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‘Zombie’ review: Assault on the senses

A still from ‘Zombie’

A still from ‘Zombie’   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

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This Yogi Babu-starrer is what you get when you stitch together unfunny parts into a full length feature with an unfunny cast while hoping that the two negatives somehow cancel each other out.

The film is a dud.

There is no other easy way to get out of writing a review for a film which, honestly, should never have gotten past its conception stage. That it was sanctioned, and even found willing investors, points to the depths that the Tamil film industry has sunk to.

It is an all too familiar tale. What beggars belief is that despite putting together a cast of actors who, at least on paper, are identified as comedians, there is very little comedy. A point to note is that it is absolutely bizarre that recent "comedy films" appear to be sticking religiously to the format first popularised by Lollu Sabha. It is even more bizarre that these films are still unfunny, and isn't even half as engaging as what Lollu Sabha was.

Let's get Zombie out of the way here. The film is an assault on our mental faculties. It is loud, pointless, incoherent, and — to quote Siddharth Abhimanyu from Thani Oruvan — incorrigible. The film uses broiler chicken as vectors for transmitting an unknown strain of virus that if ingested — after said chicken is skinned, marinated and fried — turns people into zombies.

Forget debating the viability of this concept — or of the opening sequence, which, admittedly, contains a pretty detailed (read as: graphic) account of how broiler chicken is processed by your neighbourhood butcher — because the film immediately enters a different trajectory. A 15 minute tawdry bar sequence is proof of the film's inanity.

Zombie
  • Director: R Bhuvan Nullan
  • Cast: Yogi Babu, Yashika Aannand, 'Parithabangal' Gopi and Sudhakar, 'Bijili' Ramesh
  • Storyline: A group of strangers get stuck in a resort where a deadly virus is turning people into zombies. Will they survive?

Yogi Babu name-drops several of his previous films, including director Sam Anton and actor Vijay Sethupathi as well. It is lazy acting, or is it a given now that the fourth wall will inevitably be broken in every one of Babu's films? He makes references to Bijili Ramesh's inability to mouth dialogues or dub his content without mistakes, and it is surprising considering how Babu's own dubbing is subpar. It also appears that the dialogues were significantly fine tuned at the dubbing stage (considering the overlap), and that raises questions about what material was used as reference while filming.

Yashika Aannand is used as eye candy. The many voyeuristic shots reinforces that notion, and it is easy to lose count on the number of slow motion shots that involve her. And yet, there are more offensive content in this film which tests a viewer's patience. It raises the question as to why or how such culturally disrespectful and insignificant movies get made. What rationale is applied to justify the use of such underwhelming content and pass it off as entertainment?

But there is a way Tamil film industry can avoid such treacherous roadblocks in the future, and it involves the film certification board. If the CBFC can aim their offending content detection radar away from Yashika Aannand's cleavage, and towards such films itself for once, that would be a welcome change.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2020 10:57:46 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/zombie-review-assault-on-the-senses/article29351266.ece

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