What do you say about a comedy that comes alive only in the final stretch, where bloodthirsty villagers begin to dance to Gangnam Style in the midst of a kabaddi tournament, surrounded by pompom-bearing cheerleaders and banners for Nijam Paakku and Aachi Masala? Had this crazy-surreal tone existed throughout, we may have had on our hands a free-association laugh riot. Instead, we’re faced with a ghastly mix of brutal drama and casual one-liners. The director Ezhil cannot land on a tone, and so we have, at interval point, a father who’s killed in front of his daughter by a javelin that pierces his heart. And a couple of scenes later, we’re in a wedding night scenario whose laughs are meant to rise from poisoned apples. Desingu Raja is about the union of a couple (Vemal, Bindu Madhavi) from feuding villages, but it’s really a cautionary tale about making movies with five jokes and no script.
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