Direction: Lokesh Kanagaraj
Cast: Karthi, Narain, Dheena, George Mariam, Arjun Das
Director Lokesh Kanagaraj of Maanagaram fame has proved that he is no flash in the pan with his second outing Kaithi, a gritty mass action thriller. And with a power house performer Karthi at the helm of affairs, Kaithi is an absolute treat to watch.
The entire film is a series of events that unfolds in the course of one night. Like Lokesh's earlier film, here also he uses the hyperlink genre to take forward the story where several incidents happening at different places converge at one point. The movie opens at an orphanage, where a little girl Amudha (Baby Monica) is restless as she awaits a visitor the next morning. Then there is Bejoy (Narain), an injured STF officer who has busted a drug mafia worth of 800 cores and hides it at a secret chamber below the Police Headquarters. He has the responsibility of taking a bunch of cops who are unconscious due to their drinks getting spiked to the hospital. And 50 odd thugs who want to release their drug kingpin Adaikkalam (Harish Utthaman) from the police lockup alongside their goods. A group of college students are stuck at the police station with just a constable Napoleon (George Mariam) on duty. Amidst all these enters Dilli (Karthi) a life convict who is on a parole and on his way to see his daughter, whom he has not seen right from her birth. And Bejoy has only a lorry at his disposal to transport the incapacitated cops to the hospital. He almost blackmails the reluctant Dilli and forces him to drive the lorry to the hospital which is 60 kilometres away. And there is a black sheep among them. Now starts a roller coaster bumpy ride for Dilli. Having taken the onus, how Dilli accomplishes his mission forms the rest of the riveting thriller.
The film does not have a heroine, song and dance routines and comedy tracks. Kudos to Lokesh for not falling into above said commercial trappings although there was enough scope to incorporate in the narrative, especially when Dilli tells Kamatchi his backstory. And it needs a lot of guts and conviction for a big hero to touch such an experimental genre and a producer to invest crores of money on it. Karthi does it with his extremely exceptional and realistic chops. He also pulls off the emotional scenes with effortless ease. Credit goes to Dream Warrior Pictures for bankrolling it. Lokesh's firm grip over the medium is evident as he never goes overboard.
Narain has made a terrific comeback. Dheena as Kamatchi, the young lorry owner appeals with his spontaneous comedy. Veteran George Mariam proves his versatility even as the bunch of boys and a girl chip in their bit. Arjun Das as the antagonist is menacing. Ramana as Tips and Harish Peradi are adequate.
Sathyan Sooryan's cinematography is commendable for his stunning visuals shot completely during night and his immense hard work and efforts are visible. Sam CS's background score enhances each and every scene and maintains the tempo intact. Anbariv's fresh, raw and rustic stunt compositions augment the proceedings and are a major plus.
Kaithi with its solid story combined with outstanding performances and flawless making is set to stand the test of time. The film ends with an open climax, suggesting a prequel or sequel to it. A brilliant and engaging thriller not to be missed!...