Feb 16 2017
Suriya has mentioned a few times that Singam was the film that gave him good reach in the B and C centers. He must’ve wanted reassurance about that reach again after a smart film like 24 and so joins hands again with Hari for Singam 3. His decision isn’t that much of a puzzler since masala films are what our heroes drift towards whenever they are looking for a box-office hit. And I don’t mind sitting through a couple of these if they embolden him to do some potentially risky films like 24. I just wish Hari had invested some thought into the script to take the franchise in an interesting direction rather than recycle stuff from the previous 2 films.
Singam 3 is again a true sequel in that the the characters around Suriya are carried over from the previous film(s) and there are various references to the previous films. Duraisingam and his wife Kavya(Anushka) have a conversation mimicking one of their cute interactions from the first film. Duraisingam has a brief flashback to the second film when he sees someone in the hospital. The shift in the Australian policemen’s attitude towards him is based on an offshoot from his actions in Singam 2. And as in the first film, he has a scene where he runs alongside a fleeing bad guy after chasing him(though, this being a sequel, the bad guy in is an SUV!).
This time around Duraisingam(Suriya) is on deputation to the CBI and is sent to Telangana to look into the murder of the Police Commissioner(Jayaprakash) there. But with everyone talking in Tamil(to make understanding easier, as an opening caption tells us), the new location makes absolutely no difference and adds nothing to the story.
The film’s sole motive is to let Duraisingam go up against a string of bad guys at rising levels of the villain hierarchy before meeting the bad guy who is behind it all. All Suriya has to do is to glares, strut and shout his way through the movie. The main villain Vittal is played by an unfamiliar face, Thakur Anoop Singh, and his introduction sees him working out in his underwear(not gym attire, not shorts, underwear) inside his plane. This laughable introduction tells us about the kind of villain he is going to be and he remains ineffective throughout, staying far away from Duraisingam and barking cliched orders on the phone.
The story proceeds in a disappointingly straightforward way with no surprises or twists. The murder investigation doesn’t lead to a police procedural or even a regular suspense thriller. It peters out soon enough and is just the starting point for a larger story that eventually turns out to be about medi-waste and e-waste. Anushka barely has any screen time as the wife and is relegated to feeling sentimental about her thaali and fighting with Duraisingam over his dangerous missions. Shruti Hassan is the second heroine Vidya who develops feelings for Duraisingam and later plays the damsel in distress role. But this relationship fares a little better than in the previous film since Duraisingam doesn’t lead her on and has a legitimate reason for not disclosing that he is married.
With such a straightforward story, Hari is as always forced to drum up the pace artificially using quick cuts and fast camera movements to give the appearance of things moving fast. There are many times when even regular shots(like the scene where Reddy walks towards the police station) are sped up. Between Suriya frequently striding in slo-mo and others walking in such fast shots, its rare to see people moving at a normal speed in the film!
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