even better is the fact that she was doing them all
with a fair measure of success. Of course, there was
the occasional commercial outing like Padikkathavan.
But, you have to give that to an actress who works
in an industry which runs basically on commercial
2009 and early 2010 were years that basically cemented
her place as an actress who had been accepted by the
audiences. The variety of roles she had in that year
were truly praiseworthy, starting from the routine
heroine act in Ayan, to the disillusioned with life
woman in Anandha Thandavam and the bubbly but confused
girl in Kanden Kadhalai. Her innocent role in Paiya
too was liked by the audiences. Yes, none of them
were award winning performances or anything of that
sort, but these were roles that sent the message that
she was here to stay on her terms, for quality as
well as success.
But, since Paiya, it has all been downhill for the
lady. Yes, everyone has a bad patch now and again.
But, analyzing her three movies since Paiya show that
there has been a serious change in role selection
criteria – at least it appears that way. When
she was going great in Kollywood, why at all did she
have to do Sura? The film appeared a completely jaded
and jinxed project. It had nothing in it for the heroine
(in fact it had nothing in it for anyone at all).
Tamannah’s character in Sura could easily be
one of the contenders for dumbest heroine of the decade
infamy if there was one. The only justification that
can be given for jumping onto such a project is the
opportunity to star opposite Vijay. But that was an
uncharacteristic decision from an actress who has
shown the courage to work with newcomers.
Sura was a mistake, everyone makes them and it can
be pardoned. But, it was followed up by Thillalangadi.and
then Siruthai. Both remakes of Telugu blockbusters
and both were conspicuous by the increased glamour
quotient being offered by Tamannah. The glamour quotient
is all right, but it is the way it is offered that
makes it acceptable or repulsive. In both Thillalangadi
and Siruthai, it was more of the latter than former
because the heroine seemed to be kept in there for
just that and nothing else. Some have said that ‘Tamannah
was wa(i)sted in Siruthai’, literally! Really
it all looked like nothing but a glorified item girl
who gets to do duets with the hero in Thailand (rather
than with the villain in a bar).
But, the most disappointing aspect of all is that
there seems to be no originality in any of this. Well,
one has to admit that there is very little reason
in asking for originality in glamorous roles. Having
seen Kanden Kadhalai (a remake of Hindi superhit Jab
We Met), we know that she can do better than just
a photocopy appearance in remakes.
But, cinema wisdom suggests that an actor is only
as good as the character written for him/her and the
director handling it, unless it is Kamal Haasan, Prakash
Raj or any other acting genius. It looks like the
Tamil industry conspired to compromise the credentials
that Tamannah had earned over a couple of years. And,
it is funny to hear people within the industry grumbling
about the lack of quality heroines. You get as good
as you give! And at present, the Tamil film industry
doesn’t seem to deserve the better Tamannah,
it is happy with the wa(i)sted version.