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Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha Movie Review: Gautham Menon fails to conjure up his magic in this action thriller that attempts to be sleek

Despite its Bond suit-wearing protagonist performing stunt after stunt, Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha becomes a classic example of how with no dense characters, none of the making can really help

Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha Movie Review: Gautham Menon fails to conjure up his magic in this action thriller that attempts to be sleek
Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha

Last Updated: 01.52 PM, Mar 01, 2024


Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha story

Joshua (Varun) is a contract killer, but only until he sees and falls in love with Kundavi (Raahei) who is handling an important case against a Mexican drug cartel leader in the American court. While she seems to be the last remaining member of her legal team to represent the case at the final court hearing, Joshua must double up as not only her lover but also as bodyguard to safeguard her from notorious gang trying to finish her off.

Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha review

At some point during Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha, the titular character angrily questions a member of the mercenary gang who comes to kill Kundavi, and asks if he would kill anyone for money. Even though it is the protagonist who is asking the question and as the audience you might want to stick to the emotions of what the hero is going through, it just simply fails because only moments before you had seen Joshua taking lives for money. This is not the only instance you feel not connected to the characters of the film, because Joshua Imail Pol Kaakha simply feels like last-minute rushes compiled together to make a two-hour long, last-minute school project.

Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha
Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha

Director Gautham Vasudev Menon (GVM), who is primarily known for his romantic and action films, has tried to combine both genres in Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha. But this time, the latter attempts to take the central stage with the former being a plot-pusher. However, the shoddy attempts to stage these stunt sequences coupled with inconsistent love track does not align with the aesthetics GVM has marvelled us before.

At this point, I would like to remind of how some of GVM’s films like Minnale and Vettaiyadu Villayadu might not have aged well for its problematic takes on stalking and homophobia respectively, but the films still managed to capture your attention for the mere way they were executed with dense screenplay and elimination of unwarranted elements. But the same cannot be said for Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha which lethargically wants to replicate the aesthetics in an unconvincing manner. Yes, we do get a lot of dialogues in English, GVM’s trademark shots of hair-tucking, and focus on the eyes of the heroine as she speaks, but how long will the old wine in a new glass not seem obsolete?

It is not new for GVM characters to be extremely flawed. Take the case of Jessie from VTV who is deeply complicated enough to play with someone’s feelings at her mercy. But when Jessie carried herself that way it felt like an up-close character study of her psyche. But in Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha when the titular character who operates in a morally grey ground, it is impossible to empathise with him when he says his love for Kundavi made him to quit his killing profession. That too within a few seconds of meeting her. Were we offered enough to know about the love the duo shared for one of them to leave the sophisticated and comforting life he once had? Do we get to know why they fall in love with each other? No, and it comes as a surprising factor because romance is one of the strong suits of the filmmaker and this film does not attempt an ounce to flesh out these characters.


Much like Achcham Yenbadhu Madamaiyada, this film too takes the route of the hero protecting the woman against all the odds. But multiple plot-pushers swamps the film with ridiculous lengths of illogicality. There are some unintentional quips, random mention of sexual harassment, a back-stabbing reveal. But none of them are played to the film’s advantage. At one point, there comes twist after twist, that further makes the film convoluted. Are we interested and invested to know how Joshua protects Kundavi? Do we really care if Joshua is able to leave behind his killing spree? The film’s progress only tends to increase the number of questions we have, but its choppy editing, unhelpful score, and not-so-great acting, Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha becomes a cauldron of inconsistency both in terms of writing and making.

Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha verdict

Joshua Imai Pol Kaakha was touted to be a sleek action thriller. But it barely manages to do so. Despite its Bond suit-wearing protagonist performing stunt after stunt, the film becomes a classic example of how with the absence of dense characters, none of the making can really help the film. Even as I am happy that a film which has been in the can made it to the theatres, I still miss the charm that the director was once able to conjure up on big screens.


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