CAST: Vishnu Vishal, Catherine Tresa, Soori, Ananda Raj and Rajhendran
Amidst all the flashy exuberance and serious real-life based dramas in Kollywood lands Kathanayagan - a movie that refuses to take itself seriously and instead, puts you in the same mood as watching a quacky viral YouTube video. Directed by Muruganandam with Vishnu Vishal leading the charge as well as bankrolling it, the film is a rom-com that tries to utilize situational comedy combined with absurd mannerisms to deliver the laughs.
Thambidurai (Vishnu Vishal) is a frail and chicken-like bloke from north Chennai who works as a Revenue inspector in Registrar office. And to his surprise, he finds out that his childhood friend Annaduari (Soori) is an attender there. He falls in love with Kanmani (Catherine Tresa) and obsessively goes after her, trying to win her heart. After a bunch of games and silly back-and-forth, she consents to marry him but is denied by her dad. Reason being Thambi is a coward and he seriously needs to man up.
A mix-up of medical records puts Thambi in a state of despair. Thinking that he has only a few weeks to live, he decides to donate his kidney to raise money for his sister’s wedding. Simultaneously, alcohol addiction seems to have awakened the giant in him. Thambi has newfound strength and energy to beat up baddies when in a drunken stupor. Can he reconcile his bad habit, realize that his medical assessment was a mix-up, and get his life back on track? The reminder of the film tries to answer these questions in a comedic manner.
There are lots of things about Kathanayagan that puts you off. Soori’s comic antics are contrived. There are also plenty of moments in the film that could have been made believable through better use of logic.
The shining moments mostly involve Vishnu Vishal. For a meek character, he surprisingly had to show versatility as cowardice becomes bravery and stupid becomes intelligent in the blink of an eye. And Vishnu handled these transitions very well. Catherine Tresa as the love of his life is cute and engaging in limited amounts. Other notable mentions are the cameos by Vijay Sethupathi and Rajendran. The former received wide applause when introduced, while the latter provides a nice musical vibe towards the end of the film. Ananda Raj as the Dubai Sheikh is a scream and his antics in the second half is thoroughly enjoyable. Sean Roldan’s music was catchy. Background sounds were a bit overused.
Kathanagayan has plenty of small moments that can brighten your day. A little bit of more coherence could have made it a complete package.