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The Robot

Sponsored by: Musique Plus 
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“A sensationally overstated and overwhelming mash-up” — Joe Leydon, VARIETY

“The best apocalyptic sci-fi-romcom-melodrama-dance-off date movie of the year” — Marc Savlov, AUSTIN CHRONICLE


Director: S. Shankar
Screenplay: Karky, S. Shankar, Sujatha
Cast: Rajnikanth, Aishwarya Rai, Danny Denzongpa, Santhanam, Karunas, Delhi Kumar
Producers: Kalanidhi Maran
Print Source: Fusion Edge Media



Professor Vaseegaran (Superstar Rajni) creates an intelligent android blessed with infinite memory and superhuman strength. The Robot, Chitti (also played by Rajni), must learn everything about life, adapt to its surroundings and above all, attempt to grasp the details of human behaviour. Prof. Vaseegaran, meanwhile, must himself reconcile his work and his romantic life, which he shares with his fiancée Sana (Aishwarya Rai Bachchan), a medical student. Vaseegaran can generally smooth over love’s rough patches by singing and dancing amid the scenery of Brazil and Machu Picchu. The robot quickly attracts attention after several amazing acts of bravery. The army wants to acquire Chitti, but a member of the decision-making committee, the sinister Bhora (Danny Denzongpa), Vaseegaran’s jealous mentor, demonstrates that the robot is a definite danger, given that it responds to its commands, no matter how murderous, without a second of hesitation. After Chitti is struck by lightning, the Professor’s scientific struggle is rewarded and he succeeds in investing the android with human emotions, thanks to learning software. Chitti falls madly in love with Sana but must accept that their romance would be impossible. Bhora then gets his hands on the robot and programs it with the will to kill, to make of it the ideal terrorist device. What follows is a whirlwind of special effects, action scenes, car chases, wild gunfights, complex martial arts… and the arrival of a giant robot!

In India, you’ll find Bollywood (Hindi-language films so called because the majority are made in Bombay) as well as the pop cinema of other, southern regions of the country, with their own linguistic and cultural specifications, films in Tamil (Kollywood, from the Tamil Nadu region), in Telugu (Tollywood, from Andhra Pradesh) and in Malayalam (Mollywood, from Kerala). ENDHIRAN may come from Kollywood but it nonetheless stars one of Bollywood’s biggest stars, Aishwarya Rai, regarded by many as the world’s most beautiful woman. However, the film truly belongs to Superstar Rajni, aka Rajnikanth, notable as the star of MUTHU. Imagine a romantic comedy borrowing liberally from THE TERMINATOR, THE MATRIX, IRON MAN, BICENTENNIAL MAN and TRANSFORMERS. Throw in song-and-dance numbers that are exotic, robotic and on occasion outright psychedelic, and you start to get an idea of what awaits you. ENDHIRAN, aka THE ROBOT, benefited from the biggest budget in Indian cinema’s history and was a blockbuster hit upon its release. After witnessing this overwhelming spectacle, you’ll understand why!

—Marc Lamothe (translated by Rupert Bottenberg)

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