Natpe Thunai movie review: A sports drama that lacks seriousness
Film: Natpe Thunai
Director: Parthiban Desingu
Cast: Aadhi, Anagha, Harish Uthaman, Kousalya and Karu Pazhaniappan
Natpe Thunai, the second outing from Aadhi and his team after the runaway success of Meesaya Murukku, wants to be a friendship drama as well as a sports film. Sadly, it doesn’t do justice to neither of the genres and that is one of the primary reasons why the film never quite works, even if it has some decent stretches. It also has a political sub-plot which might seem topical, given the current election season but doesn’t make an impact in an otherwise boring film.
The story revolves around Prabhakaran (Aadhi), whose only ambition in life is to move to France. When he moves to Karaikal for this purpose, he ends up falling in love with Deepa, a hockey player. As is the norm with most Tamil films when a hero likes a girl; he starts following her and eventually finds himself at the ground (which has a legacy attached to it) where she practices hockey.
A multinational corporation sets its eyes on the ground and they take the help of local politician Harichandran (Karu Pazhaniappan) to get the job done. Do they succeed in taking over the playground or not? This is the crux of the story.
For a film with a sports angle, it is quite late in the story that we actually get to see the sport played on screen. Aadi plays a professional hockey player and he has represented India in U-19 level but we don’t get to know he plays the sport until the interval. A lot of time is wasted focusing on the friendship angle between Aadhi and his friends. Even this portion, which is clearly intended to play to the gallery, falls flat but for a few funny one-liners.
The political sub-plot is merely used to address a few issues. We never quite understand the purpose behind it but we at least get a thoroughly entertaining villain in Karu Pazhaniappan, who plays a corrupt to the bone politician. The much-hyped sports angle in the climax is mildly rousing, even if most of the crucial moments are sloppily edited.
Natpe Thunai, barring some moments, is a poorly written and executed friendship-based sports drama that tries to piggyback on the success of Meesaya Murukku, only to end up as a film that needed to take itself more seriously. For a sports drama, it neither has the tension nor the serious tone to sell itself.
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