Athadey movie Review
The film begins with the World of Shekhar, where Shekhar (Dulquer Salmaan in a funny hairdo) and Radhika (Sai Dhansika) are college students, and most importantly, disabled individuals. He stammers when he speaks, she’s visually challenged –none of this poses an issue to these two. But their families, especially Radhika’s brother (John Vijay), is none too happy about it. Bejoy plays around with the segment, keeping us guessing as to which scene is happening in which timeline. However, we never care enough about the character, not feeling as invested in the romance as we should be.
The second segment World of Trilok gives us a character who seems to be the protagonist. Justin (Anson Paul) helps cover up the accidental death of Aisha (Arti Venkatesh). But he finds himself hurt in an accident and saved by Trilok (Dulquer), who just happens to be the husband of Aisha. But then of course, there’s a twist, which turns the episode into a vigilante justice one. The minimalist world Bejoy creates and leisurely pacing don’t excite us much here too.
It’s the World of Shiva where things get interesting, winning us over with arresting visuals. Narrated as a gangster’s tale, Shiva (Dulquer, fantastically brooding) is the protagonist. His mother has left him and his brother is unable to bear their father’s abuse. Shiva grows up to be a gangster and when his father is murdered, he decides it’s his duty to extract revenge. He goes after the murderer, a don in Mumbai. This segment has other interesting characters like Shiva’s brother, who wants to follow in his footsteps, his wife (Shruti Hariharan) who hates his profession but cannot get herself to leave him, the paramour of a Mumbai gangster who takes pity on the younger brother and more. But, the impressive performances, moody visuals and confident narration still miss out on something. The story needed more building, but what we get resembles a bunch of scenes from a longer, wholesome movie.
The bull’s eye is finally hit in the World of Rudra. Rudra (Dulquer, all charm) is an army officer and in love with Bhama (Neha Sharma). Her father is a senior military officer who’s against the match, so they decide to stay apart for a while. But then Rudra learns that Bhama is about to marry someone else and he has to know why. The twist here works beautifully. And though some might find it unintentionally funny, it seems to have been Bejoy’s intent from the start. The clues lie hidden in the light-hearted tone in which the episode is staged. With a sleight of hand that is remarkable, we get a black comedy to savour.
On the whole, as a narrative experiment, Athadey is kind of underwhelming as it works only in parts, but there is quite a lot to savour — from the superb frames to the terrific music and the solid performances.