Lingaa (Tamil) - Review

wogma rating: Add to 'must watch' list (?) - Watch on big screen only for the unparalleled Thalaiva hysteria!
quick review:

The only thing that is worth watching in the latest Rajnikanth film is Thalaiva himself. Otherwise, it's a disaster of proportions that can only be dwarfed and saved by the magnitude of great man's aura.

Reviews

11511 views

Click on the tabs below for wogma review, external reviews, user reviews, and twitter verdict

Wogma Review

There is only so much that the searing, blistering persona of India's biggest superstar can do, when the film surrounding him is an ordinarily written, poorly directed and shoddily produced mess.

The fact that Lingaa, directed by K. S. Ravikumar (director of one of Thalaiva's biggest hits, Padayappa,) is unworthy of the phenomenon that is Superstar Rajnikanth is no surprise, because very few films are. The disappointment lies in the fact that it fails to enhance or add to the legend of the great man - something that every 'commercial' film built around him now must strive to do.

It can't be too hard, really. The very presence of Thalaiva means his fans will lap up absolutely everything with unconditional joy. Why not risk doing something that will push the envelope to unheard of places - the kind that will take Indian cinema itself to the next level?

Shankar - the only Indian director who at least comes close to possessing the vision to match the Rajni aura - did it to some extent with Sivaji - The Boss and Endhiran. Even Soundarya's Kochadaiyyan was a film that at least tried something unheard of in Indian cinema. In the wake of these films, Lingaa is an unmitigated disaster, when seen purely in cinematic terms.

The strange thing is that one can't accuse the film of not having a story, because it has one, and it is one that had potential. A thieving hoodlum and his sidekicks come to a village that depends on a dam for its livelihood - a dam that is tied intricately with an aspect of the man's past. There's a plot angle that it shares with Kochadaiyyan as well, though I don't want to reveal it here. Not revolutionary, but the story definitely had potential - especially since it gives the film a lot of openings to talk about issues that have been plaguing India all through its past and continue to do so even today.

Thalaiva gets to play saviour yet again, and that's always fun to watch. The problem lies in the juvenile screenplay and some truly atrocious VFX - the kind that an intern at a mid-level animation house would be able to achieve with some amount of hard work.

The film has so many in-jokes, so many references and hat-tips to the Thalaiva legacy, that it becomes hard to take seriously at any point. Superstar is what he is because of the characters he plays in cinema. To have a film that tries to be too clever with its references means that you're always breaking the illusion for the audience. They may be clap-traps, but they destroy the film in the long run.

Another disappointment are the regressive sidetracks involving women. One would love to see a Rajnikanth film where the women have something to do apart from being objects of curiosity, and I'm sure Thalaiva himself would gladly acquiesce to be a part of such a film. Even the most hardcore and male chauvinistic Thalaiva fans wouldn't mind seeing him do such a film. The problem is the filmmakers who make their living by mooching off the Thalaiva aura clearly don't seem to think that women matter in the larger scheme of things.

Sonakshi Sinha, who plays one of the two female leads in the film, plays the same ditzy girl she plays in every film that she's been a part of, save for Lootera. I'm surprised she hasn't exploded yet with the weight of the sheer same-ness of her existence.

Is there a redeeming factor in the film? Of course there is - Superstar Rajnikanth himself. His screen presence is blinding, the conviction with which he emotes is inspiring, and the pure magic that can be the only explanation for the unlikeliest man becoming India's biggest screen god is on full display. There's no one like Superstar Rajnikanth simply because there is nobody like Superstar Rajnikanth. Everything else, including K. S. Ravikumar's slipshod film, pales away.

This review is by guest reviewer Pradeep Menon. Pradeep is a filmmaker and a dreamer. He loves books, rain, winters, tea and his parents. Cinema, however, is the only truth he believes in. He breathes and bleeds film, mostly in hues of saffron, white, green and blue. You can watch his short films at www.youtube.com/cyberpradeep.

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: Action scenes, but all clean.
  • Language: Clean.
  • Nudity & Sexual content: None.
  • Concept: A man comes forth to protect a village and legacy of his lineage.
  • General Look and Feel: Bright and loud.

Detailed Ratings (out of 5):

  • Direction: 1.5
  • Story: 2
  • Lead Actors: 4
  • Character Artists: 2
  • Dialogues: 1.5
  • Screenplay: 1.5
  • Music Director: 2
  • Lyrics: 1

Lingaa - Movie Details

Lingaa - Trailer

If you cannot see a video above, click here to see it on YouTube

Comments (12)

Click here for new comment

Fan:

Move over AJ, Lingaa is coming. Hope that there would be a Hindi version.

Anup:

Fan - Of coarse there is a Hindi version,,,,havnt u seen the trailer,,,,the movie just looks like a bad version of SIVAJI THE BOSS....
And yes we have Sonakshi Sinha doing Sonakshi Sinha in it.....How thoughtful casting.....If Sonakshi Sinha wants herself to be typecast in same roles as she always say she want to act in masala movies because she herself likes to watch such movies ,,,,, then this is a dream come true for her ,, infact Even Tollywood have typecast her.....(Although its altogether a different topic that she can gain some great experience from the biggest masala movie hero of India - RAJNI SIR).....I just Hope that Anushka Shetty have more screen time as compared to Sonakshi Sinha......

Fan:

@Anup: Not yet seen the Hindi trailer. Rajni has a larger than life image, and it should be nice to see him after a long time. Kochadaiiyaan was nice but Rajni in flesh and blood should be better.

Anup:

Fan - Not sure ,, the trailer was below average ,, and the songs by Rehman only make it worse....That time has gone when only the presence of Rajni could have Change a bad movie into an entertaining one......

Anup:

Its not just that the songs are average but they are long ,, really long,,,,which confirms that they will defiantly bore in between the movie ,, which was also the case in ROBOT which could have been a little better movie if those 6 and a half min songs would have been edited....
And the fact that this will be a movie by the director K S Ravikumar which if u dont know let me tell you have made DASAVTARAM with Kamal Hassan which was a really interesting film but has recently given the bollywood disaster called POLICEGIRI....
So it would be my hummble advise keep ur expectations low....

Fan:

Anup: thanks. Will scale down the expectations. Trailer gives an impression that it is based in the pre independence era. Even though clothes and dressing sense look distinctly 2014.

moviebhakt:

Seemed to me more like a review of Rajni/Thalaiva/Superstar than the film itself :). Well, to each his own...

Anup:

Like What I have expected

jj:

To be honest this is a pointless review, its nothing more than idol worship. Just because some Superstar has acted it doesnt make it a watchable movie.
Thankfully I dont go anywhere near a Rajnikanth movie after seeing him butcher a beautiful Thenmavin Kombathu and massacring a classic Manichithrathaazhu.

Pradeep:

moviebhakt and jj: The review is very clear about the fact that the film is terrible, the writing is terrible, the music is terrible, the VFX are terrible, the regressive manner in which women are treated is condemnable, the direction is slipshod, so please don't waste your time on it. My ratings confirm the same. Anything else in particular you were looking for? Do let me know, I'd be more than happy to comment.

meetu:

@moviebhakt @jj I don't see where you got the idol worship from? I haven't seen the film but from reading the review I got the impression that it is passable affair for a Rajni fan or a person who can watch *any* film for Rajnikant - the group the reviewer clearly belongs to. In that sense, it is a pretty objective review - it doesn't go all gaga about a film, just because a particular actor is in it. It clearly states, film is awful, but made watchable for Rajni fans because Rajni is Rajni.

Fan:

Disappointed with the film. Intentions seem good and so the average rating.

Leave a new comment