After watching Prem Directional The Villain I can say “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail”. The movie is a modern Day Interpretation of epic tale Ramayana’s iconic characters Ram and Ravan. Movie starts with an epic Ramayan stage play where Ram (Sudeep) ‘s father (Sharath Lohitashwa) is famous for playing Ravan’s character in the village. He advises Ram to lead his life with qualities of Ram and as well as Ravan. However ram’s mother ( Sarayna Ponnvannan) contradicts with it. Ram’s mother leaves home after the quarrel. Ram’s father dies due to heart attack and Ram replaces his father as Ravan in a stage play. Meanwhile Ramayya (Shiavarjkumar) is on the hunt for a criminal and will go to any extent to find him.
From here on movie gets into an analogy between Ram and Ravan. After the interesting opening sequence, film suffers from slow and flat narration by the director and unnecessary songs further derails the narration. However suddenly from nowhere the film escalates with few twist and turns towards the interval scenes which saves the first half from being a disaster. Even the routinely formalized action sequences fails to add any momentum to the first half. In second half the flat narration continues and drags the movie further. Despite all these, we were able to see few interesting stuff going on here and there, one being the confrontation scene of Sudeep and Shivaraj Kumar which is cleverly executed. Prem, for years has been adding mother sentiment to his story-line, follows same pattern here in the climax sequence which ends emotionally. There are many logical loopholes which can be seen clearly and some makes you wonder what was director thinking. Movie is lavishly made but if the director had concentrated on the the script over substance, this would have been a much better film.
Sudeep has enacted the role of Ram, a grey shaded character with ease. However after first half the character loses its steam ,thanks to the poor writing. Sudeep struggles to provide justice to this underdeveloped and unconvincing role of an international don. It doesn’t make any impact and fails miserably to connect. Ramayya played by Shivaraj Kumar doesn’t have much scope here and he is limited for a stereotypical introduction , few action sequences and a dance number which is pity considering the promise made by the director of providing equal screen space to both actors. There is also a song sequence for Shivaraj Kumar with six actresses in a flashback episode which is cliched at the best. To be honest the role offered to Shivaraj Kumar can be termed as an extended special appearance at most.
Talented Music Director Arjun Janya has provided some interesting Background score, however it was repetitive and bit loud. Amy Jackson has struggled to act and her role doesn’t have much scope either and she is a total miscast for the role. If that was not enough, Actress/Producer Rakshitha’s dubbing for Amy, makes it even worse. Telugu actor Srikanth in an important role shines in first half and he didn’t had much to do in the second half. Mithun Chakraborty was given a small role which didn’t had any scope .The veteran actor is under utilized here along with talented actors like Tilak Shekar and Shobharaj . The foreign actors in the film sounded fake with weird voice overs.
Its a shame that despite having an interesting premise, director Prem failed to execute it in a convincing manner. With almost three hours run time, the film is overlong and exhausting. Audience who are looking to find some logic and meat in the film will clearly be disappointed. This is nothing but a commercial entertainer which has nothing new to offer. Director Prem had some huge hits in the past with some commendable films,but the director has failed to update with audience’s changing taste for films. The Villain is a clear example that the director has failed to evolve over the years and is still stuck in a formulaic presentation which are being harshly rejected by the present day moviegoers.