Comic entertainers are probably one of the toughest of genres to work out. And scripting and narrating it without crudity, double entendre or crass acts, and making it palatable and wholesome for family viewing is no easy task. But Pandiraj, who scripts, directs and produces this film, has pulled it off. ‘Kedi Billa....’ is a hilarious entertainer, with a well worked out screenplay, sparkling dialogues and one-liners, and some fine performance from the entire cast.
The film opens on four friends making a new year resolution to stay away from alcohol. A resolution they seem to make and break each year. Jobless and whiling away their time in idle pursuits, the quartet are thick-skinned. The taunts from family and neighbours make no difference to their attitude or lifestyle.
Two of the group Murugan and Kesavan (Shivakartikeyan, Vimal), make a pact of not falling in love, lest a girl break up their friendship. The pact too is broken soon enough. While Murugan falls for Paapa (Regina), Kesavan’s love interest is Mitra (Bindu Madhavi). While Shivakartikeyan and Vimal complement each other, Regina and Bindu are perfect foils. Comedy being his forte, the character of Murugan fits Shivakarthikeyan like a glove. Revelling in it, he is delightful to watch. Soory gets a meaty role as one of the group, and steals the show many a time.
The director can be lauded for making his female characters more than just ornamental pieces. Mitra and Paapa are a spirited duo. Not taking things lying down when the guys get out of hand, the duo give it back to them in equal measure. The parents have their quirks too. Delhi Ganesh as Vimal’s father gets some good moments, and makes the most of it. The narration is focused, the pace racy.
The political scenario is blended in well. Jobless, Murugan and Kesavan aspire to enter politics, and play up to the local politician. The director takes a dig at contemporary politics and politicians in these scenes. As in ‘Pasanga’, Pandiraj blends humour with family sentiment perfectly, without indulging in melodrama. The scenes towards the end touch an emotional chord.
It’s a coming of age film, the friends learning the lessons of life the hard way. As the end credit-titles roll on one side of the screen, there is more of action to watch out for on the other. ‘Kedi Billa.....’ is one of the best comic entertainers one has seen in recent times. You wouldn’t regret watching it.