While the previous post listed the worst movies of the year, most of them arrived with little or no expectations attached to them. So, while watching them was a painful experience and they collectively represented 25 or so hours of my life that I'll never get back, they weren't really disappointments in the true sense of the word. So this list is made up of the biggest disappointments of 2008.
How much I look forward to a movie depends mostly on the actor and the director. The rest of the cast, the music director, the quality of the soundtrack and other factors do play a part but not as much as the actor and the director do. That is what you'll see reflected in this list.
Jeeva's previous movies like Raam
and Kattradhu Thamizh
led us to believe that he might have tried to do something different even within the confines of a masala movie but boy, were we in for a nasty surprise! The film gave us ridiculous characters in a predictable storyline and then proceeded to bore the daylights out of us with a fashion show and song sequences set in a community of transgenders.
Vishal, with his pumped-up physique, was perfectly suited to play a cop but that was the only thing we got out of this tired cop story. The film's screenplay was a mess with originality, continuity and tonal consistency not very high on the director's list of priorities and after a different start, the storyline became easily predictable. Nayanthara was at her most irritating in her clashes with Vishal and Harris Jayaraj delivered a lukewarm soundtrack for his 25th film.
8. Indhiralogathil Naa. Azhagappan
The quality of Vadivelu's previous appearance as hero and the genre this film belonged to made us look forward to it. With sad results. A rare entry in the socio-fantasy genre, it was stuck between feeding Vadivelu's ego, incorporating his brand of comedy and conveying a message. As a result, it alternated between cheap comedy, artificial sentiments and confusing messages. Azhagappan may have been in heaven but were in cinematic hell!
The hero's role in the remake of Main Hoon Na
seemed perfectly suited for Ajith at this stage of his career but director Raju Sundaram stumbled badly in this film, revealing a complete ignorance of what made the original work so marvelously. Ajith's larger-than-life heroics felt completely out-of-place, the overt comedy segments were irritating and the Hindi film's effective emotional hook was transformed into an unconvincing, last-minute addition.
Kamal appearing in 10 roles made this the biggest and most-hyped release of the year but the film itself was an unsatisfying effort. As an actor, Kamal sparkled with characters that were meticulously researched off-sceen and well realized on it. But almost all the other aspects of the film - the screenplay that ground to a stop in the second half, the cheesy graphics, the overdone make-up that made some of the faces stiff and inexpressive and the irritatingly whiny Asin - were more than a little disappointing.
With Rajni opting to do a quickie before the mega-budget Endhiran
, this remake of the Malayalam blockbuster Kadha Parayumbol
came as a welcome surprise for his fans, who weren't expecting to see him on the big screen in 2008. But P.Vasu spoiled the surprise, butchering the original by shearing off its subtlety and emotions and replacing them with loud sentiments and cheap, crude comedy. Rajni's stand-alone scenes had no impact because of the lack of background and Vadivelu was plain intolerable. The emotional climax was the sole saving grace in the film.
4. Abhiyum Naanum
Considering the loveably realistic characters, the subtle emotions and the understated humor that were part of Mozhi
, we were looking forward to a similarly charming tale of love between a father and daughter in this follow-up from Radhamohan. Instead, we got a one-sided relationship where the father got all the attention and the daughter's character remained underdeveloped. The emotions in the film lacked depth and things turned really cinematic once Trisha's fiance was introduced.
3. Arai En 305-il Kadavul
The way director Chimpudevan balanced satire, social commentary and comedy near-perfectly in Imsai Arasan...
led us to expect a lot more from this socio-fantasy that was loosely based on Oh God! and Bruce Almighty. But the director's balancing act with comedy and moralizing didn't work nearly as well. The were only a few laughs scattered among the messages and the messages themselves were muddled, leaving us with nothing.
Lingusamy crafted one of the best masala
flicks in recent times in Run
and so when he got together with Vikram, who can bring intensity to any role and has been rather choosy with his films, expectations were that the collaboration would lead to fireworks. Sadly, the film was simply another cliched tale about a rowdy and his mentor, with all the usual accompaniments like fights, dances and an item number. The first half was an exhausting, non-stop fight-fest and the surprisingly downbeat end was too little too late.
Dharani was the director with the Midas touch when it came to masala
movies with three of the best entries(Dhil
) in that genre in recent times. So his re-teaming with the rest of the Gilli team - Vijay, Trisha, Vidyasagar - was looked forward to. But the film was a huge letdown without any traces of the pace or the excitement that made Gilli
so enjoyable. The few good action sequences had ridiculously over-the-top punchlines and the second half reminded us of Thagappansamy
, a film which even its hero Prashanth would probably like to forget.