Cast: Kamal Haasan, Rahul Bose, Shekhar Kapur, Pooja Kumar, Andrea Jeremiah and Jaideep Ahlawat
Director: Kamal Haasan
Vishwaroop is a Kamal Hassan cinematic accomplishment with gleaming performances and technical brilliance. Fantastic background music makes up for the length making the film a must watch.
An effeminate Kathak dance teacher in New York? A jihadi fighting the NATO forces in Afghanistan or a dapper spy working for India?
Is he a good guy or a bad guy given at one point in the film he says he is both?
For pure Kamal fans, the answer doesn’t matter – the movie is all about him. The star, even after 50-plus years on screen, is still incredibly enterprising and is raring to go. This time, he takes on the Hollywood genre of suspense thrillers and pulls it off reasonably well.
The result is a pulsating thriller, which doesn’t have the usual filmy twists, a demanding script or punch-lines, but is packed with high powered live action, convincing combat sequences, original military hardware, impressive technical prowess and the star himself in at least three different get-ups. It also has drama in good measure.
The plot opens in suburban New York with a regular next door wife discussing her mundane marriage and rocky extra marital affair to her psychologist. Nirupama’s husband Weez, a Kathak Dancer has no visible flaws and was hence a natural choice of convenience for Nirupama. But her impending affair with her boss forces her to ponder about walking out of her loveless, morose marriage. In order to satiate her guilt, Nirupama hires a private detective to bring on surface any hidden in the closet affairs of her husband.
The detective does his job too smartly and ends up dead giving rise to an array of questions and the one crucial last secret he blurted out to Nirupama before his death! Weez is a Muslim!
Then on, the plot alternately shifts between the past and the present telling us a fascinating tale of varied belief systems and convictions which clearly stratifies cultures antithetically. Raveling through militant camps in Afghanistan and the strong faith which drives a Fedayeen to fight ‘Jihad’ is portrayed neatly trying to bring on screens the turmoil of terrorists.
The film belongs to Kamal Haasan. The man deserves a standing ovation for versatility. He renders elegance and sophistication to Kathak, as a dancer. His action sequences are so well designed and innovative, which he performs to the hilt of perfection. The narrative backs his character too sympathetically and only an actor with his creative vision could bring out the plot so vast that impeccably on screen, with almost negligible faults.
Pooja Kumar who plays Kamal Haasan’s wife in the film is extremely sure of her character, the storyline and herself. She is not nailed down by Kamal Haasan’s presence, rather brilliantly carves her space out, enough to be positively noticed.
The man who makes this film what it is, is Rahul Bose. Long after the film is over, this man will haunt you. Bose who hasn’t played a negative character since Thakshak in 1999, reminds us how flawless an actor he can be. As Omar, this man valiantly stands as the film’s evil mouthpiece. This time Bose is back to terrorize!
On the whole, VISHWAROOP is a Kamal Haasan show all the way. It has an interesting premise, superb combat scenes and Kamal Haasan’s bravura act as its three aces.