Prabanjan is the cop who seizes the drugs and he gets killed brutally by a gang of masked men. His adopted father Karnan (Kamal Haasan) also gets murdered in similar fashion.
Yes, you read that right. The film begins in the most unexpected of forms by killing Kamal’s character within the opening 10 minutes. But it’s a Kamal film. You know that can’t happen. You know there’s more to what meets the eye. Still Lokesh keeps his cards close for almost the entire first half before unleashing the ‘ghost’.
Fahadh Faasil’s Amar and team, who are all part of a secret agency, are entrusted by the cops to nab the masked men and solve the mystery behind the series of killings. The entire first half is devoted to Amar finding the clues and more importantly, gather information about this commoner, Karnan. Meanwhile, there’s Sandhanam (Vijay Sethupathi), a dreaded gangster who heads a family of 64 members. Imposing himself as a doctor, he runs a drug cartel whose consignment is the one that goes missing.
Even though Vikram was billed as a fanboy tribute, Lokesh didn’t go by the templates. He didn’t aim for the low hanging fruits. He has come up with a solid script that offers enough moments to celebrate Kamal Haasan, the actor and the star. The director is daring enough to keep Kamal absent from almost the entire first half. It is Fahadh Faasil who shoulders the film till the all-revealing interval block. From thereon, the film goes into a full-on action feast with one set piece following the other. To elevate these scenes is Anirudh Ravichander, who once again delivers a terrific work. The songs and score are perfectly in sync with the film and effectively elevates the mass moments.
Performance wise, Fahadh Faasil hogs much of the screentime in the first half. But once Kamal takes over, it’s completely his show. Be it the swag with which he performs the stunts or the intensity in his eyes, Kamal proves who he is. There’s a scene where Amar expresses his admiration for Vikram. It was a wonderful hat tip moment for Kamal from Fahadh.
To make sure that Sandhanam stands out from Master’s Sandhanam, Vijay Sethupathi has tried to bring in a new body language for the character. Though his role gets a fiery intro, the character is not menacing as it was intended to. His dialogues also aren’t audible and so, the quirks were missing.
After all the mayhem, the stage is set for Suriya’s entry. Anything about the character would be a spoiler but one can be assured that the last five minutes of the film is an exhilarating ride.
In a nutshell, Vikram delivers what it promised. Lokesh has come up with a fitting tribute to Kamal, notably without sidelining the other actors. If the ending is anything to go by, the director is planning to take the universe forward and we already can’t wait.