Chinnaa takes over the crown from Anbe Sivam for being
the most un-Sundar.C-like Sundar.C film ever! Confusion, chaos and comedy, atleast one of which
is always a trademark of his films, are nowhere to be seen here. Though he has tackled other
genres(Unnai Kann Theduthey was a murder mystery
while Giri was a masala film), comedy has been a constant fixture
in his films. But not here. Chinnaa is a psychological thriller. Sundar as always employs
cliches and scenes from other, much better films in the genre but even that can take him only so
far and he loses grip over the screenplay completely towards the end.
Gayatri(Sneha) has come to Rameswaram to do research on some rocks(pavazha paaraigal)
and runs into Chinnaa(Arjun), the local rowdy. Sensing a human being under the skin of the
rowdy, she tries to reform him but Chinnaa mistakes her sympathy and attention to be love.
Circumstances separate them but Chinna is not about to forget her or let her go that easily.
Chinnaa has one of the best opening scenes I have seen. The incident that opens the
film is something you rarely see on screen and succeeds in creating an interest in knowing
the sequence of events that led to it. But the film then settles into a familiar story of a
rowdy and his transformation for the woman he loves. The only comedy occurs during these
portions and is provided by two of the unlikeliest suspects - Mansur Ali Khan and Ponnambalam.
Their antics on the boat(Mansur's plan to kiss the tribal girl and the way it backfires is
very funny) and their reactions to Sneha's attempts to soften Arjun offer the few laughs in
The film turns into a psychological thriller in the second half, a genre which I'm not sure
Sundar.C has ever tackled. His inexperience is quite obvious. There is no real tension in
the proceedings and we are never sure what our feelings are supposed to be towards the
main character. And as always, Sundar turns to Hollywood films for inspiration. Though not
as bad as Rishi, Chinnaa has scenes copied from
atleast a couple of popular Hollywood flicks(I noticed scenes from Cape Fear and
Chinnaa raises the fear that it is never going to end! I talked in the
Ullam Ketkume review about the line between generating suspense
and irritation during the climax. Sundar.C has created a whole new area beyond irritation
and crossed the line too here! The film has so many false climaxes that there is genuine joy
when the film really ends and the end credits start rolling. Considering how the film ends,
joy is the one emotion that Sundar would not have wanted!
Arjun tackles a role with some negative shades. Though he doesn't add anything new to it, he
is good and believable. Maybe because she is always either in trouble or worrying about getting
in trouble, Sneha looks kinda weary and a bit old. Her costume choices in the song sequences are
really bad. Vikramaditya, the hero of Whistle doesn't get
to do much until the climax.