Director: P. Vasu
Cast: Raghava Lawrence, Ritika Singh, Shaktivel Vasu, Vadivelu
The horror thriller Shivalinga’s premise is structured basically as that of P.Vasu’s Chandramukhi and Lawrence’s Kanchana series, the pioneers of the comedy-horror genre in Tamil cinema, but in a different setting.
The film opens on a moving train with the murder of Raheem (Sakthivel Vasu), a popular cook who is fond of his pigeon named Sara that always wins the ‘pigeon race’. The cops close the case as suicide only to be reopened by CID officer Shivalingeswaran (Lawrence), after Raheems’ girlfriend Sangeetha claims foul play in his death.
Meanwhile, Shiva finds his perfect match in Sathya (Ritika Singh) and the duo gets married instantly. Shiva along with Sathya shifts to a sprawling bungalow situated near a graveyard (setting of convenience for those thrill moments) in Vellore where Raheem’s case is being investigated. Once they start living in the house, Shiva notices some changes in his wife’s behavior. She goes out everyday, no sooner does Shiva sets out for his office. The pigeon Sara, which actually is the witness to Raheem’s death, directs her to go to few places. The case takes a turn when Shiva realises that Sathya is possessed by Raheem’s spirit. Now, the onus falls on Shiva to solve the case as well as save his wife.
Raghava Lawrence fits the bill of a cop with his mass screen appeal. His flair for comedy, especially in horror genres, though a bit repetitive is enjoyable. Comparisons to imitations of his matinee idol Superstar Rajinikanth is inevitable, particularly in the song sequence where there's a Kabali reference.
Ritika Singh as a possessed woman does a great job, but she seemed uncomfortable in the romantic portions. Despite Vadivelu’s comedy being old material, the actor manages to evoke laughter at regular intervals. Shaktivel Vasu makes use of his solid role and has given a laudable performance. Urvashi’s role is clichéd.
Vasu does not try to give a logical explanation to the supernatural. Though he keeps the suspense elements intact by several back-stories, the end reason is unconvincing - it’s as if he lets the ghost has its say. However, where the director scores is in his packaging of the film, containing mass commercial elements in an entertaining manner.
On the technical front, rerecording by Thaman is loud and songs are functional. Cinematography by Sarvesh Murari is adequate.