Vada Chennai Review: A Fabulous Journey That Is Realistic, Hard-hitting & Entertaining!



Star Cast: Dhanush, Aishwarya Rajesh, Andrea Jeremiah, P. Samuthirakani, Daniel Balaji

Director: Vetrimaran

Gangster drama is not a genre that is something new to Tamil cinema and we have witnessed a good number of movies that have stayed true to the genre. But, when a film-maker like Vetrimaran and an actor like Dhanush come up with a film of this genre, the expectations are bound to be at a different level. Has Vada Chennai lived up to those hype and expectations. Read our review to know more about the same.

The plot of Vada Chennai is set against the backdrop of North Chennai and the story spans within the time period of 1987 – 2003. It takes us through the life of Anbu, who is a state level carrom player and how his life gets intervened in the gang wars between two different groups who have been fighting it out since 1987.

The storyline of Vada Chennai might not be something new as it follows some of the templates of the gangster movies that we have seen but still, its presentation, the premises, the effective characterisation and the narrative pattern make this movie a cut above the rest. The film shifts between the past and the present, with the various chapters unveiling in front of the audiences. Vetrimaaran’s control over the entire film is quite evident as he never ever misfires in communicating with the audiences. Such a narrative pattern is never easy to be convinced but the film-maker succeeds in that with elan.

Due credits must be given to the writer-director for giving due importance to each character. None of the important characters of the film are left without being addressed and each one of them has his/her own importance. They have been given equal space much like the lead hero of the movie. In fact, it is one among the very few films, which has used its characters to perfection.

Vada Chennai doesn’t lose its realistic quotient at any point of time and at the same time, it keeps you entertained as well. The romantic sequences, the lighter moments etc., are a part of the narrative pattern and they gel well without protruding out at any point of time. It is filled with riveting sequences as well. The long build up to the pre-interval sequence, the sketching sequences, the tension that builds up during the function organised by Thambi etc., are a few examples that hit the bulls-eye in this department.

Vada Chennai is rich in performances with each of the actor getting the big chance to perform. More importantly, we get to see characters and not the actors. Dhanush breaths life as Anbu and anchors the movie perfectly with his top notch performance. Samuthirakkani, Kishore, Daniel Balaji etc., come up with solid performances in well-written roles. Andrea Jeremiah as Chandra is indeed a revelation. Aishwarya Rajesh does complete justice to the role of Padma. Ameer steals the show as Rajan, especially in the flashback sequences in the second half.

Santhosh Narayanan’s BGM does wonder for the movie, especially in the second half. His songs have been used exceedingly well in the narrative. Cinematography by Velraj is top notch. It’s never easy to helm the editing table of movie like Vada Chennai and Sreekar Prasad has shown his expertise and experience.

Vada Chennai is indeed a fabulous beginning to the trilogy. Hwoever, The word fabulous would be an understatement for this well-etched movie, which is raw, real and entertaining. Once again, Vetrimaran-Dhanush team strikes gold with a film, which w