Exact sequence epo started therila,except for sethupathi and possibly rekka (which I’vent seen yet) in almost all his movies, be it soodhu kavvum or pizza or idharkuthane aasapattai balakumara or even the recent ones like iraivi,kadhalum kadanthu pogum, nanum rowdy thaan, aandavan kattalai or even dharma dhurai for that matter, (shabba..padam perlam mothama sollavay ithana neram aaguthay..intha manushan epdi ivlo padam nadichi release vera panraro) his character always stands out on each of the movie and is always that of a middle class person. His looks, but for soodhu kavvum, is almost same in all the movies,except for trimming of the facial hair. His voice modulation or the lack of it is same across all his roles. His getup change or the absence of it is restricted to just the change of colors. No funky hairdoand not even punch dialogues worth remembering across his movies. And the mix of all these simpleton-ism is what makes him stand out in the crowd of “being the center of attraction” lovers.And another reason for his near repeat appearance and make over is that he dons the role of the common man, the literal man-next-door in all his movies. He is so much relate-able in his roles that, its very hard to distinguish if he is acting or just being himself or ourselves for that matter. There is no over the top histrionics or melodrama or burst of emotions. It’s all so subtle and genuine that, he makes acting as a profession look so easy.
Either his luck or his tremendous knack of picking the right script, every story he has picked has such unique yet relate-able storyline. It makes one wonder, had he rejected any of those scripts, would any other contemporary hero would’ve even bothered to pick them!! There seems to be a conscious effort in not getting portrayed as a image conscious hero, thereby creating a wedge between him and the audience. Yet at the same time, the kind of scripts he chooses makes him experiment as well. It all sounds ridiculously simple, yet something that has not been achieved by no one else in the industry. If he was the lovable rowdy in “nanum rowdy thaan” which was more of a comic caper, his portrayal of a gethu inspector in “sethupathi” was a pakka example of commercial masala. The movie might’ve flopped because it was so anti-viay sethupathi-ish in every aspect. But the actor in him, striving for experiment scored the golden goal with that movie.
His latest movie that I saw was “Aandavan kattalai”. A simple movie on the struggles one has to undergo to get a passport in every means possible that are illegal. It could be considered as a in your face movie that talks about how easy it is to enter and exit out of the innumerable loop holes in our system and how ridiculously corrupt our government machinery has become. He plays the role of a simpleton in search of a good job in UK to settle in life. How he gets into muddle with his spouse name, while being single and his escapades that eventually lead him to getting married with the heroine forms the plot. Had any other actor taken up the role, I really doubt, if the end product would’ve been as simple. There are no hero glorification songs, no public bashing baashan or gyaan to the society. Of course, all these credit goes to the director and script writer. But had he been like another of his contemporaries, he could’ve very well forced his opinions and made a mess of an otherwise simple story. He has created an image of credibility about himself and the kind of scripts that he selects.
Gils verdict – cheers to the first and only unassuming hero in current tamil movie industry. May his tribe grow.