Cast: Suriya, Samantha Ruth Prabhu, Manoj Bajpayee, Vidyut Jamwal, Dalip Tahil, Soori, Brahmanandam, Asif Basra and Murali Sharma
Director: N Lingusamy
Anjaan is like a battle between Suriya, the star, and Suriya, the actor. Interestingly the film features him in a double role - one is a star and the other is an actor. But the director has focused on the star only.
Suriya, who didn't mind playing a buck-toothed, dark, ugly hunchback Chinna in Perazhagan or a con man in Pithamagan or the grim police officer in Kaaka Kaaka, didn't hesitate to experiment, but the film's plot backfired.
The Suriya we saw in those films may not have been a star then (or maybe he was), but audiences loved him as much as they like him today.
Anjaan comes after Suriya's recent blockbuster Singam 2, and the makers assumed that his success streak would help Anjaan in wooing the audience.
Also read: Sikandar will be Suriya's own Baasha, says L Sridhar
To cash in on Suriya's success, N Lingusamy rustled up a gangster revenge drama, inspired by several desi gangster films, but lost the plot.
Shot in Mumbai with a host of Bollywood actors, who are excruciatingly awful in their roles, it also has a romantic track. Samantha romances Suriya, dances with him in a bikini and the crowd goes berserk.
There are punchy dialogues, which are repeated in every fight scene.
There's comedy too, but it hardly evokes laughter.
Also read: Why Anjaan might just be 'make or break' for Samantha Ruth Prabhu
Look at the irony of Tamil cinema - movies made here can't have many dialogues in Hindi because audiences won't understand. But the filmmakers worked with Bollywood actors in the film because the script demanded so, but they were not allowed to dub in their own voices, as they can't speak Tamil.
So when these actors appear on the screen, you get the feeling that you're watching a Hindi film dubbed in Tamil. This is precisely why Manoj Bajpayee, one of the finest actors in Indian cinema, always looks like a clown in Tamil films.
Vidyut Jamwal, who was last seen in Tamil film Thuppakki as a cold-blooded terrorist, had impressed because his dialogues were in Hindi with a voiceover in Tamil.
It worked when audiences watched the film. He was accepted and appreciated. It was not the same with Anjaan.
Also read: Suriya has so much intensity in his eyes, he can act with them, says Vidyut Jammwal
Suriya gives an earnest performance in Anjaan, and there's absolutely no doubt about it. But he's let down by a weak script, terrible performances by the rest of the cast and lengthy narrative.
He should do films that do justice to his potential, rather than associating with films like Anjaan.
It is high time Lingusamy, who is reluctant to change, accepts the fact that age-old formula doesn't work anymore.