Ghilli (2004)

  • Written by Gunasekhar
  • Directed by Dharani

   Repeat Value : 9 / 10     

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 Chellamey, I love you da! 

a popular dialog from Ghilli



Ghilli - Movie Highlights

Tamil cinema has always been about good stories but time and again they also need to borrow from the neighboring industries to balance the ecosystem and be on par with other industries. And Okkadu(2003) is one such Telugu film which was highly successful there catapulting Mahesh Babu to stardom, while having the same effect in Tamil also, catapulting Vijay to stardom. So till date Ghilli(Risk Taker) remains one of best early films in Vijay's portfolio. Though a remake of a Telugu it is definitely one of the best offerings of its genre. Ghilli offers nothing less than sheer entertainment and an edgy thriller for the Tamil film industry which was deprived of such films. Ghilli remains as one of the best and biggest hits of Vijay's early career.

Velu alias Ghilli (Vijay) is a Kabbadi player based in Chennai. His disciplinarian police commissioner father (Ashish Vidyarthi) keeps chiding him for being a Kabbadi player and neglecting studies often comparing with his studious sister Bhuvana(Nancy Jennifer). But it is his mother (Janaki Sabesh) who supports him. Velu once visits Madurai to take part in a state-level tournament. There incidentally he saves Dhanalakshmi (Trisha) from Muthupandi (Prakash Raj), a dangerous faction leader. Actually Muthupandi loves Dhanalakshmi and wishes to marry her against her wishes. In the process he has cruelly killed her two brothers who went against him. Unable to bear the torture and as per her father's wish she is about to run from the town later to escape to US. But she is caught by Muthupandi and his men. At the same time Velu sees Muthupandi dragging Dhanalakshmi towards a car as she's crying and happens to interfere and save her from him. When Velu saves Dhanalakshmi, he humiliates Muthupandi by pushing him into a pond filled with mud, thus insulting him in front of everyone that too in his place. They escape after being chased by the goons. Muthupandi decides and refuses to cleanse the mud until Dhanalakshmi is found and brought back. What starts off a simple macho act drags Velu into the whole mayhem. Velu then brings her to Chennai and takes her to his room through the trap door. And she continues to stay there without anyone's knowledge. His priorities now are to get her a passport and visa so that she can move to the US. While Muthupandi's gang is on hunt for Dhanalakshmi and baying for Velu's blood, on the other hand, the Home Minister who happens to be the father of Muthupandi asks ACP to search for Dhanalakshmi and the guy who has taken her away. When ACP realizes that his own son is behind this entire drama all the hell breaks loose. Velu and Dhanalakshmi run away from his home and hide in the lighthouse. During this time she realizes that she has fallen in love with him, but his only intention is to send her to US. Will they be able to escape from the clutches of Muthupandi and the Police? What happens in the end when they challenge Muthupandi forms the crux of the story?

The basic storyline of a film is how a man acts as a guard to a woman and saves her from danger. The story may seem simple but the way the screenplay unfolds make the viewers watch it without any boredom. It may be same good old formula but on the whole the film is racy entertainer because of its tight screenplay. It has all the regular cliches that one can expect from a commercial entertainer, but it is distinctly different. After this film, many made films on the same plot line but they are not even in close range to this. Dharani, the writer/director just keeps a fantastic pace to the entire film, only with minor glitches in the 2nd half when the story doesn't move much later racing to an awesome climax. Moving beyond the basic story, there's a lot to admire in the screenplay and direction. Surprisingly Vijay and Trisha, in the lead roles are least talkative. The romantic part does have its moments. Dharani has made some changes in the screenplay to suit the Tamil nativity and also the climax. Many scenes stand out.

  • The first altercation between Velu and Muthupandi.
  • The climax with the Ganesh Chaturthi procession and the kabaddi match has been very well planned.

As a Director, Dharani has done a great job. After his 'Dhil', 'Dhool' he follows a similar fast track course and ends on an incredible top gear. Cinematography is one of the outstanding aspects. Editing is crisp. Stunts in the film are extraordinary. The stunts have rich technique associated with it, but at the same time they adhere to mass fights. High octane chase and action sequences are the hallmark. It is one of the very few movies where action itself carries the story forward. Especially the car chase is one of the best action packed chases seen in Tamil cinema. Vidhyasagar's music is notable. All songs narrated a story and the mood of the film. 'Sura Thenga Adra Adra', 'Kokkarakko', 'Yaaro Yarivano' and 'Appidi Podu' added to the fortunes of the film and still remains a chartbuster. Dharani the director with his finger right on the pulse of the viewer, and Vijay, the hero whom the masses today identify with, and Prakashraj, the inimitable villain in tow, this remake of the Telugu flick, 'Okkadu', comes as a clear winner!

Ghilli boasts of some power packed performances. Vijay is in blistering form. He fits as a 'T' into the role and essays a subdued and believable portrayal of the boy next door. Righteous anger, affection for the family, soft romance and agility on the playground, show us a different Vijay. Without making hero deliver heavy dialogues, the director has shown the intensity by putting him in powerful situations and he carries the film on his shoulders. With his reduced makeup and Chennai slang, Vijay personifies yesteryear's Rajnikanth. Vijay has also done appreciably well in action sequences which is the heart of the movie. His dialogue delivery skills here in Ghilli, represents the contemporary Chennai youth. Prakash Raj as an eccentric, middle-aged doter Muthupandi is first rate. With his villainous glare and comical gimmicks, Prakash raj emerges as a formidable opponent. He is simply outstanding as the love struck obsessed goonda and fixated on marrying Trisha's character wooing her in the most cringe-worthy fashion. The way he says 'Chellamey, I love you da!' is hilarious. He is the only actor who can justify that kind of role. Trisha looks gorgeous and gives a good performance of a girl always in fear of her life. Agony, ecstasy, sense and sentiment are expected of her and she manages quite well. She looks appealing and brings conviction to her role. Also Vijay and Trisha make a great pair. The young lady playing Velu's talkative sister is impressive. Others support well.

All said and done, Ghilli is an out and out entertainer!