Review for Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu:
•Duration: 02 Hour 54 Minutes.
•Genre: Action Crime Thriller.
•REVIEW BY ARUNJYOTHI R
1: PERFORMANCE OF SILAMBARASAN
3: BACKGROUND SCORE.
6: TECHNICAL ASPECTS.
1: PREDICTABLE STORY.
2: SCREENPLAY SHOULD HAVE BEEN WRITTEN BETTER.
3: THE DURATION OF THE FILM.
4: SLOW FIRST-HALF.
5: CLICHE ROMANCE.
6: ACTION SEQUENCES
•ONE WORD: Performance of Silambarasan makes this crime thriller watchable.
Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu tells the life journey of Muthuveeran. He is an unemployed graduate who does a job in the forest. Muthu is supposed to guard the forest and an accidental fire will make the woods burn and the owner will demand money for his loss. So his mother will take Muthu to his uncle and will plead for a job for his son. Seeing the poverty his uncle will make necessary arrangements for him to work in a Tamil Nadu based parotta shop in Mumbai. But some unexpected things will happen and Muthu will reach Mumbai soon. He will work at the Isakki Parotta shop and will find out that the workers in this shop and the shop runner are part of a gangster group. In between he will fall in love with a Tamil girl called Paavai who works as a saleswoman. Muthu will find it difficult to live there and will decide to leave Mumbai but the unexpected circumstances won’t give him the chance for the escape.
•ANALYSIS OF THE DIRECTION, STORY, SCREENPLAY AND DIALOGUES:
Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu is an Indian Tamil language action crime thriller film directed by Gautham Vasudev Menon. The script for the film is written by B. Jeyamohan and produced by Ishari K. Ganesh. Silambarasan T.R is the hero and A.R Rahman composes the music for the film and it’s a duology film and this is the first part. Vels Film International handles the production and the film is distributed by Red Giant Movies. With a running time of 174 minutes the film is currently in theatres with a U/A Censor Certificate.
The direction and the making style of Gautham Vasudev Menon is always stylish and he follows a kind of filmmaking and we have seen it in his previous film. Using of the hero’s voice to narrate the story is commonly seen in Gautham Vasudev Menon movies but in Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu he had completely changed the template of his making style. In his last movie Enai Noki Paayum Thota the narration style was too problematic, I didn’t enjoy it and found it disturbing. So as a director Gautham Vasudev Menon for Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu had brought a new way of filmmaking. His usual way of gang war fights and gangster backdrop is there in the plot but the way he treats the script was different. I was surprised by seeing the first thirty minutes of the film and doubted whether it’s a Gautham Menon film or not. The village and rural culture is something that we can’t see in Gautham Vasudev Menon movies so I was shocked and slowly the gang war and the darker world of crime began to confirm that I had taken the tickets for a GVM film.
To be frank, I enjoyed the film, it was nice and entertaining but it could have been made better. I didn’t feel an impact, everything in the storyline happens with a normal flow and proper heroism was missing in the gangster storyline and screenplay. The storyline is predictable and from the very beginning, we will be able to know what are all the events that are going to happen. The film largely focuses on the central character Muthu, the life journey of Muthu into a gangster from a poor Tamil boy is what the director Gautham Menon and writer B. Jeyamohan are trying to establish. So like I said the occurrences in the film are predictable but the performance and the transformation of Silambarasan’s character makes the movie enjoyable. The natural and realistic acting of Silambarsan will keep us hooked till the end, his screen presence was tremendous and was having the power to give an engaging viewing experience.
The first half of the film was unnecessarily dragged, the length of the first part was too high, and a slow-paced making had created a lag. The story is happening in Mumbai and when the central character reaches Mumbai his journey into a gangster begins and from there the movie turns into a thriller style. Fights, gang war and conflicts of two criminal groups are shown in the first half and the hero without any choice will get involved and his life will begin to change. The first half ends with a terrific interval block and I was shocked by the visuals and it had made a great impact. But till that impressive interval block the movie was going with a normal slow paced manner, the fights in between and the gang war was not creating much thrilling or exciting moments. The space was plenty but it was not utilised well by the makers, the happenings doesn’t create a wow factor. Till the first half, every happening in the script is something we have seen in many gangster movies. Still, the passionate direction from Gautham Vasudev Menon held the film from not falling off, he made the film in a conniving manner but if he had focused more on the screenplay the first half would have been more thrilling and exciting.
The interval block was promising for a great second half and I would say the second part was more interesting than the half half. The second half moved on in a fast paced manner, the life of the central character changed suddenly and his new life was making the viewing experience more energetic. The courage of the hero, his stubbornness and the service he provided for his master was giving the sign for something big. The point where the hero turning into a rogue was established well, solid reason was given by the writer. And finally how he becomes a leader for all was also convincingly directed by Gautham Vasudev Menon. But still an impact was missing, those scenes were not having a mass appeal, I wondered why the writer and director had made those scenes in a normal way. The final transformation of the hero looks stylish and his new world of hero was demonstrated well. It was the glimpse for the second part but like I said, the normal way of making didn’t impress me or hasn’t created any kind of curiosity or thrill. The ending and the tale end is promising for a potential sequel, but the visuals were not rigorous enough to draw my attention. After watching the glimpse of the sequel I didn’t feel any excitement and thought about whether I should wait for the sequel or not. So I hope the sequel will have some heroic stuff and mass scenes, let’s wait and watch.
The screenplay of Gautham Vasudev Menon was mediocre, there are some moments in the film which were impressive but his writing gets flat at many places. The screenplay felt like a half baked cake, some portions were good and some portions were really bad. He didn’t utilize the situations well, the gangwar scene was missing with lots of energy. The transformation of hero to a courageous fighter was also written out normally. The romance between the hero and heroine was not effective because it was following a regular romantic track of Gautham Vasudev Menon. The acting of Silambarasan and Siddhi Idhnani was good and their chemistry was lovely but their romance and the way of falling in love was too cliche. Their love track, and the difficulties they face in the second half after marriage was not properly executed. The romantic song for showing their love was nice to hear but it doesn’t match the occasion well and felt overdramatic. In the second half towards the end the movie was having a major twist, but it was shown very poorly. That scene was supposed to create a big impact but the sick writing of the screenplay by GVM had spoiled a potential scene.
•PERFORMANCE OF ACTORS:
The film has the casting of Silambarasan T.R, Radhika Sharathkumar, Siddhi Idnani, Neeraj Madhav, Siddhique and many more. The performance of every single actor in the film was incredible, there were many supporting actors in the film and I couldn’t find everyone’s names but all of them had done a great job. Silambarasan as Muthuveeran was outstanding, his acting and the way he handled the character defines the quality of a true actor. I was stunned by seeing his acting, the whole performance was natural and it had the swag and style of Silambarasan. His character demands a drastic transformation from a poor boy to a rich man so I am sure everyone will be shocked after seeing his way of acting. His whole performance was having a matured way of approach and how he undertook the character is one of the major highlights of this film. When his character is poor we can see lots of innocence and a determined mind to look after his loved ones so during those portions his way of acting was dominating the screen. The dialogue delivery is sharp and precise, depending on the type of situation he tells the dialogue with the right tune and modulation. Silambarasan’s timing while telling the dialogues doesn’t have any sort of error and the way he expresses it without losing the emotions was beautiful to watch. The anger which he exhibits on the thrilling scenes and during the fight scenes was superb, the aggression and stubbornness of a leader was able to be seen lustrously. So I would say Silambarasan had done a massive job for the character Muthuveeran and his dedication and transformation for the character is brilliant. Neeraj Madhav, Siddhique and Siddhi Idnani had done a wonderful job. The villain role of Siddhique was impressive, his acting and the shades of negative personality was acted out well. Neeraj Madhav scored well, his acting looked authentic and the innocence in his character was maintained properly by him. Siddhi Idnani was looking gorgeous, her smile and cuteness was looking gorgeous. Her chemistry with Silambarasan came out well, and her overall acting was impressive. The modulation on telling the dialogue was elegantly handled by Siddhi Idhani especially at the romantic scene. Raadhika Sarathkumar as the mother did a good job, to perform she was having less but I am sure that she will be having a lot to perform in the sequel.
•MUSIC, BACKGROUND SCORE:
The musical work for the film is composed by A.R Rahman which includes the background score. The company Think Music had purchased the musical rights and the soundtrack of Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu consists of a total five songs. The songs on the soundtrack are good and I would rate them 3.5/5. The song called “Marakuma Nenjam” is my favourite, the feel which the song gives is so pleasant. The tune and the voice of Rahman is so appealing also the chorus portion in the song makes it so different. The meaningful lyrics of Thamarai are blended with the voice of Rahman and the song perfectly conveys the emotions of the central character played by Silambarasan. The second song “Kaalathukkum Nee Venum” creates a romantic mood. The voice of Silambarasan and Rakshita Suresh was matching for the song. Also the use of flute instruments in the song make it unique and the lyrics of Thamari maintained a nice flow with good words. The third song called “”Unna Nenachadhum” sung by Shreya Ghoshal and Sarthak Kalyani was average, the song had only given an ok feel. The guitar portion in the song and the voice of the singers were nice. The fourth song called “Mallipoo” was satisfying. The voice of Madhushree and the lyrics of Thamarai had given a classic mood of a local vibe and dance. The final song “Muthu’s Journey” is borrowed from the track “Marakuma Nenjam”, it was used for the trailer and teaser and created a good impression. A.R Rahman’s songs and background were outstanding, the song called “Marakuma Nenjam” is my favourite, the feel which the song gives is so pleasant. The tune and the voice of Rahman is so appealing also the chorus portion in the song makes it so different. The meaningful lyrics of Thamarai are blended with the voice of Rahman and the song perfectly conveys the emotions of the central character played by Silambarasan. The way A.R Rahman used the song “Marakuma Nenjam” for the crucial scene was brilliant. Also the chorus portion in the song was crammed for the major scene and the impact was huge. We will feel the depth of that scene and the emotions of that scene was lustrously lifted by the song “Marakuma Nenjam”.
The technical division had done an incredible job, proper quality in the making was able to be seen. The cinematography and colour grading was top class. The location was matching the premise of the story and action sequences were terrific. The cinematography by Siddhartha Nuni and his work was brilliant. The visuals were having a predominant quality to lift the mood of the film, the feeling of violence and fights of gang war were driving through the visuals. The types of shots and the composition was looking good and the camera movements came out well. The dark shade colour and the techniques used for lighting was making an extra additional appealing. The close-up frames of Silambarasan were used to exhibit his natural acting and it was used effectively. The premise and location of Mumbai was captured authentically, larger part of the film is happening in Mumbai so the various location of Mumbai was perfectly chosen and it also matched for the occurances of the plot. The running time of the film is two hours and fifty four minutes, the duration was long, nearly to three hours, the editor should have focused on cutting some scenes for a neat viewing. But the transition of scene was perfect, mismatches were never felt. The action sequences looked ok, the fights were not that exciting, a mass fight would have created a big impact. The make-up and costumes of Silambarasan was impressive, his character transformation and the various stages he goes through were implemented with appropriate make-up and costumes. His character is demanding a transformation from a poor boy to a rich man, so his looks and dressing style were justifying for his acting and given more vibrancy for his acting.
So overall Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu had given me a mixed kind of experience, I liked it but felt the movie could have been made better. The performance of Silambarasan is the first major winning positive element of this film , he has done a spectacular job and this film can be considered for his acting. The making style of Gautham Vasudev Menon was different and he had done a good job but the script was not effective especially the screenplay. The storyline is predictable and it was followed by an ordinary screenplay so the film struggles to impress and doesn’t do proper justice for a gangster film. Therefore, Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu is a watchable crime thriller and energetic performance of Silambarasan won’t disappoint you, better to watch it with normal expectations.