Director: Lokesh Kangaraj
Cast: Vijay, Vijay Sethupathi, Malavika Mohanan, Arjun Das, Andrea Jeremiah, Shanthanu Bhagyaraj
Catching a mass entertainer at the theater on a Pongal morning is an experience in itself. The wolf whistles for the hero’s entry, the fanatical applause that is followed by punch dialogue and collective joy as the hero cuts down on a series of villains make the Pongal movie experience a lot of fun. Master is a movie tailored for such a community experience.
Vijay’s fans are spoiled for choice when the actor brings all of his signature moves to the garden. However, fans of writer-director Lokesh Kangaraj will be disappointed. After making an impression with Managaram and Kaithi, this is Kangaraj’s weakest film to date. It has all the trappings of a mass entertainer, and as a result, the movie as a whole suffers.
Read: Stills by Master
Thematically it is interesting because it is about reformation, the state of youth homes and prisons. But what could have been a much better movie is reduced to a star vehicle.
Vijay plays Professor JD and is an oddly revered alcoholic. It is barely functional, but students and teachers cover it and adore it every step of the way. This acclaimed alcoholic is going to reform a youth home.
The film serves as a vessel for Vijay’s many messages to his fans. From his take on entering politics to why college elections prepare the first voters to participate in democracy to the dangers of addiction, the actor has some heavy preaching messages for his devoted fans.
By referring to Ajith’s Aaluma Doluma and Surya’s Varanam Aayiram Vijay, Vijay also subtly tells his fans to stop the star wars they are indulging in. These are honorable messages and intentions, but that alone doesn’t make a good movie.
Read: Master Movie Twitter Review: Fans Shower Love On Vijay’s Entertainer, Declare It ‘Blockbuster’
Also, it’s worth noting that the word “government” is censored in the “government doesn’t listen to its people” dialogue. Whether self-censoring full-time or mandatory, it’s a puzzling move.
Vijay Sethupathi sinks his teeth into the role of a formidable adversary and steals the show for as long as he can. It’s a predictable climax and you can guess who will come out on top.
Malvika Mohanan, who plays the female lead, hardly has any screen time. Some of the kids in the youth home have more to do in the movie than they do. She adequately looks up to the hero and that is the role she must play.
Andrea Jeremiah has a blink-and-miss role that minimally redeems itself in the climax, but the rest of the cast such as Ramya Subramaniam, Sriman and Nassar are wasted in this star vehicle.
Anirudh Ravichander’s tapping music is the legacy Master will leave behind. It is possible for a movie to entertain without being good, Master is an example.
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