Far more coherent and considerably more enjoyable than 2016’s disappointing underworld rivalry saga Kabali – also directed by Pa Ranjith – Kaala is a return to storytelling and character-based acting. This is an unmistakably political film, in fact, which isn’t shy of revealing its secular and socialist leanings, and its allergy to Hindu nationalism. Ranjith conveys some big ideas in a relatively straightforward story that hat-tips to multiple influences including the Ramayana, and The Godfather.I’m going with three out of five for Kaala. Ranjith humanizes Superstar Rajnikanth in a character worthy of his talent. Now if only the film was about 20 minutes shorter.
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