Movie Review (Mersal): The Commercial film that tried to be real

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Film: Mersal

Year of Release: 2017

Language: Tamil

Starring: Thallapathy Vijay, Kajal Aggarwal, Samantha Ruth Prabhu, Nithya Menon

Written and Directed by: Atlee

Rating: 1 Star

Review:

So yesterday I watched the Tamil movie “Mersal” starring Vijay. And since there is no point in protecting spoilers now, it has a double role by Vijay – Vetri and Maaran. Vetri is a con man while Maaran is “Rs. 5 Doctor” who treats everyone for Rs. 5, whatever be the diagnosis and believes in free treatment for all.

Now, this movie was hailed by a lot of people for talking about how private hospitals make money and was being hailed as the world truth of cinema.

Well, there’s nothing like that. And before you get me wrong, it’s correct that private hospitals do rip apart patients financially and there is a big medical scam going on, but this movie is nowhere close to showing the reality.

For starters, when you show cheap tricks like man getting converted to snake and vanishing from jail by simply disappearing and call all those VFX tricks as magic, your movie is anything but real.

But the highlight of the movie was the airport scene. So, our Dr. Maaran is invited to a highly esteemed medical conference to Paris and as he goes there in the native attire of a shirt and loin cloth, he is suspected and strip-searched at the airport. And then he sees a woman choke in the food court down below after consuming coffee and collapse.

This, our Dr. Maaran watches while he is handcuffed and guarded by at least 5 airport guards. He fights with them, decapitates all of them and rushes to save the woman and only after he saves her, the airport medics arrive. So, is the director trying to tell us that a world class airport does not have medic facility and a detained doctor needs to show off stunts!

And worse is, the same airport guards escort him to the conference. The director forgot that airport guards do not do duty outside the airport and they aren’t private security guards.

As for the story is concerned, the plot is good but the depiction is pathetic and there is literally no role for 3 heroines – Kajal, Samantha and Nithya. Only Nithya has some meaningful role otherwise the other 2 heroines are simply wasted.

There is no connection between the flashback and the present and there are multiple lapses in the story. Even the characters are ill-defined. The otherwise docile Dr. Maaran suddenly becomes a seasoned fighter in the climax.

And last but not the least, that speech of Vijay which was hailed as the highlight of the movie has no connection with the story line. What is an otherwise a simple revenge story is being hailed as a hospital reformation script. And in light of the above “wonders” within the movie, those “heart-wrenching” dialogues about GST and free medical care also seem as hollow.

And while, it may seem logical that building a hospital is better than building a temple, but when the Church is the second largest occupant of real estate in India after the Govt. and the fact that Vijay himself is a Christian and just speaks against building of temples and not against Churches and Mosques, then sensing political undertones in the movie cannot be ignored.

Moreover, as benign as it sounds, free medical treatment for all is totally infeasible and implausible. Shouting fiery dialogues in a movie is easy, but the question is, whether Vijay or the director would spare even 10% of their wealth for this cause in reality? Also, no one cares for what comes free, so let’s stop asking for freebies. If you cannot earn it, you don’t deserve it.

My verdict: If you still haven’t watched, spare yourself. There are multiple occasions in the movie which will urge you to shout WTF!

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