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Gangs Of Madras Movie review
Producer C.V. Kumar turned director with Maayavan, that had a unique premise on paper, in 2017. The acclaimed producer has now come up with his second directorial. This time, it is an intense action gangster drama titled Gangs of Madras. As the title suggests, the film is about gangsters residing in North Madras and how a sudden death turns their lives upside down. The core plot of the film might look similar to Dhanush's gangster drama - Vada Chennai (the Chandra episode), but on a larger picture, the treatment and the flow of this film is different from the former.
This C.V. Kumar directorial has debutante Priyanka Ruth playing the protagonist and she looks convincing as Razia, a woman filled with anger, frustration, agony, and vengeance. The newbie has given her fullest best and she is apt for the role. She gets punched, she gets attacked, she gets bruised. Later, she fights back which exhibits her great potential as an actor. It is a gutsy role to take up in her very first film, that too, taking full charge of moving the proceedings forward and on that note, kudos to Priyanka Ruth. If the right projects fall into her kitty, she might become the next most wanted actress in K-town.
Velu Prabhakaran is menacing as Mohammad Rawther but the intensity and the importance of the character aren't felt. For instance, despite being a very short role, the importance of Rajan in Vada Chennai is experienced through the proper staging of scenes and that helps the viewers to connect with the characters and the story. In GoM, that goes missing and the writing looks weak. Except for Razia, the character arc is weak for others and with a better detailing, the other characters could have made a difference to the proceedings. A powerhouse talent like Daniel Balaji is not put to the fullest use and his character ends up flat in the second half. His character's involvement in the final scenes could have added up to the tension. However, Daniel aces his role within the stipulated screen space and time. Other actors are pretty decent, though you could witness some staged artificial performances from a few supporting actors.
Coming to the writing, it looks like C.V. Kumar has taken a convenient route to make his protagonist achieve her goal. She is someone who doesn't have even the smallest of ideas about the functioning of this dark world. In that way, Razia doesn't face even one small setback in her mission. This convenient writing reduces the excitement factor and as a result, you are able to predict the scenes. Bloody gore is seen through the action sequences and the 'A' certification is justified. The gruesome violence is demanded in a premise and world like this. Kudos to the team for not compromising on the violence factor.
The film gains momentum post the entry of Daniel Balaji and you get a super engaging pre-interval scene. The interval sequence will warm you up for an intense second half. The latter half does engage you at regular intervals, but as a wholesome picture, the weakly written characters, uninteresting subplots and unnecessarily wavering deviations reduce the intensity.
On the technical front, GoM's cinematography is perfect and the visual tone of the film is enticing. The mix of the red and green tones in the colour palette supplements the mood of the film. The aesthetic framing and movement shots are also neatly executed. DoP Karthik is impressive in bringing out the written lines into visual form. The songs by Hari Dafusia do not make a big difference, while Shyamalangan's background score does have major influences from Jigarthanda's musical score. The intense BGM aids the film. Radhakrishnan Dhanapal's editing could have been crispier (like the unwanted message angle at the tea shop) and one could also see a lot of fade ins and fade outs and you might wonder if it is overdone. The VFX looks tacky and it dilutes the impact of the violence as the blood isn't terrifying, but artificial. In a nutshell, GoM is a decently engaging gangster drama that could have been better with strong characters, writing and execution.