Adamantly adhering to the formula of a do-gooder’s one-man expedition against corruption, Vijay shows that he doesn’t intend to swerve even slightly from the path which he has trod on, in film after film. With ‘Sura’ (U) the capable crowd-puller follows the commercial pattern for the nth time in his career.

Sura (Vijay) is the uncrowned prince of the fishermen’s colony, Yaazh Nagar. He offers succour to the people in his area and is looked upon as their saviour. Life goes on smoothly, till, of course, a Minister (Dev Gill) becomes too avaricious and all of a sudden wants to acquire the land on which the fishermen live.

Vijay looks smarter than he did in his other recent films, his charming smile is intact, his poker-faced comedy has you in splits most of the time and his danger-courting stunts highlight his agility. Only when he overdoes things a little (like in the scene in court) does his performance lose appeal. So, if despite Vijay ‘Sura’ fails to sustain your interest it is the predictable story and the sagging screenplay that are to be blamed.

Writer-director S.P. Raajakumar scores with his witty dialogue, though the fishermen’s gibberish about the greatness of the hero makes you want to scream. With MGR’s ‘Padagotti’ as the base Raajakumar has tried weaving a ‘modern’ yarn in a fishing settlement.

A wealthy heroine falling for a poor fisherman is so outdated a premise that you don’t even find it funny anymore. The incongruity in the love affair between Sura (Vijay) and Purnima (Tamannaah) irritates.

Vadivelu’s role of Umbrella is enjoyable whenever it melds with the main narration. Otherwise the track is just a time-wasting exercise.

And what a let-down Tamannaah is, especially after her appealing chirpiness and pleasing screen presence in ‘Kandaen Kaadhalai’ and ‘Paiyya!’

Ekambaram, the ace cameraman, who exquisitely captured the high seas that formed the backdrop of the story of ‘Iyarkkai,’ is in his elements once again in ‘Sura.’

Zest marks Mani Sharma’s peppy numbers, and the pallavi of the opening song, ‘Vetri Kodi’ that portrays Vijay as a Messiah, is striking.

A patient viewer can put up with a second love song, even when it hampers the flow of events. But by the time the lovers take off on their third duet he is down and out!

Shooting an action sequence in the midst of a fleet of cars is fine, but why were two earth movers going this way and that like dinosaurs, in the background? Only the art director can explain the purpose!

That it is his 50th film hasn’t come in his way of opting for the beaten track – so what if it is the half century mark and a milestone for an achiever, Vijay seems to ask.

Predictable lines may have worked for one or two yesteryear heroes till the very end, but with changing tastes it is time Vijay begins to chalk out a different course. It isn’t dearth of talent, only an erroneous choice of roles. Come on Vijay, you can do it!