Smells like failure: When 1971 Beyond Borders and Kaatru Veliyidai failed to enthral the audience

Anu James
1971 Beyond Borders, Mohanlal, Kaatru Veliyidhe

April 7 saw the release of two much-awaited movies in Malayalam and Tamil, 1971 Beyond Borders and Kaatru Veliyidai. The hype around both the war dramas were high, as one starred Mohanlal in the fourth instalment of Major Mahadevan series, and the other for being the directorial venture of hitmaker Mani Ratnam.

However,  both movies, released on the same day across India, were opened to mixed response.

What went wrong for 1971 Beyond Borders

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Though some are heaping praise on the Major Ravi directorial, narrated in the backdrop of India Pakistan war in 1971, social media has been flooded with a lot of negative response as well. The not-so-good word of mouth has hit the box office collection of the film even as Mohanlal is basking in the success of back-to-back blockbusters.

Looks like Major Ravi wanted to carve a superhero character for Mohanlal, this time as Major Sahadevan and Colonel Mahadevan, but the superstar is seen struggling to run across the battle field with those heavy guns. He even drives a real tanker "just for fun", and it certainly looked like an unnecessary insertion for show off. 

Also, we have seen Jiiva's character Havildar Jaikumar, getting killed while saving Mahedevan in the first instalment, Keerthi Chakra. Even after 10 years of the movie's release, the character's sudden demise evokes sad memories. Major Ravi might have thought the same formula would work again, and has attempted to bring a similar emotional moment in 1971 Beyond Borders as well. Sadly it didn't work well as Allu Sirish's character, Lieutenant Chinmay, failed to recreate the Jiiva magic. 1971 Beyond Borders is an old wine (Keerthi Chakra) served in a new bottle with hardly any freshness (read family moments and too many war sequences).

Allu Sirish, Jiiva

Stills from Keerthichakra and 1971 Beyond Borders Facebook

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Audience response on Kaatru Veliyidai 

The highlight of Kaatru Veliyidhe was none other than Mani Ratnam. In the run up to its release, Actor Karthi and Aditi Ravi Hydari were on a promoting spree praising the filmmaker and the way he has handled the movie. But the film, told in the backdrop of Kargil war, has failed to impress the audience, as most of them felt Karthi as Indian Air Force pilot Varun Chakrapani to be a miscast.

Many are of the opinion that the magic of romance seen in Mani Ratnam's films are missing in Kaatru Veliyidai, though it has fused all the signature elements of the filmmaker. Audience said the movie looked artificial, with Karthi and Aditi failing to move the audience. However, all are praise for AR Rahman's music and Ravi Varman's cinematography, the only factors that seem to engage the audience.

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