Starring Trisha, Vijay Varmaa
Directed by K. Thirugnanam
Halfway through what I thought was a pulpy political drama featuring one of Tamil cinema’s female heroes Trisha as a doughty doctor who takes on a political mafia that threatens to finish off a male version of Jayalalithaa in a hospital conspiracy that seems plucked from the headlines, the narrative suddenly swerved with tyre-halting screech.
And I was watching a different film where a drunken disorderly taxi driver who ought to be in jail, saves Trisha and her vocally and aurally impaired daughter from a car full of goons with names like Whisky , Maari and Dharma. I made sure to remember the goons’ names since I thought their contribution to the film’s second-half, a Ramboesque survival saga in the jungle , owed a lot to the ruffians who seem ferocious and ruthless but are actually dumb as hell.
They lock up Trisha’s Dr Gayathri in a car dickey and drive her to sure death . But they leave her cellphone with her. On it , she repeatedly calls the aforementioned drunken disorderly driver who until the end I was not sure which side he was on.Neither, I suspect, do the story writers of this Jeffrey Archer-meets-Sidney Sheldon-meets-numerous-deadends saga that has more twists than the long and winding road of a motorway dug into a steep mountain.
The idea here is to pre-empt audiences’ expectation constantly. And yes, we are taken aback by some of the plot manoueuvres . But not in a good way, I am afraid. Just lining up every character as a suspect doesn’t make for a riveting suspense thriller.Sure ParamapadhamVilayattu is breakneck paced but sadly it ends up doing just that: breaking its own neck in the endeavour to remain at top speed from first to last.
There are so many absurdities and illogicalities in the plot that I stopped counting after a while. The characters are meant to be charming in a roguish sinister kind of way. Like this vaillainous politician named Kalingan who is so obvious in his evil designs he couldn’t possibly be taken seriously.There is the honest CM(a male version of Jayalalitha) lying in a coma in a hospital. There is his London-returned son(Nandha Durairaj) whoe seems to hero-worship Daddy to the point of seeming fake…bad acting or bad writing? Or perhaps both?
Then there is a killer called David(Richard Rishi) who suffers from night blindness and keeps putting eyedrops in his eyes. Finally there is piss-drunk stranger who can hardly move straight but can beat up multiple goons and save our heroine and her daughter from death.
Because, you see, at the end of the day even a female hero like Trisha needs a man to save her. She gets it. But no one saves this film from looking like an overcooked hysterically action-ridden frenetic yarn which tries so hard to please , even that item girl in the song right after intermission can’t compete with the film’s eagerness to get our attention.Subtlety be damned.