Gokul & Prem's Tamil Cinema Review

Thursday, February 23, 2006


Rating: 3.0/5
Cast: Vijay & Trisha
Music: Vidyasagar
Direction: Ramana
Remark: Disappointment for Vijay's Fans

Everytime when Vijay starts doing well, his dad, S A Chandrashekar will ensure that the success is broken. SAC has managed to live to this reputation again. The pre-release hype was quite high. The expectations are that the Vijay-starrer, AATHI would mark a hat-trick of success for the Vijay-Trisha combination. However, the end product is disappointing, to say the least. True, all the ingredients that enrich a typical Vijay film are there: action, emotion, comedy, romance and excessive violence. But somehow, AATHI leaves one cold unlike his earlier films like THIRUPACHI and SIVAKASI. It’s a bit like swigging a coke that lacks the fizz!

But AATHI is not a disaster either! If you are a diehard Vijay fan, you may be disappointed with the lack of nativity and fizz. For the loyal followers of the young actor, the film packs a powerful punch: thrilling encounters, stunning action scenes, romantic interludes and comedy cameos. Some say, if the movie had released on the first day, the film would have set the cah boz ringing(the film lost out on 3 Crores because of a day's delay). It may have made the distributors richer by that much, however, this film is definitely a disappointment.

The point is: Andhra masala is too spicy for Tamil audience.That is the lesson handed out to Vijay.

Aathi(Vijay) has a mission to accomplish. So, much against his parents (Manivannan and Seeta), Aathi, a resident of New Delhi comes to Chennai, where he joins a college. Trisha, a student in the same college, is a bird of the same feather. She is also out to avenge the killers of her parents. Her uncle (Nasser) fully supports her plan. Understandably, the duo, thrown together by circumstances, attract each other. The friendship matures into love soon. The movie goes on to depict how the twosome go about accomplishing their joint mission. The villain is a character called RDX (brilliantly done by Malayalam actor Sai Kumar).

The film definitely has a good story, backed with sentiments, action and comedy in a right mix. A major drawback of AATHI is the excess of violence that kills the film. The film literally drips with blood and gore, what with two-dozen killings! Only the manner of killing is different. Some are hacked to death while others are shot. Added to the violence factor is the lack of Vijay type peppy songs (kuthu songs) and half baked presentation. Though the film has goos melodies, that is not what his fans look for. The film was shot in 40 days and graphics look very mataeurish.

The director Ramanna may have a valid excuse to justify the overdose of violence. After all, it is the remake of violence-filled Telugu film ‘Athanokkade’ featuring Kalyan Ram. AATHI also suffers from a painfully slow pace. It could have been much better if it had been edited well. The silver lining is the screen presence of Vijay, who excels in action scenes brilliantly choreographed by Peter Haynes. Trisha gives Vijay good company. And their famed chemistry once again comes alive on the silver screen.

On the whole, the film disappoints.

- Gokul Santhanam & Prem Anand S


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