Enai Noki Paayum Thota movie review: Dhanush’s film is a lousy action-drama with bland writing
Enai Noki Paayum Thota
Director: Gautham Vasudev Menon
Cast: Dhanush, Megha Akash, Senthil Veerasaamy, Sasikumar and Sunainaa
Gautham Menon’s Enai Noki Paayum Thota, which stars Dhanush in the titular role, oscillates between a romantic drama and an action-thriller. In others words, it’s more or less an extension of his last release, Achcham Yenbathu Madamaiyada, but the problem with both these films is the lazy writing and it is even more evident in his latest outing. By writing, I’m not even referring to the story on the whole but something as simple as scenes, staging and execution. Enai Noki… is Gautham’s weakest work and it barely manages to engage let alone entertain, despite Dhanush’s earnest performance.
Menon continues to shine as a writer when it comes to handling romance on screen. The romance portion in Enai Noki… is like a whiff of fresh air and the micro-moments between Raghu (Dhanush) and Lekha (Megha Akash) work like a charm. In one of the film’s most beautiful moments, Raghu casually asks Lekha her age but before she could even answer, he apologizes for asking in the first place. Menon makes even the most intimate moments between his lead pair look poetic but never vulgar. As long as the film remains in the romance space, it manages to keep us invested in Raghu and Lekha but unfortunately not for long.
As the story shifts gears and gets into action mode, Enai Noki… goes nowhere and it treads the most predictable paths as it desperately tries to appeal to different sections of the audience.
Just like his last film, Enai Noki… too takes a needless action detour around the interval point and brings in elements like underworld, dirty cops and undercover agents. The story shifts from a college campus in Chennai to the busy streets of Mumbai. We follow Raghu in search of his long lost elder brother Thiru (Sasikumar), who, out of nowhere, gets introduced as an undercover cop. Raghu gets called to Mumbai by Lekha after she realizes Thiru’s life is in danger. We are later told that Thiru saved Lekha at some point and when she learns he’s in danger, she seeks Raghu’s help. From here on, the film goes nowhere and it makes the entire second half unbearably boring to sit through.
If it was Baba Sehgal’s psychotic cop role in his last film, we get a similar cop role in Enai Noki… played by Ashwin Kumar. Senthil Veerasaamy plays the baddie - a film producer-cum-director-cum-pimp - a character that’s less menacing and more sickening.
Watch the trailer of Enai Noki Paayum Thota here:
If not for Darbuka Siva’s lilting music and Manoj Paramahamsa’s visuals, the film wouldn’t have any redeeming factors whatsoever. As much as these factors try and keep Enai Noki… afloat, Menon’s lethargic writing is the primary reason why the film fails miserably. On top of the lousy writing, comes Gautham’s obsession with voice-over, which is no longer exciting when it comes to his films. The voice-over dialogues runs into pages in Enai Noki… and if only all this effort that had gone into writing these dialogues was actually invested in writing better screenplay, we’d have seen a better film. As audience, the only voice-over you constantly hear playing aloud in your head is – why am I putting myself through the torture of watching this film?
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