In all the movies where S.J.Suryah has appeared onscreen, I have felt that he was the biggest
liability since his irritatingly over-the-top performance buried the other positives the movies
had going for them. That is not the case in Thirumagan, his latest outing as hero. That is
not to say he has improved as an actor. He is his usual, hamming self but the movie's lack of a
strong story and its unnecessary vulgarity are more responsible for our disappointment at the
end of it.
Thangapandi(S.J.Suryah) is the son of Malaisamy(Vijayakumar), a well-respected man in his village.
Thangapandi's sister(Saranya) and her daughter Rasathi stay with them since Rasathi's father(Ilavarasu)
is in jail for murder. Nallasivam(Radharavi), another man in the village, respects Malaisamy though it
was his brother that Malaisamy's son-in-law killed but Nallasivam's other brother(Ranjith) isn't ready
to forgive Malaisamy. Nallasivam has his own worries since his only daughter is handicapped and
many prospective grooms have refused to wed her because of this. Thangapandi falls for Aiyakka(Meera
Jasmine), who makes and sells pots for a living but those around him have other plans.
As the synopsis(and there are a few more characters not mentioned there!) above indicates, Thirumagan
has a huge cast of characters. So it is no surprise that the the movie takes a while to introduce all
the characters and establish the relationships between them. The problem is that the story doesn't
take off even after that. From the feelings and actions of the characters, it is easy to deduce what
conflict the movie is going to revolve around but the director doesn't overtly bring about the conflict
until the last half hour of the film. So it really tests our patience as we are forced to endure
a bunch of different tracks that don't come together.
Thanks to the movies he directed(ofcourse, New played the biggest part),
S.J.Suryah has been associated with vulgarity and sleaze and his directors seem to be influenced by
that when casting him. Thirumagan too feels unnecessarily vulgar. The unconnected track with
Malavika is the biggest culprit with almost every line between her, Manivannan and S.J.Suryah being a
double entendre. Even when its not overt, in-your-face vulgarity like that, all the talk about
Lavanya not maturing yet just feels unclean. The Suryah-Meera Jasmine romance is mostly sensuous
rather than vulgar but even that is not completely devoid of vulgarity as some actions and dialogs
by Suryah are pretty crass and crude.
The climax is not brought on in a good way as Vijayakumar visits the different families. It is almost
laughable as he keeps changing his mind in each house and promises each of them different things. It is
clear that he is a good man and is struggling to satisfy the requests of many people who are dear to
him. But it is impossible to not feel irritated as he keeps vacillating and making new promises which
he has no chance of keeping, based on the promises he made to others. The climax itself is a chaotic
free-for-all that points to more happening that what eventually does happen. The end is a little
surprising but since the characters involved haven't particularly earned our liking in the last
couple of hours, it has little impact.
Suryah overacts in his usual style initially, whether he is making lighthearted comments or fighting
with Meera Jasmine. With his looks and his irritating, loud style, it is hard to swallow when four
women are shown as falling for him with a few minutes of seeing and meeting him (and this seems to be
a trend since he was playboy in his previous venture Kalvanin
Kaadhali also). Meera Jasmine seems more brazen than in her previous outings and acts quite
intimately with Suryah. In contrast to him, she is quite natural and convincing whatever she does.
Preeti overdoes the innocent part a little bit while Lavanya's quietness is welcome considering all
the loudness around her. The rest of the cast is quite experienced and do their jobs well.