BANNER SKT Studios
EDITOR A. Sreekar Prasad
CINEMATOGRAPHY Natarajan Subramaniam
MUSIC Devi Sri Prasad
PRODUCER Shibu Thameens, PT Selvakumar
DIRECTOR Chimbu Deven
Tagline: This Colorful Puli is truly Deadly – Only for Fans & Kids!
Manoharudu (Vijay) is brought up in a tribal hamlet called Bhairava Kona ruled by the wicked Bhetaladesa queen Yavvana Rani (Sridevi). He falls in love with his childhood friend Mandara Mala (Shruti Haasan) who is later kidnapped by the henchmen of Jalandhara (Kichcha Sudeepa), the Senapathi of Bhetaladesam. Manoharudu voyages to the Bhetaladesam and discovers his painful past and a mission much beyond than relieving Mandara Mala. Who is Manoharudu, how did he lock horns with Yavvana Rani & Jalandhara, save his love Mandara Mala & Bhetaladesam forms the rest of the story.
Vijay: The Superstar firstly deserves a tap on the back for experimenting with his genres and in a way risking with a fantasy adventure. Forget about his look, dialogues and attire but he was up to the snuff with the action and dances. If this able actor was supported by a good script, this film would have been yet another feather in his cap!
Shruti Haasan: Be it mainstream commercial film or a fantasy adventure, unfortunately there is no change in what she is asked to do i.e., look glamorous, romance with the hero, shake legs for few songs and leave. And Shruti once again serves her director’s need well. She is gorgeous in the film and does her part with ease.
Hansika Motwani: She is yet another lucky female lead who’s got a significant screen space besides the hero in the second half. Of course, even her only motto is to get attracted to the hero and shake a hip with the hero.
Sridevi Boney Kapoor: In what can be called a prestigious comeback, Sridevi has opted for a character of ‘Yavvana Rani’ – a role with a negative shade and she was indeed a feast to watch. Be it her venomous antics or the climax action episode, she was majestic and elegant in every frame. However this is certainly not her best and had the character more scope, we could have once again witnessed her acting vishwaroopam.
Kichcha Sudeepa: Even this exceptional actor fell prey to some shoddy writing. He’s menacing by his looks and expressions but his character lacked that intensity and depth.
The rest of the cast especially the comedian gang was at their animated best that can get onto your nerves.
Puli, the much touted fantasy adventure drama with some big names like Vijay, Sridevi, Shruti Haasan, Hansika, Sudeep et al is certainly a crowd puller but nothing can win the game without meritorious content. Chimbudevan somehow missed this logic big time and relied heavily upon some lame, dumb comedy, visual brilliance, special effects and other embellishments. A story with a soul is the primary prerequisite for any film and the emotional relativity is what tugs the story to the audience – which Puli lacks completely.
A bunch of comedians with heavy animated histrionics, humor less comedy and dialogues (especially Telugu dialogues), a hero who rather prefers to be a comedian and a hero occasionally, two heroines whose only job is to romance the hero and a glam show in the songs, two villains who are all fluff but no stuff, colorful visuals, some impressive visual effects and peppy music is what you find in Puli. Forget about logics in folklore and kindly don’t ask for an emotional connect in the story or an intensity in the storytelling or any wow factors in the film.
The first half is a never ending soap with some banal comedy sequences and insignificant songs and when the story gains some momentum, it is time for intermission popcorn without any usual heavy pre-interval episode. The second half is the segment with some meat but songs, a soulless flash back and bland action episodes get onto your nerves. The climax episode is lone pacifier for those distressed audience.
- Performance of Vijay, Sridevi, Kichcha Sudeepa
- Glamor of Shruti Haasan & Hansika
- Cinematography and Visual Effects
- Background score
- No wow factors
DSP’s tunes were versatile and peppy suiting the fantasy folklore and his background score was decent too, especially in some high-voltage action sequences and emotional notes.
The art direction by Muthiraj and visual effects by Makuta Vfx is absolutely top notch.
Puli is nothing but an overrated and over anticipated fantasy folklore that keeps you disappointed and even bores you down with some lame and dumb comedy, boneless and soulless storytelling. Except for kids and hard core Vijay fans, Puli can entertain none!