'Nene Vastunna' ('Naane Varuvean' in Tamil) was released today in theatres by Geetha Arts.
Prabhu (Dhanush) is a happily married young man with a beautiful wife Bhuvana (Indhuja) and a young daughter Sathya (Hiya Davey) who is doing well in studies. But things go haywire for Prabhu when his beloved daughter starts having strange conversations with an unseen character. The father worries that she may have developed psychological issues.
In another track, Kathir (Dhanush, again) is leading a seemingly normal life somewhere in North India with his wife Madhuri (Elli AvrRam).
How are the two threads connected? What is ailing Prabhu's daughter? Who is Kathir and what is he up to? Answers to these questions are found as the film progresses.
Dhanush's nuanced acting is alive to the demands of the genre. His versatility lends a unique touch to the two characters he plays. After playing a deputy National Security Advisor in Thalapathy Vijay's 'Beast' and a revenge-seeking, violent man in the Keerthy Suresh-starrer 'Saani Kaayidham' ('Chinni' in Telugu), director Selvaraghavan plays a cameo in this film.
Indhuja Ravichandran is seen in easy portions compared to Elli AvrRam. Prabhu is boring in the role of a psychiatrist. Yogi Babu is routine. Hiya Davey, the child artist, is talented.
Yuvan Shankar Raja's background score is largely a winner. Om Prakash's cinematography is okayish; almost the entire film looks dark or semi-dark. Bhuvan Srinivasan's editing is a plus.
When Selvaraghavan's '7G Brindavan Colony' was released in 2004, its raw sensibilities were considered somewhat non-mainstream. 'Aadavari Matalaku Arthale Verule' with Venkatesh in the year 2007 made him a more mainstream filmmaker for the Telugu audience. But his subsequent outings haven't quite hit the bull's eye for the Telugu audience.
'Nene Vasthunna' has come at a time when OTT has made the Telugu audience see psychological thrillers as more likeable than before. The director-hero duo, between them, keeps the audience glued to the screen for at least 30 minutes of the 2-hour-long movie. The premise had so much potential going for it. The excessive reliance on Dhanush the performer shows.
The film's starting point, the plot turn in the middle, and the flashback are its big plus points.
The climax has been narrated like a simplistic actioner with no major highs. That's a big minus in terms of execution; you can see that the film lacks ambition. The portions that follow a reveal in the second half are diluted in nature.
If you are a fan of dark psychological thrillers, give this one a chance.