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Movie Review: Thennavan (2003) Back to Movie
Rate movie A movie review by Balaji Balasubramaniam
Fans Rating: 83%%83%% 83% (6 votes)
Movie Still Vijayakanth, in 2000, surprised everybody(including probably himself!) by once again becoming a leading hero after everybody had written him off. Movies like Vaanathai Pola and Vallarasu helped him get back into reckoning after a long series of failures. But just a couple of movies like Thennavan are all he needs to be back in the position he found himself earlier. With an unsuitable role and an impractical story, the movie is Raajjiyam all over again for Vijayakanth.

After successful stints in some hotspots of the country, Thennavan(Vijayakanth) is handpicked by the Prime Minister to be the Chief Election Commissioner of India. First on his agenda is conducting general elections in Tamilnadu and for the polls he suggests passing five laws in order to fix the electoral system. But he is opposed by Ilandhiraiyan(Nasser), the current Chief Minister. Ilandhiraiyan intends to win the elections and the five rules would definitely upset his plans. Meanwhile Divya(Kiran) falls for Thennavan and tries to win his heart too.

Vijayakanth's style turns out to be completely unsuitable for the role of the CEC. While his bombastic actions and style usually fit his most common role of a policeman, he proves incapable of reining himself in to underplay the role of the Election commissioner. Consequently, the Election commissioner here is an all-in-one as he fights off goondas and investigates bomb blasts apart from conducting general elections. Ridiculous scenarios abound as Vijayakanth fights with rowdies on the terrace of his own house and threatens the Chief Minister like a rowdy on the steps of the election office!

The only time the movie offers a glimmer of hope is when Vijayakanth announces the five laws. Though not particularly radical, they make sense and are practical. But the movie never addresses them and instead uses them simply as a prop for the fight between Vijayakanth and Nasser. The screenplay then takes a number of weird twists and turns. For instance, it takes a leaf out of Lallu Prasad Yadav's books by making Urvasi, Nasser's wife, the Chief Minister. But these things just serve to make the movie even more of a parody.

It is pretty clear that both romance and comedy have been added to stick to the Vijayakanth movie formula rather than because the director had any particularly good ideas about either of them. Kiran is introduced rather awkwardly and falls for Vijayakanth for no particular reason. She then ends up having a sequence whenever the director has to segue into a duet. Vivek has a separate comedy track about a man who inadvertently becomes a rowdy and then a politician. He has a few noticeable scenes like the one where he recites the names of all the political parties in sing song fashion but the track itself is quite unremarkable and fails to relieve the tedium of the rest of the movie.

Vijayakanth looks old and big and the speed in the fights, one of the attractions in his movies, is also long gone. Kiran continues her practice of selecting makeup and costumes that make both her face and figure look rather unflattering. Nasser attempts a rather odd way of speaking but it does nothing of note to the stock villain character. Urvasi overacts in the role of the innocent, rustic wife. Yuvan Shankar Raja has a couple of nice duets in the soundtrack.

Rate movie A movie review by Balaji Balasubramaniam