Dec 01 2016
Director Gautham Menon has mixed romance and action quite well in films like Kaakka Kaakka and Yennai Arindhaal. For more than three-quarters of his latest film Acham Yenbathu Madamaiyada, he once again juggles the two genres well. The same can’t be said about the rest of the film though.
In the previous films, GVM mixed up the romance and action so that the tracks proceeded in parallel. But they are kept more separate here. The film starts as a romance and its developed well as Simbhu(his character’s name is not revealed until much later) and his sister’s friend Leela(Manjima Mohan) get to know each other. The romance is allowed to grow as Simbhu and Leela first stay under the same roof and then go on a road trip on his bike. There are too many songs(thankfully, all of them are great) but also some nice moments and conversations as they spend time together at home and on the road. So the way they grow closer is natural and believable.
Special mention must be made of the Thalli Pogathey… number. Even though its imminent appearance is announced by Simbhu uttering its lyrics, the way it is picturized – as a regular duet mixed with scenes from a serious accident – is fantastic. The audacious picturization elevates the already superb number.
The film moves into action territory as Leela and her family are targeted by some goons. As Simbhu saves her, the short bursts of action are intense and the suspense about the reason behind the attacks holds our interest. As Simbhu is stuck in a place where he doesn’t know the language, tries to make sense of the proceedings and deals with a corrupt policeman(Baba Sehgal), there is genuine tension as gets deeper and deeper into trouble. It also helps that his actions, born out of desperation, mostly realistic without any over-the-top heroics.
But then the movie inexplicably falls apart. Everything about what comes later – a silly revelation which solves the mystery about Simbhu’s name, the accompanying twist, the backstory about the twist, the long story about the reason for the attacks – is atrocious. It almost feels like GVM handed the camera over to a very inferior masala film director with no idea about what went on until then and asked him to just wrap things up as soon as possible.