Review by : Behindwoods review board
Starring: Sasikumar, Vijay, Bharani, Ananya, Niveda, Abhinaya, Shanthini, Ganja Karuppu
Direction: Samuthirakani
Music: Sundar C babu
Production: Global Infotainment Pvt Ltd
Samuthirakani’s Naadodigal falls in the new genre created by the upsurge of neo-realistic films in Tamil cinema, of late, if not for a few glitches. Actually so few they are it wouldn’t be surprising if you missed them along the way. Nadodigal has an uncomplicated story line, told in a very neat fashion that strikes the chord at the right place. It is straightforward, raw and touching, without going overboard on the sentiments part. There is love, betrayal and all sorts of other emotions with the main relationship in focus being friendship.

Sasikumar, Vijay, Kanja Karuppu and Bharani are friends who epitomize the kind of friendship you get to see in street corners – who don’t think even once to sacrifice their well-being for the sake of friendship. They help a friend in love to get married when the girl’s parents oppose the affair - by abducting the girl from her home and marrying her off to the friend secretly at the cost of their body parts and even love. The act doesn’t go well with the influential parents of the girl whose henchmen thrash the friends.

After what they have gone through to see them together, the friends are shocked to learn that the couple is after all splitting owing to differences. And most of all, the couple is not even in the least remorseful of their friends’ sacrifices that has literally gone down the drain. This irks the four friends who plot to kidnap them in an effort to teach them that love is not meant to be unserious and that sacrifices of friends are meant to be valued.

If the straightforward story plays the backbone, the actors, with their natural charm and antics do the movie tonnes of good. Sasikumar is at his natural best as the infuriated friend who is equally exasperated at the frivolity with which his friend dealt his hard-earned marriage. His bush-beard look fits the role and his prodding, tiny eyes talk more than he emotes. Bharani and Kanja Karuppu keep their comic juices flowing lightening up a few moments while Vijay does a satisfactory job.

Of the women, Ananya gets the most footage and manages to squeeze in as much acting she could in whatever she is assigned. The real life speech impaired Abhinaya, who plays Sasikumar’s sister, does a stunning job of lip-synching.

The other aspects, including music by the Kathala Kannala man Sundar C Babu and camerawork are strictly ok. Besides, there are few scenes that are made to fit into the story – like the quintessential pelvic thrust number gyrated by a bombshell – to appease the front benchers. Thankfully they are tolerable and largely excusable since they don’t go overboard with their liberties.

Director Samuthirakani treats the story carefully like it’s not to be overdone or laden with clichés. As a result, we get a no-nonsense presentation with very less emotional package. That’s not to say the movie is emotionally barren, those scenes are treated beautifully and they appear as they happened in your friend’s life; the success of story-telling.

Naadodigal is intense, yet it has its light moments. Those are best enjoyed when seen with a group of friends. And yes, don’t forget to take home the message – love is dignified, it’s not child’s play. Pardon us for the cliché by the way.

Verdict: Take your friends along!

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