2.5 out of 5 (Fairly Good)
"Bheema" is a mix of action, romance, thrill and sentiment, but fails to impress. The shoddy screenplay and jerky narration are more to blame than the lack of ingenuity on the part of the director. "Bheema" is a one-man show of Vikram.
PVS Wed, 16 Jan 2008
Bheema hit the screen after having been lying in the cans for a long long time. Vikram, who had no films in 2007, should thank his stars. Lingusamy, who directed the film, his first with Vikram, is known for making family stories. "Bheema" is a mix of action, romance, thrill and sentiment, but fails to impress. The shoddy screenplay and jerky narration are more to blame than the lack of ingenuity on the part of the director. As Vikram's stake is greater than the others, he carries the entire film on his shoulders. He comes out with his by now familiar knock-out performance. Trisha plays her role with grit making the most of her experience of working with Vikram in "Saamy". Lingusamy had roped in the entire "Ghajini team", including cinematographer R.D Rajasekhar, art director Rajeevan and editor Antony. However, they could not do much to lift the film up. The end product is no different from the routinely churned out gangster movies. The one-and-a-half year anxious wait only helped publicize the title "Bheema" the character Vikram played.
Here goes the story...
There are two rival gangs, one headed by Chinna (Prakash Raj) and the other by dreaded don Periyavar (Raghuvaran). Shekhar (Vikram), son of an honest and dedicated policeman, grows up in Rameswaram. From childhood he is drawn towards Chinna more for his benevolent nature than his dark side. Shekhar's admiration for Chinna develops into adoration. For him, Chinna is a role model. He eventually joins the ranks of the gangster and rises to become his trusted lieutenant. A turf war breaks out between Chinna and Periyavar. Fighting on the side of Chinna, 'all muscle' Shekhar humbles Periyavar and his sons and helps Chinna establish his supremacy. However, the rivalry between the two gangs intensifies in a bid to eliminate each other. Terror is let loose. Then enters a new police commissioner (Ashish Vidyarthi). He forms a special team to liquidate the two gangs in encounters. Meanwhile, Shekhar falls in love with Charu (Trisha). This further complicates matters. With the special team in hot pursuit of the gangs, the situation hots up leading to shoot-outs and the resultant mayhem.
Two of the scenes that provide relief from boredom are a birthday party where Shekhar (Vikram) in a state of inebriation confronts the Police Commissioner and the kidnapping of sleeping Periyavar from his house. How Chinna (Prakash Raj) gets to marry his childhood girl-friend, Padma (Lakshmi Gopalasamy) is hilarious.
There are too many fights and songs which the situations do not warrant. They are not only supercilious but monotonous.
"Bheema" is the one-man show of Vikram. He once again proves that he is a class by himself. In action scenes, with his painstakingly built physique, body language, aggression and intensity, Vikram looks awesome. It is he who takes the audience through.
Trisha playing opposite Vikram is somewhat subdued. A bubbly girl like Trisha is a mismatch for the role of the lover of a gang member who is not emotionally involved in romancing. She goes through the motions mechanically. That is what the story required of her.
Prakash Raj and Raghuvaran as the leaders of the two rival gangs play their roles in their characteristic styles. "Thalaivasal" Vijay (Saamy) is apt for the role of conscious keeper of Prakash Raj. On Vikram's request, Sherin performed an item number in the film.
Despite Harris Jayaraj's sprightly music, some of the songs do not jell with the story. "Mudal Mazhai", filmed in Switzerland, is badly choreographed. Action sequences, especially the market fight, carry the unmistakable stamp of stunt master Kanal Kannan. Ace cinematographer R.D. Rajasekhar's creative urge is evident in every frame. This is RD's first film with Vikram and Lingusamy.
2.5 out of 5 (Fairly Good)