Kabali – A Review

If you see this film after all the hype and hoopla created by the media, you will be highly disappointed. Believe me, it’s a big flop show (with apologies to all fans of Rajanikant). But if you see it as yet another inconsequential movie of Rajanikant, then you will perhaps okay it. With mindless violence, stupid punch dialogues and pointless plots and counter plots, the film is a complete drag. Oh, no, I’m mistaken – as a fan of Rajani pointed out, there is a point that the film wanted to make. That is, the ends justify the means! So, our hero may be excused for taking law into his hands, killing a few gangsters and making murderous attempts on several others. By the same logic, of course, the director of the film may be excused for making sure the hero escapes unscathed in several violent encounters where he is badly outnumbered by tough looking thugs..It’s as if the hero is blessed with a boon of invincibility and immortality. Contrast this with how the bad men die without any effort on the part of the hero.

But then do not forget that the hero had a mission. It appears that he wanted to rescue children recruited by the drug mafia and rehabilitate them in a school meant to give them complete freedom. But the viewers get no clue as to how this is achieved or even attempted. I’m perhaps naive to expect such details from a hero with magical powers. Well, my expectation is flawed and perhaps influenced by films such as TARE JAMIN PAR or THREE IDIOTS where Amirkhan goes deep into a social problem and tries to find practical solutions.
In one scene towards the end, a sensible child of the school puts an impertinent but very relevant question to the hero. She asks: OK, you have rescued us and given us school education. What will we do now after this. We will be jobless and again wander aimlessly. Evading an answer, our hero asks: “Why are you asking me this question. I’m only an unruly & disruptive rowdy”. What an honest confession to make by a hero with an almost flawless image!
In a surprising twist, the audience comes to know that the hero is after all fighting for justice for Tamilians. To depict the encounters with the mafia as a conflict between Chinese & Tamilians, is too far-fetched and seems too parochial.

While the film gives us no clue about how he reforms the children after rescuing, even the end of the film is left to our imagination. One wonders whether Rajani is alive or dead after all the heroics. Anyway it’s an inconsequential debate in my view.

I must point out, though, that I liked the film for a completely different reason. This film brought back the memories of an old English classic – Schindler’s list – released in early 1990s. The theme of this film is similar, that is, the ethical ends justify illegal means. The similarity ends there, of course. The film has a very powerful plot. It’s about an ethnic German industrialist by name Oscar Schindler, who moves to Hitler-occupied Poland to make his fortune. He recruits a number of Polish Jews as cheap labour to run his factory. He finds a local jew to finance his venture and befriends a Nazi military officer whom he influences to hire more workforce than actually needed by his factory. He bribes the local Nazi administration to get extra food to supplement limited food supplied through ration cards. Adopting all such illegal means, he saves about 1200 Jews from the trap of death in the concentration camps. Here is a businessman who comes to Poland to make his fortune, he makes his wealth and uses it up to save several lives of jews.(By the way, the film is based on a real life story)

Published in: on July 31, 2016 at 8:11 pm  Leave a Comment  
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