Veteran cameraman N.K. Viswanathan, who has done nearly a dozen films as director, has taken on both the tasks in the Deepavali release, Jagan Mohini.
He has roped in experienced hands and added various ingredients to work out his recipe for success at the box-office.
Famous names such as Ilaiyaraaja (music), P. Krishnamoorthy (art), Vaali / Na. Muthukumar (lyrics) and Super Subburayan (stunts) help enhance his film. Raja is the prince of an island. He meets Mohini (Namita) and falls in love with her, which upsets his aunt's daughter Nila as she is supposed to marry him. Now the tale moves beyond this love triangle to the neighbouring island, which is ruled by another prince Riyaz Khan. Here political intrigue comes into play, as an ambitious Riyaz wants to be the ruler of all 23 islands that dot the area, and one of which is under Raja. So his first step is to get rid of Raja.
With the help of sorcerer Kotta Srinivasarao, Riyaz attempts to kill Raja.
But the power-hungry Kotta Srinivasarao has a devious plan. He wants to rule the world! He can achieve this through black magic, for which he has to sacrifice two young men to appease his deity.
Meanwhile, Raja's father Raju wants to end his son's relationship with Mohini, who is the daughter of a fisherwoman. She gets killed, but love makes Mohini return as a ghost. And, she helps Raja foil the murderous plots of Riyaz and Kotta Srinivasarao.
New 'find' Raja does his bit by singing and dancing with the heroines (Namita and Nila) and fighting the villain Riyaz Khan.
Namita has the charm to pull in the crowd. But Nila seems at a loss, as all that her one-dimensional character does is sing and dance whenever the script demands it.
Raju (who had done the lead in a film with the same name in the past), Jothilakshmi (plays the mother of Mohini) and V.A. Moorthy are convincing in their roles. Both Kotta Srinivasrao and Vadivelu also do a good job.
Big technicians have aided director Viswanathan who deserves credit for his camera work. But he could have worked more on the script.
Among the five songs tuned by Ilaiyaraaja, three bear his stamp. They are 'Kattikitta Rasavathaan', 'Poothadu Poovu' and 'Unnai Vitaal'.
P. Krishnamoorthy deserves applause for his creativity which is reflected in the various sets he has done - together with impressive special effects, they add an element of interest to the film.
Director: N. K.Viswanathan
Cast: Raja, Raju, Jothilakshmi, Namita, Nila, Vadivelu, Riyaz khan, Kotta Srinivasarao and V.A.Moorthy.
Storyline: A prince falls in love with a fish vendor's daughter. After she is killed, she returns as a 'mohini' or ghost to help him against the villains who want to murder him and usurp his throne.
Bottomline: The narration has all the formulaic ingredients to make a tasty dish. To know how much of it appeals to the audience let's wait and watch.