Naluguri Snehithula Katha (Thoonga Nagaram in Tamil) remains very truthful to its location Madurai and resembles Subramaniapuram. The film opens amidst a dark, stormy night and after a full five minutes of downpour, we are introduced to a group of four friends (Vimal, Barani, Nishanth and Gaurav). While Vimal, the hero’s job is to shoot videos, Nishanth, a mute youth uses a recorder hidden in his trousers to express his feelings to a girl, Gaurav works in a crematorium, Bharani does small electrical repairs. A flashback shows the childhood friendship of Vimal and Anjali and how a small skirmish leads to a big fight and both the families cum neighbours split. In a few years they unite after Vimal declares he is in love with Anjali; it is indeed refreshing to see the woman of the house instilling sanity and according priority to her son’s wishes and bringing in Anjali into the family.
The story moves ahead with a priest approaching the friends and seeking their help. His daughter’s impending marriage is threatened by an MMS clip, and the man responsible is a gangster’s son. The priest is blinded and the gangster seeks revenge by turning all his friends against Vimal for initiating the fight. The second half of the story picks up speed with the friends giving him a poisoned laddu, to picking up a sharpened knife to stab Vimal and just when you think that the gangster’s strategy paid off, there is a twist in the story.
The casting is perfect and all actors have done a commendable job but what works against the film is the last few minutes. Though the fear generated is palpable, it is not overpowering or scary enough. Cinematography is top class but music is unappealing. The film doesn’t make for a bad watch but it could have done with better execution. After watching so many Tamil films with plenty of bloodshed in the finale, this looks incomplete with less intensity, far fewer fights and appears to have been wrapped up fast.
NALUGURI SNEHITULA KATHA
Cast: Vimal, Anjali, Bharani
Music: Sunder C Babu
Plot: A politician plans to kill a youngster through his friends
Bottomline: Not novel but not a bad film either