'Captain Miller' Movie Review
Dhanush is one of the best actors in Indian cinema and there are no two ways about it. Over the past decade, he developed a good market for himself in the Telugu states as well. He even made a bilingual movie ‘Sir’ last year which was a success. Now, he is arriving with a raw action drama titled ‘Captain Miller’. The exciting trailer has raised the expectations on the movie and let us see how the movie turned out.
Set in the pre-Independence era, Agni (Dhanush) is a village youngster who belongs to a poor family. The people of that village are now allowed to enter the temple due to their caste. The ruler of that area and his family don’t treat the villagers well. These people live in small houses that were lent to the temple by their ancestors. The ruler wants to drive them away from that area. Unable to withstand these atrocities, Agni joins the British army and becomes ‘Captain Miller’. But some heartbreaking incidents make him turn against the Britishers as well. He is hated by his villagers and becomes a criminal and rebels against the Britishers. What will Miller do? How will he save his village people from both the ruler as well as the British people? Answers to these questions form the rest of the story.
Dhanush hits it out of the park even if he is given regular roles. Imagine he gets a warrior role who fights against British rule as well as caste discrimination! Along with his acting, there are ample heroic moments and hero elevation shots. The action sequences were brilliantly designed and executed. They are a treat to action lovers. The period backdrop gives a unique visual appeal and the artistic frames are a delight. On top of everything, there is strong content in this movie and GV Prakash gave his best when it comes to elevating the proceedings with his super background score. In addition to this, the superb cameos of Shiva Rajkumar and Sundeep Kishan are good too. There are many highlights in ‘Captain Miller’ but the director failed to tie all of them together with an engaging screenplay. Despite all the attractions, you get a feeling that there is something missing in this movie.
The first scene where the audiences feel moved and get involved in the movie is when the British force the Indians in their army to kill the freedom fighters who are staging a protest. It makes you emotional and some shots stay with you. The story takes a turn from here and the transformation of the hero’s character starts as well. We get one action sequence after another that elevates the hero’s character. The pre-interval chase scene involving the god’s idol was wonderful. But the hero’s motive wavers at the beginning of the second half and people get confused about his relationship with villagers again. Action takes the front seat in the second half and the emotion works out pretty well during the end portions. The action scenes are on the next level and the way in which the hero’s gang fights against the British army is compelling and arresting to watch. The tight screenplay and emotion at the last stages of the film should have been carried throughout. This would have made ‘Captain Miller’ a classic. Without proper detailing, the director jumped from one part to another in the name of chapters. This led to a lot of confusion and a lack of emotion. The slow pace is a big minus. It is Dhanush’s performance, action sequences, visuals and background scores that make you watch this film. But it is better to keep your expectations in check.
What can we say about Dhanush? He is an actor par excellence. He proved time and again that he can play any role with the same conviction. Whether it is a boy-next-door or a complex character like Captain Miller, Dhanush delivers every time. He showed once again that he is the best in business. The character had a lot of shades and his makeover amazes you. His performance is fantastic and he acted mostly with his eyes.
Priyanka Arul Mohan gets a good role and delivers a mature performance. Kumarvel did a key role and excelled in it. Shiva Rajkumar and Sundeep Kishan make a strong impact with their cameos. John Kokken and Jayaprakash impressed as well. The rest of the actors did a fine job as well.
After Dhanush, it is GV Prakash Kumar who is the hero of this movie offscreen. ‘Captain Miller’ doesn’t have many songs but his background score is the biggest asset to this film. He elevated a lot of normal scenes and his work during the action episodes is jaw-dropping. Siddharth Nuni’s camerawork is very artistic. Some frames stay with you and the fight scenes were captured very well. The production values are great as well. The hard work of the art department is visible on the screen.
Writer and director Arun Matheswaran’s efforts can be seen in terms of script and taking. The backdrop he picked for this movie is impressive but his narration faltered in many places. His screenplay was all over the place and the pace was too slow as well. But his director and taking should be appreciated. Had he taken better care with the screenplay, the movie would have been a classic.
Verdict: Captain Miller – Has Potential & Performances But…