There’s no shortage of Tamil films that get dubbed into Telugu. Some of them go on to be bigger hits than the Tamil version and (at times) competition from local films. Most Tamil movies (the dark humour/drama ones) don’t find favours at all. In fact, the Telugu audience refrain is that these too stark, bleak, preachy and foreign for their taste. Telugu moviemakers (for the most part) prefer sticking to the local flavour of raising simple issues and even when the issue is complex or touchu, keep solution mild.
Past few years have dropped a huge gulf between the theatre-seekers of these two states. I’m not saying this out of contempt or arrogance; it’s the reality. We have evolved differently as an audience and we are safer without cross-border incursions like Inji Iduppazhagi. Size Zero (a.k.’Inji Iduppazhagi’ is a rare dubbed film masquerading as a bilingual, that makes its way to Tamil thanks to Anushka’s drawing power.
The promise from Inji Iduppazhagi’s promos is it is (at best) a movie trying to shine light on women standing up to respect their inner beauty, not just their appearance. It briefly does go that way, then gets bogged down by other utterly irrelevant distractions and loses its bearing and our patience. We’re not saying it had to be messagey, but at least keep the kitsch entertaining.
‘Inji Iduppazhagi’ has neither the confidence to script a heartwarming romance nor the faith in devoting itself to a female lead. It resorts to a Bollywood-style cop-out on a relevant conversation, worth probing and elevating, instead settling for superficiality. By the time it ends its botched fling, Anushka and the “spirit” of Inji Iduppazhagi are buried under a heap of name-dropping, cameo appearances and an item number.