Thursday, November 03, 2011

Movie Review: 7aam Arivu

Hiya Folks!

This time am back much quicker - thanks to 7aam Arivu.

The movie was such a profound effort at utter stupidity that it's one of those things that wake you up in the middle of the night squealing in self pity, months after the experience.
Ok, am exaggerating.
Maybe just weeks.

After purchasing tickets for "Seven-A.M. Arivu" (else the Scottish guy at the counter wouldn't have understood), we went in all eager to drink in the magnum opus it was billed to be. And the first few scenes quite lived up to that hype. They added to the sense of magnificence that surrounded the movie before its launch.

But the moment Circus-wala Surya appeared on screen, looking like a Liverpool Chav, my heart sank. If they could do this to a guy who is among the better-lookers in Kollywood, woe-be-me!!

The plot:
Bodhi Dharma is a Tamilian who went to China 1600 years back and started the Shaolin Temple, and is still regarded a 'God' there - for his medical, martial & hypnotism abilities. Shruthi Hassan is a present-day PYT in India doing some DNA-level maha-research, which is meant to reintroduce lost traits in your DNA/genes/whatever. And if that succeeds, she would be able to recreate Bodhi Dharma from one of his descendants. Just like that. So she goes around looking for the descendants and finds them quite easily (next target - Maddie McCann?). As you rightly guessed now - modern-day Surya is one of them. And she immediately decides that he would be the guinea pig for her research. But she does it all on the sly, so the poor lad doesn't know all this background info. He duly falls for her and sings a couple of duets, taking breaks from his circus routines. Later when he gets to know that she had befriended him not to get into his jeans, but rather his genes, all hell breaks loose.
Where you would expect him to exhibit vertebral capacity and stand up to his own dignity, he continues to be Junior Hassan's Beeyaatch, virtually peeing at her bidding, after a brief display of salt-induced-sensitivity.
Meanwhile, the bleddy Chinese government (verbally censored, but the subtitles spelt the word out! DUH!) makes secret plans to do something that will get India to dance to its tunes very shortly: that is to release a very deadly virus in India, get the epidemic to spread, and later come and get Indians to lick the medicine off their palms. Their extremely well-informed intelligence has warned them about this girl in India whose research will be the only stumbling block for their grand designs - as she is trying to recreate the legendary medical expert Bodhi Dharma with the aid of genetic engineering. So that's how the dots connect.
To make this happen, the Chinese Govt selects the best student from Shaolin and sends him across to India with some money that permits him to buy a Hummer, and lots to buy the fuel. His motive - to spread the deadly-disease, and to 'find them, kill them' both. While he does have the appearance to shiver-you-timbers, all he does is to walk around with a stern look on his face - the kind I have when I try to choose between noodles and spaghetti for dinner. Vetthu Vaettu Singaaram.
(Him. Not me)
He does succeed in spreading the virus. As all hell breaks loose in Tamil Nadu, a half-baked gang of 5 take it upon themselves to save the nation. By recreating Bodhi Dharma from Surya. It's a process that will take days and they need to get it completed before they get caught by the China Man. So they put a brilliant getthu plan, use a hitech lab at IIT for a hideout, and make one of their friends stay in the 'outside world' to support their external needs. And they change SIM cards. But still, the China-wala starts finding and killing them all one by one. He eventually reaches the last remaining warriors, only to find Surya being pickled in a large glass jar in the name of DNA-revival - the result of a long and extensive research by Shruti Hassan that lasted threeeeeee fullllll years. Then comes the climax - the man generally known for his short-term-memory-loss, wakes up with very-long-term-memory-retention suddenly "remembering" Bodhi Dharma's powers. He annihilates the villain and the disease, and then you are given a sermon on Tamil / Tamilan / Ilangai / etc.
And Murugadoss appears for a brief while on the screen (with the same noodle-spaghetti look), which serves well to remind you of the numerous vows you took during the movie around this very fellow.

If you think this was a spoiler, you should see what Murugadoss has done to the movie. Not many people can succeed in messing up an interesting story-base as this. But this fellow has done that in an unparalleled fashion. If at least this had been a Gaptun-Baagistaan-Tamil movie, most of us would have escaped watching it until the scenes get on youtube. But whattodo!

  • What truly irked me was the fact that soooooo mannnnnny trivial things were beefed up in the movie to appear like significant stuff. I could find it all through the movie. Remember the scene from Singam where Vivek says "Tea kudikka polama?", and the constables reply, "YESSSIR!" in all earnestness? Much of 7-am arivu felt like that. Sappa matterukku over soundu.
    • He says "Lift vara late aagudhu.. Lets take the steps" - and everyone responds like it's a decision of utmost brilliance requiring immense analysis
    • "SIM cards change panniralaam.. Appo avanukku namma enga irukkom nu theriyadhu".. And they proceed to show every step in the supply chain of sim card delivery that makes you wonder if it were truly a tough thing to do
    • And many many more that I couldn't care to note down
  • What also irked me equally was the complete lack-of-sense in so many things:
    • "IIT la lab irukku.. Adha use pannikalaam.. 18 days leave, yaarum irukka maattaanga" - WTF!!! WWTTFF!! WWWTTTFFF!!! Next thing you know, they will be showing IIT-guys throwing ink on each others' uniform shirts on the last day before Annual Holidays
    • He and she are sitting in an auto - virtually visible from all directions. Suddenly spotting the villain in the vicinity, he tells her "avan varraan.. keezha paaru" ?!?!?!?!?! As if they were playing peekaboo..
    • Why the hell would the fantastic-few want to leave one person "outside" to support them? If the allakkai fellow anyway had to get out of IIT to receive all the stuff, can he not go to the shops directly? Unnecessary red-tape I say..
    • After a night-ful of knowing that they had to meet the fraud-Prof in the morning, the Hero and the Heroini discuss strategies at 9 o clock on the way to the meeting "seri.. ippo Prof-a paakka porome.. Enna seyya porom?"..
    • One particular stunt scene around containers was the ultimate insult to the movie-going crowd. They have used 'hypnotism' as if you could transfer knowledge wirelessly. One look from the villain, and old men and young women start performing anthar balti and back-flips..
    • Really.. 3 yrs of PG-research to make DNA-level tweaks? Really?! I mean.. Ok, forget it..
  • Shruthi Hassan is quite photogenic, but not video-genic/audio-genic if you get what I mean. Acting and her - 7aam poruttham only. You almost immediately start feeling sorry for Kamal Hassan. 
  • And looks like she wasn't paid enough - I could only find half of her in the movie.
  • I didn't know iPhone is so common in India! Everyone has one. And surprisingly, Blackberry has THE iPhone ringtone
  • To be brutally honest, I did enjoy some parts of the movie.. 
    • Surya as Bodhi Dharma has good screen presence.. He commands attention.. Unfortunately those scenes dont last too long..
    • Dialogues sparkle in a couple of places: Uyiroda post mortem panni vechurukke...... Foreign pona first doctor aa?... Etc
But these were so few and far between, that throughout the movie you find bitterness spreading through the length and breadth of your being.

Final Verdict:
7-am Arivu: Moolai Ketta Mundam


Madhankumar Anandhakrishnan said...

Ha ha ha.. great post!! Have never read such an entertaining movie review before! :) Like you've mentioned, the list of absurdities is even longer.
Edho cool'a youtube la video paarkura madhiri, microscope la DNA'va paarkudhunga.. adhuvum double-strand'oda!
And then the mastermind researcher announces a whopping 80% similarity with Bodhi Dharman's genes!! I mean, these days which madasaambrani doesn't know that humans and chimps are 95% similar genetically? :|
Operation red aam!! Total insult to the IQ levels of the audience.. and to top it all, they invite us to be proud of being Tamizhians.. enna dash ku nu theriyala! :/
Worst thing about the movie is: now my mom asks me, "ava ellam 12 naal'la ivlo panraa.. nee enna PhD mudikka 4 varusham aagum'ngra?? ozhunga padikkiriya illaiyaa?" :(

Venkata Ramanan S said...

He he. Same peeling. Happy that Tamil selling dint work. Pity Murugadoss & Co. :)

King Vishy said...

@Madhan Krish..
LoL, with you on every word!!
Microscope la DNA with double helix - I choked on that in the movie!! My dalliances with microscopes haven't been for too long, but I could guess that was completely made up!
95% similarity with chimps - he he.. I am also a madasaambraani who didn't know that.. But anyway, thanks for that!
Your Mom's comment - top of the world :D :D :D

Exactly.. The Tamil-selling seemed tooooo contrived and biased.. Murugadoss nallaa thaane irundhaan.. Bollywood ponadhum moolai kettu poachu pola irukku..

Sridhar V said...


Ramana solratha elaam ketkaatheenga. Avan oru vijay fan ! Velayudham review ezhunthungana. review ezhuthara alavuku worth ila, but still when you are utterly jobless and if you are alive after watching that movie, you can write :)

Btw,hypnotize panni antha road la pora kanda ponnuukum shaolin kathu kuduka mudiyumna, Bodhidharman hypnotize paniye elaarukum Shaolin soli kuduthurukalaame. Entha dash ku training kuduthaan nu therla. :)

Arun said...

That was a riot!! :)) accidentally stumbled on to this review thru FB and I thoroughly enjoyed it..nice work buddy!! I knew the movie was wrong in so many levels but didn't bother to did a pretty good job at that..

Anonymous said...

Agree with most parts of your review except -

1) auto scene : both of them look down so that they don't want eye-contact with the villain.. else avanga mind ah control panniduvaan illa..

2) one guy was outside so that even if he gets caught, the rest do not.
kind of like LTTE strategy. infact there were lot of direct and indirect references to the eelam issue, and hence i guess this was deliberately done to signify that.

And the (unnecessary) level of detailing which you have pointed out are more to explain the viewers why they make a decision.. but in trying to explain logical consistency in small and trivial issues, they have left huge logical gaps unattended to, as you have pointed out..

but u gotta watch velayudham, 7am arivu will look like a classic :-)

- Sugan

Arunrajkumar Kaki said...

7am Arivu Patti Innum Sila Doubt Irekke: 1. Luv Failure Song Le Yethukke Suriya Sirichekette Padran? 2. 12 Days Aquarium Le Yepudi Oxygen Illame Mochu Vide Mudiyum? 3. Tamil Version Le Tamilan Ne Sonnavan Yen Telugu Version Le Telugu Kaaran Ne Soldranengge? 4. Climax Fight Le Six Pack Parthone Than Shruti Hassan'ke Athu Bodhidharman Ne Therinjichi Apparan Yen 'Mun Andhi ' Song Le Six Pack Kaati Dance Aadunan? 5. Oru Tamilnadu Police Station Ellam Police Settupoitangge , Road Fulla Fight, Accident And Death Ah Irekke , Athu Main News Ah Varave Ille, Aana Disease Spread Pandrathe Mattum Antha Paala Pona Suntv News Le Varuthe... 6. Atha Vidu First Tim Donglee Sruthia Paakumboothuthae Hypnotism Use Panni Iruntha Story Mudinchi Irukumae? 7. Yanaiku Odambu Sari Illana Doctor A Circus A Ku Kootu Varuvangala.? Adha Vitutu Yanaya Kootitu Oorvalam Pora

Arunrajkumar Kaki said...

First day first show Office Bunk adichu ponna enaku seruppala adichalam pathathu

King Vishy said...

@Sridhar V..
Oh ya.. Good catch! This is turning out to be a sounding-board for all.. :) Bring them on!

Thanks a lot mate :) Do keep stumbling in often!

Thanks for dropping by, and for the comment!
1) Auto Scene - I still don't accept this. If that guys sees them, hypnotism or otherwise, he is going to annihilate them. Best option would be plan A - run away like mad!
2) Veliyil irundhu aadharavu - still don't get how complete the logic is. But if it's an LTTE reference - fine, at least it's consistent with the message they wanted to send across.

Reg the unnecessary detailing - it wasn't throughout the movie. For e.g., I liked the scene where Dong Lee would walk out of Fast Track's office, eating peanuts, and the phone ringing non-stop in the background. That was a subtle way of saying what had happened. If Murugadoss felt the audience could understand that, he should have done such stuff throughout the movie.

And Velayudham - sure will watch that! Loads of people are 'recommending' that in the same way as this :)

Thanks again..

King Vishy said...

Ha ha.. FDFS aa.. En aazhndha anudhaabangal machi..
List poattu thaakkitte.. Especially liked number 7..

King Vishy said...

Ha ha.. FDFS aa.. En aazhndha anudhaabangal machi..
List poattu thaakkitte.. Especially liked number 7..

Unknown said...

The whole recreating from DNA thingy is a Copy-Paste job from Assassin's Creed, which happens to be a super duper game that has been a huuuuge hit of a franchise over the past few years. I'm sure that the phaarin developers stole the bleddy concept from Tollywood fellows, who would've come up with it as soon as India achieved independence.

Unknown said...

7 am arivu.. 7 oscar kudukanum.

Gugan Eswaran said...

One more thing...
In Tamil version, Bodhi dharman born in Kanchipuram (Real one). But in case of Telgu version they showed that he born in Guntoor (AP) and in Hindi version showed that he born in Taravi (MP).... W.T.Hell....

Jacob Jerome Alex said...

An excellent and humorous article. It made an interesting read. You rock na!! :)

Seyyon said...

very nice guys. even i felt the same thing. they have tried to ape hollywood and hav landed in koovam river.

and the fun is aamir khan vere indha padathe remake pan draram, seme comedy paa.

except first 20 minutes, the whole movie is mokkai

Seyyon said...

i agree with u all guys.

the fun is tht MR. aamir khan is also remaking this movie. dnt kno for wht fun!!!!!!!!!111

they hav tried to ape hollywood & hav landed in koovam river.

except first 20 minutes, movie mokkai

Anonymous said...

ha ha.. nice review.. When you read some mokkai-movie reviews in Anandha vikatan, you would see a clever use of words in bringing out the logic loop-holes.. yours was as good.. and to those folks that comment on Velayudham (another crap movie except for santhanam's comedy), they don't, at least, claim they are taking tamil cinema to the next level.

- Santhosh

King Vishy said...

@ASO.. Assassin's Creed eh.. Hmmm.. So that's one movie I need to stay clear of, if at least to prevent scary recollections of this one..

@KP.. Ezhuvadhu kooda tharalaam da.. Poi kalyaana vaelaya paaru da.. Vettiya padam paathutu blogs padichuttu irukke!

@Gugan Eswaran.. OHH!!! APDIYA!!! That kills the basic point actually.. Makes it even worse..

@Jacob Jerome.. Thanks da :) Have you seen the movie?

@vijay.. ha ha.. And ya, first 20 mins gave you a feel of watching a big blockbuster.. anticlimax!

@santhosh.. thanks da :)
And ya - I think you hit the nail there.. Maybe I got too pissed off by the movie cos of all the hype around it being a class movie.. When I go to Velayudham, I know what am signing for.. guess that makes a lot of difference to audience response..

Anonymous said...

Couple of points to add to ur review..
1. Bodhi dharma scenes should ve been more in the movie..
2. No Suspense at all in the movie. The entire operation RED was revealed so everyone knew wats next.
3. Toooooooooooo much of hypnotism. The hero needs 12 days gene therapy shown almost like reborth to tap the kunfu skills in his Genes, but the beggar and road side girl just need a look from the villian to do martial arts???
4. Logical mistakes are accepted in a movie. But 7 am arivu cannot be pardoned. Cos the the movie crew boasted so much abt theor efforts in research and show casing the movie as THE BEST in tamil cinema...Indha build up ku padathula onnum illa!!

Murugadoss needs to learn from Shankar...

தக்குடு said...

சிரிச்சுண்டே இருக்கேன் விச்சு! போஸ்ட் பிரமாதம்னா அதுக்கு வந்த கமண்ட் ஒவ்வொன்னும் டாப்டக்கர். மதன் கிருஷ்ணன் சார் அம்மாவோட நக்கல் சான்ஸே இல்லை!! :))))

@ குகன் ஈஸ்வரன் - சார், மலையாள வெர்ஷன் இருந்தா அதையும் பாத்துட்டு ஒரு வார்த்தை சொல்லுங்க! :P

Anonymous said...

ha ha ha ! great. superb

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Ravi Akula said...

Hi, Accidentally I landed at this page and have returned atleast 3 times. Excellent sense of humour and extremly good review.

I would like to provide link to my blog -
Hope this is fine with you.

Thanks, Ravi

Venkysdiary said...

Where are you? Its been sooooo loooong..Please write something.. its a gentle threat (!!??)

King Vishy said...

Hello Venky.. Thanks for reminding me about my blog!!
Email.. Blogging.. Orkut.. Twitter.. Facebook.. Skype.. Ivlo choices irukkuradhula i have got confused, and am not active on any of these now!! glad to note you continue to post pretty frequently.. inspiring :)

Divya Lakshminarayanan said...

ROFL!! you made my day...