Tamil Movie Review: Realistic, Downright Engaging Angadi Theru 2010

Angadi Theru movie

(A very realistic movie on the lifeline of a saree shop, the salespersons and story of lovers who started off as enemies all in one neat package. Image source: The Hindu)

I wonder why really good Tamil movies always seem to have tragic endings.

Just take Vennila Kabadi Kuzhu for example – brilliantly made movie but the ending was tragic, despite the underdogs winning the final match, the main character ends up dead and the beautiful heroine is left looking for her love for the rest of the life. Tragic indeed!

Then we have Angadi Theru – a story of youngsters working in a saree shop in Chennai. And the story made more sense to us, especially after we had returned from a shopping trip in Chennai. Thinking this bac, I now regret not smiling and saying kind words to the tired-looking saree salespeople. Life is not as rosy as it appears to be – work is tough, getting on to the next day is tougher.

Acted by a rather unknown people, Angadi Theru is one well-made movie, revolving in the usual activities of the saree salespeople and their life outside the workplace. The director, Vasanthabalan executed the right moves to bring the story from the village where the hero loses his father to a tragic accident and had to cut short on his studies and forced to work in a saree shop to ensure his family gets enough money to survive.

Veiled within the main story is the side stories which is interesting too – the story about the people who make their living selling small items around the saree shop, the fat policemen who often take bribes from the people around shop, the saree shop owner who maintain an iron claw on things that are happening in and outside his saree shop and sadist like section leaders who are very kind to customers but simply harsh on the workers.

One thing I like about Mahesh who plays the main character, Jyothi is on how simple and natural he is. He can be mistaken for a real saree salesperson. Pandi playing the lovable character, Marimuthu provides the bulk of the laugh in the movie and also acts as the main character’s close friend.

Anjali plays the heroin, Kani in this movie – she first dislikes Jyothi and gets him in serious trouble and this causes Jyothi to take revenge, only to realise that the punishment that Kani got was too severe. Jyothi stands up for Kani and both end up loving each other. But love is the dirty word in the saree shop especially after Kani’s friend commits suicide in front of the saree shop.

Angadi Theru also features 2 well-known music directors – Vijay Antony and G V Prakash.

Although in general, quality of music is nothing to shout about (unlike Yuvan’s Paiyaa), the movie has one good composition (by Vijay Anthony) titled “Aval Appadi Onrum” – well picturised and with thoughtful lyrics. You need to listen to the words carefully to appreciate the meaning of the song.

In short, Angadi Theru packs a strong storyline (which make sense) even though, I must admit that some of the scenes are shown at the extreme but we will never know how true it is. Despite the problems the young couple has at the beginning of the movie, the message, in the end, is very clear – losing the job and limbs is not the end of the life.

Final say

The plus points: Storyline, realism, moral of the story, camera work

The negative points: The ending (even though both characters are alive and working on getting back on their feet)

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