Maanaadu (2021)

On the day of a public conference by the state’s Chief Minister, his bodyguard and a police officer are stuck in a time loop.

Maanaadu is a sci-fi political thriller roped in with the time loop concept. Maanaadu will open the gates for the young directors who crave to try something new with Sci-Fi genres. Writer-Director Venkat Prabhu comes up with a mass entertaining thriller with a day loop concept and proves a point to the aspiring directors. Undoubtedly, it is a solid come-back film for Venkat Prabhu, Simbu, and SJ Suryah.

All praise the great efforts of the actors but fail to recognize the impeccable effort of Editor Praveen KL. It is a very difficult film to edit as there are many multiple layers within the storyline. Any flaw in the editing work may cause a continuity issue and the complete scene may go off-track. Day loop concept is quite new to the Tamil audience, but general audiences can easily follow the storyline with the help of flawless editing. The audience erupts at the halfway mark when SJ Suryah and Simbu are shown in a single frame. The vision of the director was perfectly executed on-screen by Praveen KL with his high-class editing. STR was struggling to survive in the industry as there is no noticeable hit after VTV.

Maanaadu will become an important film in his career. Good to see him back on screen with solid performance and amazing physical transformation. STR delivers what is required for his role and plays it well for the high, intense scenes. The emotional burst at the end shows his acting supremacy on screen. The face-off scene between Simbu and SJ Surya was a treat to watch. SJ Suryah is an iconic actor and every time he appears on-screen the crowd erupts with joy.

He played it so perfectly that we cannot imagine any other actor in his role. In terms of on-screen presence, the Director maintains the balance between Simbu and SJ Surya, as both the characters have an important role to play in the screenplay. The humor side of SJ Suryah was well established and blends well with the screenplay. Director Venkat Prabhu deserves all the praise for his impactful writing for a highly complex story. There are so many repetitive scenes in the film, but it was engaging and entertaining throughout the film.

His hard work in crafting such a solid, complex story is quite evident in many parts of the film. The clarity and details for the day loop were perfectly layered and smartly simplified in the screenplay. It is an out-and-out Venkat Prabhu game in the second half. The encounter scenes between STR and SJ Suryah were smartly written, and it is commercially enjoyable to watch.

Cinematography by Richard M Nathan adds value to the director’s vision. It is quite challenging to follow the continuity for the repetitive loop scenes which take place in the same location, but Richard used the right angle to capture the loop scenes and also highlighted the subtle difference in the loop as the movie progress. Yuvan’s background score is very effective for the day loop scenes.

Stunt sequences are elevated with strong BGM backed up by Stunt Shiva’s action choreography. All the supporting characters played their part well for a perfect political thriller. Y.G. Mahendren showed his grey shade to enact the negative role, and it worked out well in the screenplay. Kalyani Priyadarshan, Premgi, and Karunarakan have been utilized decently to an extent.

Overall, Maanaadu is a commercially enjoyable science fiction flick and a must-watch film to experience the fun ride in theatre.

Runtime: 147 min

Streaming quality: HD

Release year:

IMDb: 9.3