Skip to main content

Irumbu Thirai

Cast: Vishal, Arjun, Samantha, Delhi Ganesh, Robo Shankar
PS Mithran

Even if you haven’t received the email about the Nigerian prince who wants you to take his millions in exchange for a share, you must have gotten a cold call or an unknown message offering you a loan or selling you a service. “Did you know that your phone number is with 30 lakh people?” states a voice at the beginning of Irumbu Thirai and that’s just one of the numerous shocking facts that are thrown at us in this 160-minute-long eye-opener of a film.

Vishal plays an Army Major, and from the way he pulls it off, it’s pretty surprising that no one has made the most of casting him in a uniform (he previously played a cop in Sathyam and Vedi). As Major R Kathiravan, Vishal’s tall stature and physique stand as embodiments of your average citizen’s anger towards society. The actor, in this intense story, shines, partly due to some well-written commercial stretches. His character, initially shown as a typical masala film hero who hangs around a bar looking for a white girl to settle with abroad, eventually transforms into one who wants to get down and dirty and get the thankless job of cleaning the system done. As for Samantha, it looks like playing a doctor is her lucky charm. After Theri, she delivers a splendid performance as Dr Rathidevi. If you can ignore the incessant shots of her smiling.

Delhi Ganesh, as Kathiravan’s emotional father, Rangasamy, gets a role worthy of his ability. He is a chronic borrower, a stark contrast to Vishal who detests being in debt, and the poignant scenes between them are wonderfully framed. The film’s antagonist Satyamurthy aka white_devil (played by a suave-looking Arjun) is described by one of his minions as ‘digital world oda don’. As a bigwig in the society who lives a double life as a cold-hearted hacker, he knows the power and the value of information, which he uses to his advantage. With a touch of Siddharth Abimanyu in him that defines his devil-may-care attitude and because-I-can mentality, the Action King delivers the evil we missed out in Kadal. After all, when was the last time we had a villain who was almost always a step ahead than our hero?

Given that we are faced with the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal, online groups such as Anonymous, people hiring hitmen via the dark web to eliminate others and various sources citing the lack of security of our details in the Aadhar database, there couldn’t be a better time for a film that questions whether we are ready for a digital India. It’s hard to believe that the film marks the directorial debut of PS Mithran considering the richness in detail in this film. But it’s natural given that he’s a disciple of the man who gave us Marmadesam and Chidambara Ragasiyam — director Naga. Right from the green bullet (which only army personnel can own) that Kathiravan rides, to the use of white in costume and the accessories of Satyamurthy which resonate with his moniker, the attention to detail is wonderful to see.

Mithran also resists the temptation to come up with a duet despite having a melodious track such as Azhagae. The director should also be lauded for not shying away from taking digs at a millionaire who ran away from the country, a minister who blocked the sun’s heat with thermocol, and of course, the seeming inability of the country’s government when it comes to safeguarding the personal information of its citizens. Be it the shots of a village’s greenery or the concrete jungles of Chennai, George C Williams’ cinematography makes the film look sleek and classy. On the downside, the film’s runtime could have been lesser, had the director avoided the stretches designed to cash in on the action image of Vishal.

If last year’s Velaikkaran taught people how they are cheated as consumers, Irumbu Thirai shows how our digital data is taken for a ride along with us. On the whole, it works as a relevant commercial entertainer.

Rating: 3.5/5


Popular posts from this blog

Vijay and Vijay Sethupathi shoulder a mediocre film: Master Review

A flawed protagonist and a powerful antagonist have always proven to be successful tropes in the world of cinema. The hero, when being anything but perfect, makes way for a beautiful story arc as he convalesces and a strong villain makes the hero’s triumph at the end larger. Despite having both of these, Vijay’s Master feels far from a perfect flick thanks to succumbing to irregular pacing and a middling screenplay. Master follows the trials and tribulations of JD (Vijay), an alcoholic college professor whose valiant effort towards the student community plants a belief in his colleague Charu (Malavika Mohanan) that he would be able to do the same to the kids in a juvenile correction centre that needs… correction. Armed with a just kada, a classic four-wheeler, a Persian cat and a cool pair of sunglasses, JD embarks on a journey that will collide with that of Bhavani’s (Vijay Sethupathi). On paper, Master looks like a failproof star vehicle – the story of a man out there to teach lesson

InterContinental Mahabalipuram

After visiting InterContinental many times to meet people who were staying there, for events & functions and for, of course, dining in, I decided it was high time I experienced a stay at this property. A while back, it happened and here I’m chronicling that experience.  Location, Reception and First Impressions InterContinental Mahabalipuram stands among a handful of star properties that are located close to Mamallapuram but not exactly inside the bustling town. It’s situated on the ever-busy East Coast Road and is a cool 42kms away from Central Chennai and almost the same distance from the Chennai International Airport as well (yes, I checked). Post the ‘vanakkam’ by the security personnel who greets you right at the gate, the first thing one would notice about ICC is how simple and elegant it is. Once you get past the security checks, you’re welcomed by the sky and a long pathway and standing on the edge of it gives us a bird’s-eye view of the property. The reception is a high ro

Icon Residency, Wayanad

During one of my solo bike rides from Chennai to Coorg, I took a detour to check out Wayanad and since Coorg is just a few hours by road from there, I decided to use the small town also for a layover. A quick search told me about the limited options this tourist location has and as I was all by myself, I didn’t mind taking a risk by choosing whatever has a decent rating. iCon Residency in Kalpetta had some really good reviews and in no time, I was in Kerala via Bangalore.  iCon Residency is located on National Highway 212. Though the direction on Google Maps is accurate, finding the place was quite a challenge as it’s located past a narrow street. The hotel looks brilliant from the outside in total contrast to the otherwise old town. There’s also a decent parking space. The basic room I opted for is small when compared to average rooms but for a solo traveller, it was cosy and perfect. The bed