‘Varun Doctor’ hit the cinemas today (October 9) simultaneously in Telugu and Tamil. Let’s find out its hits and misses.
Dr Varun (Sivakarthikeyan) likes to get married to Mini (Priyanka Arul Mohan), but she is miffed with his “unemotional” personality. She feels that he is obsessed with discipline. As destiny would have it, Mini’s younger sister Chinnu gets kidnapped by a gang of human traffickers. Dr Varun chips in with a bold idea that drags Mini, her parents and their servant maid into a huge crime. Will they be able to save their skin and trace Chinnu?
Sivakarthikeyan is known for loud roles in Kollywood. His much-lauded ‘Remo’ didn’t do well in Telugu because the audience here didn’t quite connect with his style of acting and his kind of cinema. But ‘Varun Doctor’ is a different animal. The actor is superb throughout. He is not only measured but also endearing. Priyanka Arul Mohan was so-so in both ‘Gang Leader’ and ‘Sreekaram’. Here, she is fine.
Milind Soman has an extended cameo, while Vinay Rai is impressive in a negative role. Yogi Babu is fun to watch. Redin Kingsley, Ilavarasu, and Raghu Ram are able.
Anirudh, the composer, once again proves that he knows how to stylize whole scenes with his BGM. After ‘Jersey’ and such superb films, the music director makes a much-needed impact here. Songs like ‘Chellemma’ have been removed in the Telugu version keeping in mind run-time issues and nativity. The Tamil version is about 150 minutes long, while the Telugu version is shorter.
Vijay Karthik Kannan’s cinematography is not just an asset but almost the soul of several scenes.
‘Varun Doctor’ has the kidnap of a school-going girl at its core. The element of human trafficking has not been used to deliver a masala flick. Instead, the director has made a dark comedy actioner. The film is sans thrills because its focus is on comedy.
The comedy is strong enough in the first half. The situational humour is greatly satisfying. The scenes involving Yogi Babu, especially, are a hoot. As a serial kidnapper with links to the human trafficking mafia, the comedian makes us laugh despite his depravity.
Most of the Kollywood filmmakers have failed to churn out comedy that can work with non-Tamils. Most of the Telugu audience today can’t recognize any Tamil comedian. Director Nelson Dhilipkumar doesn’t make this handicap spoil the show. Had the actors not been able, ‘Varun Doctor’ would have fallen flat. The casting is near perfect.
To the film’s credit, the romantic track doesn’t overpower the core plot. The emotional pull, however, is not strong.
The second half slackens and believability goes out of the window. Even if you don’t expect any logic, the Goa scenes seem to obsess themselves with too much creative liberty.
The climax is fun to watch despite large doses of dark comedy and logic-defying stunts.
‘Varun Doctor’ may not be the perfect dark comedy, but it’s definitely worth a watch.