We clap, laugh and adore Vijay as he takes over his contemporaries in the race to super-stardom. Gilli portrays a Vijay as a comic hero who battles his villains logically while his physical powers are exaggerated dramatically. Having said that Gilli offers nothing less than sheer entertainment and an edgy thriller for the Tamil film industry which is deprived of such films.
Dharani‘s magic has worked third time. This time he has reached the way to the top gracefully and is sure to remain there for sometime. From Dhill to Gilli, dharani’s journey has been calculated, planned and executed with discipline. Gilli is certainly not a yet-another-telugu-remake of Okkadu. Gilli’s incidental story is not a man’s saga or epic tale. But its production values and entertainment mix has taken the movie to high scales.
It talks about an angry, young and brave Chennaite’s slice of life. Gilli Vijay’s naive bravery earns him the animosity of Prakashraj, a local dada, who chases him and Trisha from Madurai and tries to get him killed. This and the following course of incidents form the crux of the movie. While the movie details the chase of Prakash Raj / Vijay, it also branches out to explain the kabadi aspirations of Vijay and what the aspiration leads to.
The movie starts with a top gear and doesn’t stop until the end of first half. With the movie oscillating between Chennai and Madurai, it finally comes back to Chennai in the second half and settles. After Vijay reaching Madurai for a Kabadi match after the first hour of the movie, the movie gears up. From then on to the intermission, the story itself is told with the help of action. It is one of the very few movies where action itself carries the story forward. Especially the car chase is one of the best action packed chases seen in Tamil cinema. With Vijay pushed to a situation to take Trisha as hostage and help himself out of the clutches of Prakash Raj displays Dharani’s effort make the viewers say WOW. If you want a complete helluva Gilli trip, don’t miss this sequence.
The second half slows down to unfold the story, romance and other commercial elements. But at the same time, Dharani has worked hard to keep the movie going with the songs and the chase, chasing one another. In this nail biting thriller, the comedy and songs form a vent to the tension. The climax with Vinayak Chathurthi processions and the Kabadi match proves the planning and the hard work of the entire crew.
Vijay with his reduced make-up and his Chennai slang personifies the yester year Rajinikanth. His facial expressions and his comical sense make us re-collect the superstar himself. If that is position which Vijay aims to reach in the near future, this is his giant step towards that. Vijay shoulders most of the movie on himself like his previous flicks and carries the movie with a charming style. He also handles the comedy dept for himself while giving a slice of it to Dhamu (Nari). Vijay has also done appreciably well in action sequences which is the heart of the movie. His dialogue delivery skills have improved over the time and here in Gilli, he presents the contemporary Chennai youth.
Trisha looks classy but her role gets reduced to a Barbie doll. Trisha’s costumes in Appidi Podu song look dazzling. Three Cheers to Nalini Sriram, her costume designer. Also Jennifer who enacts the sister of Vijay has done extremely well and one would think they could have given the same importance of the sister role to Trisha also.
The best part that happened to Gilli is Prakash Raj. His comeback after a long time is glaringly well executed. His role as Muthu Pandi suits him well. Prakash Raj and Kamalhassan may not have anything in common but this kingpin-cum-dada Muthupandi role reminds me some shades of Virumandi. Prakash Raj dazzles when he looks at Trisha with an idiosyncratic look and says Chellamey !! I…Love you da!
Vidhyasagar‘s uses the same Dhool formula here too. All songs call for huge crowds and every song has a celebrative mood. However, the night skied Chennai sets and Kokkarakko songs stays tight. It has a very strange feel and is sung well. Appidi Podu song has been picturised and tuned well. It is a special song to get the audience ready for the climax. However the song Yaaro Yarivano during sumo chase reminds us of Kakkha Kakkha but it does the job.
Maniraj’s sets of the Triplicane area is amazing. Only if you get a producer like A M Ratnam, you can think of such a huge spending for a set. But Dharani has used the set well and it finds a place in most songs and important sequences. Combined with the sets, Gopinath’s camera and avid editing races the movie throughout. The action sequences speak of the advanced technical wizardry that Tamil cinema is going through. Rocky Rajesh – the stunt director, Gopinath – the cinematographer and VT Vijayan – the editor gets a mention for the fabulous action sequences. Aalavandan boasted of Hollywood-like action sequence but Gilli, silently grabs away the title.
This movie would be a hit for the kind of team effort Dharani has roped in. Also his brilliant screenplay has made the movie one very fast without too much flaws. Dharani also doesn’t bother too much to give a finger to the logic. Combined with his intelligent story telling skills Dharani also gets a mention for the changes that he has made to the Tamil version of Okkadu which makes the movie adapt to the Tamil tastes.
Gilli is a movie to be watched in a theatre to enjoy the movie thoroughly. This movie will be a sure shot hit, not just for its entertainment and production values but for the incredible understanding of delivering what people want. And that’s exactly what we want.