Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu Movie Review
What instantly strikes your mind while watching Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu is that this premise needs a lot of work in crafting powerful characters, powerful scenes and it’s almost like constructing a world. This is what makes a film of crime-noir different from what has been already made. For Hollywood buffs, it’s easy to discern Mario Puzo’s The Godfather from Denzel Washington’s American Gangster. When Gautham Vasudev Menon announced what’s the story of VTK is all about, we were clear about what we are going to witness on big screens. Furthermore, the visual promos assured us that the story although might have a time-worn plot, will keep us engrossed with the screenplay and the finest technicians shaping it up.
Almost 3 hours of narration, GVM fails to create that world. There are many characters in the movie, but the audience will not carry anyone back in their memories while walking out of the theaters. The role played by Appukutty (Azhagar Saamiyin Kuthirai fame) is powerful, and GVM should have composed all the characters with same impact. This is where the writing fails. Naturally, when you have a star like Silambarasan and iconic musician AR Rahman adding his Midas-touch, the results are going to be phenomenal for a brilliant script. However, this one with a middling narration has only STR and ARR doing their best to elevate the scenes or else, it would have been too mediocre.
The romantic episodes don’t carry the elegance as in previous movies of GVM. It looks like they are forcibly placed. Having cited the term ‘Forcibly’, the same goes with the film’s climax too. It looks like an amalgamation of Fahadh Faasil starrer Malik Meets Lokiverse (Spoiler Alert). To be precise, the post-Vikram scenario, which is a hit model, has created a belief among a few filmmakers that when there is no clarity with the film’s climax, it’s better to go with an open ending, the universe, and sequel factors. Yes, that’s commendable only when the entire movie has carried that substantiality.
Neeraj Madhav’s role adds no value to the movie. Delete his portions and there’s no difference to the full-length film. He is a talented actor, and has the ability to deliver exceptional performances, but doesn’t get the right scope here.
AR Rahman’s re-recording is outstanding. His additional track played during the action sequences is intense. Art Department has done a remarkable job of creating the Mumbai street set works including the Metro Rail Bridge construction. The entire art department team needs special mention. Lee Whittaker’s pre-interval action block filmed in the single shot sequence is outstanding.
Silambarasan TR’s screen presence is the only convincing element alongside AR Rahman’s music. Siddhi Idnani dubbing in her own voice is appreciable, and GVM as usual portrays his female lead character in the right way.
On the whole, Vendhu Thanindhathu Kaadu owns stylish visuals, a great screen presence by STR, and a commendable musical score by AR Rahman, but with a mediocre story and passable screenplay, the movie confines to average zone.
Verdict: STR’s screen presence and AR Rahman’s re-recording alone are takeaways