Probably the most expected film in recent times finally got to see daylight. Shankar joined hands for the second time with Vikram after the awesome Aniyan (Third time if Vikram’s dubbing for Prabhudeva in Shankar’s Kadhalan is considered too). Vikram’s last movie was almost two years back and that was David, so the last memorable film of his was Deiva Thirumagal back at 2011. Shankar’s last project was also around three years back which turned out to be Nanban, therefore making it 5 years since his own story came on screen after Enthiran. Obviously the expectations were high right from the moment the project was announced.

I includes a stellar cast of Vikram, Amy Jackson, Santhanam, Suresh Gopi, Ramkumar (Actor Prabu’s brother), Ojas Rajani and a cameo from Powerstar Srinivasan. Behind the silver screen, A.R.Rahman, P.C.Sreeram, Writers Subha and the production plus distribution by Aascar films were some of the prominent faces.

I is one of those movies that are hard to review, not because of it’s story line but the amount of layers brought in by the directors and the knots he manages to tangle that unravels slowly. I is the story of a small time bodybuilder Lingeswaran who aims on becoming Mr. India. His fascination towards bodybuilding can only be topped by his admiration for Diya, a famous model. As the story goes, they form a sort of friendship and she makes him a model. As usual, love blossoms between them and as Lingeswaran, who becomes Lee after turning into a model, rubs shoulders with some big shots on his way to stardom, who join forces to bring him down to his knees. Will he overcome the troubles and hold Diya’s hand in the end forms the story for I.

The entire story for I can fit in the space of a chocolate wrapper but still taking such a story to great heights (and lengths) is only possible by a director such as Shankar. To begin with, this isn’t his regular film where he ends up giving a message. It’s a romantic thriller and he still seems to have gone a great job with what he managed to take up. Weta workshop’s mind boggling prosthetic make up makes the film too realistic. Anl Arasu’s fight scenes in India and Yuen Woo Ping’s (stunt director for films such as Matrix, Kill Bill series and Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon) share in the China portions are sure to entertain. P.C is at his best behind the lens. The beauty in which he captures the artists as well as the location can’t be put in words. A.R.R’s amazing songs are already topping the charts. And last but certainly not the least, Vikram…. His dedication and hard work has surpassed the best in all film industries. The pain and toil he went thru is evident and this can rightfully be called Vikram’s I rather than Shankar’s I. Apart from him, Ojas Rajani, who worked as a stylist in quite a few Shankar films including Endhiran for Aish, has portrayed a cross dressing homosexual and he has done a commendable role.

The ones that didn’t work out are quite a few. The length of the film stands at a staggering 3 hrs 5 mins. After a certain point, the story becomes very predictable. The villains don’t have much of a character built up to live up to the hype. Amy has matured very much as an actor but her lip sync is beyond damage control. Some scenes were dragging and though the songs were good, the hurry to finish them off early to move the story is evident. This makes them come in regular intervals and at wrong places. Apart from the lead pair other have very little to do. Suresh Gopi, who was last seen in a Tamil film more than a decade ago and Upen Patel, seen in some good roles in films such as Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani and Namastey London are given very less scopes to show their acting prowess. Santhanam’s comedy, sans the climax portion, was dull and forced. He is still trying to impress with his witty one liners. There are quite a few logical mistakes which is something uncalled for from a director known for perfection.

Overall, I can be defined as the brainchild of all the best ones in the business. But as a film I is carried on the shoulders by Vikram singlehandedly. Even with a few negative points, I still manages to satisfy the hype created for the maximum number of audiences. The grandeur seems to have overpowered the simple flaws. It’s definitely a must watch film and as any Shankar films it’s a treat that can be enjoyed by the entire family.

I – Merasalayitten !!!

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