“Chandramukhi 2” (translated as “Moon Faced Girl 2”) is a 2023 Indian Tamil-language comedy horror film, both written and directed by P. Vasu. It is produced by Subaskaran Allirajah under the Lyca Productions banner. Serving as a sequel to the 2005 film “Chandramukhi,” the movie features a prominent cast that includes Raghava Lawrence, Kangana Ranaut, and Lakshmi Menon in lead roles. Additionally, the ensemble supporting cast boasts familiar faces such as Vadivelu, reprising his role from the original, as well as Raadhika Sarathkumar, Mahima Nambiar, Srushti Dange, Rao Ramesh, Subiksha Krishnan, and others.
The official announcement for the film was made in June 2022, with principal photography commencing in July of the same year and concluding by mid-August 2023. M. M. Keeravani took charge of composing the music, while R. D. Rajasekhar handled the cinematography and Anthony managed the editing.
“Chandramukhi 2” saw its release on September 28, 2023, but it received unfavorable reviews from critics.
Chandramukhi 2 : plot summary
In a tale of affluence, a prosperous family encounters a series of challenges that lead them to reconnect with estranged relatives, seeking divine intervention for their troubles. Little do they know that this pursuit will inadvertently rekindle the ancient rivalry between the classical dancer Chandramukhi and Sengottaiyan, buried in history for centuries. As the possession of Divya by Chandramukhi’s spirit unfolds, uncertainty looms over whether Pandiyan can triumph over Chandramukhi and bring harmony back to their family.
- Raghava Lawrence in a dual role as Pandiyan and Sengottaiyan (Vettaiyan)
- Kangana Ranaut as Chandramukhi
- Lakshmi Menon as Divya (possessed by Chandramukhi)
- Vadivelu as Murugesan
- Radhika Sarathkumar as Ranganayagi
- Mahima Nambiar as Mahalakshmi
- Srushti Dange as Priya
- Subiksha Krishnan as Gayathri
- Mithun Shyam as Gunasekaran
- Ayyappa P. Sharma as Rudraiyya, Sengottaiyan’s Mahaguru
- Vignesh as Ranganayagi’s younger brother
- Ravi Mariya as Ranganayagi’s elder brother’s son
- Suresh Menon as Ranganayagi’s elder brother
- T. M. Karthik as Manager
- Rao Ramesh as Guruji
- Shatru as Vettaiyan Raja
- R. S. Shivaji as Contractor Govaalu
- Y. G. Mahendran as Temple Priest
- Manobala as fake exorcist
- Cool Suresh as house servant
- Rajitha as Palace servant
- Manasvi Kottachi as Ranganayagi Jr.
P. Vasu began envisioning a sequel to Chandramukhi as early as September 2012. By January 2020, Vasu announced the completion of the sequel’s script, and a producer had stepped forward to support the project. It was confirmed that Raghava Lawrence would be the film’s main star, a fact he personally shared on Twitter in April, also revealing that Sun Pictures would produce the film. In June 2022, Lawrence revealed that Lyca Productions had taken over the film’s production, and the renowned comedian Vadivelu had joined the cast. The responsibilities of cinematography, editing, and art direction were entrusted to Anthony, R. D. Rajasekhar, and Thota Tharani, respectively.
Notably, Kangana Ranaut met with Vasu to discuss another project and, during their conversation, inquired about the role of Chandramukhi. Vasu revealed that the role had not yet been cast, prompting Ranaut to express her interest in playing the part. In November, she was officially announced as the lead female in the film. Cinematography continued to be supervised by R. D. Rajasekhar, while Anthony remained in charge of editing. Kala, who had previously choreographed dances for the first film, was once again selected as the dance choreographer for the sequel.
Filming for the project kicked off in July 2022 in Mysore, completing its initial schedule by August. In March 2023, Ranaut joined the crew to film a climactic song, a process she had been rehearsing for since January, and she wrapped up her scenes within the same month. Raadhika finished her part in May. By June, the team officially declared the completion of principal photography. An additional song sequence was captured in August, signaling the final chapter of the filming process.
During June, the team made the exciting announcement that the movie would be hitting the screens on Ganesh Chaturthi. Subsequently, Lawrence initiated the dubbing process for his segments in July.
M. M. Keeravani, returning to Tamil cinema after two decades since his last film “Student Number 1” in 2003, has crafted the music and background scores for this project. Notably, this marks his second collaboration with Vasu and his debut partnership with Raghava. Sony Music India secured the audio rights for the film.
The release of the first single, “Swagathaanjali,” took place on August 11, 2023, followed by the second single, “Moruniye,” on August 22, 2023. Keeravani revealed that there are still nine more songs awaiting release, making a grand total of ten songs for the film. The audio launch event occurred at Jeppiaar Engineering College on August 25, 2023.
Negative reviews from critics
Priyanka Sundar, a critic from Firstpost, awarded the film a mere 1 out of 5 stars, emphasizing, “With its lackluster writing, it might be wiser to revisit the previous installment on an OTT platform instead of investing in rising ticket prices.”Janani K, reviewing for India Today, gave the film 1.5 out of 5 stars, declaring, “Chandramukhi 2 exemplifies mediocrity. The second half features a romantic number titled ‘Podhum Podhum’ (transl. Enough, enough), and we couldn’t agree more! Podhum!”M. Suganth, writing for The Times of India, also granted the film 1.5 out of 5 stars, stating, “It might suffice for those seeking momentary distraction, but those looking for more will be left disappointed.”In contrast, Kalyani Pandiyan S of Hindustan Times praised Menon’s performance while critiquing Lawrence’s comic timing and noting Ranaut’s inability to match Jyothika’s level.Siby Jeyya of India Herald, in a scathing review, labeled the film’s story as a “mess” and criticized the performances of Lawrence and Ranaut.Sowmya Rajendran, in her review for The News Minute, rated the film 1 out of 5 stars and remarked, “The film unfolds like a TV serial with close-ups, reaction shots, and melodramatic dialogues, heavily relying on M. M. Keeravani’s nostalgia-inducing score.”A critical review from Hindu Tamil Thisai warned against using the names of well-received works like Manichitrathazhu, Apthamitra, and Chandramukhi for a film that lacks memorable features.Sruthi Ganapathy Raman of Film Companion described it as a “poorly-acted” sequel, stating that apart from the title card and Keeravani’s haunting score, it fails to capture the horror of its predecessor.Srinivasa Ramanujam of The Hindu called it a “mildly” entertaining film.Saki Yutukuri of Telangana Today labeled Chandramukhi 2 as either a remake or a copy, highlighting its striking similarities to its predecessor.Kirubhakar Purushothaman of The Indian Express rated the film 1 out of 5 stars, branding it as a “shoddy” horror film that tarnishes the original’s legacy.Baradwaj Rangan criticized it as a “generic” sequel, citing its lack of innovation compared to the first installment.Anusha Sundar of Cinema Express gave the film 1.5 out of 5 stars, remarking that Chandramukhi 2 fails to introduce anything fresh and serves as a color-remastered copy of its forerunner.B. V. S. Prakash of Deccan Chronicle awarded the film 2 out of 5 stars, dismissing it as a “tacky” sequel to an evergreen classic.
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