Kathanayagan is another attempt from Vishnu Vishal to try and reach out to the masses. But once again he is careful not to go full throttle. He wants to cater to the masses without projecting himself as the unvanquishable hero.
Plot: Tables turn for a timid guy who is on the verge of losing his love due to his submissive nature.
When Motta Rajendran read out the statutory warning at the start of the film I was a bit worried. Yes, it was a little funny but of late quite a few makers seem to think that comedy is easy and this much of effort would suffice to get the audience to laugh. The film does start in top gear with most characters getting introduced in a jiffy. Before we even realize a couple of songs too are over. But the real problem is that the laughs are very minimal.
To the credit of the makers, the film does have a few ideas. It tries to work like a spoof with characters like a notorious gangster called Singham who never utters a word, a rich Sheikh (Anandraj) in need of a kidney transplant, Mottai Rajendran as the key singer in a light music troupe and a cameo by Vijay Sethupathi as a doctor who quotes philosophical lines of Osho. But it never really exploits some of these juicy premises to full effect while some flat in execution. The Anandraj and Mottai Rajendran episodes are the ones that provide some fun but they are too little and come too late.
Vishnu Vishal is getting more comfortable in the commercial space. He might not be running the show but there is a definite increase in his comfort level on the screen. Soori hogs the screen for a large part and he does his bit. But again only a few jokes like the one where he impersonates himself as a mat seller and a scene in the second half with Anandraj are what really work. What comes to the aide of the film is that despite not having a real hold on us something always keeps happening on the screen and the length is kept optimal.
Kathanayagan aspires to be an entertainer with quite some interesting ideas. But the final product is a watchable fare at best.