Dasavatharam Box-Office Status and Public Talk

Dasavatharam Box-Office Status and Public Talk–1st Week Update on Friday, the 20th:

If you are from Tollywood, you will know how starved we all are and were this summer for a blockbuster. More than chilled water i was thirsty for a blockbuster film which i can watch again and again (i saw OSO 4 times in the first week!). I had pinned my hopes on Dasavatharam (Dasa), but that too has disappointed me. Anyways, what a dasa-week its been! On 16th, Monday, after a discussion with my colleagues and friends i casually blogged about what the prevailing talk for Dasa is. Since then apart from being listed on top of google search the hits on this blog entry has run into thousands now! Lets not forget the interesting comments i’ve received on my review of Dasa and this box-office report. Synthesizing news and information from various sources, these are my observations at the end of week 1 of Dasa Let me now summarize the box-office status:

1. Dasa opened to Big (with a capital B) collections and mixed (online) reviews and public talk. This is typical for blockbuster films that release with high expecations–and this holds good for any film industry. However, much to the disadvantage of Dasa, the talk was poles apart ranging from rubbish to brilliant. Typically, blockbusters begin with mixed reviews and the talk stabilizes at one point and this common point is the bottom line that irrespective of the flaws the film entertains. This has not happened with Dasa. The public talk continues to be poles apart ranging from–‘whad the heck is going on’ to the ‘story is the work of a genious’.

2. It is also typical of blockbusters to garner HOUSE FULLS in spite of mixed reviews and this is exactly what is happening to Dasa. The first weekend saw extraordinary collections because multiplexes–in Chennai– were screening record shows. Single screens are also seeing packed houses. In the case of Tollywood, there is no other Telugu film worth the public’s ticket money and at this point Dasa is the best place to put that ticket money. There is tremendous curiosity around Kamal’s 10 different avatars and that is what is drawing the crowds. But once this curiosity dries up and when a better alternative movie shows up [possibly Rajni’s Kuselan in Tamil and Kathanayakudu in Telugu] the collections are bound to fall for Dasa; primarily because the talk has not stabilized and continues to be poles apart.

3. Kamal fans are going overboard by educating those who didn’t like the film to realize the beauty of the film. To do this, they are talking about the Chaos theory and the butterfly effect—more than anything else, this has been the most interesting development over the week on par with the possibility that the UPA Govt. will fall apart. But the flip side to this is that, every film if closely looked at will reflect these theories. Film makers must know this mantra—blockbusters are meant to entertain only–whether it is Pirates, Indian, Khushi, or Indra. If the entertainment is done well then the educating part will work well (eg- Shankar’s Bharateeyudu, Okke Okkadu). To make movies that reflect on predestiny versus coincidence or butterfuly effect the treatment has to be different. And if that is done well, then even such (most probably small) movies will go on to be blockbusters.

4. Do not believe the numbers that are published by our producers or distributers—none of them represent the true picture. The public knows when a movie is a hit and when it is not. Every blockbuster release, in this day and age of aggressive movie promotions, corporate sponsorships, and other marketing blitz stunts can easily generate large collections as long as the film is reasonable enough and has a big star and huge hype. The real test is after the first two weeks. For example, Pawan Kalyan’s Jalsa opened to tremendous collections and then sank after a few weeks. Lets take the most recent RGV’s Sarkar Raj–hype, great star cast, some glowing reviews, a blog by RGV defending and justifying the film, great collections the first week and now…the film has sank at the ticket window. what does this mean? are really collections, half of which are fabricated by fans and prodcuers, the barometer to decide the verdict? Ultimately, what counts is the run of the film and the perception of the movie in the minds of the public. This test will work for every hit film in the past. Test and try. The producers know or have a gut feeling about their film and thats why it is released in so many theaters so that as much money is made in the first few days to save themselves from getting to the streets.

The bottom line for Dasa: End of the week 1, the film is doing very well at the ticket window and surely the film is not an utter flop. The public talk, however, even as latest as Thursday evening continues to range from negative to mixed. With such talk, it is virtually impossible for the film to attain a blockbuster hit status. I am positive this weekend also will be good, and it will be interesting to see how the film fares in the days to come. The ultimate blockbuster test is to see how a film fares when there is competition around.

Also see: Indiatimes reports: Dasavatharam Sinking at the Box Office. In fact, this report is even more brutal than mine. http://broadband.indiatimes.com/Movies/Dasavatharam_sinking_at_box_office/videoshow/3135534.cms

Wednesday Updates:

Sify.com published its Chennai Box Office Report. Of course, Dasavatharam is number 1, but it stated that the producer got special permission to screen 5 shows per day that gave the film unprecedented collections. No doubt, the trend now is to screen as many shows as possible in the first few days to get back as much money as we can. This is an indication that the producer is nervous. Please do not believe the numbers that our producers or distributors publish—they are all fake and do not in anyway give the true picture. In my opinion, there is no element of truth about the cost of production or revenue. Blockbuster movie releases often fizzle out after the first week or two—depending on the star’s box-office power and other big movies in the vicinity (eg-Sivaji and Jalsa). Om Shanthi Om is one blockbuster in the recent past that sustained blockbuster collections due to positive word of mouth.

Kamal and KSR are in Hyderabad promoting [read justifying] the film. Another clear sign that the film makers are aware of the negative word of mouth.

Lets wait and see how the film fares in the days to come.

Box Office Status on Tuesday in Hyderabad:

-PVR, ADLABS, Prasadz will all run to housefulls today. The shows for tomorrow at most of these multiplexes are available. The advance booking at single screen theaters (based on Easy Movies Theaters) is not too hot either. This trend suggests that while the advance booking is not ‘hot’, the shows are filling up fast on a day-to-day basis. This is not good news for a big-budget film. Those who are seeing the film are those who are curious about it or are fans of Kamal, but many of those who were waiting for the reviews and public talk are being cautious about going to the film. However, with no major film in sight Dasa might get some good returns. The film opened to record collections, but heavy negative word of mouth is affecting the film.

Update on Monday:

You had to be here to believe it…everywhere you go it was only about Dasavatharam (Dasa from now on) on Friday in Hyderabad. At prasadz, Easy Movies office, and it was the topic for discussion in my office from office boy to faculty. I had tickets for the 7:15pm show at Prasadz on Friday and the first review i read was around 2 on rediff.com that said Dasa was spectacular! then sify.com said it was average and mediocre. then i read the user comments, which clearly echoed what the aam janata* is thinking—the movie is a mess! check my review to get the full scoop on it.

As expected, the film began picking up negative talk all over hyderabad. On Saturday, tickets were available without competition at Shanthi theater.

The film will be running to Housefulls today at PVR, Prasadz, and ADLABS, but tickets are available from Tuesday. Surely, the housefulls on Monday is the spill over from those who couldn’t get tickets in the weekend. The single screens, tickets are available without much competition. ofcourse, the litmus test for the box office success of a film is at the single screens, not multiplexes.

On Monday, the unanimous public talk for Dasa is: confusing, no story, too many characters, no clarify etc. In Hyderabad, the film will definitely take a beating at the box office in the days to come.

* i had earlier writen junta, which was corrected by a reader of this blog. thanks Indian.

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47 Comments »

  1. proper said

    Plenty of Dasavatharam tickets easily available this week

    Use website bookmyshow – Lots of tickets available for this week across India

    Use website cineworld – To book in Uk – Only one third of theatre is full all shows available

    USe Website Sulekha – movies-sulekha-com- USA all shows available

    Holland Contact Tel: 0031648366194 – Call and confirm

    Espace Cinema Paris -Tel 0033142055212 – Call and confirm

    Germany Tel: 00491732067688 – Call and confirm

  2. Indian said

    yo brother!
    ‘junta'(pronounced ‘hunta’) is a spanish word and it means ‘a small group ruling a country, esp. immediately after a coup d’état and before a legally constituted government has been instituted’-
    it doesn’t stand for your hindi ‘janata’-ok?

  3. //On Monday, the unanimous public talk for Dasa is: confusing, no story, too many characters, no clarify etc. //
    Exactly written!That’s what my parents feel.They’re utterly confused regarding the theme.Impressed only with the old lady and the 12th century character.
    //Surely, the housefulls on Monday is the spill over from those who couldn’t get tickets in the weekend. The single screens, tickets are available without much competition//
    Even more right,yesterday too shows were full at our local theatre(Amba) because many who did not get it on Sunday booked it for Monday.But today,could not find a single car/cycle in the theatre complex today.(Tuesday.)

  4. Senthil said

    The movie is excellent,it is the best movie i have seen so far.,The words about Kamal i can say is he is the best actor in the world.,

  5. jagan said

    the movie is excellent

  6. krishnan said

    Kamal is absolutely fabulous in at least 3 roles … Naidu, Dalit leader and villain role! i felt ASIN has screwed up the movie… always thought she thinks too much of herself… total misfit. Vivek, Vadivelu or Brahmanandam in a comic role or even accompanying the villain {instead of Mallika} would have been a great plus to the movie. Of course other show stealers have always had no place in a Kamal movie!

  7. Santy said

    Only fools will say that the movie is confusing and Dasa doesnt have box office collection. The news that are coming in and the actual HOUSEFUL boards in the theaters show that how well the movie is performing. Hey guys, stop your nonsense and misleading the people.

  8. Badri said

    The movie is great ..who said it lack story great story and u need to watch be good in understanding to understand this story.

    Kamal is really a great actor …Fletcher rocks

  9. Ajay said

    I like this movie very much..Dont spoil the good movies and story like this it will end up in same old masala movie to come up in future. Kamal and Amir are the the great actors india.

    Too many doubts about correlation of the movie, Chaos theory and Butterfly Effect have come into Picture….! !!

    The movie clearly states about Chaos Theory and Butterfly Effect [Kamal says it in his Speech in the Movie ]

    The concept of “CHAOS THEORY” and “BUTTERFLY EFFECT”, by itself is a complex concept, which mainly highlights the happening of huge unimaginable things because of least probable things…!!! !

    Dasa although deals with these concept, but does not necessarily confuse anyone with it,,,, As i said earlier, its mainly “YOU”… that plays a factor in how the movie gets along with “YOU”.

    You have got to be Case 1 or Case 2 as i have said earlier in this entry,,, No use being Half Baked…..!! !!

    To just brief about these Concepts,

    Q: What is Chaotic System ?
    A: Basically a chaotic system is one wherein long term predictions are impossible.Like for example,if I push a car, I know that it is going to move and it will continue to do so if I go on pushing it on and on.However,in a chaotic system,this situation cannot be predicted over a long period of time.
    Weather for example is a chaotic system.No matter how good your instruments are,you simply cannot predict the weather with 100% accuracy over a long term basis and forecast it.

    Q: What is the Butterfly Effect ?
    A: It is the most important component of a chaotic system.Basically, small perturbations results in amplifications which completely destroys the original nature of the system and makes prediction impossible.
    If a butterfly flaps its wings in Africa,it could result in a cyclone in USA.(Mark the word COULD).A highly dumbed down explanation of the butterfly effect is in the film Anniyan,where Vikram’s sister dies because a liquor shop owner sells liquor on a dry day.

    Q: OK, how does Dasa incorporate it ?
    A: In essence,Dasa talks about 8 characters who are inconsequential as such,but are integrated in a larger picture.Without Bush,the plane would have been called back.Without Shinghen, Govind would be dead.Without the tsunami,the world would have been destroyed.Even Krishnaveni Patti plays a very important role.If she had not put the vial in the idol,maybe Govind would have recovered it then and there and a powerful weapon would have been unleashed.The very fact that it went into the idol meant that it was being accelerated to its destiny.Without Kaifulla Khan, Govind would have never escaped;the list simply goes on.

    Q:OK,so does the film talk about theism or atheism?
    A:Neither.It talks about how humans drive the destiny of the world.

    ———— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——— ——-

    The movie does Show ” A Butterfly ” flying accross the screen after the Tsunami Attcck, clearly indicating that the Tsunami is an Outcome of ” The Butterfly effect “.

    ALSOOOOOOO.. ……

    I said that the butterfly COULD cause a hurricane.That’ s a huge probability. Would be a negligible probability. NOT a huge one. if that were true, we would have cyclones on an hourly basis as butterflies keep flitting all over Africa and u don’t have so many cyclones to account for a HUGE probability.
    Chaos,relativity and quantum mechanics are so damn weird that you will think I am talking metaphysics and pseudoscience.

    Like for example,according to quantum mechanics,there is a finite probability that you will fall right through a solid chair.And it is a PROBABILITY.
    Even 10 to the power -26 is finite 🙂 .

    But yes, Quantum Mechanics does allow for weird situations.

    THE CONNECTION !!!!!

    Guys check this link for a clear and complete explanation

    http://en.wikipedia .org/wiki/ Chaos_theory http://en.wikipedia .org/wiki/ Butterfly_ effect

    In the above links u can see that butterfly’s wings might create tiny changes in the atmosphere that may ultimately alter the path of a tornado or delay, accelerate or even prevent the occurrence of a tornado in a certain location..

    So in dasavatharam that idol thrown into sea in 12th century is the cause for tsunami…. so everything is interlinked .The wiki entry also says that chaos could play an important role in plate techtonics. Which means even the 12th century incident is connected.

    The 1st scene is perfectly connected to the climax, remember what Kamal says in the 1st scene, that he will not say “Om Nama Shivaya” , but Asin tells him to chant it , but still Kamal refuses , ( in this kamal in his story tries to tell that ) Nambi believes in his god more than anything, but Asin feels “Its ok if we change the god or chant other god’s name, its life thats most important.” Now if u see the climax its JUST OPPOSITE…. Kamal doesn’t believe in god much and values lives of people the most…. but Asin deeply believes in god and that too this dialogue comes when both Asin and Kamal’s hand is on the god which came from the sea , and it also means that they are getting united from the place they departed hundreds of years back ( Kamal and Asin).The connection between the 1st scene and the climax in the movie shows the generation circle combined with supernatural powers of GOD and destiny….. !!!

    If you watch it closely u can also find another actor who has done double action other than Asin and Kamal.
    Asin’s father Sahasranamam [12th Century], in the beginning he says to Nambi “Panchatchira manthirathai sollitu vaango mappillai” and at the End [After tsunami] he says “Avar enna jathiyo inga vaanga paati “.
    Another Eg. of Chaos Theory and circle of life.

    JUST IMAGINE THE CHAOS THEORY IN A TAMIL FILM ??
    WILL ANYONE HAVE THE GUTS TO HANDLE THIS KIND OF A SUBJECT IN A TAMIL FILM?

    ONLY KAMAL HAS THE GUTS…. U ROCK!!

    FURTHER—– ——–

    Nambi explanation

    Okay, this is slightly outside the chaotic system driving the film as a whole.From what I could gather he says that this story is about ideologies like God,the madness surrounding such ideologies and decides to tell the story of the Shaivite-Vaishnavit e conflict to show how people go crazy in the name of God as an example.

    As a loose end,it gets tied up in the end,when the Ranganathar idol is thrown out of the sea due to the tsunami which highlights the cyclic nature of life.Actually the Nambi character highlights both Chaos and Karma which I explained.That is the brilliance of this film,there is so much to see and understand.

    Another explanation( and this is slightly far fetched— as explained earlier) is that Govind is in fact the reincaranation of Nambi. As Nambi he couldn’t protect God and died in the name of God.In order to fulfill his Karma,he is reincarnated as Govind Ramasamy who ultimately saves the world from destruction. The idol in the end somewhat hints to this theory; his story began with the idol and it ends with the idol.
    As far as the connection with Nambi character and events in 12th Century goes…
    The connection is based on the “Butterfly effect “.

    When Govind and Andal goes to the bury the idol in the sands, Andal will stumble on a particular stone couple of times…This is the same stone as the one from 12th Century hen Kothai rips her Thaali and flings it at Kulothunga Chozan…it will end up hanging on the stone. So, the implied message here is Andal is Kothai reborn in the 21s century.
    During the encounter with Santhana Bharathi in the sand quarry, it is repeat of the incident from 12th century. Instead of Kulothunga Chozhan, it is the Sand Mafia which tries to inflict damage on the land.
    This movie is a brilliant juxtaposition of independent characters whose paths cross, if only briefly, which is stunning example of Chaos Theory.

    The idol that is drowned in the sea along with Rangarajan in 12th century by Chozha king results in a fault being developed at the bottom of the ocean and creates tremors more than 800 years later. These tremors result in the Tsunami. This again is a classic case of Butterfly Effect wherein a seemingly inconcsequential event (the drowing of the idol) saves Tamil Nadu from being wiped out off the face of the earth.

    But actually kamal has not left anything for our imagination. .. Explanation struck the right chord, Kamal does tell to Asin in a dialogue that idol which gets sunken back then gets struck between the tectonic plates under the sea and causes tsunami…
    Many people missed this dialogue i guess. Kamal’s accent was so very perfect Tamil, that many people missed it…. Being perfect Is a Problem by Itself !!! 🙂

    Although the explanation is a least possible theory, that is what “Chaos Theory” And “Butterfly Effect” are all about.
    Its not just the statue that caused the tsunami, but it just started a large chain of effects which kept multiplying exponentially and finally lead to it after 800 years….!!
    Why just say this concept is perfectly illogical… it is possible… thats what i have been explaining all the while !!!

    The story line is that things going wrong are made to be right which involves many people and countries knowingly or unknowingly.

    Knowingly:

    -Bush, Manmohan Singh, Govindh, Fletcher, Balaram Naidu, Mallika Sherawath.

    Unknowingly:

    -Nambi’s drowning to death with the heavy statue causes simple changes to the seabed that causes a devastating tsunami 800 years later [Acc. to Chaos theor it is possible…. although it is least probable… It is possible.. so nothing TOTALLY WRONG About it ]
    -Poovaragan( actually saved kamal unknowingly- –when poovaragan enters kamal and asin were caught by those manal kollayargal. There poovaragan distracts the gang helping kamal to escape),
    – Avatar Singh(gave way to Fletcher to escape in the airport unknowingly) ,
    – Japanese(saved govind from fletcher,he knows he is saving but he doesnt know about the play and was there only for revenge),
    – Kallifulla and family(saved govind unknowingly) ……..
    -Vincent is a dalit leader of a lower caste( the so called ) but saved an Iyengar Girl ……and at the end becomes the con of the Iyengar Paati !!
    – If Shingen Narahashi’s sister was not killed, Fletcher could have killed govind and used the virus for wrong purpose..

    This is based on Chaos Theory..!!!!!

    It is marvellous that Kamal has used such a device in Abhoorva Saghodhararghal, way back in 1989. To kill Delhi Ganesh, for those of you who do not remember… yet another Eg. of Chaos Theory And butterfly Effect !

    The plot concept of Dasavadhaaram is logically explained by a machine used by Him in His own screenplay back then too, before 20 Years!! Be it a coincidence, or He possibly had that in mind as an inspiration, it amazes me!!

  10. badri said

    Understand Dasavathara

    For those who are not understood the reason for 10 roles. Please go thro this..

    I’m not sure how many of you thought on these lines, but the below post makes a lot of sense about the film. There are many discussions on the film happening here – about Chaos Theory, Butterfly Effect, God, Religion etc. I’m watching the film again sometime.

    One thing we had noticed is why people didnt get the real subtext and reason for the various roles and hence the title.
    If you knew the real dasavatharams of Lord Vishnu and their characters you can appreciate the script more. Let me explain, starting with the best adapted role:

    1. Krishna avatar – Vincent Poovaraghavan
    Lord krishna is actually a dalit, he is dark-skinned [shyamalam]. He saved draupadi when she was being violated and he was the actual diplomat in mahabharatham. Lord krishna dies of an arrow striking his lower leg. Now look at how vincent was introduced.. he appears when asin is about to be molested and he saves her like draupadi. Vincent is the dalit diplomat, fights for land issue [soil issue to be exact] and dies from the metal rod striking his leg. Oh even five of vincent’s men are drugged at P. Vasu’s.. sounds familiar???

    2. Balarama avatar – Balarama naidu
    This is an easy given. as the name suggests and the role personifies you can easily get it.

    3. Mathsya avatar – Ranagaraja nambi
    nambi is thrown into water in an act of trying to save lord from being thrown into sea, though vainly. what more clue do you want?

    4. Varaha avatar – Krishnaveni paatti
    During the mukunda song, krishnaveni paatti does varaha avatar in the shadow puppetry. The frame freezes on it for a second. there is the clue. Moreover, in varaha avatar lord actually hides earth so as to protect life forms. Here too krishnaveni hides the germs – life form inside the statue so as to protect.

    5. Vamana avatar – Kalifulla khan
    remember in vamana avatar, lord vishnu takes the vishvaroopa, that is the giant form! Hence the giant kalifulla here symbolises vamana avatar.

    6. Parasurama avatar – Christian Fletcher
    Parasurama is actually on an angry killing spree and killed 21 generations of the particular kshatriya vamsa. Hence the real KILLER… Guess what thats what our Fletcher is! He comes around with the gun [modern upgrade for axe] and kills everyone around. I have to check if he kills 21 people though.

    . Narasimha avatar – Shingen Narahashi
    first of all the name itself is a play on the words singam [means lion in tamil] and narasimha [the avatar being symbolised]. Lord Narasimha manifests himelf to kill the bad guy and he also teaches prahaladha. In the movie, he shows up to kill the killer fletcher! and is also a teacher.. Lord Narasimha had to kill the asura with bare hands and hence the martial arts exponent here.. get it?

    8. Rama avatar – Avatar Singh
    Lord Rama stands for the one man one woman maxim, kind of symbolising true love.. Here Avatar portrays that spirit by saying that he loves his woman more than anything and wants to live for her.

    9. Kalki avatar – Govindaraj Ramasamy
    As you know, the hero in kaliyug can be none other than the Kalki avatar!!!

    10. Koorma avatar – Bush
    This is the most loose adaptation I couldn’t clearly comprehend. But if you look at the real koorma avatar, the lord is the turtle/tortoise that helps in stirring the ksheera sagara and bringing out the amruth. This essentially creates war among the devas and asuras. Similarly today Bush facilitates war between you know whom… May be Kamal also indicates that this avatar is a bit dumb like the tortoise…

  11. Indianguy said

    hello… this is totally unfair and u r gvng false news here… already all media were trying to pull down the movie but it came up… i donno u guys are not able to appreciate a super human effort…

  12. mahesh said

    Hi please check out my review in my blog and about box office status.

    http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/News/News_By_Industry/Media__Entertainment_/The_Happening_grosses_315_mn_in_US/articleshow/3135416.cms

    Please look into it , you can find dasavatharam on 11th

    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/uk/?yr=2008&wk=24&p=.htm
    dont forget the average collection per theatre which close to Hulk at number 1.

    Check for Malaysia collecction

    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/malaysia/?yr=2008&wk=24&p=.htm

    This is overseas total for 1 territoy of Dasavatharam , ok

    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/weekend/?yr=2008&wk=24&p=.htm

    sir, i think you are the one who is very much interested in the bad mouth. and the whole news about Public speaking bad , i think , your name is Public..

    Rajin will do Kuselan it will become Major hit yeah i accpet, but dont you think all he does are Remake, please dont talk about Sivaji, atleast here you know where the money was spent, i still wonder what they spent in Sivaji.
    Seriously i’m not against Rajini, but then you have to accpet.If you still think i’m biased, please check my review at

    http://moviereview-tamil.blogspot.com

    Mahesh

  13. Raj said

    Dear All

    Lets be neutral and comment.

    If the same is done by Sankar ….we Accept. If the same is done by Rajni we accept. If the same is done by Mani we accept. If the same is done by hollywood actor …….. we accept.

    Then y not Kamal. Even the so called Sankar / Mani gotta big name after directing Kamal only.

    You dont over expect. something like Dhoni cannot always win……….

  14. Edwin said

    Friends,
    Who are they to accept..people who cant digest the performance and the audience will talk bad about the film. Kamals fan back-up are corporate it is not a corporation like his counterpart. They would be decent and may not turn up in groups for the theatres. Kamal’s target audience are matured people and not ametures and novices. DASA rocks to the core. Amazing effort, amazing versatality. The one and only man in the India cinema who can do such things. I pay no heed for those who makes hue and cry for anything and everything. KAMAL IS THE GOD OF INDIAN CINEMA……. Guys thanks for all support..

  15. I pride myself as an open minded cinema goer, and when my friend saw it being listed on Cineworld, we decided to give it a go. Cineworld said:

    “Dasavatharam is a Tamil feature film directed by K. S. Ravikumar, who with Dasavatharam, is teaming up with Kamal Haasan for the fourth time. Haasan acts in ten different roles, breaking the record for an actor’s portrayal of the most different characters whilst Asin Thottumkal in a dual role and Mallika Sherawat also play lead roles in the film. The film, which has been under production since mid-2005, has Himesh Reshammiya as the music composer and Oscar Ravichandran as the main producer.”

    We came across 3 warning signs before the film had started:

    1 – all the cinema staff went Chris Tarrant on me and my mate when we asked for the tickets, when we showed our tickets to get in, when we sat outside the screen waiting to get in. “Are you sure you want to watch this?”

    We argued that we just wanted to see what it’s like since it sounded interesting

    2 – as our fellow film goers arrived at the same screen (we had to wait outside), we noticed an ethnic exclusivity to everyone around us.

    We argued that it’s only normal that it’s a film that would appeal the most viewers who’re more culturally aware of the film’s background.

    3 – the front speakers failed to work during the trailers, it was interesting watching the Dark Knight and The Incredible Hulk trailers with only Centre and Satelite speakers…

    I amended this by complaining to the cinema staff who happened to be just outside the screen.

    Here’s what I had to say about this film:

    You don’t need to be Tamil / Indian in background to watch it, the subtitles are sufficient for you to understand them. However you will definitely miss out the lyrics to songs.

    The entire film’s actually dubbed over. Majority of the story (of what I saw) were set in America, and really, it’s almost like an American film that happens to involve Indian characters. Anyway, there’re a fair bit of English, and they’re still dubbed, in English, by other characters.

    The selling point of the film – title actor playing 10 roles, is actually a bit of a joke. It’s better than Eddie Murphy’s The Nutty Professor in that the actor actually portrayed drastically different characters, much like Peter Seller in Dr. Strangelove (one of my all time favourite films). Although in reality, Austin Powers 3 would be a more appropriate comparison, in how ridiculous some of the characters were.

    The major let down of the film seems to be the technology/budget. Haasan played 6 different characters that I’ve seen in the film before I walked out, these included:

    A faithful deciple of the Hindu god Vishnu. This role involved no makeup, and it carried a mixture of Jackie Chan / Indiana Jones style semi-comedic martial art fighting.

    A biologist, turn race car pro during car chase scenes, and James Bond during detective scenes. Again, this role involved no makeup because it was set in a different time entirely. He’s the protagonist / narrator of the story who… as stated, turns into a professional race car driver during car chase scenes, and outsmarts research facility security when he turned James Bond…

    George W Bush… which involved him wearing an oversize prosthetic mask with barely visible eyes in contact lenses. This role is essentially a complete piss take of Bush’s infamous intelligence, with “snappy” dialogues like “If it’s too complicated, don’t bother explaining it to me.” uttered to his strategic officer in the white house. The mask was terrible, the accent was non-texas, and utterly pointless to the point that I stayed in the cinema

    A white hitman parrallel to… any “hardcore” villian’s right hand man in any Jean Claude Van Dam movie. Again, huge mask, sporting sun glasses at night.

    A Japanese martial artist. Huge mask… A very cliched portrait of Japanese culture of honour and compassion. Role was taken very seriously, but I can hardly think any of the audience could empathesis looking at his ridiculous mask.

    Airport security manager who’s the comic relief of the movie. Chin prosthetics to make him look a bit different. He was obviously meant to steal all the scenes in a typical comedy movie with his snappy dialogues. Granted the jokes were funny enough (well… not to the stage where I laughed although our fellow patrons bursted out upon every other line), they were often irrelevant to the situation…

    Okay, I realised breaking down the roles of the actor wasn’t the best way to analyse where the film failed, I seem to be just wittering on. But my point is – the film has no real plot – it’s basically a bit like The Fugitive where our protagonist is stacked against imsurmountable odds without any means of fighting back, except the plot that propells our hero into the action were as convincing as bedtime stories for 3 years olds.

    The film was full of illogical goofs, for instance our protagonist had somehow snatched a virus away from the lab in a research facility. He runs across the entire compound to the car park, when the bad guys had just noticed that he’d stolen the goods. Two seconds later, our hero’s speeding through the car park, and our bad guys have teleported themselves across the entire facility, buckled themselves into their car, just in time to drive around the corner where the hero had just started his car.

    The prosthetics worn on the non-indian roles covered Haasan’s entire head, and considering the dialogues were all dubbed anyway – they could just as well have been played by another actor entirely. The masks were completely rigid and the actor couldn’t at all portray any emotions through the masks beyond the eyes. It’s an utterly pointless exercise, let along drawing huge attention to the silly mask. Incidentally, all the masked reminded me of Roy in the film Mask (starring Cher and Eric Stoltz).

    The scene transitions were disorientating, the special effects were poor, half the cast of the American centered story just happen to be Indian who spoke the same dialiac, switching between perfect English and Tamil during every line of dialogue while the Americans in the background couldn’t care less. And when one did asked that our protagonist (who I oughta remind you, could speak perfect English) would speak in English in front of fellow English speakers, he ends up asking his colleague to translate instead.

    The film seems to want me to take it seriously, bar the comedy scenes, but you simply can’t see pass how stupid the plot is, and the massive masks! The acting reminded me of my Sunday school theatre productions when I was 12, and I could almost detect laughter from the camera crew of how silly the film was, except they didn’t make it to the final cut due to the dubbing.#

    I have no doubt Haasan is a good actor however, for the roles that he was trying to portray, he’s done a decent job of it. They just happen to be really stupid roles, or they involved very stupid masks.

    So yeah, I ended up walking out after sitting for an hour hoping to see at least all 10 roles Haasan plays. Unfortunately it was too painful for me to carry on when I found zero entertainment value from the film… I sat through Terminator 3, Matrix Revolutions, AND worst of all – Accidental Husband. I guess I would have walked out on Accidental Husband if not for it being a birthday present to a female friend, but at least it didn’t have the ridiculous masks!

    Sorry it turned into a bit of a rant here. But please, unless you’re a fan of Indian cinema or the director / actors involved, save yourself the effort to try and explore this particular film in the foreign genre.

  16. Shashi Kumar U V said

    The very fact that Dasavatharam is being so widely dissected and disscussed is in itself a victory for Kamalahasan. These are the times when you can safely leave behind your brains at home when you go out for a Movie and Dasavatharam is actually pushing you to excercise it. This, if nothing else, is indeed laudable. But not being exposed to such mental exercises, our audience would find it easier to find fault with the film’s story/screenplay.

  17. Dauntlessboy said

    I have seen the movie last night with all the inputs from friends and media ,that the movie is confusing etc. Even my friend e-mailed me this review.

    All the talks are rubbish. The movie is very much entertaining if you see it just for plain entertainment. The movie is great if you put your brain and try to understand the Theory behind the screenplay and storyline. Yes , defenetly few charecters of kamal are unnecessary. But when you make some landmarks such as 10 roles , you need to accept some charecters are gonna be useless.

    Coming to reviews by various media.. Who are all these critics? What is their exposure to movies ? A big Nothing. All these guys are just like Aam Janatha mentioned by Mr. inkenti. Today you see in every TV ( NDTV – T.S.Sudhir, CNNIBN – Rajeev Masand,Times Now- Unknow Girl) all these guys might have not even seen 100 Quality movies ( i meant quality movies) . Those days ( even now) good critic is one who breaths movie . You can find good movie review in The Hindu, Hindhusthan Times. All other media, blog are all bakhwas. Just trying to write something to brag their knowledge and brandish their mediapower. Sad thing is it has some negative effect on society. But indian people are catching up and started ignoring these media/bloggers ill intentions.

  18. Vinodh Balakrishnan said

    Dude,

    Its a democratic world and you have all your right to express how you feel. But also when are sitting in a Revviewer position, where people will look at your view to get a feel of the reviewed product. You have to have certain amount of fairness and responsibility. You and your review seems to lack both.

    As pointed in another website…

    “It is about time Indian cinema takes a giant leap and moves to the next level, and takes its audience with it. The makers of the movie Dasavatharam have aspired to do just that. Now the ball is in the audience´s court. It is make or break time for Indian cinema. Are we ready to make movies about global issues, science and the future? Are we ready to be leaders in innovative ideas and science in our art forms? Are we ready for movies that make the audience think, be entertained and be inspired?”

    Well, looks the the Audience are ready to graduate to next level. The box office collections and results are eveident of that fact.

    As i said earlier. you reviewers are messengers and have the responsibility of taking his views to reluctant people.

    Now its upto reviewers like you, if you want to support efforts like this or still hail the run of the mill efforts coming mostly from all indian movies.

    Come on dude….think about that and then write your review…….

    Clean your thoughts first, before pointing others.

    Hope you take it in the right stride……..

    Vinodh

  19. ash said

    Dasavataram Of Vishnu & Kamal- Similarities
    You can identify this man’s wonderful script writing skills.
    Which is hardly aware to an ordinary folks of Film watchers.
    This will help you in identifying the avatars of VIshnu which will
    relate Kamal’s Dasavatars & Vishnus’s.

    / Badri has made some Mistakes here,/

    This is what the avatars depict!!!

    1. Mathsya avatar – Ranagaraja nambi
    nambi is thrown into water in an act of trying to save lord from being thrown into sea, though vainly. what more clue do you want?

    2. Mohini avatar – Krishnaveni Paati
    Mohini Avatar, is where Vishnu comes as “Lady” and actually seduced Asuras with he beauty but made “Amrudh”, the devine liquid made unavailable to the Asuras. Here Krishnaveni paati did teh same by making the “Vial” unavailable to the Villans hand

    4. Varaha avatar – Balram Naidu
    The role of Varaha Avatar is to bear(lift) the world to save it. Which means he has the responsibility to save the world. Here Balram naidu was given the responsibility to save the “Vail” and save the world.

    3.Vamana avatar – Kalifulla khan
    remember in vamana avatar, lord vishnu takes the vishvaroopa, that is the giant form! Hence the giant kalifulla here symbolises vamana avatar.

    5. Krishna avatar – Vincent Poovaraghavan
    Lord krishna is actually a dalit, he is dark-skinned [shyamalam]. He saved draupadi when she was being violated and he was the actual diplomat in mahabharatham. Lord krishna dies of an arrow striking his lower leg. Now look at how vincent was introduced.. he appears when asin is about to be molested and he saves her like draupadi. Vincent is the dalit diplomat, fights for land issue [soil issue to be exact] and dies from the metal rod striking his leg. Oh even five of vincent’s men are drugged at P. Vasu’s.. sounds familiar???

    6. Parasurama avatar – Christian Fletcher
    Parasurama is actually on an angry killing spree and killed 21 generations of the particular kshatriya vamsa. Hence the real KILLER… Guess what thats what our Fletcher is! He comes around with the gun [modern upgrade for axe] and kills everyone around. I have to check if he kills 21 people though.

    . Narasimha avatar – Shingen Narahashi
    first of all the name itself is a play on the words singam [means lion in tamil] and narasimha [the avatar being symbolised]. Lord Narasimha manifests himelf to kill the bad guy and he also teaches prahaladha. In the movie, he shows up to kill the killer fletcher! and is also a teacher.. Lord Narasimha had to kill the asura with bare hands and hence the martial arts exponent here.. get it?

    8. Rama avatar – Avatar Singh
    Lord Rama stands for the one man one woman maxim, kind of symbolising true love.. Here Avatar portrays that spirit by saying that he loves his woman more than anything and wants to live for her.

    9. Kalki avatar – Govindaraj Ramasamy
    As you know, the hero in kaliyug can be none other than the Kalki avatar!!! He is the savior of the current world(century or Yuga)

    10. Koorma avatar – Bush
    This is the most loose adaptation I couldn’t clearly comprehend. But if you look at the real koorma avatar, the lord is the turtle/tortoise that helps in stirring the ksheera sagara and bringing out the amruth. This essentially creates war among the devas and asuras. Similarly today Bush facilitates war between you know whom… May be Kamal also indicates that this avatar is a bit dumb like the tortoise…

  20. zain said

    dear ash,
    excellent. really i appriciate you,

  21. Nava said

    Nice movie Dasavatharam ans diffrent screenplay for tamil movie all must see this film in Cinema hall not in dvd success super hit

  22. Mahendran said

    Dasavatharam Smashes Sivaji in overseas collection

    The below links shows figures in USD at the second week end

    Dasavatharam: Overseas
    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/weekend/?yr=2008&wk=25&p=.htm

    Sivaji : Overseas
    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/weekend/?yr=2007&wk=25&p=.htm

    you can see the collection figures of Sivaji was $3,705,252 (US Figures) or Rs. 15.8 Crore. Whereas the Box

    Office figures for Dasavatharam after the same time period from the same amount of territories is Rs.49.67

    Crore.

    This is a report for only 2 WEEKS!!!!
    All the previous records smashed

    Still miles to go….
    don’t know how many new records going to be created!!!!

    But it seems sivaji still hold records in malaysia and UK in collection
    (both the films compared based in terms of weeks)

    dasavatharam- Malaysia
    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/malaysia/?yr=2008&wk=25&p=.htm

    sivaji-malaysia
    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/malaysia/?yr=2007&wk=25&p=.htm

    dasavatharam-UK
    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/uk/?yr=2008&wk=25&p=.htm

    sivaji-uk
    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/uk/?yr=2007&wk=25&p=.htm

  23. Pradeep said

    hi,.. Guys,..

    the Reviewer himself admits that he watched Om Shanthi Om,.. 4 Times,..

    from that u can understand his Attitude, Character, interests and his Mentality [Purely 3rd class, i mean],..

    So,.. how can a 3’rd class Guy Understand a Legendary Movie,..

    So,.. simply skip this review,..

  24. Pradeep said

    also,.. Hi,…Kid [the Reveiwer of course]

    there are plenty of things told in this movie,. that can be recognized only by Grown Up’s.. sorry Kid,.. u Can’t

    U gotta Grow up,.. A LOT,..

    Also u should stop watchin’ Movies Like Om shanthi OM, and Masala Scums etc,.

    they will not Let your Brain to Grow,… and u will be like this for Ever,..

    No Mention in advance,..

  25. SITTARAM said

    çsva its KSR FINAL TOUCH THAT SAVED THE MOVIE .LOT OF KADI JOKES AFTER THE INTERVAL.GOOD STUNTS;JUST ONE TIME;SECOND TIME NO CHANCE;KSR SCUPUTURED THE OVER INTELLGENT KAMAL WITH HIS HIGH SKILLED MASALA;I THINK KSR SHOUD TAKE UNCONDITONNEL REST TO RECOVER HIS BRAIN

  26. aby said

    i love the movie…there may not be a power full script…but the script made foer ten roles and the way he connected is nice…even pakistanhi charector was not a need…i wud love to see tat if it was tat old man from indian…
    i am on a doubt…how he wopuld have managed with this 9 roles in the climax scene,…u know the difficulties…one make up at one time will take about 6 hours..how wud have he managed for this much hours iof cinema..there i doubts …will it be kamal haasanor some one else helping it out…if not he is the best in india…and soon he can make the marks as best in the world….

  27. Anitha said

    I agree with the review of James Rajendran word to word. Thats exactly I felt while watching the movie. Only difference being we sat through the movie as we couldnt get the car out of the parking lot till the movie ended!!

  28. gopi said

    dasavataram movie brake all film which was greatly hit in past (pokiri)

  29. gopi said

    kamal is greatest one in the world no body beat kamal in acting kamal is GOD

  30. muthu said

    super film.super permance by kamal.i saw three times

  31. gopi said

    i saw 5 times DASAVATARAM movie

  32. udhay said

    Now that Dasavatharam has been declared the biggest south indian blockbuster, Where are you Sir? U seem to be upset as ur predictions have gone wrong. So you r not writing anything now.

  33. mathu said

    if you ask me both dasavadaram and sivaji sucked big time. neither of them were convincing or coherent. I liked the movie Kaaka Kaaka better than any of the above two.

  34. Alosius said

    I watched Dasavatharam 4 times and still i would watch the movie for kamal’s brilliance. I don’t know whether our critic is listening to my comment . He haven’t posted a single comment after june 20th as it shows that he could not digest the success of this movie after all the bad mouthings from media which even include all NDTV,sify,timesnow………….. the list goes on. But the final verdict is dasavatharam has been declared as a smash hit and it is already there in the history books of south indian movies as its collection all around the world speaks for its success. Ulaganayagan Kamalji Rocks!!!!

  35. aks said

    Where is the moron reviewer?
    He was day dreaming thatr DASa woud flop.

    Now in his home state AP itself DASA is a blockbuster.

    Dasa has already grossed 130 crores.

  36. remi geo said

    it is a fabulous it is a historic movie it is treditional amsing acting performence
    itwould be 2008 no 1 movie ofthe year .

  37. Hari (Dasavatharam) said

    Dasavatharam is a superduper blockbuster
    come on guyz if films like day after 2moro,matrix and pirates can be applauded, then why not our DASAVATHARAM
    come on I have this for those who say the movie sucks–“DONT BLAME THE MOVIE IF U CUDNT UNDERSTAND IT”
    thank u
    Well done KAMALJI

  38. hari said

    whaterver ..the movie sucks big time ..and a headache.

    What the heck ??

  39. Srinivas said

    I am from AP. Saw the movie a couple of days back.

    To put it in one word, the movie is AWESOME!

    BRILLIANT work by Kamal the great!

    Only ‘drawback’ of the movie is it demands some mental keenness from the audience… which unfortunately is lacking in the so called reviewers, having watched bollywood crap masala movies for long, 🙂

    These morons would have categorized ‘The Matrix’ and ‘V for Vendatta’ too as crap movies if they were produced in Chennai.. for, I am pretty sure, they would have understood a zilch of the philosophy that was underneath them.

    The same is the case now! Having no brains to exert and understand what is happening on the screen, these ‘movie geniuses’ have started ranting on it..!

  40. Though it fell due to negative talk during 2nd week,it picked up well again because of lack of big releases in South.Don’t know if the buyers are really safe(In A.P.,Kerala maybe some are safe due to low investment.);but definitely it did better than what the critics might’ve predicted.Won’t like to believe in 130/180 crore figures.:D

  41. Shiva said

    Friends:

    Dasa has already smashed all records hence no point in guessing the results….40 plus days run collections crossed already 150 crores against Sivaji’s collection of 90 Crores in 100 days run ..ahaha

    God never betrays the good, the best and the hard worker…. Thanks to all incl dear Kamalji fans who had made this film a huge success.

    Dasavatharam – 80th Position (Current Position)
    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/weekend/yearly/

    Sivaji – Total Collection: $5,871,620 (335th Position)
    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/intl/weekend/yearly/?yr=2007&sort=gross&order=DESC&pagenum=4&p=.htm

  42. A.M.senthilkumar said

    all comments are really good.a tamil movie makes records to this extent is reaally great.hats off to kamal hassan.

  43. kalithas said

    kamal …
    kamal…
    kamal…kamal…kamal only can do this….
    he only have the knowledge take these type of different films…
    we r waiting the news of marmayoki…
    “kalakunga thalaiva…”

  44. Gracin said

    I dont usually reply to posts but in this case. WOW!!

  45. Huki said

    I am glad to find negative reviews about dasvatharam (from five year old kids dressed up as adults).
    Dasavatharam is the best indian movie so far, the most comprehensive story till date.
    Ofcourse vijay fans and superhero fairy tale lovers will find absolutely no story in it and find it a confusing head ache.
    Now how about going back to that nice, relaxing sun tv soap opera with a wonderful story waiting for you? (or a masala film like om shanti om).
    Anyone with such a brilliant movie in his mind would run out of India and work for hollywood. I am happy that Kamal took the risk of screening his ideas for our kindergarten kids with courage.
    I don’t mind some people saying Dasa has no story and is a confusing piece of junk, because these are the people who struggle to digest simple fairy tales like Anniyan. How can we expect them to understand even a speck of this masterpiece?
    I hope Kamal doesn’t lose hope one day and run away to a country that welcomes “films” instead of repeated love stories and nayantara rolling in the desert.
    Thanks to Ajay for wasting his time covering the whole concept and story in Dasa. People who think Dasa has no story, please don’t read it, you might get nausea trying to understand and comprehend it!
    https://mrinkenti.wordpress.com/2008/06/16/dasavatharam-box-office-status-and-public-talk-on-monday/#comment-224

    Even some of the hidden matter such as the relations to vishnu’s ten avatars struck me only after reading these comments. Dasa was made for these selected people, not for the whole lot of dreamworld ponies.

    And finally, for “the movies with no flaws” that the negative reviewers compare Dasavatharam with… how can there be flaws when there is no story in the first place? But for such a complicated story like dasavatharam, it is easy to find faults (for the people who don’t understand the story, that is)

  46. Wonderful blog, some fascinating points. I remember 2 of days ago, I have visited a similar post.

  47. Nice Post- I hope i can find more Information.

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