Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Review of Quickgun Murugun

Watch it, I say

Starring: Dr Rajendra Prasad, Naseer, Rambha, Lola Kutty, Raja Sundaram, Sandhya Mridul, Vinay Pathak
Director: Shashanka Ghosh
Stars: ***

It takes sense to come up with entertaining nonsense. Quickgun Murugun is supreme silliness no doubt, but it goes about its business with a kind of joyous self-abandon and poker-faced wit that makes this good kitschy fun all round.
In what is an action -packed, western spoof, you have Indian cowboy Quick Gun Murugun - something of a cross between Clint Eastwood and Rajnikanth - taking up the cause of vegetarianism. For the uninitiated, Quick Gun Murugun happens to be a cult figure down south - a wacky character that appeared a lot in 70s Tamil movies.

In quixotic style, Murugun ( Rajendra Prasad) is goaded into action against meat-eaters, when he's reminded he's a 'cowboy' after all and must protect cows. His target is restaurateur Rice Plate Reddy ( Naseer) and his menacing thugs, who promote non-vegetarianism. Reddy is making his brand of machine made non-veg dosas and is in search of the perfect recipe for it. He's aided in this by Rowdy MBA (pronounced as 'Em') - Raju Sundaram - who comes up with the idea of getting hold of comely mothers for this purpose.

By the way, this is Murugun's second life, since he was killed by the thugs 25 years ago, but let off by Yama (Vinay Pathak). Now, he's determined to avenge his own death and also fight against Reddy's machine-made dosas. As the wacky promos read, 'They made him a past tense, now he will make their future, tense'

There are also matters of the heart that call for attention. Murugan is caught between past affection for Locket Girl (Lola Kutty) who hangs around his neck and Shetty's girlfriend, Mango Dolly (Rambha) who falls for him.
All this is in the midst of entertaining action sequences, and some pretty funny dialogues. As Quick Gun Murugun, actor Rajendra Prasad pitches his character perfectly. Watch him in the bar scene with Rambha where he asks her in perfect South Indian twang, 'Your orizinal(sic) name is Mango?' or in his chivalrous stance to a thug, 'Leave the ladies, I say!'

Director Shashanka Ghosh gets the tone of the film right and the songs with the background music add the requisite chutzpah to this action comic caper. There's a lot of Tamil in the film which helps retain the flavour of the character. Though I must say, the lead actor's get up and and accent is more Telugu than Tamil but for the vast majority it won't make a difference one guesses.

The other plus is that the silliness never slips into puerility, and all the characters have been written with a certain wackiness that makes it enjoyable. Yet, at a mere one and half hours, this film isn't the kind of blockbuster laughathon it could have been. Also, the film is too action-packed, with the comedy and drama taking a slight backseat. But as a whole, this is harmless fun, as light as savoury dosas.
- Sandhya Iyer

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