Veerappan Review by Bollywood Hungama
Ram Gopal Varma, whose last Hindi/ Bollywood film at the box-office was the forgettable SATYA 2, makes a grand comeback with VEERAPPAN. One has to give it to him for having the confidence and the conviction in an off-beat subject like the life story of Veerappan. Unlike his earlier films, Ram Gopal Varma has adopted a rather guerrilla method in the narration of VEERAPPAN. Ram Gopal Varma should also be applauded for convincingly extracting human emotions from his characters, without going over the top. The film script (R.D. Tailang), is convincing and believable. Both, the script and Ram Gopal Varma’s direction complement each other. While the first half of the film builds up the story and the pace, the film’s second half dips slightly. Even though the film cannot be termed as a ‘visual masterpiece’, still, one does get to witness a handful of scenes that have been shot superlatively. The film has the most fitting climax, by all means. Full brownie points to Ram Gopal Varma for having flawlessly shot the scenes like Veerappan’s hideouts and the scenes towards the interval point. The climax of the film is as much fantastic and enjoyable, as much as the ultimate elimination scene of Veerappan.
Veerappan Review by Meena Iyer on The Times Of India
Since everything about Veerappan made headlines in his lifetime, the story has no surprises. Also the docu-feature style narrative doesn’t have too many edge-of-the seat thrills. But if you are keen and curious, to see the life and times of one of the most dreaded criminals, who twirled his moustache and brandished his gun with equal finesse, Varma provides you that vicarious pleasure.
Veerappan Review by Rohit Vats on Hindustan Times
The disappointment grows when the script fails to produce any grip over the characters. Nobody other than Bhardwaj looks serious about the film. Thanks to his make-up artist, he reminds the viewer of the dreaded man from the beginning, but he has a gang that looks absolutely out of sync.
Veerappan Review by Asira Tarannum on Deccan Chronicle
RGV has told it taut, specially in the second half that is all about Operation Killing Veerappan. Sandeep’s tranformation as Veerappan is commendable — from his looks to his dialect. Here’s an actor waiting to be explored. Usha too plays it easy. Sachiin was a delight and perhaps this is his best performance so far.
Veerappan Review by Jaidev Hemmady on Movietalkies
As for the direction, Varma shows that he still knows a thing or two about camera angles and eerie background music to highlight his scenes. But unfortunately, the director fails to come up with a gripping thriller, which we all were expecting. The amateurish acting and the weak dialogues, not to mention the loose screenplay, ensures a boring cinematic experience.
Review by Saibal Chatterjee on NDTVMovies
The film is somewhat tolerable only as long as Sandeep Bharadwaj is on the screen in the guise of Veerappan. He inhabits the larger-than-life character with impressive flair. In comparison to his animated presence, Sachiin Joshi resembles an automaton gurgling out his lines like a lifeless machine running on empty. Lisa Ray, playing a policeman’s widow who willingly becomes a part of the operation against Veerappan, sticks out like a sore thumb in more ways than one. The dialogue delivery – her voice is clearly dubbed – is abysmal. In contrast, Usha Jadhav lends dignity to the character of Muthulakshmi, the woman caught in the crossfire between the police force and her husband. She brings out the tussle in her mind between doubt and trust in all its complexity. But somehow the nuances that she informs her character with are lost in a film that does not go beyond the visceral.
Review by Shubhra Gupta on Indian Express
‘Veerappan’ , based on his own Kannada ‘Killing Veerappan’, never becomes that film. Bhardwaj is to be seen wreathed in a perpetual snarl, hacking away at human limbs and shooting luckless elephants. The other three who split the rest of the screen time are Joshi, playing the mastermind behind Veerappan’s capture , a slain-by-Veerappan officer’s widow ( Ray, unintentionally hilarious) and the outlaw’s wife ( Jadhav, far too sympathetic), and they are made to scurry around to little impact. The dizzying camera angles which have marred so many of RGV’s recent outings may have mercifully gone missing but the ear-shattering background music is right there. It is enough to make you want to flee into the forests, even at the risk of running into Veerappan.
Review by Sreeju Sudhakaran on Bollywood Life
Veerappan may be a let down if everyone expected this to be on lines with Band Queen or Pan Singh Tomar. However, there is a still a reason to smile here as we get to see the signs of RGV’s lost brilliance. If it was not for the lifeless performances from most of the cast and the silly BG score, this would have been a better film.
Review by Ananya Bhattacharya on India Today
Veerappan feels like a 2-hour-30-minute long, badly-rehearsed children’s play. Sachiin Joshi sings a lullaby even while outlining an operation; his way of talking can put even the most active of people to sleep. Lisa Ray lip-stracts you badly. Her acting seems strangely forced. Her camaraderie with Usha Jadhav’s Muthulakshmi sticks out like a sore finger. Ram Gopal Varma feels the need to hold the viewer by the neck and make him/her realise that Priya and Muthulakshmi’s friendship is all pretence.
Review by Shubha Shetty-Saha on Mid-Day India
Varma attempts to narrate an engaging story, but the narration gets drowned by relentless ear splitting background music. Lisa Ray plays a spy who befriends Veerappan’s wife Mutthulakshmi (Usha Jadhav) and passes on some vital information to the cops. Lisa Ray, who’s obviously limited by her acting talent, looks more like she belongs to one of Ramu’s horror movies than this one. Sachiin Joshi makes an attempt to look and act the role he plays, but then the attempt shows more than the talent. Sandeep Bharadwaj as Veerappan and Jadhav as Mutthulakshmi are perfectly cast and they both do a convincing job of it. Even then this could have been an engaging watch, if not spoiled by that constant assault on one’s eardrums.
Review by Martin D’Souza on Glamsham
What really gets to you is the background score that goes boom, boom, boom, every time there is an action scene in the jungle, some jungle scenes, or scenes where not much is happening. RGV tries to hit out at you, any which way.
Veerappan Review by Indiaglitz
‘Veerappan’ is mildly menacing instead of an out and out menacing film. The movie had all the potential to become a hard-hitting cult drama if only the screenplay would have been a bit tight and had some better actors to perform.
Review by IANS on Zeenews
Sandeep Bharadwaj essays Veerappan’s character with sluggish ease. It is amusing to watch him with his handle-bar moustache literally dress up and emulate Veerappan. But unfortunately, not much emphasise is given to him, as an actor. With unflinching gaze, Sachiin Joshi plays the tough police officer from whose point of view the story is narrated. Except for flexing his muscles, he has nothing much to emote. Usha Jadhav as Veerappan’s wife Muthulaxmi is convincing. You empathise with her when she tells her landlady, Shreeya, “woh waisa aadmi nahin hai jaise police and press kehte hain.” Of the rest of the cast, Lisa Ray as Shreeya is a misfit, Nassir as the Police Commissioner is perfunctory. He just seems to be an extension of the character he plays on Television.
Review by Raja Sen on Rediff
This, then, is not a film worth recommending. And yet there are some images that stay with me — like the aforementioned one of the dacoit as a cop, and one featuring, alongside the men, female cops in red and yellow sarees, gamely wading through water and firing at the outlaws — which convince me that Varma isn’t sleepwalking through the project. Also, as Hindi films go, it’s surprisingly no-nonsense for the most part, save for Joshii. It knows what it wants to do and while it can’t quite pull it off, it certainly kidnaps our attention for a while. It may well be a misfire, but Veerappan shows that at least RGV has his eyes open while squeezing the trigger. The dacoit is still at large.
Review by Bryan Durham on DNA India
The return of RGV to Bollywood’s consciousness. He’s not completely in his usual element here, but there are flashes of his brilliance here, and these, sadly, are few and far between. As Veerappan, Bhardwaj inhabits the character, truly bringing him to life, with more menace than one could’ve imagined. And while you might argue the point of leading with Voltaire’s ‘Society gets the criminal it deserves’, you have to agree that the spot-on casting of Bhardwaj as Veerappan truly deserved a better film. And a much, much better background score. And far better supporting actors (the lesser said about them, the better). And a story told about the criminal in the title. Sadly, that isn’t to be found here, with the nameless cop (played by Joshi) getting more screen time than Veerappan.
Review by Rajeev Masand on News18
The body count piles up during the film’s two hours running time, but the brutal killings are not for the fainthearted. There are some skillfully executed shootout scenes like one in which the authorities close in on Veerappan’s gang while they’re making their way through a waterfall. But these are small pleasures in a largely disappointing film that never goes beyond the obvious. Varma takes frequent liberties with the truth in this remake of his own Kannada film Killing Veerappan, but what you leave the cinema with at the end are shattered eardrums from the incessant background music.
Review by Kunal Guha on Mumbai Mirror
Sandeep Bharadwaj in the eponymous role evokes very little terror, but seems convincing in his dialogue delivery and getup. Sachiin Joshi has worked on his performance and has come a long way, if you’ve followed his filmography. The film has an eclectic mix of character actors, each with a peculiar choice of accessory or handicap. It’s upsetting that Ram Gopal Varma fans have to put up with this. Even the very few and far between visual flourishes are merely reminders of an auteur that was.
Review by Sonia Chopra on Sify
The ending could have been far better. It’s a bit comical to see some of our central characters sitting out and having a nice tea picnic while something so significant is happening. Still, the film is mostly gripping, sensational and involving. Veerappan’s story with his spectacular rise and fall was a big one. The film does it justice.
Review by Manisha Lakhe on Nowrunning
The man who plays Veerappan, though, looks like he was born to the part. Creepy and cruel, he manages to make you cringe initially with his violence. But the story is so tedious, you really don’t care if the cops win or the dacoits. A shining beacon of relief is Usha Jadhav who plays Muthulaxmi, Veerappan’s wife. But she cannot carry the flag alone, can she? A couple of aerial shots in the ravines and by the waterfalls make you wonder if there was something there. But the movie is mostly stupid overacting by supposedly evil characters like Arun who make you wish he actually snaps his neck while giving in to his kink.
Review by meeta on Wogma
For one, whenever you could be a part of the plot, you are distanced. Discussions between characters are muted under loud music. You are left looking at characters animatedly moving their lips at each other with over-enthusiastic expressions. This doesn’t happen just once or twice, but is a regular feature.
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