Bruh. Okay first of all props for the idea. But I have a lot to say about the execution.
Plot: Kathiraven, an Army Major (played by Vishal), needs a 600 000INR loan for his sister’s wedding. But no bank is willing to give him a huge personal loan – he has no surety – so he is approached by someone who teaches him a way to get the loan via fraudulent ways in return for a commission. Kathiraven does it. He gets the money but this money is usurped from his bank account within days. And he doesn’t know how. So he goes on a hunt to find out who did it and realises there is a whole scam going on in the area/state/city whereby scammers go up to those in need of money, offer them a way to get the money from the banks in fraudulent ways and then once the bank disburses the money, the scammers take all the money.
Let’s talk about the backbone of this story. Thani Oruvan did it first (or maybe not, but based on my memory). The kind of movie where the hero keeps losing to the villain, who’s just that much smarter, until the end when the hero comes out on top. Thani Oruvan did it well because by the end of it, our hero didn’t actually win, the villain was the one who decided to call it quits. It was a good ending. But in Bogan and this Irumbu Thirai, the ending doesn’t work too well. Can’t remember how Bogan ended but here’s what happened in Bogan, the hero was losing so much. They hyped the villain way too much that it was close to impossible for the hero to win but the hero still won. In Irumbu Thirai, it’s almost the same (even though the hero doesn’t win). You have the hero, Kathiravan, losing so much. He’s been losing for fcuking two hours out of a two hour thirty minute movie (and most of the movie it’s about his love life and family life also) where he’s constantly being outsmarted and pushed into a corner. And then you spend less than thirty minutes telling us how smart the hero actually is and how he in a way won over the smart villain. IT DOESN’T WORK THAT WAY. You can’t just fast forward through the hero’s success after dragging him through all his failures, especially when there are a lot of plot conveniences that allow for him to win. No. Kathiravan won the villain but like not exactly. Kathiravan got back the money the villain stole but he did not solve the major problem which is the fact that the villain can do it again to other people once he’s out of jail.
Let me start my rant (even though I’ve already started).
Our villain, White Devil (Arjun), although we have scenes where the scam is taking place to other people, other than Kathiravan, White Devil never makes an appearance until one hour into the damn movie. For one hour we’re looking at Kathiravan’s boring ass life wondering when the fcuk it will cross paths with White Devil. His family issues and his anger issues and a possible love story. Of course, it’s all trying to mesh together to give us a motive for why Kathiravan needs a loan. But seriously, it was dragged out way too long. It could have been done much faster. His love interest, Rathi (Samantha)… look in the recent years, I’ve really come to like Samantha. But… I cannot stand the relationship the pair shared. It was boring. I don’t understand why movies must put emphasis on developing the love story. Why can’t the movie just start with a couple already together cue Aval, cue Vikram Vedha< both movies just had a song sequence to showcase the years of relationship. It annoys me that this movie spent time on developing the love story and family story because this movie isn’t a love story or a family story (or at least it shouldn’t have been)! The main motive of this story is to say how technology is used and how people are making use of information to con everybody else. So why tf are you wasting time on building a relationship? I want more hero VS villain action.
Let’s next talk about the exposition. Ohmygawd. And I’m not even talking about the tech exposition. I’m talking about the exposition between Kathiravan and his family and his love interest within the first hour. As for the tech and banking exposition, I can understand why it’s happening, because Kathiravan needs to know how it works. But here’s the thing, there’s so much Kathiravan doesn’t know which makes his win at the end all the more ridiculous. We haven’t seen him make use of his knowledge or contemplate the information he gets to use to his advantage in realtime in the movie. He gets the information and then we move to the next scene where things happen then he meets White Devil and then we see in flashback what Kathiravan did without much explanation. Like there’s no time spent to show how Kathiravan became smarter or how he makes use of the information. Having information doesn’t make you smart, especially when this information is nothing you’re used to. Kathiravan isn’t a hacker, he isn’t a banker either. Doesn’t he need time to process the information? Which brings me to another issue. The actual fact that he can’t oppose White Devil on his own. Sure, he has a group of people assisting him but I wish there were more interactions, more debates on how to work this problem out because it just seems like the group is there to deliver more tech exposition and do absolutely nothing to assist Kathiravan who is making decisions with the exposition when he should not be able to make those decisions given it is not his area of expertise! These movies. Please make a damn movie for the plot not just for the hero char!!!!!!
And lets talk about the most biggest plot convenience of all. The local phone shop worker who is the one who blocked the messages of the bank transactions from Kathiravan’s phone when they usurped the money out of his bank account. The fact that Kathiravan even stumbled upon him while wanting to achieve something else is one thing but the issue I have is who this nugget even is. White Devil, an amazing man, conning thousands of people, earning crores of money, is using a random local phone shop guy to block messages from his victims’ phone. Are you fcuking with me? This White Devil has hackers, people armed with assault rifles, a whole network of people working for him, and he uses someone he found on the internet, I apologise, THE DARK NET, to get him to block people’s messages. He can’t ask his own men to do the blocking of messages? He needs to find some random guy on the Dark Net? And give this random guy access to all the information he uses to con people? And how is this random guy not living a high life? He has the ability to do so much and he’s living in a shack. Very good.
And okay, there’s something I want to talk about which is regarding the reason Kathiravan needs a loan. We come to find out Kathiravan has issues with his sister and his father. His father always took loans when he was a child, and hence Kathiravan left the family the moment he could, while still giving money back home. He goes back to his family on insistence of Rathi. It’s been like ten years plus since he has gone back. He isn’t on good terms with his sister or dad but they’re all like hmm yay maybe can rekindle. But anyway, Kathiravan finds out his sister had a love interest but the wedding didn’t happen so he goes to ask the sister why. The sister’s all like why do you care so much now. But anyway turns out her love interest’s parents asked for dowry, unknown to the love interest. See, this movie thinks it’s smart, they make the love interest seem like a good guy, because he doesn’t know about the dowry. But c’mon la KNNBCCB f*****g dude is trash too if he doesn’t have the brains or the courage to find out why his parents and the girl’s dad could not come to an agreement regarding the wedding (Yes, this is me going ballistic on a fictional side character). But anyway, so Kathiravan’s like since the boy is also interested why not elope and get married to which the sister is like, ‘I want a family not just my lover’. AND I’M LIKE HELLO. WHY DO YOU WANT A FAMILY THAT ONLY LIKES YOU WHEN YOU GIVE THEM MONEY? But so she touches Kathiravan all in the damn feels and he’s like ‘okay I must give my sister the happiness, the family she wants and if I have to take a loan, so be it’.
Very plausible given context and how marriage is deemed in society. But lame. I feel very personally attacked that women have to buy their way into happiness. But maybe it’s not plausible. Because the sister is shown to be firm and smart and strong, why she gives in and wants to marry into a family that wants dowry, is beyond me. Not within character. But who knows, love apparently makes people do ridiculous things.
This movie should have just spent it’s time being a thriller instead of all this side things. The idea is good though. The idea of people manipulating technology and conning people, exactly the kind of storyline we need in this age and I wanted a showdown between the villain and the hero, but I was underwhelmed. The hero isn’t matched to the villain’s abilities. The villain is obviously way better in terms of skills. And trust me, White Devil is the saving grace of this film (even though he has an anti-climatic real name of Sathyamoorthy). He might be an ass. But he is right about technology, you know. And Arjun who plays White Devil is fantastic. I love that he moved over from hero roles to villain roles. He portrayed his character well. But. Even the villain character is underdeveloped. What is his intention with owning everybody’s information? He wants to be on top. But for what purpose? Power for the sake of power? Money for the sake of money? Lame. (I read a review saying they were glad that the villain wasn’t given a background story and I get that. But I just like background stories, not because I think it will somehow reprieve the evil actions but more as to restore some faith that even villains had a choice, even if it was between a rock and a hard place, and how easy it will be for everyone to become the villain of someone else’s story.)
But right, even though the idea behind the story is good I don’t like the message it’s sending. The movie is saying that all your information is out there waiting for others to use it and you have been warned. And I’m like what do you expect people to do then? Are you expecting people to go back to their old phones, to go back under their rocks and don’t use technology at all? Or do you expect them to read the terms and conditions before clicking ‘yes, i agree’? Laughs. In a perfect world, that will be a solution but ain’t nobody got time for that. And anyway given the FB Data Analytica thing whereby consent wasn’t even given but the data was still stolen… so what’s the point even if you read? And given that the movie suggests you might accidentally click a message and people can hack into your phone, you’re trying to say technology is the evil and you have to stay away, no? But. The world has come to this stage already. Information is out there. If you want to challenge a villain like White Devil, you need a crazy solution. You cannot just attack him. He is not your problem. If White Devil dies, someone else will take his place. Kathiravan being the hero he is, does not have the expertise to offer a solution that is on par to the problem that White Devil was capable of making, which is why the showdown at the end between Kathiravan and White Devil is underwhelming. And it’s not because White Devil doesn’t lose. I’m okay with having the villain not lose, I’m not okay with having a hero that is unable to even make a dent on the villain’s trajectory. White Devil is going to come out of prison and do the exact same thing because Kathiravan has not changed the playing the field, not that he has the ability to do so.
This movie was a grand idea but if it didn’t waste it’s time unnecessarily on the romance and the family issues and just had Kathiravan as an equally smart and capable hero to take on the White Devil, damn, now that’s a movie I’d watch the heck out of.
You can watch this movie for one main reason: someone in dire need can be manipulated into doing a crime and it’s not because they are a bad person, but because they saw no other option. (Talking about the fact that Kathiravan, an Army Major, fraudulently got the bank to sanction him a loan. << see backstories, it doesn’t make the act right, at best, only understandable. But still not right.)
No other reasons can be found, because I mean, do you really need another movie to tell you that technology can fcuk with you? Spyder, Thiruttu Payale 2, etc, they’re all out there. But at least in Spyder and Thiruttu Payalae 2, the scale of the problem was not as grand as in this movie.
I’m being an awful ass about this movie. I think I’m taking it too personally because all my information is out there too, FB, Instagram, Internet banking and this movie makes me feel like I’m very dumb and I’m going to get conned if I don’t log out of everything and go live in the forests.
But I guess, if that’s the thing I’m supposed to feel then I will admit you achieved that movie. I’m just upset that’s the ONLY thing I’m feeling.