Skip to main content


Cast: Vijay, Keerthy Suresh, Varalaxmi Sarathkumar, Pazha Karuppiah, Radharavi
Director: AR Murugadoss

Undoubtedly, the current political climate in Tamilnadu is providing ample fodder to Tamil cinema, which has “incidentally” been the go-to industry for many who wants to make the political plunge. After a hilarious Tamizh Padam 2 and NOTA which border-line spoofed the scenario, the Vijay starrer AR Murugadoss directorial Sarkar takes on the ongoing sequence of events in a serious and a holistic manner. Speaking about seriousness, this actor-director combos’ previous two collaborations, Thuppaki and Kaththi have turned out to be super-hits and if that doesn’t send the stakes up north, Vijay has been having a dream run with back to back blockbusters and A.R.M needs a hit desperately after the Spyder fiasco.

While heroism used to be sending goons flying and mouthing punch dialogues, it goes a step ahead in Sarkar, where Sundar Ramasamy (Vijay in something of an extension of Sanjay Ramasamy from ARM’s own Ghajini), a ‘corporate monster’ who comes down to India to vote ends up becoming a victim of bogus voting. When he decides to knock the doors of the court to get justice, I was expecting a scene similar to the one in Sivaji where Rajini’s character would be sent from pillar to post just because they wanted to come up with a change. We instead get sequences where Sundar mugs up the entire law book overnight like an engineering student on a day before his exams and he ends up teaching law to the lawyers and the judge. Remember the scene in The Avengers where Maria Hill asks Tony Stark “When did you become an expert in thermonuclear astrophysics?” and he replies “last night”?

Speaking about Sivaji, the only similarity we get in both these films are the lines “nee thirupi America vuke poidu“. While Vivek says it in the Rajini starrer, Nila (Keerthy Suresh) mouths this in Sarkar. And probably because the film happens predominantly in the mornings, we don’t get to see Nila at all and if this “joke” annoys you, then you’ll get less than that in this film. Seriousness is the word here fellas. Thankfully, on the other hand, we have Komalavalli a.k.a pappa (Varu) as a shrewd politician. It’s one of those rare roles that gets extremely minimal screen space in the first half, only to almost steal the show in the second. In a stark contrast to her negative role in Sandakozhi 2, Varu will make you wish she had more to do in the film. Radha Ravi too leaves a mark with his casual acting and lethargic mannerisms as Rendu.

Considering the film talks in length about real life issues, the list of topics untouched would actually be shorter. Right from Jallikattu to fishermen, from hydrocarbon to methane, from corruption to lack of basic necessities and from people in power getting away with murders to people killing themselves, Sarkar touches everything. Though the film tries to highlight that none of these would be prevalent under a good leadership, as the screenplay department decides to bite more than what they can chew, we’re not left with much to get hooked on to.

A.R.M and Atlee seem to be the best directors when it comes to making Vijay play to the gallery. Right from the quintessential phone call right before the interval where Vijay utters those magical two words to his opponent (if you’re wondering, it’s ‘I’m waiting’), to his fist to the cheek to crack a joint, there are enough scenes that would send a Vijay fan on a frenzy. But Sarkar overdoes it to an extent where the lead’s mannerisms don’t seem cool after a certain point. Though placed clearly for the commercial aspects, the fights are well choreographed and the slow-mo shots by Girish Gangadharan (who is making his Tamil debut with this film) are energetic. As the songs didn’t match up to the regular tracks one can expect in a Vijay film, the ones such as Simtaangaran and OMG Ponnu double as speed breakers. While CEO In The House doesn’t give the josh of a Vijay intro track, the use of Oru Viral Puratchi and Top Tucker as montage songs add intensity to the scenes.

On the whole, Sarkar is a film that tries to preach an important political message that doesn’t really convince you as it’s given with a heavy coating of hero worship.

My rating: 2.5/5


Popular posts from this blog

Vijay and Vijay Sethupathi shoulder a mediocre film: Master Review

A flawed protagonist and a powerful antagonist have always proven to be successful tropes in the world of cinema. The hero, when being anything but perfect, makes way for a beautiful story arc as he convalesces and a strong villain makes the hero’s triumph at the end larger. Despite having both of these, Vijay’s Master feels far from a perfect flick thanks to succumbing to irregular pacing and a middling screenplay. Master follows the trials and tribulations of JD (Vijay), an alcoholic college professor whose valiant effort towards the student community plants a belief in his colleague Charu (Malavika Mohanan) that he would be able to do the same to the kids in a juvenile correction centre that needs… correction. Armed with a just kada, a classic four-wheeler, a Persian cat and a cool pair of sunglasses, JD embarks on a journey that will collide with that of Bhavani’s (Vijay Sethupathi). On paper, Master looks like a failproof star vehicle – the story of a man out there to teach lesson

Icon Residency, Wayanad

During one of my solo bike rides from Chennai to Coorg, I took a detour to check out Wayanad and since Coorg is just a few hours by road from there, I decided to use the small town also for a layover. A quick search told me about the limited options this tourist location has and as I was all by myself, I didn’t mind taking a risk by choosing whatever has a decent rating. iCon Residency in Kalpetta had some really good reviews and in no time, I was in Kerala via Bangalore.  iCon Residency is located on National Highway 212. Though the direction on Google Maps is accurate, finding the place was quite a challenge as it’s located past a narrow street. The hotel looks brilliant from the outside in total contrast to the otherwise old town. There’s also a decent parking space. The basic room I opted for is small when compared to average rooms but for a solo traveller, it was cosy and perfect. The bed

Spago Inn, Mahabalipuram

It was yet another trip to Mahabalipuram and if you visit the famous tourist town as much as I do, you should be knowing that unless you’re a tourist, it’s better to stay from the centre of the city. A quick search told me that Spago Inn, a considerably new property has made its way to ECR, right at the entrance of Mahabs. I had also seen it, right on the main road, during my regular drives down that brilliant stretch of tarmac. The town is famous for pocket-friendly options making it perfect for a day’s retreat and Spago Inn too fits the bill.  Unlike most of the properties in Mahabs, Spago Inn has a car parking space, enough for more than half a dozen four-wheelers. The room is compact, similar to most of the properties in that price range but ticks off all the basic boxes one would expect. The place is extremely clean and neat. The linens were tidy and so was the bathroom. The bed was comfy too and it was perfect fo