First things first. I am delighted that Pink got remade in Tamil; I am rapturous that someone with the star power of Ajith has participated in the project. This decision by the star ranks right up there alongside Rajinikanth doing films with Ranjith, for sheer courage, and good intentions. Often, films like Pink run the risk of preaching to the choir, but when a star of the stature of Ajith breaks away from expectations and does a film like this, it helps familiarise many sections to the message of such films. The hope, of course, is that it will stick. The participation of a star is a double-edged sword, however. It popularises the message, sure, but pandering to his presence often proves harmful for the potency of the message. Unfortunately, some of that has happened with Nerkonda Paarvai.
Among the key strengths of Pink is the air of suspense that pervades its universe (it’s impossible not to bring Pink into this conversation, given this film is a remake). This is aided by Amitabh Bachchan playing a lawyer with great fragility. The three women central to this story, at one point, even express doubt over whether he is the right man for their case. In Nerkonda Paarvai, these women are played by Shraddha Srinath, Andrea (reprising her part from the original), and Abhirami, but here, when they express uncertainty over the efficiency of Bharath Subramaniam (Ajith Kumar), you want to ask them to relax. H Vinoth tries to make Bharath vulnerable by adding depression and bipolar disorder to his character, but he makes the latter seem almost like a superpower—which, of course, has the opposite effect of making him vulnerable. A doctor even warns a group of bad guys that Bharath not taking his pills is more dangerous for them. The idea is great in a mass film, but not in a universe like this, where the focus needs to be strictly on the women. Bharath makes horizontal figures of dozens of vertical men, as a fountain gushes in the background (symbolism?). He then snarls at a powerful politician, “Bayamurutharavana bayamuruthardhu en pazhakkam.” And to think his clients, those three poor women, were worried about this guy?
For the remainder of this interview (and there’s a lot more left, I assure you), please visit https://www.cinemaexpress.com/reviews/tamil/2019/aug/07/nerkonda-paarvai-movie-review-ajiths-integration-into-this-remake-is-to-mixed-results-13479.html