First Half Hit, Second Half Fut
2h 58m, ‘UA’ Certified.
What Is the Film About?
Chennai city is terrorized by bike gangs with chain snatching and other crimes and is also involved in drugs. The super cop Arjun (Ajith) enters the scene and tries to catch the mastermind behind the bike gang network.
Who is Karthikeya, and how does he operate his network? What happens after Arjun catches him? Will he take revenge on Arjun is the movie’s basic plot.
Ajith playing Arjun is a tailor-made role for him. He is smart, suave and intense, and even though all these qualities are not fully utilized, they can be felt under-currently.
The best qualities of Ajith also involve his passion for bikes and racing. H Vinoth has used these additional skills to great use in Valimai. The bike stunts are sensational, and it enhances the overall star appeal. As a performance, there is nothing home to write about; we have seen Ajith do all this before. He does the usual chore with ease and swag as one expects from him.
Karthikeya, who surprised with a villain turn in Gang Leader, plays another antagonist part in Valimai. Incidentally, this role, too, has a racing connection. For a large part of the first half, he remains hidden mainly behind the scenes. Karthikeya makes his presence around the pre-interval mark and is visible for most of the duration. He is alright playing a criminal mastermind. The intensity is missing, but as most of it is make-do with looks and posing, it is alright.
H Vinoth of Sathuranga Vettai (Buff Master in Telugu) and Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru (Khakee) fame directs Valimai. It is his second film with Ajith after Nerkonda Paarvai (Vakeel Saab in Telugu).
As one can see looking at H Vinoth’s filmography, he is one of the most exciting young emerging talents in Tamil cinema. It’s the reason for the great hype of Valimai in the first place, as it’s larger than life action fare coming from him.
The first half proves to everyone why one should be excited about an H Vinoth film. The young director who has built a repertoire for excellent crime dramas (primarily the criminals behind) shows his spark ‘again’ with the bike gang. The modus operandi and the networking etc., are the strengths of Valimai, which is the case with the director.
However, unlike H Vinoth’s previous attempts, the sentiment isn’t blended correctly in the narrative. The idea of the unemployed being trapped and lured into crimes is dated. Not that it can’t be used, but the way it’s done is the problem here. The emotions generated out of this trope doesn’t create a compelling drama.
The freshness of bike stunts and lavish making contrasts the outdated sentiment. It holds back the movie from getting its absolute stunner of an impact. The lengthy designed interval block adds to the problem. It is sensational in parts, no doubt, but it could have been trimmed.
By the time the interval is done, it feels like completing a full-length movie. It makes one wonder what lies ahead as the main thing is over.
However, the second half starts on an exciting note. It does give an idea of where the movie is headed, but one can’t help but be immersed in the jaw-dropping stunt sequence. Unfortunately, that’s as high as Valimai gets in the second half.
The rest of the proceedings in the second half comprises predictable cat and mouse games between the cop and the thief. As the director has run out of his strengths, the weakness in holding attention via typical mass action is exposed. The sentiment, too, feels contrived and lacks the connection.
The narrative takes an overlong approach to reach the predictable end. The long drawn out mind games and sentiment blocks towards the climax drain our energy and interest. At the closing, one is relieved that the movie has finally ended. It’s a shame we feel that way, given Valimai, in parts, offers sensational and spectacular action bits never seen before on Indian screens.
Overall, Valimai is an action thriller that works well, sticking to the director’s strength in the first half. The weaknesses are exposed in the second half as there is nothing exciting plot-wise. If you love action movies, you can give Valimai a try for the first half. But, remember it’s a patience-testing watch due to the excruciatingly long length.
There is no traditional heroine part in Valimai. Huma Qureshi plays a cop who has a decent role, albeit a small one. She is okay with whatever is given to her. The rest of the cast have bits and pieces roles with a couple of bike gang members making an impression, but that’s about it.
Music and Other Departments?
Yuvan Shankar Raja’s songs add value to the narrative. In fact, they appear like speed breakers. It is the background score where he shines, as usual, and delivers for Ajith again. The BGM is excellent and adds to the movie’s slick and trendy international vibe. Nirav Shah’s cinematography is brilliant. The ace lensman takes us back to the Billa days. In parts, Valimai is no less than a Hollywood action movie. Vijay Velukutty’s editing could have been better, though, for a crisp narrative. The stunts deserve special mention for their world-class appeal. The writing also could have been better.
Bike Stunts & Actions Blocks
A more thriller approach to the second half, making less use of emotional angle and sticking to the core cop versus thief action, would have been better.
Did I Enjoy It?
Yes, first half
Will You Recommend It?
Yes, but for only action lovers
Valimai Telugu Movie Review by Siddartha Toleti
Valimai’s weak story is exposed in the second half as there is no meat. The climax is a big bore and drags with a predictable sentiment.
Still ‘action movie lovers’ can give it a try, once, for the spectacular action. Full review coming soon.
— The climax is overlong and tiring. Final report and detailed review shortly. Stay tuned.
— As the second half progresses the weak plot is getting exposed. The second half bets heavily on couple of action blocks rather than a gripping story.
— Again, the second half starts off with a high octane and stylish stunt episode but it doesn’t end on a high note.
First Half Report:
Valimai’s first half comprises an engaging crime thriller plot mixed with adrenaline-pumping bike racing stunts. The flipside is the simple story and way too lengthy (almost like a climax) interval block with few good bits.
Overall, the first half is decent for the lavish Hollywood style making, good BGM, and novelty in the whole thing, even if it is overlong. The second half is crucial now to see where Valimai ends.
— Ajith gets into the highly technical web network of criminal Kartikeya.
— Ajith figured out the there’s a bigger loot happening and a dangerous gang behind all the crimes. He is now appointed as a lead to solve the crime.
— The gang of chain snatchers are making the cops restless. It involves drugs and killings of innocent people.
— Ajith is on the job to control the crime. The first rain fight is alright followed by a typical hero intro song.
— Valimai show started. The city is witnessing never seen before murders and robberies by a gang of bikers. The take off is super lavish and stylish.
Valimai Review, U.S Premiere updates will begin shortly. Stay tuned.
Tamil star Ajith’s highly awaited pan-India release Valimai is set to hit the big screens on February 24th. It sees the star join hands with his Nerkonda Paarvai director H Vinoth for the second consecutive time.
Valimai has been in the news for a long time. The fans went berserk for an update on it for months together. It was because it has been a long time since the release of Ajith’s last flick. Nerkonda Paarvai hit the cinemas in August 2019. And it wasn’t a regular commercial fare to boot.
Coming to Valimai, it is everything the fans of Ajith want from the star. There is a stylish action, an uber cool looking Ajith and a fresh subject from the actor. The long gap has only increased the expectations.
The biggest advantage with Valimai has become its release timing. Besides the long gap between Ajith films, it is also the first Tamil biggie to hit the screens in Tamil Nadu after the third wave. The whole ground is open. If the film gets positive talk sky would be the limit for its potential. Remember, Ajith already has the highest grossing Tamil movie (outside Baahubali 2) to his name. another such success would further elevate his status as a star.
Apart from Ajith, H Vinoth also stands a chance to enter the big league as a director. His biggest film so far is Khakee. Valimai promises to be more thriller than the Karthi starrer.
M9News, as always, is here to give ‘First-On-Net’ Valimai movie review genuinely and honestly. Watch this space for our updates.