Let’s get one thing out of the way. If you’re looking for something poignant and cerebral, this film is not up your alley. If you don’t mind getting entertained watching a hero who runs faster than a train and bashing up at least two dozen goons at a time, Thadaka will offer you moments of fun. Director Kishore Kumar Pardasani (who made Koncham Ishtam Koncham Kashtam) remakes the Tamil action-comedy Vettai, which starred Madhavan, Arya, Sameera Reddy and Amala Paul, and largely stays faithful to the plot.
We have a wimp of an elder brother Siva Rama Krishna (Sunil) incapable of defending himself when assaulted and a suave, street smart younger brother Karthik (Naga Chaitanya) always ready to rescue his older sibling. After the demise of the father, a cop, the elder son gets to wear the khakhi. Posted as a sub-inspector in a port town reeling in the grip of the smuggler Bagga (Ashutosh Rana), the older brother is given one unthinkable task after another — like rescuing a kidnapped child from the clutches of the gang and foiling the gang’s plan of smuggling a huge consignment. Karthik works like a shadow. He single-handedly beats up Bagga’s henchmen, helps his older brother accomplish the assigned tasks and bask in reflected glory. But soon, the game is up.
Eliciting a few laughs along the way, the film is reasonably fast-paced, helped by good editing (Gautam Raju), apt cinematography (Arthur Wilson) and stylishly-choreographed action sequences.
Naga Chaitanya shows tremendous improvement over his last outing, the debacle called Bejawada. He is in sync with his role, exudes confidence and seems to have had fun both during the stunt sequences and comic portions. Reprising a role essayed by an established actor like Arya is no mean task and Chaitanya pulls it off rather well.
Sunil has more scope towards the later portions, when he has to measure up to his younger sibling and take on the might of the villain. The screenplay remains racy for most part of the film and credit goes to the director for re-working the second half of Vettai, making Thadaka more entertaining than the original. That said, we wish a couple of songs and action sequences had been done away with; there are just too many of them. A few songs are impressive while the rest create a din.
The leading women, Nandini (Andrea Jeremiah) and Pallavi (Tamannaah), struggle in their ill-etched characters. Andrea’s role begins with promise but loses steam. It doesn’t augur well to introduce Andrea as an independent, valiant woman and then show her agreeing to get married to a man she’s never met. Tamannaah has nothing much to do apart from being glamorous.
The one major change from the original is an extended comedy track involving Brahmanandam, Rama Prabha and Vennela Kishore.
Thadaka isn’t a film where you should exercise your grey cells. As a mainstream action-comedy, it’s fairly entertaining.
Cast: Naga Chaitanya, Sunil, Andrea Jeremiah and Tamannah
Direction: Kishore Kumar Pardasani
Music: S.S. Thaman
Story line: Two brothers, one a wimp and the other a goon-basher, get embroiled in a vicious game.
Bottom line: Paisa-vasool fun.