Gang - Movie Review

Friday, January 12, 2018 - 18:30
Gang (2018)
Cast & Crew: 

Film: Gang
Cast: Suriya, Keerthy Suresh, Ramya Krishna, Karthik, Sudhakar, Brahmanandam, Tambi Ramaiah, RJ Balaji, Vinodhini and others
Dialogues: Shashank Vennelakanti
Music: Anirudh Ravichander
Cinematography: Dinesh Krishnan
Editing: Sreekar Prasad
Art: DRK Kiran
Action: Dileep Subbarayan
Producer: Gnanavel Raja
Banner: UV Creations and Studio Green
Written and directed by: Vignesh Sivn
Release date: Jan 12, 2018
CBFC Rating: UA

'Gang', starring Suriya, Ramya Krishna, Suresh Menon, Karthik, Keerthy Suresh and others, hits the screens this Friday. Let's find out what works and what doesn't.


As someone who wanted to join the CBI and break the backs of the corrupted, Suriya is a youngster with broken dreams. He fails to make it in the interview because the venal Uttham Das (Suresh Menon) is such a lousy elitist who can't tolerate an underdog becoming an officer. Uttham believes that the son of a clerk (Thambi Ramaiah) should remain one for the rest of his life.

Wronged by the system and raring to render jungle justice, Suriya concocts an unconventional plan. Together with men and women of his ilk (who have their own tragedies and difficulties in life), he forms a gang (comprising of Ramya Krishna, Keerthy Suresh, Senthil, Sathyan in the main). These gang members appear like a thunder at the doorsteps of a corrupt politician (Anandraj), claim that they are from the CBI and seize everything that they can lay their hands on.

A couple of such fake raids later, their goose is cooked. Uttham Das senses something fishy. In comes Sivashankar (Karthik), who can crack any case with toughness and wit. In no time, they tap Bujjamma alias Jhansi Lakshmi's (Ramya Krishna) phone so as to nab the entire team at once.

But herein comes a cinematic twist. Suriya sees through the plan and dares the cops to catch them if they can. Will the system chase the ill-equipped gang down? What fate will they meet? That's the crux of the second half.

What works:

Based on the Bollywood hit 'Special 26', 'Gang' comes with a tone of its own. The fun and sentiment quotients are much more here. Director Vignesh Shivan effects so many changes to the script in making the first half a breezy affair.

Thankfully, the humour is not loud. But it is quirky yes. For example, Ramya Krishna has seven daughters in total. Reason? In the '70s, there was no TV and electricity! She and her husband (comedian Sudhakar in a brief cameo) had no choice but to seek entertainment on the bed!

The writer-director innovated with respect to the characters as well. For example, Ramya Krishna (replacing Anupam Kher) and Karthik, both of whom have very key roles, are a welcome change. Watch the Shivagami feign toughness during raids. Suresh Menon is joined by Karthik in the CBI. In the original, they made do with just one character, played by Manoj Bajpai.
The back story of Suriya (his friend is driven to suicide) is very emotionally appealing. The role of Keerthy Suresh is also changed effectively. She too elicits some laughs.

What doesn't work:

It would pay if we don't compare it with the original at every turn. For a film set in 1987, the visuals and costumes are too contemporary to seem realistic. While the first half elicits laughs (especially the scene where the fake Gandhian politician Anandraj is robbed by Suriya's gang), the second half loses steam. The tone and tenor of the first half go for a toss. Too much of Tamil nativity is a turn-off. The songs (music is by Anirudh Ravichander) are a letdown in the film (though not in the audio), as they slacken the pace.

Performance score:

Unlike many commercial films nowadays, 'Gang' is not a one-man show. Along with Suriya, who does an excellent work (and he also dubbed his own dialogues), there are others who fare very well. Suriya also looks very handsome. He holds the movie with his charisma. Ramya Krishna, all the comedians, Suresh Menon and other bit players (Brahmanandam, Senthil, etc) are entertaining. Ramya Krishna is in good form here too. Keerthy Suresh doesn't have much role. Karthik is okay. Rest of the actors hardly make any impression.

Bottomline: 'Gang' has a winsome first half and superb performances by Suriya and Ramya Krishna. The second half is off-the-mark. A fun film that makes timepass watch if you don't compare it to the original.

Reviewed by: 
J Gudelli