Movie: Tharai Thappattai
Cast: Sasikumar, Varalaxmi Sarathkumar
Editor: G Sasikumar
What is it about: The movie deals with a South Indian folk art called “Garagaatam”, a dance form which is famous around the villages during festivals. In this movie it revolves around the lives of two such artist Sannasi (Sasikumar) & Sooravali (Varalaxmi Sarathkumar) directed by Bala.
Why it’s disappointing: For some reason I could not lock on to the sentiment which Bala’s film usually has. Kind of felt that a little bit of commercialism was fed in to this film. The usual grim which is maintained throughout by Bala was missing from “Thaara Thappattai”. The film takes quite some time to convince you that it’s a film by Bala.
What to watch out for: The casting was impeccable, every character in the film just fits like it was tailor made for them. Due to this the film which lacks the stamp of Bala still makes it a worthy watch mainly because of the subject which throws light on the lost art and how it has been disrespected and taken for granted. The lives of those struggling artists were depicted well.
Sasikumar, he’s one great talent in Kollywood and would remain to be one. His role has good variations and he has done a commendable job, especially the climax sequence.
Varlaxmi Sarathkumar, this will be her second outing in Kollywood. She’s a natural when it comes to a role of this calibre. She definitely has put her blood and sweat in to the character of “Sooravali”. She exuberates pure rawness which brings out a great structure to the character. Every scene was outperformed by the previous one. She steals the show and leaves a strong mark.
The second half will see a character taking an avatar totally different from the first half. RK suresh did a remarkable job in the movie and has a great screen presence.
The supporting cast such as GM Kumar and Amudhavaanan did great job along with the rest.
The music of the film scores a great appeal apart from acting. This will mark 1000th film for Maestro Illayaraja, who has scored a brilliant soundtrack for “Thaara Thappattai”. The background score sounds raw with the traditional folk music, giving a relief from the techno stuff being fed to us endlessly these days.
The cinematography by Chezhiyan was good supported by a tight editing by Sasikumar.
Verdict: Bala’s signature was mostly missing, making you miss his traditional style of gore galore. But Varlaxmi holds the movie together with her raw grit along with talented Sasikumar and dreadful RK Suresh, which is enveloped with Illayaraja’s remarkable score.