Star Movie review: A Journey That Will Keep You Hooked

In the bustling narrative of “Star,” we’re swiftly introduced to a young Kalai, whose frustrations with life are palpable in his tiny universe, revolving around cinema and family. In a moment that encapsulates his predicament, he arrives late for his school drama recital, missing not just the event but also Bharathiyar’s iconic mustache, a significant part of his costume. Director Elan ingeniously utilizes this incident as a silent harbinger of Kalai’s future struggles, skillfully setting the tone for the protagonist’s journey.

The film thrives on such nuanced moments, offering gratifying payoffs amidst the overarching tale led by the passionate Kavin. However, despite its inspirational underpinnings, “Star” occasionally succumbs to the conventional rags-to-riches narrative template. While such narratives risk feeling antiquated, the finest among them, like “The Pursuit of Happyness” and “Gully Boy,” transcend clichés through their execution.

Kalai, portrayed with depth by Kavin alongside his supportive father (Lal as Stills Pandian), dreams of stardom against all odds. This aspiration, gradually evolving from a flicker on the school stage to a consuming ambition, resonates strongly with viewers. Elan meticulously portrays Kalai’s arduous journey, replete with failed auditions, financial woes, and sleepless nights in Bombay. Kavin infuses the character with an authentic underdog energy, evoking empathy and admiration.

However, amidst its pursuit of grandiosity, “Star” falters. Rather than delving deeper into Kalai’s anguish, the film often indulges in mundane sequences, diluting its emotional impact. Additionally, its portrayal of female characters is disappointing, relegating them to roles of either saviors or mere motivations for the male protagonist’s success.

Furthermore, the film struggles to balance its pacing, frequently rushing through pivotal moments without allowing them to resonate with the audience. While visually stunning, thanks to DOP Ezhil Arasu K, the narrative fails to complement these visuals with compelling storytelling.

Yet, “Star” occasionally shines through, offering glimpses of brilliance amidst its shortcomings. Moments like the juxtaposition of an employee award function with the harsh realities of life exemplify the film’s potential for poignancy. Unfortunately, these moments are overshadowed by its preoccupation with superficial pursuits.

In essence, “Star” is a tale of ambition, resilience, and the pursuit of dreams, albeit marred by its adherence to formulaic storytelling and neglect of substantive character development. While it dazzles with visual splendor, it falls short of leaving a lasting emotional impact, ultimately losing itself in a sea of misplaced priorities.

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