"All adverse and depressing influences can be overcome, not by fighting, but by rising above them" : Charles C Colton. These words pretty much sums up the present situation that Vijay finds himself in.Things couldnt have gone any worser for Illaya Thalapathi as all his movies since "Pokkiri" had fallen like nine pins & to add to that Tamil Nadu Film Exhibitors Association refused to screen "Kaavalan" until Vijay had compensated for the losses incurred by his earlier movies. With a virtual isolation even by the media leading to hardly any promos being beamed on channels, Vijay had nothing more than the strength of his movie to get back at his detractors. So can he pull it off or will it be yet another collosial failure???
The movie begins with Muthuramalingam (Rajkiran), a powerful landlord helping a pregnant lady reach the hospital on time & eventually naming the new born as Bhoominathan (Vijay). With time, Bhoominathan turns out to be a helping hand for all those who comes to him for refuge. This prompts his father (Nizhagal Ravi) to sent his son to Muthuramalingam on the pretext of being a bodyguard. After saving Muthuramalingam from a couple of life threatening situations, Bhoominathan becomes his trusted aide & is entrusted with the duty of being the bodyguard for his daughter, Meera (Asin). True to his word, Bhoominathan takes up his new assignment in full earnestness complete with a uniform much to the displeasure of Meera. She eventually devices a plan to ruffle him up by making crank calls on the guise that she is in love with him. However things doesnt pan out the way as she had planned as Bhoominathan falls in love with her without even knowing that the voice in the phone was Meera. Will he be able to ever meet the voice & will he accept her when he realises that it was Meera all along???? The answers to all these forms the pivotal part of the movie.
The movie is the remake of the Malayalam "Bodyguard" starring Dileep & Nayanthara which was an average grosser, directed by Siddique. He has also written the script & except for a few minor changes to suit the image of Vijay, he has pretty much stayed true to his original version. However, it goes without saying that it was a refreshing change to see Vijay in a totally different avatar from the larger than life characters that he has been essaying since the last many years.
Vijay is well & truly back in his elements with a performance oriented role with ample scope for stunts & dancing skills as well. After a long hiatus dating back to "Dasavatharam", Asin is back in Kollywood & with not much to write about in the recent past, this movie was very crucial to her also. She has performed commendably though there was a definite lack of exuberance that we usually associate with her. Vadivelu creates yet another laugh riot in combo with Vijay while Mithra Kurien as the supporting lead has done a decent job
As for other technical aspects, the music by Vidyasagar was average with "Pattamboochi" by KK being the pick among the lot with the visuals by N.K Ekambaram being laudable. Though the movie at times does reveal the lack of a taut screenplay, there will be no qualms in admitting on the part of the fans that finally Illaya Thalapathy has come up with something that they can rave about!!!!
Verdict: If it had been any other star, the initials would have taken a beaten after the abysmal situation that Vijay was in. However, the brand name Vijay still strikes a chord with the masses & luckily for him the script provided him with something different as well. There is no doubt that the movie will be a dampener for most of us who had seen the original. So watch it if you are a Vijay fan or else forget it, but it goes without saying that he has struck gold this time around!!!