Thirunaal Review


Cast: Jiiva, Nayanthara, Karunaas, Joe Malluri, Ramadoss,
Direction: P.S. Ramnath
Production: M. Senthil Kumar
Music: Srikanth Deva

Jiiva one of the best-performing actors of his generation has had a long gap after a few average films and a lot of interest was created for ‘Thirunaal’ a rural gangster saga which reunites him with his ‘E’ costar Nayanthara.  Director P.S. Ramanath has directed ‘Ambasamudram Ambani’ a few years back and whether this unusual combo works remains to be seen.

Jiiva is Blade an orphan who is a loyal henchman of a local Kumbakonam dadha Naga, he goes to the extent of even murdering for him and his boss uses dubious means to bring him out of a seven-year prison sentence. Vidya (Nayanthara) a kindergarten teacher and daughter of Naga;s partner (Joe Malluri) whose recurring dream is of Blade marrying her.  When Vidya is kidnapped by a gang from Trichy, Blade jumps into action to rescue her and on the way back declares his love for her and the two become a couple.  The lovebirds are caught in a compromising position on the day a groom comes to see Vidya and this causes Joe Malluri to leave to Tanjavur in shame.  Naga cheats Joe Malluri of twenty lakhs and the rest of the story is whether Blade goes against his boss for his love and whether the two predestined pair unite.

Jiiva is an actor of a very high caliber and the role of Blade with a negative shade is like a cake walk for him but in ‘Thirunaal’ he let down by an insipid script and inconsistently etched character which makes him look dull and listless most of the times.  However, his chemistry with Nayan is excellent and the scenes involving the two are the best in the film.  He brings the house down when he explains his M.R. Radha tattoo and when he speaks about the white space in a rupee note. Nayanthara gets the most thundering welcome right from the time her name appears on the screen and pretty much everytime she is in the frame.  The lady superstar is the sole consolation and she keeps her fans happy by providing enough humor and in the romance scenes.  She plays a role that is much younger than her real age but the fact that it does not show at all is a testimony of her charisma.  Sharath Lohitashwa as Naga and Joe Malluri as Nayan’s father are just about ok.  Muniskanth provides a few laughs but is mostly wasted and so are Madhumitha and Karunaas.  The much-hyped appearance of television personality Gopinath as an encounter specialist creates very little impact.  Yesteryear heroine Meenakshi returns in a role that is used for explicit skin show.

Music by Srikanth Deva is a plus for the film and all the songs that have a rural touch are pleasing to the ears. Cinematography by Mahesh Muthuswamy and editing by V.T. Vijayan is average chiefly due to the weak script and execution.  At a time when Tamil cinema is breaking open, the doors of International acclaim director P.S. Ramanath has literally pulled it back to a bygone era.  The storytelling and characterization are uneven and wastes the efforts of the two leads who struggle to lift the movie.  Ramanath’s strength is his dialogues which are praiseworthy.