Vishnu Vishal is arguably the most versatile among the current generation when it comes to choosing scripts of different genres. He has more often than not hit the bullseye with his selections. For ‘Gatta Kusthi’ he has joined hands with his ‘Sillukuvarpatti Singam’ helmer Chella Ayyavu to emerge the winner albeit through woman power.
Veera (Vishnu Vishal) is a well-to-do young man living in Pollachi under the supervision of his maternal uncle (Karunaas). His uncle and friend (Kaali Venkat) try hard to get a bride for him but he rejects all of them as they fail his two conditions that the girls should be illiterate and have long hair. Keerthi (Aishwarya Lekshmi) on the other hand is a wrestler who lives with her family in Kerala. Her parents are tired of prospective bridegrooms rejecting Keerthy due to her passion for wrestling and her father has a heart attack. Keerthi’s uncle played by Muniskanth bumps into his old friend Karunaas and on knowing that he is hunting for a bride invites them to Keerthi’s house. When Veera visits Kerala, Muniskanth lies that Keerthy has studied only till 7th standard and also attaches a long false hair. The wedding happens and Veera starts dominating Keerthy to prove his manliness. At one point the true colors of Keerthy emerge where a villain is also involved and the couple separate. To prove that he is stronger than her Veera challenges his wife for a wrestling match and what happens next is what ‘Gatta Kusthi’ is all about.
Firstly, kudos to Vishnu Vishal for surrendering to the demands of the script and agreeing to play second fiddle to the heroine that too in his own production. As usual he has delivered a neat performance in the comedy, action and the emotional scenes. The entire screenplay is based on Keerthy and Aishwarya Lekshmi plays her with gusto, especially in the wrestling scenes. Karunaas as the male chauvinistic uncle is aptly cast while Kaali Venkat and Muniskanth tickle the funny bones at regular intervals. Redin Kingsley brings the house down in the scene where he cites examples of several hit movies that showed untrained heroes winning in sports. The actress playing Karunaas’s wife has a very memorable scene at the end while Sreeja Ravi is natural as the heroine’s mother.
What works best in ‘Gatta Kusthi’ is the entertaining first half that moves like a breeze with several comedic situations. The interval punch where Aishwarya Lekshmi fights the villains is as impactful as a mass hero film moment. The concept of the titular sport and the role reversal of the typical hero heroine sequences are quite fresh to Tamil cinema. The scene where the men discuss the insignificance of women in their lives and the women doing the same though cliched is enjoyable. The climax fight between the hero and the villain is choreographed well.
On the downside right from the relationship between the husband and wife to the message driven scenes in the end, the lack of depth is pretty noticeable. Logic goes for a toss in the manner in which the wrestling match organizers fix matches.
Justin Prabhakaran has rendered lively songs and an energetic background score. Richard M Nathan’s cinematography is clean as a whistle while G.K. Prasanna’s editing is crisp. Director Chella Ayyavu in his sophomore project has impressed with his fresh storyline and humour filled narration. He however deserves the trophy for attempting to make a hero of the heroine in the commercial space. Vishnu Vishal Studioz and Ravi Teja have jointly produced the film in Tamil and Telugu.
Verdict : Go for this fun filled commercial entertainer that has its heart in the right place