Podhuvaga Emmanasu Thangam
Podhuvaga Emmanasu Thangam: Recycled Entertainment at Its Worst
Movie Review by Trijai Nerthi (Rocheston Certified Movie Critic)
Director Thalapathy Prabhu’s Podhuvaga Emmanasu Thangam is no different from Rajini Murugan, Varuthapadatha Valibar Sangam and many other comedies set in a rural background that intend to be funny but fail miserably. In fact, this film might be the worst among the above-mentioned films. The story lacks originality and the only twist it incorporates in the plot is meaningless and present just for the heck of it.
Oothukaatan (Parthiban) is a man who values fame, reputation and attention more than material wealth. Many years ago, he had been insulted by a village elder in Koothapaadi and Oothukaatan sets out to seek revenge on the ones involved by hatching a plan to evacuate the entire village.
Simultaneously, the film also introduces us to Ganesh (Udhayanidhi), an unemployed man who loves his village and is immensely rooted to his native place. So, when Ganesh crosses path with Oothukaatan, a cat and mouse chase begins between them.
Podhuvaga Emmanasu Thangam is a lesson on how not to make a film. The film never takes itself seriously and absolutely makes no effort to have a script or screenplay. It just hastily puts together elements from other rural comedy films and creates a cinematic broth, which reeks of carelessness and disinterest. The plot point for revenge itself is weak and silly. If one has the budget to put together a recycled motion picture, why not spend some time in coming up with an original and viable script?
From “Kula Deivam Kovil fights” to “Tea Kadai gossips” the plot points the director uses to drive the story forward are elements that Tamil Cinema has been using and reusing for decades now. After a point, none of these segments take the story forward. Not knowing how to move further, the story hits a plateau, making the film a tedious watch. Every little action and reaction of the hero and villain are built up to an extent that one expects fireworks onscreen but when it comes to actually walking the talk, the film fails yet again.
The troubling romantic track does not help much. Ganesh falls in love with Leelavathi (Nivetha Pethuraj) in an instant and gets dead serious about her in a heartbeat. This staging that they call love becomes horrendous when yet another Tamil cinema hero courts his love interest by stalking her. If only there were disclaimers for such scenes!
Udhayanidhi desperately wants you to believe that his dancing skills have improved, but he still needs lessons on the same. The limitations in his acting skills are getting evident with every project he undertakes. Nivetha fails to make her presence felt throughout the film and her character lacks soul and depth. Parthiban’s screen presence is the only silver-lining in the film. However, as the film progresses his dialogues get boring and predictable. Soori is seen playing the role of the annoying friend of the hero, yet again. Owing to his knack for landing similar characters, he can’t do much to provide comic relief.
A plot involving a face-off has so much potential for substantial writing. If the film took upon an inventive approach, it could’ve been successful in its intentions.
After Motta Shiva Ketta Shiva’s disturbing take on rape, Podhuvaga Emmanasu Thangam’s rape reference too is equally insensitive. Such a sensitive subject if not handled properly becomes incredibly offensive. So, why touch upon this subject if one lacks the ability to handle it in a mature manner?
Coming to technicalities, the film’s sound mixing is pathetic. Many places have mismatched lip-sync. Many dialogues are jarringly loud and lack proper clarity. Something as basic as this could’ve been perfected for the experience to be better, if not the best.
The climax of Pothuvaga Emmanasu Thangam is absolutely tacky. The way it hurriedly unravels one shot after another, makes you realize that this part of the film was not given much thought.
Over and over again, formulaic films like Pothuvaga Emmanasu Thangam claim to have a lasting presence in the B and C sector audiences of the tier 2 and 3 towns. But the film fails to connect with any type of audience at all. All this film really does is, have you roll your eyes at its juvenile jokes and thoughtless treatment of situations
D Imman’s music can’t do much to lift the film’s fate. Most of the songs have terrible timing. Cinematographer Balasubramaniem tries to make the best of what he is given. So, visual storytelling is tad bit better than the other aspects of the film.
At best, Pothuvaga Emmanasu Thangam is recycled entertainment. Its story is non-existent, screenplay is weak and it fails to draw the laughs as any comedy should. The film doesn’t even care enough to pour its old wine onto a new bottle.