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|TAMIL FILM REVIEW:
Stale Yet Stylish: Nootrenbadhu ('180')
Nootrenbadhu (‘180’) is of the most stylish films that have been released this year. Debutant director Jayendra, who is also a veteran advertisement filmmaker, has done a fairly neat job though some spark is missing in the film.
The story, though filmed in a nice manner, isn’t a fresh one. The dialogues and performance by the lead actors are carried well but as the story is a known one, the so-called ‘twists’ and ‘turns’ become rather predictable.
Our protagonist (Siddharth) emerges from the holy waters of the Ganga in Varanasi and watches various families perform the last rites of their relatives. The sight moves him and makes him feel disturbed about his own life until a young boy provides him with the much-needed direction to proceed.
The protagonist then calls himself as Mano (the boy’s name). He sets off to Chennai and easily finds a place to live. The depression seen in Varanasi is gone. He is full of zest and moves around to make others happy. He befriends many sundry workers like newspaper-boys. He lives in the present and enjoys the company of simple and ordinary people. He does ironing the cloths, sells sundal at the beach to make these poor workers happy.
His zeal and altruism earn him the attention and affection of a beautiful-looking photo-journalist Vidya (Nithya Menon).
Vidya tails the evasive Mano and arrives at his home. Despite the various probing questions about his status for which she finds very few answers, she falls in love with him. Mano continues to remain silent about his background. He continues to arrange to fund the cost of educating the newspaper-boys with the help of Vidya.
He decides to leave Chennai when Vidya opens her heart. The girl is shocked but determined to know his answer. She rushes to the bus stand to see him but gets into an accident in the process. Mano is now left with no choice than saving her. The injury is complicated. The treatment is not available in Chennai at present. But Mano wants to save her at any cost. This predicament reveals his background.
Mano’s name is Ajay Kumar alias AJ. He is a successful doctor with the Sunway Medical Center, San Francisco, U.S.
Ajay falls in love with Renuka Narayanan (Priya Anand) and eventually gets married to her. There is also a loyal friend Sam (Sricharan). Their lives then go for a toss as things begin to happen in the most unexpected manner following which AJ leaves the U.S.
AJ gets Vidya to San Francisco to treat her. He succeeds in his mission but the visit revives the past wounds. Now he is caught in a dilemma about his future. What happens to AJ, Vidya, and Renu form the rest of the story.
Despite its flaws, Nootrienbathu is worth watching for its fine making and good performances.