After Thuppakki's success, Vijay misfired in Thalaivaa and somehow managed to stay afloat with Jilla. Then came his next biggest blockbuster Kaththi, but he again took a misstep in Puli. Puli was supposed to entertain all the age groups but ended up offending everyone. It was too silly for the adults to enjoy, and too repulsive for kids with its skin show and some violence. However, he has returned to his familiar ground with Atlee holding the megaphone.
Atlee who debuted with Raja Rani, a box office entertainer, has done a splendid job once again by giving a blockbuster this time. Vijay is one of his inspirations in the cine industry and he tapped Vijay's strengths properly in Theri, which has been well received by Vijay fans and general audience.
Lets look at the positives of Theri and why you could consider watching it, if you are a fan of Vijay or a lover of commercial cinema.
1. Baasha style flashback done right
Right from the beginning, we know there is more to the clam and tepid Joseph Kuruvilla than meets the eye. The audience are teased with scenes he could explode anytime but shows unusual restraint. From the trailers, we clearly know there is one more Vijay - Vijay Kumar, a cop. So, we know we will see him soon and understand why Joseph wants to hide in a small town. The moment he shouts at one of the henchmen to not go inside the house, reminds me of Rajni yelling at his brother "Ullae Po" in Baasha. However, the director doesn't drag much further and take us to the flashback, where we meet Vijay Kumar. That is how you throw the hook to the audience for a flashback. Neatly done.
2. Whistle worthy mass moments, especially the interval bang
Atlee keeps the proceedings at a fast pace, so that no questions are raised about the cinematic "liberties" he takes. He places the mass moments at regular intervals, which will make the fans whistle and general audience smile. He doesn't take the audience for fool and tries to keep everything cohesive. He touches upon the social issue of safety of IT women at night. He makes the audience engage and root for the hero. Theri intermission is one of the most interesting interval bangs in recent Tamil masala movies.
3. Baby Nainika and Vijay's charming relationship
In many of the Tamil movies, you might have noticed that the child artists speak too mature for their age and their characters are over the top like Saivam's Sarah. However, in Theri, Meena's daughter Baby Nainika does a very good job of just serving loads of cuteness, and thankfully, her character has much ignorance intact. She shares a beautiful chemistry with Vijay as his daughter. When she says 'Theri, baby!', it is infectious. Meena, your daughter may overthrow your performance as a child artist!
4. J. Mahendran's debut as actor, that too as a villain
We have seen J. Mahendran's movies, and most of his characters would be raw, real and not too loud. In his debut as an actor, his character too is similar. As a cunning politician who patiently waits for his opportunities, he is believable. Hope he does more roles in the future and not necessarily a baddie.
5. G.V.Prakash Kumar's 50th film as composer
Theri is G.V.Prakash Kumar's 50th film as composer. The background score for the movie is very apt and he has done a neat job. When he mixes Kerala style chanda during the stunts, it is instantly catchy. The intro song 'Jithu Jilladi' is also enjoyable (and the picturisation of it reminds us that Atlee was Shankar's erstwhile assistant).
Theri will join the list of Vijay's blockbuster hits like Gilli, Pokkiri, Thuppakki and Kaththi. Atlee will become a much sought director hereafter, having delivered two back to back hits. Hope both of them continue their winning streak.
For a complete review of Theri, click here - GCinemas Review of Theri.