Movie - Thillalangadi (Tamil)
Director - M Raja
Producer - M Raja, A Mohan, Sun Pictures
Cast - 'Jayam' Ravi, Tamannah, Shaam, Prabhu, Suhasini, Vadivelu, Santhanam, Livingston, Radha Ravi, Jayashankar
Music - Yuvan Shankar Raja
Cinematography - B Rajashekhar
Editing - L Sasikumar
Screenplay, Dialogues - M Raja
Release Date - 23rd July 2010
I was bored, jobless, had loads of time to kill and didnt know what to do. I decided to go for this new Tamil movie called Thilllalangadi which promised to be mindless masala fun. The movie perfectly served my purpose and kept me entertained throughout. It also helped that I hadnt seen its Telugu original, Kick (Ravi Teja, Ileana) so that no comparisons came to my mind. It is director Raja's 4th remake in a row with his brother 'Jayam' Ravi. And like all the other films, this might also turn into a blockbuster provided that Sun Pictures continue their aggressive marketing strategy for the film.
Nisha (Tamannah) and Krishnakumar (Shaam) meet on a train in Malaysia to get to know each other after Krishnakumar's marriage proposal comes to Nisha. During their conversation, Nisha talks about her ex-lover Krishna (Jayam Ravi) whom she now hates. The movie goes into flashback mode and tells the love story of Krishna and Nisha. Krishna is a person who lives life just to get a 'kick' out of it. He does even the most normal things in the weirdest possible way just to get a 'kick'. Nisha begins by hating him for this nature of his, but in true filmy fashion, ends up falling for him due to the same nature. After romancing for a while, they break up since Nisha cannot take Krishna's antics anymore and Krishna believes that the kick has gone out of their romance. Then Krishnakumar narrates the story of the person he hates the most. A thief, who steals from the who's who of Chennai just for fun. KK is the Assistant Commissioner of Police who is in charge of nabbing him. But the thief outsmarts him at every move and KK is hell bent on catching him. What happens when all of them meet at Malaysia forms the rest of the story.
The first half is racy and entertaining, whereas the second half moves at a much slower pace. The entire Malaysia episode was just forced into the narrative for some good locations, it wouldnt have made much difference if all that happened in Chennai also. The whole 'memory loss' portions and the song were a sheer waste of time. The movie never wants the audience to take it seriously, and is a shameless commercial potboiler. So there is absolutely no point in looking for logic in the narrative. All you have to do is give your brains some rest and be entertained by the completely mindless proceedings. To quote Veeru paaji from Sholay, "Is story mein emotion hai, drama hai, comedy hai, tragedy hai, aur loads of action bhi hai.", thus making it a full-on masala movie. Raja, who has made only family movies so far, has broken his image by making this flick. It would be interesting to see what he has in store in the Vijay movie Velayudham.
Jayam Ravi is over-enthusiastic, but still does a decent job as the slightly insane Krishna. Ravi Teja is supposed to be much better in the Telugu original, but since I havent seen that movie, I cannot comment on that. For me, Jayam Ravi was quite good, except for his voice, which doesnt sound anything close to a hero's voice (like in all his movies). Tamannah is getting better with each film. She's the only North Indian actress in Tamil who gets her lip-sync almost right when she speaks Tamil. She plays the bubbly Nisha effortlessly and has done a great job in all the comedy sequences as well. She seems to be inspired by Kareena Kapoor, in both acting and her costumes and look. Shaam as the tough cop is impressive and its good to have him back after a long hiatus. But his look seems to be a little too inspired by Kamal Haasan's Raghavan from Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu. Vadivelu is pretty decent and manages to deliver some good laughs. Santhanam makes an apperance in the second half, only to do some terrible comedy which makes you cringe in your seat. Prabhu is as usual, dependable. Radha Ravi is excellent. Suhasini has nothing much to do. John Vijay in a short cameo is funny.
Music by Yuvan Shankar Raja, who was on a winning streak till now, is below average. The only good song in the movie is 'Sol Pechu' by two of India's best singers, KS Chitra and Shreya Ghoshal. The video of the song is thoroughly inspired by Behka from the Hindi Ghajini (this is perhaps the 3rd or 4th Tamil song to be inspired by that one song), but has interestingly been shot without cuts in one single shot with so many Jayam Ravi's and Tamannah's coming in, that you actually lose count. It is done quite well actually. Background score was racy and was apt for the film. B Rajashekhar's cinematography is good while L Sasikumar should have made the movie a little more sharper in the second half.
On the whole, Thillalangadi is a shameless masala film made with no apologies about it. It certainly could hav been much better with a much more spicy and racy narrative. But still, it manages to be a timepass flick. Watch it if you're a fan of such movies, you wouldnt be bored.
Rating - 3/5