A lacklustre fare
A lacklustre fare

Performing a triple role in a feature film is equal to hitting a triple century in cricket. Not only does it call for high level of energy, it also demands a top set of skills which can enable distinguishing one performance from the other. 

No wonder, it is a rare act , selectively  resorted to by even top heroes even after they attain great box-office success as it has been mixed luck at the box office for such endeavours. ‘Ilaya Thalapathy’ Vijay, a top star in Tamil cinema who has been ranked in the first three heroes for well over a decade and more has not managed a steady support base in Telugu cinema yet. His ‘Adhirindhi’, a message laden commercial flick which exposes the cruel and exploitative culture of corporate hospitals is yet another attempt for him to win over the audience in the neighbouring states.

Dubbed from his Tamil original ‘ Mersal’ which came into limelight for its potshots on digital payments and GST and also the critical stand it adopts on the medical profession, the 172- minute venture moves tediously with multiple flashbacks. Director Attlee, who has been a Vijay specialist in recent times, clearly keeps the home crowd in mind as he spins a masala yarn about the poor man’s doctor, who charges only five rupees per patient and is obviously their darling.

Cleverly interweaving the double role entry, Attlee maintains a spike in interest levels at the interval block only to lose the momentum once again. This time, the third role, which is the one with a distinct ethnic feel, get -up and appeal is introduced pairing him with Nithya Menon, playing a Punjabi woman. 

The younger ones, with the other shown as an ace magician have their own girls – Kajal Agarwal and Samantha- who have barely enough screen presence to ignite interest in their performances.

S J Surya, who has been taking up villain roles in many recent films is the main antagonist and he performs pretty well, defining the evil he is supposed to represent  as a doctor in the form of unethical medical practices and exploitation of poor patients. His clash with the hero is shown continuing  till the end as the good man triumphs.

Vijay of course is high octane action throughout and his stamina is still of appreciable levels. He is shown for the first time in a father’s role with grey stubble which is being reflective of the times, as his son also makes a guest appearance in a song. It remains to be seen whether he breaks the jinx in the Telugu film market with this release, which has had many postponed release dates since its Tamil release a few weeks ago.