Direction: Rohin Venkatesan
Cast: Tamannaah, Munishkanth, Yogi Babu, Kaali Venkat, KSG Venkatesh
Petromax is a remake of Telugu horror comedy Anando Brahma with Tamannaah reprising Taapsee Pannu who did the original.
Saravanan (Prem) comes down to the city from Malaysia to sell off his parents' house. But he does not fetch a good price, as there is a story spread in the locality that the house is haunted by ghosts. However, Senthil (Munishkanth) who works in a bar comes forward to prove that it doesn't have any evil spirits. Apparently, he is badly in need of money and Saravanan promises to offer him a good commission if Senthil disproves the misgivings. He brings three more people Thangam, Nandha, and Kaali (Kaali Venkat, Sathyan and TSK) who are also in need of money for his company to stay in the bungalow. What follows is the comedy battle (!) between the quartets and the actual ghosts (Tamannaah, KSG Venkatesh, Baby Moneka and Pei Krishnan) and whether the guys come out safely forms the rest.
As Tamannaah herself admitted during promotions that she essays one among other characters in the film, she has a limited scope as Meera. And it was almost like a guest appearance. The comedians majorly dominate the film.
Petromax faithfully follows the template for a horror genre – an old haunted bungalow at a remote place, a bunch of comedy actors, few scary moments, jump scares, flashback murders and ghost revenging, high decibel sound etc etc. With this clichéd stuff combined with an ordinary writing, it is difficult to sit through the first half. However, there’s some respite post-interval, thanks to Munishkanth, Kaali Venkat, Sathyan and TSK, whose spontaneous humour works to some extent. Yogi Babu in an extended cameo brings the roof down with his witty one-liners. Though there is an emotional quotient attached to the revenge mode of the spirits, the way it is conveyed lacks depth.
Technically, Ghibran’s BGM and Dani Raymond’s cinematography are commendable....