Director: Aishwarya R. Dhanush

Featuring: Dhanush, Shruti Haasan, Siva Karthikeyan, Sunder Ramu (Prabhu, Bhanupriya and Rohini wasted!)

This is a film by the next generation Tamil filmmakers (artists, music directors inclusive). Shruti Haasan, Dhanush, Aishwarya R Dhanush are all people who’ve seen cinema more closely than any of us would have in our lives. Yet, 3 is what they can produce. Sub-standard, unimaginative, insensitive and ridiculous load of trash that they’ve dumped in to three hours.

In the name of love

Ram (played impeccably by Dhanush) helps this girl who can’t help herself with her own bicycle (which happens in the real world, of course) and then falls in love with her when he is all of 16/17 years of age. The girl Janani (irritatating portrayal by Shruti Haasan) returns the favour and they are both in love. The first half of the film meanders across tuition classes, roadside conversations, slaps from the girl’s father and useless trip to Tirupathi.

Nothing in the film makes the audience feel the love between the two lead characters or any hope that the film is heading somewhere this way. The girl burns her passport (which has the Visa that her mother obtained after 15 years on burning herself outside the US embassy! Lolwut?), runs away from home asking Ram to marry her, apparently does nothing that could be called a job but cooks well, of course. The boy fails in his maths and chemistry exams in school, runs after this girl he likes (and scores well in Physics – the subject he takes tuitions with her), drives to Tirupathi without a license and uses an Aircel phone (one too many plugs this Aircel has paid for).

There is absolutely no love that I could see or feel between the two – no conversations, no happy moments together, no display of sanity or self-sufficiency.

In the name of marriage

No surprise that this love goes into marriage. Ram marries Janani and moves into this apartment that his father buys for him. They wait for both their parents to visit them before they have their “first night”. He promises never to hurt her and take care of her. She in turn reaffirms her trust that he would do so. He goes away for long hours, has a friend sleeping over every single day but Janani waits for him to die before she finds out why it is this way. Ram kicks their pet and kills the dog (unimaginatively named Tom). Unable to tell her what he’s done, he cries and she consoles him still not wanting to find out what really happened.

The Director has gone out of her way to beat stereotypes in having Ram and Janani’s wedding at a pub/ discotheque. Ignoring the fact that, though the venue is new, the thaali and the man tying it around the woman’s neck hasn’t changed, it is impossible to ignore that Janani wears Vibudhi (symbol of widowhood) on her forehead for a large part of the film post-interval. Strange are the ways we beat the norms these days.

In the name of mystery

The film begins with someone having been murdered. And then there are these scenes where Janani runs after what looks like Ram’s silhouette. Like most other scenes, this one goes nowhere too. But I refuse to understand the irrelevant plugging of such things to make the movie catchy. Dream sequence or otherwise, if the film is about a man with bipolar disorder, why make him seem like a ghost?

In the name of a ‘disease’

This is the scariest part of it all. Ram, in the film is dealing with bipolar disorder – which is pretty much mentioned as a disease. He acts like Chandramukhi Ganga (while the Doctor character clearly mentions that this is not split personality but bipolar disorder). He beats up friends, walks up to kill his wife, hallucinates and even forgets everything that he has done while he is in one of his fits. He refuses to ‘admit’ himself in a hospital and is worried about his wife “seeing him” with “fear” rather than “love”.

What’s more bothering here is how everything in this entire sequence is so unimaginative. All of the reasons for which he meets his extremes are so stereotypical. He breaks his friends head for merely telling him that he has a problem. He beats up people in a car park like a mad man left loose. He kills a poor dog. Even if I’d buy this for all of them are occurrences in the life of a man, his hallucinations are out of nowhere. There is no reason for why he is seeing what he is  seeing (a smoking kuduguduppandi-like person and a girl). To show us that these are hallucinations, these characters stand in the air and are coloured green. Duh! What’s even worse is that there is no apparent meaning to any of his hallucinations. If he is indeed hallucinating, why can’t writers think beyond two random characters. I am now thinking of Beautiful Mind and sighing. (Not to argue that Beautiful Mind is the best film in the world. Just the imagination of someone to fit one’s hallucinations into a film)

In the name of perspective

The entire film is shot from what I believe is a third person perspective. We are seeing the world not as Ram is seeing but as us watching from elsewhere. So, when Ram walks into the sea trying to reach Janani, I am not able to see it as someone suffering from lack of control over his emotions. I see it with fear that he is going to kill himself. All scenes where Ram hallucinates, loses his mind (and temper), hurts himself, I can never empathise with him because I am always wondering when he is going to hurt people around him.

If the intention of the film is to make the audience feel scared of someone with bipolar disorder, the aim is met. But if you want me to see it as a disorder that is bothering someone I know, you’ve lost your way by miles!

In the name of a film

This is just another flimsy attempt at showcasing a mental disorder that no one in the film making team has any idea about (or worse no experience with). Logical loopholes, perspective issues, meaningless conversations and irritating performances can all be dealt with if only Aishwarya R Dhanush had a vision about 3! Sadly, it falls apart!


17 thoughts on “3

  1. Agree. I threw my popcorn at the screen in the second half. In short, Aishwarya has used (abused or whatever you feel like) Dhanush’s acting skills to make for a below-average story. Or the classic case of husband doing the best for his wife. Or both.

  2. Well written. Only best thing in the movie is Siva Karthikeyan’s timing comments. Sadly, it ends in first half.

    I hate it when tamil directors make an attempt like this. “hey, there is a ‘Bodhi Dharman’, let’s take a movie!”, “hey, there is ‘bipolar disorder’, let’s take a movie!”


  3. Perfectly worded. The movie was a total bummer, given the lavish hype that surrounded it ever since WTK became viral.
    It was very clear Aishwarya had really no idea what Bipolar disorder was and seemed like all she did was read the wiki page about it! Sad Dhanush’s talents were wasted on this.
    Also, the fact that Aish was heavily influenced by Selvaraghavan’s style is all too obvious. (She was working under him before, so it should be no big surprise!)

    That’s 120rs down the drain.

  4. Nambirajan says:

    Come on guys, give Aishwarya Rajnikanth a break. this is her first film. i agree that it’s not a great debut. She hasn’t scored a century, but she has made a decent 40 runs.

    Hopefully she will score more in the future.

    Btw Ranjani the play “Aanmaiyo Aanmai” was engaging; it was so different from the usual fare, that it was good…you missed it for 3 :)

    1. First film or not, I guess a film should be judged for what it’s worth and not anything else. But it’s a shame I missed Aanmaiyo Aanmai. Horrible choice I made! :|

  5. Thanks for the review; saved me a trip to the cinema hall. Sounds like a mashup of Boys and Kadhal Kondein.

    I really didn’t expect too much from Aishwarya R. Dhanush as a director. Thanks for calling Shruti Hasan irritating.

    Someone’d told me that this is an adaptation of Aishwarya’s real life story. I hope it wasn’t.

  6. Siva says:

    In the name of comment, you worded your thoughts.

    As same as you, In the name of flim she flimed her toughts..

    Thats it.. :)

    Worth to watch. Especially for Dhanush and Anirudh’s background score…

  7. Archana says:

    While watching the 3 movie ..at two particular instances ,I felt they were inspired by the movies “Paranormal Activity” ..where he stands still for few hours.And from “Beautiful Mind ” where his two imaginary figures (one adult and one small girl) appear for a brief period of time just like in that movie .I think they should have given a clue about his disorder in the first half when the girl’s father slaps him..and not when his friend leaves to singapore for work which came out of nowhere.
    And Also ,why would an educated well off hero not approach his very supportive father just like in all other ‘life matter’ instances before..That was not answered.
    Also,many a times I felt there was too much of helpless crying in the second half .I mean where will you find an educated adult who had lots of money ,supportive parents and wife..would kill himself for a curable health condition..that’s very unrealistic.
    Its also setting a wrong example to newly wed girls,who are madly in love, that you should cry for three days if your husband has high temperature and faint when he has got few bruises..instead of being brave.

    Just by quoting at the end that killing is not an answer to problems ,will not leave a impact on audience.Instead show how you tackle such situations..so that the audiences can learn from the movie.The director could have done that by.. at least by not starting off on the hero’s death note in the beginning but by showing his scary shock treatment instead.

  8. Nicely summed up in the end. I think it’s becoming a trend to visit a Wiki page on a psychological disorder and make a movie out of it. The interest goes out the window in such movies whenever a doctor comes out of the blue and starts explaining what that peculiar disorder is. The director quickly warns the audience that it is not split personality but a strange one-in-a-million disorder and so not to leave the theatre yet.

    And why does that baby-faced shrink really wear a white coat for a consultation in a clinic?

  9. chakravarthi says:

    Worst movie and defneatly it affects the hearts of school children.
    Then the pub scene is too bad…It insults thaali method.

  10. levania says:

    Was the animal hurt in any way???

    Its disturbing that the concept of causing harm to an animal was used! Absolutely pathetic! Digusting!

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