After the disappointing Puli, Vijay is back with a bang with a nicely packaged commercial plus emotional potboiler Theri (Spark).
It is the first time Vijay has teamed up with director Atlee of Raja Rani fame. One could say that the director who received acclaim through his first directorial venture has shown Vijay in a different light. In ‘Theri’, one could see the ‘actor’ Vijay.
The film begins depicting Joseph Kuruvilla (Vijay) as a doting father to Nivi (Baby Nainika, daughter of yesteryear actress Meena). He leads a peaceful life in Kerala and avoids unnecessary confrontations. He meets Annie (Amy Jackson), Nivi’s kindergarten teacher and become friends with her. Annie has a secret crush on Joseph.
Joseph gets entangled in a conflict with some of the local goons which leads to events that raise certain suspicions in Annie’s mind. She then tries to find out who Joseph is. A few minutes into the film, it is revealed that he is in fact Deputy Commissioner Vijay Kumar who was believed to be killed along with the rest of his family five years ago.
The flashback sequence reveals that Vijay Kumar, an honest cop, gets into the bad books of a minister, Vanamaamalai (J. Mahendran) after he kills his son Ashwin who raped an IT employee who subsequently dies.
Vanamaamalai and his henchmen barge into Vijay Kumar’s house one night and kill his wife Mithra (Samantha), and his mother (Raadhika). They also brutally assault him and attempt to drown Nivi in a bathtub. Mithra manages to save the infant. However, just before her death, she makes Vijay Kumar promise that he leaves the Police and lead a normal and peaceful life.
He then moves to Kerala along with his daughter Nivi, and constable friend Rajendran (‘Motta’ Rajendran). However, Vanamaalai finds out that Vijay Kumar is alive and once again tries to disturb his peace. The rest of the story deals with how Vijay avenges the killers of his family.
The story has nothing new to offer audiences as far as content is concerned. But the director has packaged it with a neat storyline and screenplay. The emotions between a mother and her son, a father and her daughter and a man and his fiancée are beautifully portrayed.
Some of the scenes are definitely tear jerking. That’s Atlee special for you. All actors play their part to perfection. Baby Nainika is a fabulous find. The daughter-dad moments keep us entertained, with a few rib-tickling moments to offer.
‘Theri’ incidentally is the 50th film for young composer GV Prakash. He has not failed to deliver as usual. The background score elevates emotions without hindering the storytelling.
Theri has managed to collect Rs 670 million during its 12-day run in Tamil Nadu, Rs 340 million in the other states of India and Rs 430 million in overseas market. Surprisingly, Theri ranked at number eight in the UK box office chart during the first week of its release, according to Times of India.
With reports of success pouring in, it is rumoured that Atlee, Theri’s director will be going in for a sequel. As per rumours he and VIjay will be joining hands once again for ‘Theri 2’. In fact, Director Atlee is reported to have already written the script. Apparently, a sequel was in the pipeline long before the film’s release. According to reports, the second part will revolve around actor Kuruvilla and his relationship with his daughter, who will be more grown up. According to sources Vijay’s real-life daughter, Divya, will play his daughter in the sequel.