On the Road with Mumbai Xpress – Review

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The camera refuses to move. Stops panning and stands uptight on Vaiyaapuri’s face as he comically remarks about the kidnap plan to the deaf Kamal Hassan. Half an inch more and Vaiyaapuri’s nose would brush the camera lenses. What is an unrestrained close-up like this doing in this comedy film. Out-of-place, you would feel. So did I. As more-and-more similar shots came more-and-more closer to the characters, you know it’s different. And by that definition of different, Mumbai Xpress is very different from the comedies that we have had before. It’s an offshoot of on-the-road movie genre. By a unwritten rule, we have had on-the-road movies either being thriller or serious types. Mumbai Xpress tries to explore the arena of on-the-road comedies. It tries.

Even as Pasupathi(codenamed as A) etches the kidnap plan of a rich business magnet’s son, to his sidekicks, the movie takes-off in a high speed. From then on, it runs express speed to hire Kamal Hassan in the kidnap plan and execute it. All of this told in a way that makes you think the movie was truly shot in a single day. Singeetham’s directorial experience comes to play in executing this kidnap sequence with a professional touch. The Kidnap plan which looks like the plot of the story gets done with half hour with top class comical twists, turns from the top of a crane. The Vande Matharam sequence in the school being the best of all sequence in the movie.

While the first half completes with a bike chase, one is left to wonder how Kamal & Singeetham would manage to drag this rather simple story into the next half. The second half occupies the commercial aspects for the film. A rushed-up romance that wouldn’t gel with the plot, introduction of new characters and new confusions in the aftermaths of kidnap and resolving these knots make up for a dragging second half. Even as I say that the second half goes dragging, there are scenes which make you laugh, like a typical Kamal Hassan comedy flick. Kamal chooses to end the film with a fiesta similar to Shrek.

A kidnap plan gone wrong, an innocent circus bike driver and a bunch of foolish amateur kidnappers gives enough time and space for an adept actor like Kamal Hassan to carve a niche for himself in the film. While acting as an innocent dude is something that Kamal does in most of his comedy flicks, also irritates a viewer who would expect assortment. With that Asterix type knot around his head and colorful bike, Kamal Hassan is all out for fun throughout.

Pasupathi is one who would be the most profited from the movie. Its his character that walks away with the cake, like the Gemini Ganesan of Avvai Shanmughi. Pasupathi talks a natural Tamil slang that just rocks. His voice modulation and his facial expressions just suits the ‘Boss’ role he plays. The scene where he tackles the traffic police alongwith Kamal, WOW. Manisha looks pale and is a misfit for the role. Naaser and Santhana Bharathi take similar roles they played in Anbe Sivam.

Sidharath’s camera needs to lauded for the angels and some amazing free-flowing shots. But then, blame it on the digital movie-making that most of the effort gets wasted and overlooked. Its understandable that the crew is trying to use a movie-making which is even debated in the Hollywood but the audience were just not told of all these. An unassuming viewer would think that it’s just an act of irresponsibility to have a movie show-up grains and poor picture clarity.

Illayaraja needn’t have been there in the film. The songs needn’t be hyped so much. The film would have managed well without songs too. Yelle Nee Ettippo which plays at the background has neat music in the album. All that got lost in the film and makes one feel that Illayaraja’s efforts weren’t paid-off properly.

As said its a beginning of a breed of movies in Tamil and could not pushed aside by overlooking. I don’t seem to recall many on-the-road comedies atleast in Tamil. Thiruda Thiruda was a little adventurous than being a riot fare. Mamootty and Arvind Swamy’s starrer Puthayal was of a similar type but Mumbai Xpress is out-right comedy with more logistics than logic. You may not be inspired to watch it again and again like Michael Madana Kama Rajan or Pesum Padam but you would certainly relish the moments of Mumbai Xpress.

76 thoughts on “On the Road with Mumbai Xpress – Review

  1. I usually like to watch Kamal’s movies in theater.. but I felt this movie isn’t worth watching n theater..
    As LG said.. it doesnt inspire to watch it again and agian.. Next day I saw Chandramukhi.. It started amazingly but wasn’t like any other Rajni’s movie.. but I wld say it was better than Mumbai Exp 🙂

  2. Mumbai Xpress Review

    Lazygeek does a great review of Mumbai Xpress,

    “The camera refuses to move. Stops panning and stands uptight on Vaiyaapuri’s face as he comically remarks about the kidnap plan to the deaf Kamal…

  3. A review without a mention on the absence of Crazy Mohan. Actually speaking, thts what the movie was xactly about, in historic perspective!
    A clear departure from the recent spate of comedies Kamal was doing!
    In my previous comment in your last post, I mentioned (about Ram Murali’s superb review!) that I “almost felt the same way as Ram Murali did except for the Crazy-Mohan-absent-lament part”. I said so because, the first half was very different from what Kamal was doing in recent times (with great support from the dialogues from the Genius of Crazy Mohan!) and still evoked laughter like the better comedies from Kamal’s stable. Humour was based more on the comic incidents happenning & is visually depicted – ala Pushpak and relying very little on the dialogues. But, second half drags for quite sometime before Kamal tries to redeem himself with a climax in which he tries to clear all the knots. And this too, with some scrutinization on the screenplay could have been made as interesting as the first half.

  4. Mumbai Express seems to be very good but only in patches. You wont be seeing a flamboyant kamal here. The picture quality wasn’t that great (it was little dull), may be cos of the theatre i saw didn’t have a digital projector. The music had nothing to be mentioned for, apart from few places where BGM of Illayaraja underlines the scene. Manisha’s role was too pathetic, that too Avinashi(kamal) instantly falling for her eventhough she being a mother of 10yr old kid sounded very odd. Pasupathi is star of the show, his timing sense is too good. Atleast now he could be seen playing some comic roles instead of playing the routine villain role.

  5. Hey, i disagree with your comments on IR. He is very much plays a vital role in the movie though not in songs but in BG score. The full throttled orchestra with trumpets taking the lead in the chasing scene at the end of the first half, the interesting percussions and symphony of funny sounds in the Crane scene, the Vande Mataram song and the usage, the breezy love theme that plays in the BG when Kamal (though highly illogical) exposes his love to Manisha, the “Kurangu Kaiyil Malai” songs and its interludes finely placed in the intial moments of the planning scenes aptly gives a rich new sound to this dark comedy. According to me, i would the movie again for his BG Score alone. Also i felt the whole movie very entertaining except very few moments involving Manisha in second half. Also as Srihari said, i don’t know how you forgot about the absence of Crazy Mohan in Kamal’s comedy.

    Smile
    Sureshkumar

  6. Hey Suresh!

    Who said I forgot about Crazy Mohan’s absence in the comedy? My point was Lazy’s review didn’t even mention (leave aside lamenting) about the absence of Crazy Mohan and was quite right in doing so. Kamal himself was trying to depart from the beaten-to-glory (euphemism? no, much of their combo movies were glorious!) Crazy-Kamal combo by trying to evoke humour through the visuals rather than dialogues ala pushpak and succeeded half-way in it. You don’t get to see characters cracking jokes for the sake of humour. This movie is a departure from all these seen in his recent comedy flicks and was good in its own way as they were good in their own way.

  7. Spot on LG .. had the same feeling after watching it myself .Also i felt that Avinashi resembled Thenali minus Srilankan tamil accent ..adhei Appavi thanam & adhei paridaba nilamai !!
    Overall ‘Highlight’nu padathulla onnum perisa ellai …

  8. Oops!
    misread Suresh’s comment “i don’t know how you forgot about the absence of Crazy Mohan in Kamal’s comedy.” as being addressed to me!
    But the point I was trying to make was that this movie tries to stand on its own differing from the recently made Crazy-Kamal combos.

  9. Hi Srihari,

    Yeah, it has its own freshness, as we have more action oriented comedy than before(which was more dialgue oriented) but only very few scenes like Crane, kidnap and “Vande Mataram” sequence and some initial scenes with the Choloform bottle etc., But the second half completely relies on word play which makes one forget the absence of Crazy Mohan. Kamal is so much influenced and inspired by Crazy’s way of writing and he could not deviate much from that style though it was a worthy try. The dialgues with ABC confusions, “head mela flood poyithi, ini john pona enna joseph pona enna” are some of the trade mark Crazy’s style of penning the dialogues. I don’t think it stands that diff from recent Kamal- CRazy combos, even in his absence we could sense Crazy’s presence through Kamal’s pen.

    Smile
    Sureshkumar

  10. Srihari/Suresh, I did leave the crazy mohan lament intentionally because it may not be justified to say. Combinations needn’t be always the same. Probably if Crazy M was there there would have been good amount of play-of-words humour. But then it might carry a risk of becoming like a stage drama.

    Ofcourse, I’m a big fan of crazy’s humour but then crazy not being there should not be treated as a minus.

  11. LG,

    Ofcourse, i don’t say it is minus and also it is not a big plus for this movie in the context of trying out a diff comedy as Kamal also (most of the time) follows the same style as Crazy in the dialogues of this movie.

    Smile
    Sureshkumar

  12. i have a question for all those who have watched this movie. and i ask out of my own personal curiosity. when you were watching this movie, were any of you mentally mapping it or trying to compare it with mmkr or pushpak or any kamal-crazy mohan combination movie? secondly, when you came out of the movie, did the pros outdo the cons or the cons outdo the pros? i ask for every review ends up by saying this movie is different from the normal comedy genre and is watchable but the lead in to that final say feels negative. ie the reviews seem to paint a negative picture and then somehow end up trying to be positive about it.

    iyengarkatz

  13. vast movie , common guys think abt it they speak the same thing again and its almost like tell us to laugh for that, how many times in a movie would one focus on a comedy concerning he is deaf one time its ok not each and evrery time whe n they show kamal , and they have taken this movie like rajini movie no lgic at all , he first thing when kamal is tryuing to get pasupathi into the crane the mokey raises kamal to the top and after that how the heck did he hook up pasupathi to the crane no idea how they did it my point is kamal dioesnt leave out such a big blunder and next thing when he gives 15 lacs to kovai sarala dont they se that its full of newspaper and not money no lat nmothing different in this movie at all its just a big flop i felt negative from screen 1 , common one of the vast introduction scene in the movie , the big mistake he did is not having crazy mohan for comedy he would have had some good comedy lines into the movie , can give 3 out of 10 for this movie.

  14. Hi Lazy/Suresh!

    Lazy, I did know you left the Crazy-Mohan-Lament (nice phrase, right? I take the royalty!) and just pointed out that it was valid. C’mon, can you miss it unintentionally? :)). So we share the same view on this!

    Suresh, the ardent/crazy admirer of the Crazy-Kamal duo that I am, right from the word ‘go’, I was (quite pointlessly) analysing the absence of Crazy in the movie (if you waste your time goin thru my blog, you ll see).

    The whole discussion (my monologue, i should say) about Crazy Mohan’s absence actually was w.r.t. Ram Murali’s review of MX whose link Lazy had posted the other day (I added a comment there too that I dont buy the Crazy-Mohan-Lament part of the review).

    So, my point was that the movie stands on without Crazy’s pen and doesn’t miss him as much as many reviews point out. As I mentioned elsewhere, its true that the second half was loaded with cases of mistaken idenities, the ensuing confusion and connecting the open knots is vintage Crazy-Kamal, with some typical wordplay dialogues which Kamal has done/inspired from so many movies he collaborated with Crazy that, this kinda zany dialogues is not a “Crazy” thing anymore, but Crazy-Kamal Duo thing. But compare it with the finale of a panchathanthiram, you can see the difference in the way it is handled (that it wasn’t done much successfully is another point). The second half still doesn’t come as well as the first because it was not handled as deftly as the first half. Not because of absence of Crazy’s pen, as Kamal has consciously tried to avoid Kamal’s recent affair with heavily dialogue oriented comedy. I don’t claim its a big plus. But Crazy’s absence was not much a minus point (the way the first half was handled, predominantly).

  15. Lazy,

    Whatever goes, I hate to hate the movie. They way i laughed for “Pussan Talk”(Push and Talk) and everytime Kamal mentions Kali Koil,Daddu mentions Handsfree and more. Hilarious comedy. What i cant accept is the climax, Well, there was no climax at all in the movie.

  16. Hi LG,
    Did u see the movie on Friday night? If so, i missed a good opportunity to meet u,I was there.
    BTW,this is a fair review.

  17. Hey LG,

    You are trying to be politically correct here. It is misguiding as to whether you like the movie or not.

    Guess a review in your personal web space should reflect your true opnion about the movie instead of trying to be diplomatic.

    Ive liked a lot of your posts..but this review is more of a “nuni pull meyara” category. You havent concentrated on any of the fine details, which is the speciality of a KH movie.

  18. Anon, I am not trying to be politically right else I wouldn’t be saying that it’s irritating at times.

    Basically it a good try but the final product wasn’t laudable. Also the finer points of this Kamal movie, either got sandwiched between the comical sequences or wasn’t even highlighted by the film maker. Also to be honest there weren’t some extra ordinary highlights that I am kept to myself without mentioning.

    Thanks for liking the posts.

  19. lazy,
    am waiting 4 your chandramukhi review. would luv it if u can review it in comparison to the original manichitrathazhu

  20. I enjoyed this movie a lot. It was funny from start to finish. Though there were some unbelievable scenes like escaping thru the chimney…on a whole it was good. Infact the entire theatre(bayarea) was laughing. I cannot relate to movies like 7G-Rainbow colony(prev movie in theatre) even though I grew up in a middle class family. I found 7G plain silly. So this movie was a breathe of fresh air. I would rate it next to MMKR. To me, the only sore point was the grainy visuals. Digital filming was a bad move by KH.

    Ganesh,

    He climbs down the crane, hooks up both pasupathy and the kid and climbs up the rope. That is when the monkey turn on the crane switch. So that is perfectly plausible

  21. aprm,
    actually that scene is a mistake.he gets lifted up when he is in mid air.so there is no way he could have hooked pasupathy and the kid.There is a discontinuity there.

  22. Mr LazyGeek!! that was a insidious review. we know that the pictutre on the top is also grainy just like the movie itself. good way to say about the picture quality of the digital movie. Super thalaiva.

  23. Why is everyone comparing it to MMKR or others? When MMKR came out, many did not appreciate till it got accepted. Same with Tenali, PKS.

    We should just watch the movie for what it is. If someone wants MMKR, they should just watch it again. Because kamal tries not to repeat anything. It is all about expectations and comfort zone.

    ME will enter the comfort zone as time goes by. And it will be compared in future with others as it was done in all Kamal’s movies.

  24. Why is everyone comparing it to MMKR or others? When MMKR came out, many did not appreciate till it got accepted. Same with Tenali, PKS.

    We should just watch the movie for what it is. If someone wants MMKR, they should just watch it again. Because kamal tries not to repeat anything. It is all about expectations and comfort zone.

    ME will enter the comfort zone as time goes by. And it will be compared in future with others as it was done in all Kamal’s movies.

  25. kamal,

    i agree wholeheartedly with your comments. comparing it with old movies is of no use, for they are different in content altogether.

    cheers,

    katz

  26. yes senthil. I was talking about the ending. 2 Crores at stake, and nothing happens ?

    Actually, i was surprised and was still seated in my seat even after titles started rolling. I was expecting something more to be said. Couldnt belive that the last scene was the end of movie.

  27. Lazy, talking of digital movie making, well, i felt most of the scenes were unaffected, except those taken on wide angle, and compressed to fit the screen with aspect – ratio, alone were totally blurred or had grains (pixels). By the way, was it the Vande Mathram song played there in US, because when i watched in Sathyam, they played a different song.

  28. Hi LG,

    The review is really good & projects what the picture is. Analum namma PKS mention panna maranthutengale. “Don’t put word in my mouth’s..”

  29. Hi LG,

    The review is really good & projects what the picture is. Analum namma PKS mention panna maranthutengale. “Don’t put word in my mouth’s..”

  30. “By a unwritten rule, we have had on-the-road movies either being thriller or serious types.”

    Not true. In the sixties, there was a hilarious full-length comedy called “Madras to Pondicherry” starring Nagesh, Jaishanker, et al. It was such a big hit that it was remade into Hindi as ”
    Bombay to Goa” starring Mehmood and Amitabh Bacchaan, whose first big hit it was.

  31. To put it in a simple words..Mumbai Express was a disappointing movie. It wasn’t even interesting except for comedy and that too wasn’t funny compare it with Chandramukhi. Waiting for Chandramukhi review from you.Hopefully you do a fair review for it. The way you wrote about Chandramukhi audio isn’t good either. The songs were all hits and yet you give a so call ‘review’ for it.

    Go to indiaglitz.com to see the videos of the crowd respond for Chandramukhi from children to ladies. That said it. The winner for Tamil New Releases is ‘ CHANDRAMUKHI ‘

  32. Senthil,

    He does put Pasupathy and the kid onto the hook and only then tries to climbs up manually (y the heck wud he climb up, otherwise?) :)) That he tries to climb up the same way (instead of taking some other way to the crane) as he came down is the stupidity of the character, a la Bheem’s character in MMKR! LOL!

  33. Srihari,

    I think we both are trying to make the same point. I also agree that absence of Crazy mohan is not at all a minus. But i feel this movie doesn’t deviate much from Kamal-Crazy combo. I too agree that these word confusions are not Crazy’s style but Kamal-Crazy combo’s style. Yes, there are many action oriented comedy scenes than before which makes this movie a bit different from others. And the script and the characters give space for such moments in this movie and it is not becoz of the absence of Crazy. Even in Thenali there were lot of scenes which is completely action oriented that doesn’t take any help from dialogues but even there we had Crazy handling the Dialogues.

    Smile
    Sureshkumar

  34. Fantastic review. Thanks.

    I saw it on Saturday and felt very upset about the Video quality. I am browsing all websites to see the comments and just like you and me..everyone seems to have commented on the poor quality of Video.

    Is there any news.? any comments from Kamal on the Video quality? Just wondering.

    By the way, I’ll definitely watch the movie once again. It will be in my shelves when the DVD comes out.

  35. srihari,
    I think the mistake in the scene is because of the crane hook shoot.See kamal hooks them in the ground.But when he gets lifted the hook box is in mid air.If they are both hooked, the hook box should be at the ground level.Anyways that’s a trivial thing.

    I don’t know why all these rajini fans go around trying to put down a nice movie like mumbai express.
    I havn’t seen any negative campaign on CM, why for mumbai express??

  36. senthil,

    simple explanation. people love to hate kamal and therefore, nothing he does is ever good enough. on the other hand, when it comes to everyone else, even if they do something, it is more than enough.

    katz

  37. Since somebody asked bout video quality, i would like to mention that it is taken in 480 p resolution – that is like magnifying your tv screen to the big screen (Today’s hollywood standard is 2k resolution ie. 2000 lines/frame)

    There is no wonder why the video looks poor.
    i donÂ’t know why did kamal (of all people) make such mistake – probably to save some money.

    -sureshkumar (mail2msuresh@gmail.com)

  38. Itthe velaiya pochu….just the run of the mill movies and some crap story and u r trying to compare it with a valiant effort. Rajini movies are entertaining but do not compare them with Kamal movies cos u r making a comparison between illogical and logical movies. If so much hoo haa about Rajini, let him release it in hindi in a dubbed version and let’s see what opening it gets. Mumbai X mite not be a big hit in hindi but atleast till now has managed a good opening. Guys, whatever be the case another one from Kamal will be different again. Carry on with whatever negative comments you have abt ulaga nayakan, he’ll show to everyone that he’s a doctorate.

  39. @ Senthil: I dont think collateral had this “effect” in every scene. I thought only the outdoor scenes were like that, if at all it was grainy. I thought Collateral experimented more on the lighting.

    @ Senthil (same person?): As regards to this statement – I havn’t seen any negative campaign on CM

    Just wait till Lazy gets to watch CM and decides to review it on here. I am sure the same “negative campaign” will be directed at CM, with a dozen ppl “shouting”. It’s already begun on several other prominent blogs. I think it just comes with the territory. We shld learn to decide for ourselves if we like a movie or not, rather than deciding whether to watch it or not based on someone’s review, be it Lazy’s or anybody else’s. I have seen Chandramukhi and I found it good enough to be grouped with other Rajini movies. Its different, but I think “different” should be taken positively. And regardless of what I read about Mumbai Xpress, I will surely watch it. Because regardless of what someone else felt about it, I might just find something in the movie that might just hold my attention throughout and satisfy me.. To each his own, buddy…

  40. I totally agree with katz – “people love to hate kamal and therefore, nothing he does is ever good enough. on the other hand, when it comes to everyone else, even if they do something, it is more than enough..” The movie is an entertainer. What a movie watcher needs is to set right his expectation from de movie.His(Kamals) attempts to deliver a neat movie to the audience needs some appreciation atleast guys.. he has definitely tried to make a movie that is not keeping in line with the crap/crass or vile movies of today..I didnt note any elements of serious vulgarity in the movie..MK was quite needless..but i dont think the tamil audiences are mature enof to watch a movie devoid of an object to ogle at..That she is didnt serve the purpose is besides the point 😉 Guys..watch the movie…its very different!

  41. Even if Lazygeek gives a negative review for Chandramukhi, it woon’t be affected.

    Results of Clash of the Titans is :

    Winner : Rajinikanth!!!

    Evidence –> Visit indiaglitz.com and watch the crowd response for Chandramukhi. Some of them are ladies and you know generally ladies they don’t lie about movie.

    Even my female collegues whom are Vijay and kamal fans watched Chandramukhi said it was more interesting than Mumbai Express and Sachin.

    The public verdict is the final say.

    So kamal fans, please for heaven sake, stop whinning, moaning and crying like a baby.

    The ‘Doctor’ has catched cold after the release of Mumbai Express. He needs a medical check up, quick!!!!!

  42. Laya, Katz
    I never saw any anti-Kamal comment on this page. All i found was some people (including me) not completely satisfied by the feast.

    Mumbai Xpress is certainly a “Laugh-a-riot Movie”. Thats what Kamal promised. He also promised a Family entertainer, and even thats abided. Kamal has kept up his promises. (even my dad was amazed, how come there were not a single vulgar scene).

    But the movie is incomplete, and we have to accept it.

  43. keerthi,

    i never said that there was an anti-kamal sentiment in this page. mine was a generic claim that a lot of people love to hate kamal. i have seen it in people around me and in people not around me too. you get a sense that nothing he does ever qualifies as worthwhile or good, because the factors they apply to judge him go from near perfect expectation to inane stuff like a comment he was heard to have said in 1983! that was all i wanted to get at.

    cheers,

    katz

  44. Kreshna: Thalaivara pidikadhavangalukku, endha thalaivar padamum pidikadhu. Dont lose your voice by shouting out. Thalaivar Thalaivar dhaan. But, if u want to use Indiaglitz as “evidence” ppl are going to laugh, because Indiaglitz is the site that hosted the Chandramukhi homepage. So, sit tight and let the movie talk. Let us be the better ppl 😉
    Thats what i am trying to do!

  45. Dei anti,
    Accept the fact da.I hope you are a MAN.
    Indiaglitz did give chandramukhi a negative review.I think they are a fair website and they doing justice. If its bad they will say bad, if its good they will say good. They need not have to hide anything.
    No self publicity.

    Hey before i move on….I read in an article at cinesouth.com that kamal open his own music production and there is a poster on the article saying mumbai express break a record on audio sales. 1.75 lakh cd and cassettes sold.hahahaa

    I listen to mumbai express songs at raaga.com.
    It suck testicles. my god. what a lie.No wonder yet to hear the songs from my local radio stations.

    U better stop whinning and moaning, plus
    If kamal is the greatest actor then Rajini is the greatest entertainer.

    This was even evident in Sivaji- MGR era. One was simply excellent at acting and the other weell you should know why he was the No 1 actor then.

    Same here now.

    This kamal fans simply cannot digest the fact that mumbai express wasn’t even good a Vasool Raja MBBS.

  46. ME doesn’t meet the expectations agreed. The questions is “is it below expectation or beyond expectation?”.

  47. Kreshna, you did not get the point behind my msg!

    “I hope you are a MAN” !

    Adada… :O

    LG, don’t worry, idhukku naan react a panna poradhulla 😀

  48. PART 2/2…..

    THE FLAW

    As far as I am concerned, the movie Mumbai Express is a 2 hour brilliant movie.

    But a 3 Hour good movie.

    And thatÂ’s the flaw.

    I loved the new angle in the second halfÂ…. I can even take him wanting to marry Manisha KoiralaÂ… HmmmmmÂ….. just about.

    The change in pace and all that: beautiful; the tender moments.

    But the whole angle with the Nasser (ACP), Saxena, Santhana BharatiÂ…The 40 minutes of that sequence is what I am unhappy with.

    It was unnecessaryÂ…. Did not add valueÂ… more over, the movie could have gone on in that manner for another 3 hours – or it could have ended any timeÂ…. Arbitrary.

    And thatÂ’s the flaw.

    THE VERDICT

    Thankfully, the 40 minutes is not boring. It is funny. So, the effect of the flaw is only this:

    Imagine a Stand Up comedian. He finishes his 1-hour act to standing ovation. Seeing the response, he decides to extend his act by another 20 minutes. But this extension is made up of some random jokesÂ… funny, very funny onesÂ… but random ones, nevertheless. And he can see the audience rolling over in laughterÂ…. And when he takes the final bowÂ…. he wonders why there was no standing ovation this time.

    THE EXCEPTION

    This time, I have no qualms in saying “Mumbai Express is a Fine movie… with all its flaws”

    And I have not said that about Hey Ram or Abhay or Anbe Sivam.

    Watch Mumbai Express to see what genius can do when it applies its mind fully and honestly to its task. ThatÂ’s why it is genius. The work.

    And that’s the “majority” of Mumbai Express for you!

  49. part 1/2……
    Mumbai Express (Tamil) – 20 April 2005

    Kamal Hassan is a genius. I say this AFTER seeing the movie Mumbai Express (Tamil).

    I say this with the knowledge that, there might be many who, even as they read the first few lines of this review, will dismiss the statement as a “hyper” vent from a die-hard fan. For long I have been accused – and I use that word in its fullest meaning – as a fan of Kamal Hassan.

    Very condescendingly I have been told – almost as if a patient is being informed of his disease by a patronizing psychologist – that I say Kamal Hassan is great only because I like him.

    To this day I do not understand why in the world they donÂ’t see the simple truth! That: I LIKE Kamal Hassan only because he is GREAT.

    THE MOVIE

    There are good movies and then there are bad ones. And then there are some movies which are confused about which way they want to go.

    These movies will have flashes of brilliance, interspersed with flaws. And usually that would be the death knell for the movie – Hey Ram. Abhay. Anbe Sivam

    And then there comes this movie where-in the “good” parts are brilliant…. And the “bad” parts are good. Confused?

    Watch Mumbai Express.

    The first half of the movie, the afore-mentioned “good” part shows such brilliance!

    The PERFORMANCES of the actorsÂ…. Pasupathy, Kamal Hassan, VaiyapuriÂ….. the Horse!!!!!

    The VISUAL LANGUAGEÂ… some breath taking shotsÂ… stylized shots that flow into each other ever so smoothlyÂ… the colorsÂ…!

    The SOUND EFFECTSÂ…. Be it the omnipresent Aeroplane that threatens to run over the kidnappers – demanding they stand still in abeyance of its passing overheadÂ…Beautiful! Or the succinctly placed Horse Neighing. Re-recording music!

    All these elevate the movie to a certain level. And in this new level, the rules are changed. There are new players in this new game of comedy.

    Humour is explored through the set properties, the sound effects, the pauses of silenceÂ… camera angles, deadpan looksÂ… and yes, I almost forgotÂ… the dialogues.

    So don’t be surprised if you see on screen “Nothing”- some actors standing still, the camera in close up, and a horse’s neigh… and you find me rolling over in my seat laughing my head off!

    Yes, the rules have changedÂ…

  50. ME is comedy film as said, but not an Action coemdy. It is a new comedy type invented by kamal(vidhayasam). it is “Confuse the Dialogue” comedy type. I have seen so many people crowd leaving the theatre in the Interval. this is happening for ME.

    Only 10 days has passed, in KK Nagar Kasi theatre there are hardly 50 persons for the morning show.

    ME Vedict : BIGGEST FLOP

    Kamal is intelligent actor, intelligent enough to fool his fans & sometimes the general public.

    Some years back he was fooling his fans thru magazines that his aim was trying for an oscar. His fans without knowing the worth of an oscar award always would say that kamal would get oscar one day. Latter kamal himself admitted that oscar
    was meant only for hollywood films, & that too for persons who knows acting (not pretending acting using costumes/techniques)

    None of Kamal’s ideas are his own. All straightlifted from different english movies. This trend started with the Guna.

    Mohanlal and Mamooty are also great actors, but unlike kamal they don’t give importance to costumes. they do just plain acting and they get credit for it.

    Kamal use to fool his fans in such a way whenever you encounter a discussion with his fans they would say he is doing “Vidhayasama”, “Vidhayasama” always repeating the same word irritatingly.

    Whatever ever be the “vidhaysams”, people always give kamal films thier verdict without any vidhyasams.The verdict is mostly flop.

    So ME will not have any vidhyasams as far as the verdict

  51. For heaven’s sake plz dont ever compare Rajini’s craps with any of kamal’s movies.Somebody had commented that Chandramukhi is better than ME…Chandramukhi may be better than Rajini’s previous craps…but what needed to watch ME are humor sense and de sixth sense to watch the movie minutely..Though am an ardent fan of Kamal I accept ME is not so good as kamal’s previous same-sort of movies PKS and Pancha Thandiram.But ME guarantees u 100% nonstop comedy thus it achieved its Objective “A Family Entertainer” …

  52. Kamal expects his viewers to be intelligent. Its not his fault if they are not. I always believe that movie makers should raise the bar at all times rather than stooping low for collections sake. Hopefully Mr.P.Vasu, and many others, will get that message some day (hero creating a tornado with leg movements is too much).

  53. Thought of giving a suitable reply to Rams last comment..he was so funny to mention that Kamal always trying to something vithayasama and fails…But Mr.Ram plz refer the reviews from lazygeekf or ANBE SIVAM,VIRUMANDI pbly the best movies taken in Tamil Industry..a person with 3 National awards ,Padmashree, Kalaimamani Award and states awards from Tamil Nadu government, 17 Filmfare Awards dont have any need to get a crap opinion from a Rajini fanatic. Also can u name atleast one movie where Ur Thalaivar tried to do something Vithayasama…Excerpts form Chandramuki review(by lazygeek) also ensures the fact “Choosing a story for his re-launch after Baba was so important for him. Chandramukhi which had a perfect script for an entertainment movie, was also successful in Malayalam and in Kannada which must have pushed him to use the script in his favour.”
    Rajini in his life time cant do even a single frame like Kamal…Thats my verdict …Thats de fact that may be hard to digest for die-hard rajini fans..Lets wait n see..

  54. Pathetic movie…made for people who like to believe that whatever Kamal does is for “intelligent” viewers and whatever “thalaivar” does is for front benchers…sorry folks, CM is definitely better than ME…

  55. I totally agree with Mukunth. I dont know why people have to always praise a kamal’s movie..?
    I do respect him for his achievement in the field, but that does not count toward gauging his movies.I hardly laughed thro the movie and the movie is far from what comedy is. The reason for sure is crazy Mohan. Guys accept it. The movie is a flop. Big Time!

  56. some months back i watched kamals Moundram pirai .

    Kamal fans claim it to be classic.
    In the final scene, kanal had OVERACTED superbly that it makes people laugh. I was just laughing at the way he is acting. His showing of monkey tricks is nonsense and horrible. Acting is different from showing tricks and appying makeup’s. Infact sridevi siting ideal in the train was far better than kamal’s nonsense
    acting. After the movie was over, i had a wild imagination of shooting the jury members who gave award to kamal for this movie.

    I always felt that Rajini is a better actor than kamal. Kamal unwantedly tries to inject some complexity in his movies and
    tries to prove(fool) that this is acting. In fact acting is different from applying makeups, complex scripts etc.
    Rajinis movies are simple masala movies, but his delivery is near perfect.
    Even in Chandramukhi which is a non-masala entertaining film, his delivery is 100 % perfect.Thatz why rajini movies are better received than kamal.

    Though Kamal fans claim kamal to be oolaga Nayagan (“lauging at the tiltle, actually it should be oolara Nayagan”),
    the serious people of the indian film industry have not at all appreciate kamal. Maybe they know his stuff.
    thatz why. those people are really intelligent. Unlike kamal fans who always want to be intelligent fans ,
    but in reality they are half baked.

    Kamal vs rajini
    —————-

    First take rajini. Apart from his brilliant acting, he is recognized for his simplicity.
    Simplicity means as a “Super Star” he is not shy of remaking a 12 year old malayalam movie and giving the
    title role to jyothika. But due to his confidence in acting , makes the movie interesting to watch and
    it has become the biggest hit to date in south india.

    Now lets take kamal. Before the release of “alavandhan” in an Interview to a magazine, he mentioned (lied) that he had
    great difficulty in creating the nadhu character. But actually the nadhu character and the 15 minute graphic anaimation is
    a straight lift from the movie “NATURAL BORN KILLERS” acted by oliver stone. the original movie was actually banned in
    some european countries. By stealing scenes and character from NBK, he tried to create a powerful image for him in that
    movie. Atlast the movie bombed. In that movie for nadhu character kamal shaved his head (“mott”). after the release of the
    movie producer thanu, distributors, fans have to shave thier heads (“big motti”).

    Like this all kamal movies right from guna are lifted from english movies. (movies than don’t come to chennai, very intelligent actor)
    sometimes he steals from Polish, russian films.

  57. I am a die-hard fan of kamal but at the same time his worst critic.Kamal thinks too much of himself and thinks others are fools,otherwise he would not have done a film like mumbaiXpress.I warm him as a true fan to stop doing such 3rd rate films in the name of comedy.POsted in the public interest (of kamal of course).
    by DEVa

  58. “First take rajini. Apart from his brilliant acting”

    Thats a brilliant joke man…Rajini acts…ooooooohhhooooo

    u r very well aware that Rajini copied a movie which is a hit both in Malayalam n Kannda n very brilliantly(??) presented his ManichitraThaal-3(chandramukhi) to his die-hard fans..but u r commenting on kamal ..

    Do u know wat Fazil said in his recent iview..the very same ManiChitraThall(Chandramukis’original version) director…”They have changed a movie that has won national award into a comedy movie”..

    That says how brilliant rajini is….

  59. all remakes need not be hit. take munnabai it was huge hit whereas vasool ran for 25 days in kasi theatre. a flop movie. Watch munnabai before speaking about kamal. kamal could not even deliver 10 % of dutt.

    rajini openly gave an interview in kumudam that chandramukhi is a (legal) remake unlike persons persons who steal silently from some woods.

    u mean to say that fazil comment is more than than lakhs of persons who watched chandramukhi.

    Agree that chandramukhi had some flaws, but once
    again rajini lifted the movie to great heights. his onscreen image is one of the best the best
    )in tamil movie.thatz rajini.

    Nobody bothers about fazil. he has
    already lost his credibility in chandramukhi rights, by not paying even a single paise to the original story writer. his comments should be seen in context with the rights problem he had with vasu.

    Acting is more than applying pancakes on face.
    pancakes cannot give “gaambeeram”.

    i dont remeber kamal’ last blockbuster , may be some decades back.

    An actor who speaks volumes about world cinema but in reality makes more movies with stupid crazy mohan verbal “kaadies” not jokes and releases in some theatre like kasi and the movie run for 25 days. thatz kamal.

  60. Mr.Mani must remember that initially, very faded and -ve reviews came in for chandramuki, even fans indicated the very-low downsized play by rajni, and they all had to wait until the female and family audience came to the halls and made the film a superduper hit.

    a fan can see chandramuki a dozen times but still cannot make it a hit.

    The youth which saw this film is the same which made films like 7g rainbow colony, vasoolraja mbbs, new, autograpgh, gilli a Hit.

    apart, the main reason for this much collections mounts ONLY from the female and family audience. The 1st statement we hear from this group is “Story is Super”

    Its not new that rajni fans will credit their thalaiver’s failure always to external factos and always credit the successive films to Rajni’s superstar image

    See arunaachalam, sunder.c and deva’s bad work ONLY was blamed and not rajni charisma. but it is the same charisma which made the Cm a hit and not at all story – as said ONLY by his fans

    Not all Rajnifans are such a fools to forget the flashbacks easily after one big success.Rajni clearly said that he was waiting for a good story.

    if you claim that Cm minus rajni[or CM + any other hero] will be a flop, then CM minus this story would have been an average grosser or a normal hit like vasoolraja.

    IfMadhavan is the only reason for the success of the movie RUN, then Rajni is the only reason for success of teh move CM

  61. Kamal did lot of mistakes in mumbai xpress but soon he will return with a block buster.success is not staying victorious but rising and coming out SOON from failure. World has saw his similar comeback’s many times, unlike rajni who scratches his head everytime he fails.

    Rajni said he is an horse, not an elephant, which rises from failure very soon, but he had to wait for success of an Old Maichitrathaaz “copied” aapthamithra for 3 years. so “SOON”, in rajni’s dictionary means 3 years

  62. vasool raja a 25 day run movie. a hit?
    ha ha ha.

    Is it really a standard for an actor
    who is (somehow) a star for the last 25 years.

    Out of this 25 days please dont give another reply that all 25 days house full.
    ha ha ha.

  63. mani,

    what is ur point? vasoolraja a flop? if u belive so let it be. again i say,vasoolraja is farmore better in theme and execution than the crap chandramuki.its only the core screenplay which saved rajni this time and without chandramuki, rajni is no more and nowhere. but thats not kamal’s case. rajni and u fans always speak on collections. kamal is not like that. winning is not always important but trying is. and kamal is doing that promptly, not as slow as rajni

    people still and always have a great respect which is equal to or more than rajni, on kamal hassan as a great actor and filmmaker and also as a nice personality. he interacts more to people directly than rajni.

    good that rajni won in ChandraMuki but he or his fans dont feel comfortable when rajni films fails, this is saw on baba days and election-2004. rajni is afraid of failure and risks. but kamal loves risks.

  64. I have been reading all the comments posted and well.frankly its too much…i agree that ME was below expectations…it definitely isnt padmashree’s best..but saying that he has nvr given hits for years is too much…has rajini ever got a national award??if he is a brilliant actor..how wld u describe sivaji??rajini got a break thanks to kamal only..in the 70’s…rajini’s roles were all based arnd kamal’s roles..in K.Balanchandar’s films..except a few, say moondram mudichu…most of rajini’s films are utter crap..but run well due to his mega image..this doesnt mean the film is good..so plz..only talk abt the film..not the actors image or watsoever….im not anti rajini…im a fan of both kamal n rajini.

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