Rating: 2-1/2 stars

This Satyaraj movie comes under the wake of three successive flops from him and desparately needs a comeback now. The movie is produced by Malar films - K.Balu who has given super hits like Chinna Thambi and is being directed by Raj Kapoor who has done movies like Chinna Jameen.   It is yet another movie fully relying on its comedy, hoping the current trend of successes of the comedy movies, works with this one too. The cast includes Kushboo, Rasi (alias) Manthra , Manivannan ( a neccessity for today's movies ), S Ve shekhar (back for another round after Jeans), and R Sundararajan. The music is being scored by Raja's youngest son, Yuvan Shankar Raja.

The storyline very much reminds you of a dozen movies of the past. Satyaraj is an orphan (right from Riksha Maama!) and he adopts a local christian family, and becomes the guardian of the family.  He comes to ooty (the favorite place for humour movies like uLLaththai aLLi thaa and Pisthaa) searching for a job in a cinema theatre run by maNivaNNan, where satyaraj's friend, S Ve shekhar also works.  Due to some clever planning, Satyaraj convinces maNi and gets the job.  But maNivaNNan wants only a married man to be his manager.  Because Satyaraj is desparate, he lies that he is married (same old lie right from Missiamma!) and that his wife works as a post-women in Madras.  He runs into petty fights with Manivannan's daughter Manthra, whoManthra and Sathyaraj in "Kalyaana Galaattaa" plans underground tricks to sack Satyaraj from his job. Anandaraj is the "muRai paiyan " for Manthra, who wants to get married to her for property.   Due to one such prank from Manthra, Manivannan asks Satyaraj to ask his wife to come and collect his salary. Satyaraj then lies, that he is a widower and shows a photo of unknown figure Kushboo    (supposed to have dead ), got from one of the local studios, as his wife.  While Satyaraj and S Ve shakhar do cleverly mastermind this plan, R sundararajan a local interior designer(?) brings back Kushboo alive but mentally retarted to Satyaraj's place (reminds you of Moondraam Pirai ). Meanwhile some astrologer predicts that Manthra should be married as a second wife, or else her "thaali" wouldn't last long and Manivannan, wants Satyaraj to marry her.  Having a big fish in hand, Satyaraj tries to conceal Kushboo and get married to Manthra.  The second half goes in Kushboo's pranks and the duo's attempts in hiding her, who also turns out to be pregnant (standard formula again!) and making a fool of Manivannan. Finally, Satyraj is caught red-handed, and then he traces back kushboo's origin and discovers that she is the eldest daughter of his adopted family (so his sister!) and Anandaraj is the culprit who is her husband who deserted her, which made her insane.  He doesn't have any evidence to prove this fact and finally director Raj Kapoor uses "ladies-sentiment" of pregnancy and pain to make Anandraj confess and the movie ends with wedding knots for Anandaraj-Kushboo and Satyaraj-Mantra.

The story line ( if ever it existed ) is in bits and pieces and more a "thuNukku thOraNam."  The sequences are highly unrealistic and dramatic, which has become the trend for comedy movies.  The movie is very slow and boring in the first half, until the entry of Kushboo. It reminds us of a dozen movies on the same lines produced earlier, and mentioning the names of those movies in the dialogues is a clever patch from the director.  Satyaraj has given a wonderful performance, with some clever imitation and mimicry of MGR, Sivaji, Rajini and Nambiar.  S. Ve. Shekhar seems to be under-exploited and something seems to be missing on the screen, in his comedy timing.  Manivannan has done a repeat of Mouli's role in Pistha and his own role in Ullaththai aLLi thaa.  Manthra has been used exclusively because Satyaraj needs a female counterpart and her character has similarities to the one she had in Love Today.  The music is more a cacophony and men are promptly out of the auditorium for a cool smoke, during the song sequences.  Re-recording and background score is poor and even cinematography hasn't really exploited the scenic beauty of ooty.  Satyaraj lashes out against movie reviews on cable channels, which looks very unsportive.  Raj Kapoor can take credit for the screenplay in the second half, which covers all the logical flaws in his direction.  If laughter is what you are looking for and logic doesn't matter, then it makes a decent watch, just once.

Srinivasan Sivakumar

Original Photograph (KalyaaNa Galaattaa): Thanks to Cinema Express
Photograph scanned & reworked by: Sandya