Film: Navarasa Thilagam
Cast: Ma Ka Pa Anand, Srushti Dange, Ilavarasu, Karunakaran, Sidharth Vipin, Jaiprakash
He essayed one of the protagonists in Vaanavarayan Valllavarayan (2014). Now Anand, a popular anchor on the small screen, gets to play his first solo hero in Navarasa Thilagam. The role of Muthu is that of a smooth talker who has a knack of extricating himself from unpleasant situations. A role that doesn’t strain the actor much, going well with his persona on the small screen of a glib ad-libber. But the film could have done with a more interesting screenplay and a better presentation.
The early scenes are about Muthu wasting his time with friend Alangaram (Karunakaran). Uneducated, unemployed and splurging on his father’s hard-earned money on idle pursuits, Muthu’s life takes a turn when he sets eyes on the pretty dimpled Chithra (Srushti). The moments here are routine ones, sans any novelty or freshness. A deviation is Chithra’s father, who realising Muthu’s interest in his daughter, tries to ward him off, projecting his daughter in a negative light. The inevitable would follow soon enough, though Chithra’s volte face and acceptance is sudden and lacks conviction.
Srushti has become an actor to watch out for. From a hesitant not-very-involved actor in her earlier films, she has transformed into a more assured and a confident one in her recent releases. The narration peps up a little with the entry of Thirunavukarasu (Sidharth Vipin), the intended bridegroom of Chithra’s sister. Knowing her father’s antagonism towards him, Muthu uses the excited would-be bridegroom as a pawn in his game. The scene stealer here is music director-turned -actor Sidharth Vipin as the comic-villain of the piece, his timing perfect. Vipin’s whole demeanour, dialogue delivery and body language is a delight to watch, pepping up the narration to a large extent. And towards the latter part, he takes over the whole scenario.
The screenplay is more verbal in its take. The script may have seemed good on paper, but on the screen it falls flat. If only it had some punch and was crafted more interestingly...sigh! Navarasa Thilagam is, at most, a promising effort from a debutant maker.