Director: Venkat Mohan
Cast: Vishal, Raashi Khanna, Parthiepan, Pooja Devariya and KS Ravi Kumar
Puri Jagannadh’s Temper, which featured Jr. NTR as a selfish corrupt cop who goes on a transformative journey of redemption after a shocking incident showcased a different dimension of the actor’s calibre and that’s primarily why the film worked, in spite of its over-the-top presentation. Vishal starrer Ayogya, the Tamil remake of Temper, pretty much followed the same path as the original and emerges as a mostly faithful but slightly problematic remake, courtesy Vishal’s performance that never hits the right notes.
The premise is simple. Vishal plays corrupt police inspector Karnan who turns a new leaf after a rape incident. This story of rape-and-retribution is a frame-to-frame remake of the original and is quite powerful in places. However, the film struggles to make audiences empathize with the protagonist as Vishal merely imitates NTR and never brings his style and attitude to the character, thus making his performance unbearable at times.
Having already established himself as a bankable action star who can pull off demanding roles, Vishal isn’t entirely convincing as Karnan, a role that Jr. NTR made so memorable. Throughout the film, it felt like Vishal was never comfortable playing the character that expected him to go overboard. It’s in the second half he really takes control of his character and transforms into something we haven’t seen from him so far.
Ayogya, like most remakes, doesn’t bring anything new to the table and it’s disappointing for those who’ve already seen the original. Thankfully, the decision to slightly change the climax does come as a sigh of relief, and director Venkat Mohan deserves credit for making it happen. In the original, NTR was pitted against Prakash Raj and they were fun to watch as they took on each other. R. Parthiepan reprised Prakash Raj’s role in Ayogya and he’s a treat to watch, playing a villain with a great sense of humour and wit. KS Ravikumar chips in with a neat performance as a duty-fearing constable while Pooja Devariya in an important cameo is effective.
Ayogya is neither good nor bad. It takes the middle ground and ends up as a predictable, run-of-the-mill action thriller with some highs and lows.