Cinema

Rowthiram - Action saga, but…

Every time the story introduces a new villain you think he's the strong anti-factor who will take the hero head on to rev up the action saga, but he fizzles out. Soon, from nowhere comes another only to meet the same fate. No dearth of villains in Rowthiram (U/A), only paucity of effective villainy!

From Ganesh Acharya to Naan Kadavul Rajendran, the number of baddies who begin with stridence and go down with a whimper is innumerable.

For nearly an hour or so you get to hear about an underworld don called Gowri, whose very name sends a chill down the spine of even the hardcore killers in town. But eventually when he emerges, it is utter disappointment all over again — an empty vessel made mincemeat of by Shiva (Jiiva). At this point you get restless. Rowthiram's cut-throats are so unpardonably exasperating that it isn't easy to get over the insipidity they lend to the narration!

Of course, heading the cast of Rowthiram is its hero Jiiva, with first-time director Gokul leading the crew.

Strategically, bringing out Rowthiram just after Ko, isn't a wise move, particularly because the negatives in the former are sizable. The only common factor is Jiiva, who does a decent job in both. In fact, in Rowthiram, his agility in action sequences is very impressive. Otherwise, whichever way you see it, Rowthiram pales in comparison.

True to the title, every blow in Anal Arasu's choreography comes with the right amount of righteous anger. Sometimes simmering, sometimes erupting, Jiiva's ire-filled expressions reveal the potent performer in him. It is his romantic overtures that look a little contrived. Probably making him speak the typically cinematic lines of love that were in vogue about three decades ago is the reason!

For a change, the heroine has been given enough importance. Mentioning Shriya Saran's captivating screen presence is superfluous. But why do all our heroines invariably giggle so much?

Jayaprakash shouldn't fritter away his talent in stereotypical, responsible-dad-of-rebelling-son roles.

But for Srinath's light-hearted asides, humour in Rowthiram is downright silly — Sathyan's tomfoolery doesn't even evoke a smile, let alone a laugh.

Just like all our heroes, Shiva cannot be blind to the wrongs around him. So he flares up, and expectably makes a lot of enemies, who aren't going to keep quiet about it, goes the line. So what's new?

Rowthiram throws up quite a few messages, but none is clear — your foe's foe isn't necessarily your friend; if you don't go out of the way to help others, you may end up the loser; and even if you do, you'll still lose. Confusing?

Probably Gokul wants them to be so.

Neither the songs nor the RR appeal. Udit Narayan's lifeless singing of the ‘Adiyae' number irks you the most. Thrusting song sequences in situations where they ought not to be is a bane of Rowthiram.

You understand Gokul's urge to conceive things differently even within the commercial format. But little can be achieved when the narration lacks fizz. And there lies the problem.

Rowthiram

Genre: Action

Director: Gokul

Cast: Jiiva, Shriya Saran, Jayaprakash

Storyline: He constantly revolts against injustice, and a jolt awaits him at the end.

Bottomline: An angry young man in a doddering screenplay …

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Printable version | Mar 5, 2021 11:47:35 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/cinema/rowthiram-action-saga-but/article2353733.ece

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