‘Kaala’ Film Review: Rajinikanth and Nana Patekar Are Riveting

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Talking about stating the obvious – “Superstar Rajni” is written across the screen aglow with lightbulbs right at the start of Kaala. A Rajnikanth release isn’t anything less than a festival for his millions of fans. Kaala sees the said superstar collaborate with writer-director Pa Ranjith for a second time and is far more effective than their 2016 film Kabali.

Kaala is an arresting political drama with Rajnikanth and his stardom allowing Pa Ranjith’s charged screenplay to shine. At the epicentre is the huge slum cluster of Dharavi where Karikaalan aka Kaala reigns supreme .

The land mafia comprising of shrewd builders and evil politicians want to take away what rightfully belongs to its people and Kaala at every step inspires them to agitate and stand up to this kind of bullying . Basically all that the real Rajnikanth said about the Thoothukudi protests is the exact opposite of what he propounds in this almost 3 hour long saga. The politics of Pa Ranjith takes centre stage with its very clear secular and socialist leanings and a subversive sub text of the pure Ram vs the black Ravana.

Kaala mehnat ka rang hai” bellows Rajni is one scene. His black shirt and lungi are in stark contrast to the pristine crisp white kurta pajama that Hari Dada, the politician with sinister designs dons. This black vs white binary is turned on its head as the two chief adversities cross paths and it makes for the most paisa vasool moments on screen works to the audience’s advantage.

Nana Patekar ‘s menacing presence against the lionhearted hero of the oppressed and downtrodden give us many memorable scenes and this is when the film is truly in top form. Nana breathes thoughtfully , his steely resolve meeting his match in Rajni’s vociferous advocacy for the poor.

The unhurried pace ensures we have to wait for sometime before seeing Rajni in “action”. Dressed almost always in a black shirt, lungi and dark aviators, Rajinikanth even carries a black umbrella that becomes his weapon of choice as he bludgeons a dozen goons without breaking into a sweat. Rajni who in this film is far more restrained than his verbose previous avatars and plays his age with grace has his swashbuckling charm still perfectly intact which would surprise anyone.

Another notable feature in Kaala is the presence of some strong women characters . There is Rajnikanth’s adorable chemistry with Eswari Rao who plays his on-screen wife and adds just the right dose of humour and warmth to the proceedings . Anjali Patil as the fire brand activist has a small but hard to ignore presence. Zareena aka Huma Qureshi is a single mother heading an NGO to help the people of Dharavi and while the character has an important link to Kaala’s past, Qureshi’s weirdly greying stands of hair and placid demeanour make her casting suspect.

I’m sure the Tamil original would have far more crowd pleasing dialogues but we are glad that the Hindi dubbed version allowed the non-Tamil speaking janta to revel in the Rajni magic. Rajnikanth and Nana Patekar are supremely accomplished actors and are riveting in Kaala.

Source By: https://in.style.yahoo.com

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