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Friction not unusual



FULL-FLEDGED ACTION: Thotti Jaya.

Thotti Jaya

Genre: Action
Director: V. Z. Durai
Cast: Silambarasan, Gopika, Pradeep Rawat, V. M. C. Hanifa
Storyline: Orphaned in childhood Jayachandran turns a criminal.
Bottomline: There's action and love but is there anything new or different?

This time Silambarasan enters the fray with a full-fledged action flick — V Creations' `Thotti Jaya' (U) — where windshields are broken, bad men are beaten up black and blue and heads are smashed with iron rods but none actually gets killed! `Stun' Shiva's furious action choreography in `Thotti Jaya' does frighten you. Much thought has gone into the conception of the main role, though Jaya resembles `Thalapathi' a lot. Story, screenplay and direction are V. Z. Durai's. Simbu's attire and appearance are distinct and blend beautifully with the mood of the character and texture of the film.

Jayachandran or Thotti Jaya (Simbu), an orphan, earns his livelihood as an underworld don's henchman and is thus a hardcore criminal. But his life undergoes a sea change after Fate brings Brinda (Gopika) into his life.

Silamabarasan portrays the part of a sober, serious and reserved thug with maturity. Black is the colour he sports throughout the film, with a beard to boot. But the lean frame smashing his fist into faces of huge ruffians and they cringing in fear is too unrealistic even to the most credulous filmgoer! Gopika is homely and natural as Brinda, torn asunder by her love for Jaya and fear of danger to his life and hers. Throughout the film the poor girl seems to be running for her life literally, sometimes alone and sometimes with her lover. Funny, sad and touching all at once, V.M.C. Hanifa presents an interesting cameo. G. M. Sundar (Cheena Thana's assistant Santhanam) is seen in a stereotypical role that's nothing to write home about. The riveting eyes of the boy who plays the role of the young Jaya make much impact.

Speed breakers

Why does this clichéd villain Cheena Thana (Pradeep Rawat) bawl out at people in a totally different language? The voice has been dubbed in Tamil all right but neither the actor nor the director has bothered about the lip sync, and this plays havoc.

The item number and duet have been inserted at the wrong places, probably as an afterthought and these affect the pace — aberrations in an otherwise smoothly moving screenplay.

Harris Jayaraj's use of percussion in the titles kindles viewers' interest in the film. But certain songs show an `Anniyan' hangover. `Yaaridathum Thondravillai,' (sung by Ramesh Vinayakam but not included in the film) is a melodious number.

Cinematographer R. D. Rajasekar's (he also makes an appearance in the film!) lighting and Mohana Mahendran's art are other positive aspects of `Thotti Jaya.'

Strangely nothing about the story is new. Strange because Durai's earlier film, `Mugavari,' had a new storyline and natural treatment. The screenplay of the first half of `Thotti Jaya' is refreshing. But the film flounders as the climax nears.

MALATHI RANGARAJAN

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