Cast: Arya, Shriya Saran and Preetika Rao
Manikandan’s first feature is a road movie, in every sense of the term. Not really a novel plot, though, for we have seen similar films earlier. Paiyya is a recent one. Besides, the director has clearly failed to draw convincing performances from his main lead, Arya and Shriya. She has been typecast for the umpteenth time as a bubbly, frivolous girl. I am not sure whether she is capable of playing an intense character. Arya remains the same wooden self that he was in Madhrasapattinam.
Years later, Sekhar’s son, Arjun (also Arya), egged by his grandmother, leaves for Karaikudi to save the family’s ancestral house. On the way, at Bengaluru, an airline strike throws his travel plans in disarray, and so too Anu’s (Shriya Saran), who is on her way to Madurai. A considerable part of the movie travels along with them as the two get together to make their way to their destinations.
Chikku Bukku has a neat twist in the end, and its flashback and forward story-telling style is remarkably precise as it follows Sekhar’s and Arjun’s lives. It is done with elan, though the content is a little too coincidental, and at times awfully silly. When will Indian movie-men learn to stop vulgarizing romances with the couple breaking into not just song and dance, but also getting whisked away to exotic locales for the number. Surely Indian audiences no longer want these kinds of frills to draw them into the cinemas!