Mumbaikar Movie Trailer Review: In the realm of hyperlink cinema, the expectation is for multilinear narrative structures to captivate our emotions until the various strands converge, catching us off-guard.
However, director-cinematographer Santosh Sivan’s “Mumbaikar,” a remake of the Tamil hit “Maanagaram,” heavily relies on editing to emphasize its status as a hyperlink film. Unfortunately, this reliance transforms the pursuit of generating nervous energy into a mere gimmick.
A Lack of Novelty and Predictability
The sense of tedium sets in right from the beginning, perhaps due to the six-year gap since Lokesh Kanagaraj made his remarkable debut with “Maanagaram.” The thematic elements of “Mumbaikar” lack novelty, and the surprise factor is disappointingly thin. Despite claims of being an action-thriller, the subsequent twists and punches become predictable, diminishing the overall impact. The issues explored, such as acid attacks, discrimination against migrants, and the fight against injustice, are portrayed in an imbalanced manner that fails to evoke a sense of their true significance.
Struggling to Find Authenticity
Furthermore, akin to some recent remakes of South Indian films, “Mumbaikar” often feels like a dubbed production. Hridoo Haroon portrays a migrant from Uttar Pradesh who loses his UP Education Board degrees in a skirmish, yet his voice carries a distinct South Indian twang. Although Hridoo may appear out of place, the surrounding cast provides ample talent to navigate the choppy waters. Vikrant Massey, as a rebellious lover, and the equally brilliant Tania Maniktala try their best to bring depth to their characters. However, due to the deficiencies in the writing, they struggle to infuse real energy into the narrative.
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An Unexpected Resurgence
Just when it seems tempting to give up on the film, Santosh Sivan takes an unexpected turn, introducing Vijay Sethupathi’s character. With a repertoire of inside jokes delivered in his endearing Hindi style that captured hearts in “Farzi,” Vijay Sethupathi injects humor into the storyline. Portraying a gangster-in-the-making who fumbles through his first kidnapping assignment, the versatile actor seamlessly invokes the spirits of Rajinikanth, Amitabh Bachchan, and even Marlon Brando, creating moments of genuine laughter. With his unique accent, he effortlessly delivers even the harshest words with a deadpan expression. As Vijay employs his unhurried charm, the film transitions into a more lighthearted experience, allowing us to laugh at the scenarios it presents.
Despite the film’s redeeming aspects, it fails to fully utilize the acting prowess of Vikrant Massey and Vijay Sethupathi, as well as the versatility of seasoned supporting actors such as Sachin Khedekar, Ranvir Shorey, and Sanjay Mishra. While Vikrant embraces a role that showcases a different side of his abilities, marking his impressive Hindi debut, Vijay Sethupathi’s performance surpasses the scale of the film. As for Santosh Sivan, “Mumbaikar” falls short of matching his stature as a cinematographer, leaving this venture as another one that fails to meet his directorial potential.
In conclusion, “Mumbaikar” struggles to break new ground within the realm of hyperlink cinema.