Movie : Kuselan/Kathanayakudu
Cast : Rajini, Pasupathy (TAMIL) / Jagapathi Babu (Telugu) , Nayanthara, Meena, Sona, Vadivelu, Vijayakumar
Direction: P Vasu
Music: G V Prakash
Production: K Balachander
Kuselan/Kathanayakudu is 2 hours, 30 minutes long.
REVIEW BY GALATTA.COM :
Kuselan (remake of the Malayalam movie Katha Parayumbol) has the special aura and look of a typical Rajni film; yet, in the place of the usual style king, audiences get to see the emotional actor in the superstar (the last scene is particularly superb!) similar to the role portrayed in the classic Aarilirindhu Arubadhu Varai. The Tamil remake has of course deviated from the original and incorporated a few interesting changes; Rajni's role has been considerably expanded, yet the movie is completely devoid of artifice and commercial frippery.
Blockbuster director P. Vasu knows audiences' expectations from a Rajni movie. With such an action hero in the lead role, Vasu has displayed commendable sagacity and showcased him with an image makeover.
The story of Kuselan goes like this: Two childhood friends grow up together in a small village, then go their separate ways. One rises to become a superstar. The other struggles through life and barely ekes out a living as a barber in the same village. When the barber and the superstar meet, there is evidently a clash of personalities. But how do they overcome their differences and rekindle their friendship?
Superstar, portrayed as superstar himself, is something nobody in Tamil cinema dared to attempt till date. The characterization itself has a touch of novelty and exclusivity. The best part is that in the role of a superstar, Rajni has taken this opportunity to answer some important questions put by his fans. Why he is avoiding politics? Why do movie cameras focus mainly on the industry's big shots likr Rajni and Kamal? Is there a secret behind his periodic visits to the Himalayas? If you watch Kuselan, you are sure to find answers to all these questions!
Though the focus is more on the superstar, Pasupathy shines as a solid performer. Particularly in a sequence where everybody lauds and reveres him as the star's friend, the timidity and longing projected from his eyes display the great actor's talent. Nayantara is simply gorgeous and Meena warms audiences' hearts. Vadivelu, as the unfortunate barber who has to abduct customers to cut their hair, is absolutely enjoyable. Sona is his sensational pair.
The gallery of supporting stars, including Livingstone (straight through Rajni's direct recommendation!), Chinni Jayanth, M.S. Bhaskar, Manobala, R. Sundarrajan, Santhanam, and T.P. Gajendran, evoke lots of laughter. G.V. Prakash's music ('Thalaiva' song tugs at one's heart-strings!), Arvind Krishna's camera and Thotta Tharani's art direction -- all these constitute Kuselan's crowning glories. After Sivaji, the movie is a fitting comeback for Rajni. Such a strong role, in which he downplays his own talents and icon status, could be performed only by Rajni, a star and visionary of highest order. And all the love and admiration his fans have for their 'Thalaivar' have worked as an uplifting breeze, guaranteeing the success of Kuselan.
REVIEW BY BUSYSPACE.BLOGSPOT.COM :
Rajinikanth appears twenty minutes after the movie begins. And remains through the length of the film, though not in every single frame. In all he appears for a total of 60 minutes.And in 3 rocking songs.
Kuselan Movie Review
Kuselan is a fun filled 2 hours, 10 minutes with about 20 minutes given over to emotional drama. There are no real fight sequences, only the ones staged for this movie within a movie.
It has two parallel stories about two friends - one rich, one poor.
6 punch dialogue sequence filled with comedy that will delight not just fans of Thalaivar but everyone in the audience.
Rajini usually has one stand-out line in every movie -here he takes that old saying, “Matha Pitha Guru Dheivam” and turns it into a new saying about the importance of freindship: “Matha Pitha Guru Nanban Dheivam”. We can bet that this is going to be a catchy line that all of us will be repeating soon.
For many of us who have been wondering a lot about Rajini’s political ambitions and his sojourns into the Himalayas, he answers us all in Kuselan with such wit and tact that it will silence us from speculating anymore!
As in Chandramuki, where the Superstar gave equal screen presence to Prabhu, Vadivelu and Joythika, here, in Kuselan, he has given importance to other actors sharing the screen with him.
The climax, with Pasupathy and Rajini, is sure to melt hearts! Pasupathy is marvelous; perhaps his best performance to date. Comedy by Vadivelu is top-notch, rivaling his performance in Chandramukhi.
Nayantara simply sizzles effortlessly, proving why she is the numero uno. Arivind Krishna’s camera work is prefect, matching the mood of the movie . This is a Thalaivar movie, and yet it is also something completely different! Thalaivar’s style here as he plays himself reaches a new high.
Overall : Movie is Entertaining
Rating : 7/10
ONE REVIEW FROM SULEKHA.COM :
Rajinikanth, the first things that strike the mind at the mention of this name are the emotional scenes, punch dialogues, and bashing of big-name baddies who give him trouble on the big screen. But contrary to belief that the actor is routinely doing commercial masala movies, this movie brings out the actor within him - thanks to the Director P Vasu. Watch Rajinikanth in his latest flick Kuselan with a complete new face – the real one without any commercial compulsions!
For those who want to know the reason why Rajini has not entered politics? Why the superstar often frequents the Himalayas? And why he still prefers to work in run-of-the-mill stuff? The movie throws light on all these facts as the thalaivar, as he is affectionately called by his fans, himself answers these questions that have been haunting the minds of his hardcore fans. Yes, you are right, Kuselan has got all the answers.
The film carries a thought-provoking message and when it comes from a Rajinikanth’s film it easily reaches the audience. The usual adage 'Matha Pitha Guru Deivam' gets an addition with ‘Kuselan’ - 'Matha Pitha Guru Nanban Deivam'. Rajinikanth is a natural and he carries out his role with consummate ease – the magic is he always goes with the flow. It’s like watching Sachin Tendulkar on song at the middle of the crease and even more listening to Beethoven's symphony sitting under the moonlight.
Kuselan is all about two childhood friends. One of them becomes a super star in the film industry while the other turns into a barber in a hamlet. Balakrishnan alias Bala (Pasupathy) is a poor barber in a village. He lives with his wife Sreedevi (Meena) and his children. This is when a film crew lands in their village to shoot for a movie. Balan learns that super star Ashok Kumar (Rajinikanth) has come for shooting in the village and also realizes it is none other than his childhood friend. Bala has a fear in meeting Ashok Kumar thinking that he may not identify him. But, when the two meet after a long gap, the emotional drama between the pals, sets up an emotional 20-minute climax.
The story line is not actually spun around Rajinikanth but he manages to leave his impression on the audience especially towards the climax when an emotional Rajinikanth identifies his friend recalling their good old innocent days. Portrayed excellently on the screen, these sequences bring tears to our eyes and also invoke the human side of each of us to the forefront.
Coming to Pasupathy’s performance, it’s a big task for an actor like him to work on the big screen alongside a person who dominates the audiences’ attention like Rajinikanth. Pasupathy plays the role of a poor barber who fights for his survival. An extension of his role in ‘Veyyil’, Pasupathy performs no less and moves the heart of the beholder.
Meena, Tamil cinema’s numero uno actress of the 90s, plays the role of a typical Indian wife to Pasupathy understanding the emotional struggles of her husband and gives him the much needed solace and comfort. Her experience in the tamil industry reflects in her performance and she has done an extremely good job.
Nayantara simply sizzles effortlessly, proving why she is the lead actress of the times. Unlike Chandramukhi, she fulfills the glamour quotient well in this movie. Vadivelu's comedy compliments the script well especially the scene when he plays a trick to get an audition with Rajinikanth makes the audience rock with laughter.
The movie has a fantastic star cast including Livingston, M S Baskar, Sona, Geetha, Fathima Babu, Brahmanandham, Chinni Jayanth. Arvind Krishna’s camera work is prefect, matching the mood of the movie. A whole host of stars including Sneha, Soundarya Rajinikanth, Suriya dance to the tune of the ‘Cinema Cinema’ song.
The music is good to hear especially the numbers ‘Om zarerare’ and ‘Cinema Cinema’ have been made attractive by Arvind Krishna. The background score towards the climax sets up the momentum in the movie.
The Superstar effect has taken over and it is coming to hit you.
Be prepared for sumptuous Rajini treat!
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