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Bakasuran A Dangerous Film On Dangers Online
Bakasuran (Prime Video)
I so want to start this review by saying Bakasuran(Tamil) means well. The concerns regarding sexual harassment online seem genuine.But producer-writer-director Mohan G’s execution(pun intended) is so crude and amateurish that all the good intentions get washed in an acid rain.
It’s like being invited to a bachelors’ party only to discover drag queens dragging down the fun quotient. The vigilante played by Dhanush’s elder brother Selvaraghavan looks so creepy it actually seems he is a sheep in wolf’s clothing.
Selvaraghavan last seen helping his screen stepsister Keerthy Reddy get rid of her rapists systematically in Saani Kaayidham is here on his own, nabbing academic perverts who are responsible for his daughter’s sexual harassment and rape.
The “execution” is crude from the start when a teacher is seen trying to take advantage of a hapless underage girl. The language used(“take off your, let me caress your virgin body”) by the rapist is nauseating. It feels like rape twice-over.This is not how films about rape are effective. This is where Selvaraghavan’s character Rajasekaran barges in,drags the twisted teacher to the ground and rips him into two, like they did in the Mahabharat, we are told.
The mythological allusions are sprinkled all across the brackish narrative, like spicy add-ons to a bland overcooked pizza. This is a film that believes in pumping up the melodrama until it bursts open at the seams.
While Rajasekaran gets bestial with all those who harmed his daughter , in a parallel plot, an investigative officer Arul(Natarajan Subramaniam) whose niece Ramya has committed suicide after being sexually blackmailed(yes,every family in the film seems to have a daughter, and they all fall prey to online mischief) is on the prowl trying to decode the logic behind the trail of brutal killings.
The flashbacks are particularly stiff at the joints, with the men behaving like drugged predators and a woman with short hair, a tight skimpy blouse with a tattoo visible, a billowy saree and cigarettes on her painted lips, acts so stereotypically in-character, it feels like a propaganda piece on predatory behaviour.
If subtlety is your scene then I suggest you stay as far away from Bakasuran as possible. The film’s crudity level is so steep, it feels like an excuse to unleash a torrent of misogyny masquerading as concern for what the phone can do to a girl child.
Why not the male chidren? They are the ones watching porn and getting ideas, And by simply removing phones from children’s reach, are we going to solve the very urgent issue of sex crime? It’s like blaming the weapon for all the killings in the world.You can remove the phone from impressionable hands, but what about the images of sexual fantasy that float in the mind?
Bakasuran has no answers. Only the questions on the rise in sex crimes. And very crudely posed.