Cast: Vijay, Ileana, Jiiva, Shrikant
It was a film that was critically acclaimed and commercially successful in its Hindi version. A tale of three friends, about the bonding and friendship, and of following one’s dreams. And now 3 Idiots has been remade in Tamil as 'Nanban'.
Remaking a successful film in another language is a challenging task for any director. But credit goes to Shankar for being able to capture the essence and soul of the original movie in his first remake in Tamil.
The movie has been beautifully scripted with a dash of humour and pinch of emotion. Irrespective of the scene being corny or truly touching, director Rajkumar Hirani had successfully weaved a script which was fascinating and intriguing.
Shankar has followed the original script almost faithfully, only tweaking it just a tad bit. So, with the feel-good factor, the glitches, the melodrama and the soppy scenes of the second half, the film does well.
The film could have been shortened, especially the second half. The narration travels a bit, from past to the present, as two friends Senthil and Venkat (Jiiva, Srikanth) embark on a journey in search of their friend Paari (Vijay), who disappeared soon after graduation.
The journey has a few surprises for the duo, and for their former classmate ‘Silencer’ (Sathyan), who accompanies them to prove his point.
Paari was the rebel, and was a headache for the college director - ‘Virus’. Paari solves the woes of his two friends and motivates them to follow their dreams. Through Paari’s character the script takes light hearted digs at the education system which offers little room for independent thinking. Parental and peer pressure are brought out here. Then, there's this love affair of Paari with the director’s daughter (Ileana).
Her second Tamil film (after Kedi), ravishing Ileana returns to Tamil screen after a long gap, her hour glass figure swaying sensuously to the song-dance numbers. Harris Jayaraj’s songs are a disappointment though. The thrust-in closing dream song, is a speed breaker.
The performances are finely tuned. Vijay with his charming expressions and effortless portrayal of Paari is a delight to watch, and is the soul of the film. Satyaraj as the college director with an endearing lisp, carries off the role with élan. With his role fleshed out better than Srikanth’s, Jiiva leaves a stronger impact. Sathyan is a revelation as the annoying know-all ‘Silencer’. He plays his role with obvious relish. A sweet and satisfying Pongal fare, ‘Nanban’s’ feel good flavour will linger on even after one leaves the theatre.