If the fact that director Whaterman had apprenticed under filmmaker Lohitadas stirs up interest in Virundhaali(U), the glaring loopholes in the storyline and the ineptitude of the screenplay disappoint.

The other draw ought to have been Singampuli. The director-actor who had you in splits with his poker-faced humour in Milagahas returned to offer more rib-tickling stuff, you think. Expectation is more because he is also the dialogue writer of the film. But his comic takes in Virundhaaliare contrived and passé.

The story meanders into meaningless terrain and leaves the viewer confused on many a score. There is vague talk about hero Ishwar (Ishvar) having become a millionaire after winning a lottery and references to Nasser incarcerated for murder. But they remain riddles till the end. Also none knows how the final murder in the climax occurs — the viewer is left to his inferences. And if you think Whaterman is just taking time to unravel the mysteries you are terribly wrong. (Or has the editing department let him down?)

Ishwar, the kind but rough-looking rich, young man, is another enigma — astute, naïve, mature and foolish all at once! Once he sets eyes on Archana (Dhyana), impressing her becomes his single point agenda. Whaterman brings in another pair, Ishwar's friend Arun and his wife, whose actions are again puzzling. Villains make an entry at a leisurely pace probably after Whaterman couldn't think of any other option to conclude the dragging drama. Here innovation (!) starts and stops with the evil woman constantly sporting a spliff on her lips and puffing away. Too many things happen in the last 20 minutes or so, but nothing stays with you. By then your only thought is to vamoose from the scene!

Dhyana isn't exactly a new find. She did make an impact in a cameo in Aval Peyar Tamizharasi and here, as the heroine, she just about fills the bill. Ishvar's screen presence isn't striking. (That crude moustache and sideburns are an eyesore and you thank Archana for making him remove them at least towards the end.)

When you begin a film with the end (paradox unintended) and switch on to rewind mode throughout, the challenge of sustaining viewers' attention increases manifold, because they are already familiar with the outcome. As matters come full circle to the point where it all began, with nothing too gripping happening in between, the film is bound to turn a damp squib — a good example is Virundhaali.