written by Anu Gopinath
Vetrimaran’s Vada Chennai, the first part of his ambitious trilogy sets the tone for an ultimate gangster flick which may well go down as one of the classics in the history of Indian cinema!
My Ratings: 4/5
With his film Vada Chennai, directorVetrimaran, in this first instalment, draws the battle ground and the pawns like a painter taking his time to pour out his life’s work in to the canvas. Each character is well defined, their shades, grey and the clouds of vengeance, ever looming!
One has to hail the brilliant efforts of the director as he successfully manage to sponge up the hard life of the fishermen. Dialogues are spontaneous, jokes never seemed to be forced and the language very much limited to the slang and colloquials of the slum dwellers.
Supported by a brilliant cinematography by Velraj, the director does an astounding in capturing the stench of rural perception in the life of the people and its colony, where dreams of a man starts at his doorstep and ends in the garbage bins of the same colony.
Vada Chennai tells the story of Anbu (Dhanush) a gifted carrom board player who inadvertently gets involved in the clock and dagger games of two rival gangs.
The movie if played in chronological order will come short of a decent action flick. But it’s the brilliance of Vetrimaran and the editing team lead by G.B.Venkatesh to present the movie the way it is presented, ever holding the cards close to their chest, tantalisingly revealing each cards, one at a time n each one of them making the storyline turn a corner, keeping the audience engaged and at the edge of the seats.
The story goes back and forth in time and the narrative is so crisp and the editing so impeccable that each story is left hanging at a tantalising point before the director jumps to continue with thread of the next story, leaving the audience in an agonising wait while their fertile imagination tries to fill in the rest.
Music and background score by Santhosh Narayanan is an absolute revelation.
India finally wakes up to the idea of the strength and power, a decent background score holds in the grand scheme of things. Santhosh Narayanan relies on the local folk songs, soft rock and at times even punk rock to set the tone of the movie. But his talent of deciphering the director’s perception of the story comes to the fore when he saves a “gem of a move” up his sleeves and reveals it by letting the silence accentuate the boisterous effect of the compounding suspense in many scenes. Result, drool- worthy!!!
Dhanush as Anbu is brilliant in his portrayal of a simpleton who inadvertently get sucked into the scared games of betrayal and vengeance of mafia gangs.
Aishwarya Rajesh lends good support to Dhanush as his love interest and plays the supporting role to perfection.
The director has retained the core of the supporting cast of his previous cop-flick Visaranai and Samuthirakani, Daniel Balaji,Kishore, Pawan, Radha Ravi and Aamir play their part to perfection and holds the different story lines of the movie together through their gritty performance.
So the board is set! The game is afoot! And Vetrimaran in a move which can only be described as audacious and brilliant, gives the threads of all storylines into the hands of Andrea Jeremiah. And Miss Jeremiah, in a career defining last quarter of an hour , waltzes into the storyline by not only tying up all the ends of the threads but also put a fucking bow on it!!!
Trailer Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q5GG5HJ1hVk
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Poster courtesy: www.imdb.com