Maari 2 movie review: Dhanush dazzles but Sai Pallavi is the best thing about this mass entertainer
The mass scenes and punchlines in Maari 2 do not work as well as they did in the first part.
castDhanush, Sai Pallavi, Varalaxmi Sarathkumar, Tovino Thomas, Krishna Kulasekaran
Maari (2015) was a mass film about a gangster with funny punchlines and peppy music by Anirudh. And it worked with the fans of Dhanush. The film was an average grosser but Dhanush’s mannerisms created a halo around the character — a “lovable rascal”. A year later, Dhanush and director Balaji Mohan, after doing online surveys, decided to do a sequel to Maari, as the title had recall value.
But once again the team has focussed on a few mass scenes and punchlines which do not come anywhere near the first part. Sample: The villain tells Maari – “I’m a very, very bad man”. Mari replies: “If you are bad, I’m your dad!” The director had created almost a big impact with the Maari character so he did not want to tinker with it in the sequel. Instead, he wanted a larger-than-life villain who would stand up to the hero.
The rising star of Malayalam cinema, Tovino Thomas, plays the bad guy Thanatos (similar to Thanos of Avengers : Infinity War?) aka Beeja who refers to himself as ‘The God of Death’! Here again the build up to Tovino's character is menacing in the first half but loses steam in the second half. The emphasis is clearly on Dhanush and his mass image. And in the first half, the Maari introduction scene is a scream as he cuts a cake to celebrate the 100th failed attempt by his rivals to eliminate him!
At the interval point, you get a feeling that Maari has found a powerful antagonist in Beeja. But post interval, the film starts sliding as unnecessary sentiments and long drawn out scenes are pushed into the narration. The writer-director suddenly wants Maari to be a nice, caring and loving husband and a good father. A typical B and C compromise that Tamil films do at the last minute to create artificial sentiments to woo the lady audiences.
The best thing about Maari 2 is Sai Pallavi, who plays Aanandi — a strong solid character, who is madly in love with Dhanush. The role has been well etched by the director and the character herself says –“ I’m not a loosu ponnu that you see in Tamil films but a massu ponnu”.
And the Dhanush and Sai Pallavi song “Rowdy Baby.....” has some great dance moves. Yuvan Shankar Raja’s background score lifts the film but songs in Maari 2 are nowhere near as good as Maari. Varalakshmi’s collector character too has an important role to play in Maari turning the tables on his rivals. Krishna plays the best friend who falls out with Maari over a misunderstanding created by the villain. Robo Shankar provides some dry humour.
The film with a run time of 150 minutes could have been trimmed to make it a bit racier. Wish it had more meat in its storyline with a stronger climax. There are no two ways about it; the film is an out and out one-man show by Dhanush. He makes you like the Maari character with his stylish swag and oozing screen presence.
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