CHENNAIYIL ORU NAAL 2 STORY: A cop has to investigate the motive behind sinister posters that have been put up in the city and track down the person who sends a threat letter to his adopted daughter.
CHENNAIYIL ORU NAAL 2 REVIEW: Don’t be fooled by the title. This film isn’t a sequel to the warmly received 2013-thriller Chennaiyil Oru Naal. Even though Sarath Kumar is part of it, he doesn’t play the character he played in that film. It isn’t thematically similar as well. Heck, the film isn’t even set in Chennai! It takes place entirely in Coimbatore. So, how can it be Chennaiyil Oru Naal, then? Go figure!
This one plays out more like a whodunit. Sarath Kumar plays Soundarapandian, a cop who has been transferred to Coimbatore. On his first day on the job in the city, he gets an intriguing case. Posters sinister in tone — Will Angel’s death be today or tomorrow — have been pasted all over the city, and the police department is concerned. Is it a publicity gimmick or an actual threat? Even as Pandian starts investigating, his adopted daughter receives a threatening letter signed by the mysterious Angel!
Chennaiyil Oru Naal 2 is inspired from a novel by crime novelist Rajesh Kumar, and the pulpy elements of its source are all too evident in the film’s plot. Mysterious posters, anonymous letters, highly harmful inmate in an asylum, unexpected death, a killer for hire, a drug that enhances memory power… the plot has it all. But the writing never manages to bring all these elements into a satisfactory narrative.
The dialogue is stilted and the characters are just functional with no real presence. The investigation part is also amateurish, with Pandian hardly shown as someone who is making actual deductions. The direction is also off, with the actors (including the veterans — Sarath Kumar, Suhasini and Napoleon) performing in an artificial manner, moving and talking slower than people do in real life.
There is some flair when it comes to the visuals. A sequence inside an asylum is well shot, with cinematographer Vijay Deepak experimenting with lights and shadows. Much of the film’s vigour comes from the music, by Jakes Bejoy, who tries to make every scene seem important.
But Bejoy, who also composed the music for another Coimbatore-set thriller, Dhurvangal Pathinaaru, overdoes this, and often the score is overpowering. In fact, the entire project has the feel of a wannabe Dhurvangal Pathinaaru. It is a pity that the film doesn’t really succeed despite this worthy ambition.