Thirumanam movie cast: Cheran, Sukanya, Umapathy Ramaiah, Kavya Suresh, MS Bhaskar, Thambi Ramaiah
Thirumanam movie director: Cheran
Thirumanam movie rating: Two stars
Thirumanam looks like a throwback to the 70s style family drama. You have a sister who is willing to sacrifice love for her brother. Yawn. This elder brother stops her from going to the gym. Yawn. Instead, he asks her to practise Bharatanatyam at home, so she remains ‘fit’. Yawn.
Mahesh (Umapathy Ramaiah) and Aadhira (Kavya Suresh) are in love. It is not exactly the love-at-first-sight scenario. Eventually, they inform their respective families they want to get married. They know each other only for six months yet decide to take the plunge. We get to see them in a coffee shop indulging in a casual conversation. There is neither depth nor detailing involved in it.
Also, they chat more frequently on WhatsApp than they meet. You get to see cutesy emojis flying around. Aadhira says ‘love you’. Mahesh types ‘me too’, quickly erases and says he is “scared to use those two words”. (This is Cheran trying to be ‘relevant’ and ‘modern’.) It is hard to believe Thirumanam belongs to him who gave us memorable films—Bharathi Kannamma, Autograph and Thavamai Thavamirundhu.
Mahesh’s sister Manonmani (Sukanya) wants a grand wedding because she is from ‘jameen kudumbam’, whereas Aadhira’s brother Arivudainambi (Cheran) prefers a simple one because he values money. Nambi is a sincere Income Tax officer. When he meets Mahesh’s family for the first time, he asks if they had filed the taxes. This doesn’t go well with Manonmani, and there is a spark of instant dislike.
Slowly, differences of opinion crop up between both the families during the wedding preparation. Manonmani wants a huge wedding hall, but Nambi thinks it is a waste of money. Manonmani wants to get more than 2000 wedding invitations printed, but Nambi says he can circulate the invitation on WhatsApp. (This is Cheran trying to stay ‘relevant’ again.) Manonmani wants her brother to be dressed in a red kurta, but Nambi suggests that he wear a simple shirt and veshti.
Thirumanam isn’t really about Mahesh and Aadhira. It is more about Manonmani and Nambi, who are always at loggerheads with each other. Things don’t go well. So, Aadhira stops talking to Mahesh because she doesn’t want to be in a family that disrespects her brother. Mahesh goes missing. He indirectly wants his sister to know he can’t live without Aadhira. What does he do? He switches off his phone but sings a karaoke song on a mobile application. (This is Cheran trying to stay ‘relevant’ once again.) Aadhira and Mahesh never convince us that they belong to this generation.
Thirumanam could have easily been a Kalyana Samayal Saadham, but Cheran lets you down with a predictable and outdated script. No amount of lengthy dialogues can make up for the lack of meat in the story. Alas, he thinks dialogue heavy-movie is good cinema. Maybe, Cheran is still not over the Autograph’s success because, in the film, the heroine is shown scrolling through her Facebook feed, as the audience compares the 2004 film with 96.