We watched the movie last Saturday, 28 Nov 2008 at PVR. The first and foremost before writing a full review will be... Surya is phenomenal... he is brilliant, outstanding on the two characters as father and son. Surya is one gem of an actor who I hope will follow the foot steps of the great Kamal Hassan.
The film shows the 4 phases of Surya's life and there is a portion of Surya' as father. If you put altogether imagine the length of the movie.... it is well over 2 and half hours. It is a well crafted movie and it is one of the best for Gautam Menon and Surya. For Surya this movie will be an icon in his career.
We (myself n my wife) loved the character of young Surya, the adolescent Surya. He had completely transformed to look like a school boy studying in +2. The hair style and the facial expressions are brilliant. The next phase of his life is after his college life he meets his love Sameera Reddy and my god... she is gorgeous. She has an addictive smile... an inquisitive smile on her face which makes her attractive. The young Surya woos her finally after a struggle but fate his own things written over their love.
The next phase of Surya's life is onto drugs after he loses Sameera in a bomb blast. The look is considerably changed from a lovable Surya to rowdy look Surya. He gets out of drugs after an ordeal with gangsters, saving a child. The next phase which is shown as the current phase, as a major in Indian Army. In this character Surya is stout and portrays as army man. The characterisation and the look are perfect.
As you can see there are 4-5 dimension for Surya or 6 looks for Surya, you seem to think the movie runs fast and due to this I feel the depth is lacking. The movie is suppose to be a relationship between a father and son instead the movie goes where the son Surya goes. It's basically son Surya's life. Surya says he draws inspiration from his father at every point of time but that bonding, inspiration is not seen in the movie. The father Surya is very subtle all along the movie, one would expect as a responsible father his son studies well and settle well in life but in this movie he encourages his son to do things which most fathers' will resist. I guess it's the style of urban or metropolitan culture.
The music is peppy and all the songs are a hit. In order to match the music on screenplay the background, sets and location needs to be taken care of, I mean it will be additional work effort for the Director and the cameraman involved to bring the hit song in the movie. The cameraman work is also doubled due to Surya's double role.. one as old age father and a young son. In an interview Gautam Menon told he wanted this movie to be a musical treat. So, there is lot of things happening for one movie and in this essential plot is missed, the relationship between a father and son. If you see the movie 'Thavamai Thavmirundhu' you can feel the emotion from the characters of that movie the bonding between father and his sons - which I feel the emotion quotient is missing in Vaaranam Aayiram.
We also discussed that it is an epic movie and if the Director had used 4 or 5 different cameraman for each phase the visual treat would have been different. Ratnavelu, the cameraman has tried his best for this movie to take it to the next level whenever son Surya goes to next level but falls flat.
On a final note I would give 2.5 stars out of 5. Go watch it for Surya!!!!!