Film Review: ''Vetri Kodi Kattu''


2 / 4 STARS

DIRECTOR: CHERAN

ACTORS: PARTHIPAN, MURALI

ACTRESSES: MEENA, MALAVIKA

MUSIC DIRECTOR: DEVA

STORYLINE:

Parthipan and Murali hail from poor families, and somehow manage to build up a lakh to travel to Dhubai to make money. They are swindled out of their money in this venture by Anand Raj. The two of them decide to switch places, go to each other's homes as "representatives" of the other from Dhubai. Parthipan goes to Murali's home, meets Manorama, and Murali's little sister (who he gets married). Murali goes to Parthipan's house and looks after Parthipan's wife Meena, and Meena's sister Malavika (who falls in love with him).

The story eventually revolves on how the two men finally realize it's not "Dhubai" that makes one rich, it's hard work. Murali opens a restaurant, and Parthipan starts working with cows.

Charlie makes a serious appearance as another swindled pauper.

Vijayakumar also appears, but he's only there "in name" and doesn't have more than a total of two minutes of screen time. Vadivelu also appears as a "bhandha"-touting Dhubai toilet-cleaner who runs afoul of Parthipan on a number of occasions.

COMMENTS:

Cheran, after his other socially-conscious movies such as "Thesiya Geetham", returns to the arena with "Vettrikodi Kattu" starring Parthipan and Murali. While "Vettrikodikattu" works on a few levels -- such as basic storyline -- eventually it drags on too much, making the audience intensely bored. And if only Cheran hadn't spent the entire second half of the movie preaching! (Not even the first half -- with Rajiv -- is devoid of preaching). An intelligent storyline poorly executed.

Parthipan and Vadivelu's comedy is getting repetitive; though it's funny, the same old same old gets old. It seems we must endure the Parthipan-Vadivelu comedy for at least as long as we must endure Vadivelu-Kovay Sarala and as long as we endured Goundamani-Senthil.

The surprising part of the movie was that the best actor in the entire piece was neither of the heroes. In one of his first serious roles, Charlie ventures out of comedy and acts so well, everyone in the theater was shocked. His character was the most sympathetic of the bunch (if only they had ended his scenes with Charlie visiting their homes and acting as a madman, and not seen it fit to have Charlie killed by Anand Raj's men).

Wonderful story, JUST DON'T PREACH SO MUCH, Cheran.

NOTE ON THE MUSIC:

Deva's done an adequate job and not much more. "Thank you Krishna, Jesus, Allah" is perhaps the best song. For some reason totally incomprehensible to me, "Karupputhaan Yenakku Pidicha Color-u" was a hit. "Valli Valli Valli" and "Thillaelae" are mediocre efforts at best.

RECOMMENDATION:

Theater for movie buffs; video for casual Tamil audiences.

VIJAY VANNIARAJAN


Copyright © 2001 Vijay Vanniarajan

Republication of this and other reviews by the same reviewer is expressly prohibited without the written consent of said reviewer

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