Gautham’s Annie Hall
Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa (U/A)
Director: Gautham Vasudev Menon
Starring: ‘Young Super Star’ Silambarasan and Trisha
Genre: Romantic Drama
Woody Allen has been known for his different and outrageous take on the romance genre. For him, Annie Hall was a landmark. His narration and Diane Keaton’s ecstatic performance led to an Oscar victory which overthrew George Lucas’ Star Wars.
Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa is a fairy tale from a director who loves to keep his audience glued. However, he fails every time to create character space and thus, a few characters appear and disappear with no object or relativity. For once, we thought that the film is narrated by the boy and he would make his memories sound spicy. Halfway through, we have the girl’s voice-overs which put an end to the so-called ‘Boy’s Memories’ genre.
This is a problem faced in the film industry. We want to know what everyone’s thinking. In (500) Days of Summer, there was a narrator who told us everything about Tom (Gordon-Levitt) and not much about Summer (Zooey Deschanel). In that manner, we found Summer mysterious and Tom outspoken. Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa kinda reminded me of (500) Days of Summer which is a classy rom-com. However, Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa sticks to the Tamil antics and does play well for a while until the all-so-dull moment strikes.
An actor is a person who plays different roles in different films. Silambarasan finally gets to play a down-to-earth character after playing the stereotypic one-liner speaking, finger wagging mass hero for the last seven years. We find his performance to be exhilarating because we haven’t seen him in such a role before. He puts up a fair play but, it’s Trisha who with her tepid character becomes the eye of criticism. Much like Diane Keaton’s Annie Hall or Zooey Deschanel’s Summer Finn, Trisha Krishnan’s Jessie remains untold. But, if it hadn’t been for her voice-overs in the second half, Jessie could have been in league with the big names.
We learn that Jessie is smart, sexy and well-educated. Was she really in love with Karthik? When she was ready to elope at one point of time, why should she marry the boy of her father’s choice? Was it because she wanted to prove her feminism?
A.R. Rahman has become an auteur. After listening to his compositions, the expectation level grew and after the ending credits, it radically sank. Gautham’s climax is not a surprise as we have had Annie Hall where Alvie (Woody Allen) creates a Broadway play based on his experiences with Annie.
I doubt it if you’d cross the skies of expectations and hopes to watch the film. Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa is another melodramatic love story, raring to melt your hearts.