Kalaiyarasan-starrer Adhe Kangal, directed by Rohin Venkatesan, is one of those small films that could have easily slipped through most of our must-watch lists. 'Thandiraa', the superhit song from the film, made sure it remained in our minds for a long time. The fact that it was being produced by CV Kumar too added a lot of value to the film, given the man's golden run up until that point. Even so, and despite the film being highly recommended by trustworthy sources, it took a time like this for my mind to finally throw it up as an option, after having exhausted multiple lists.
What begins as a blind man's search for his missing lover (Sshivada) turns into a consistently surprising thriller with an unexpected turn every 20 minutes or so. Yet, it's not a film that takes itself too seriously. It does not also pretend to be anything it's not. Laced with humour, it maintains a lightness that ensures we're seldom prepared for what's going to happen next. Proof of this lies in how difficult it is to write about this film without giving away too many spoilers.
But if you're watching the film now, make a note of its twists and compare them to those in a recent film celebrated for its unpredictability. I am someone who didn't like the recent film all that much, and feel Adhe Kangal did a far better job at incorporating unexpected turns that affect the film completely, rather than it just being a twist for twist's sake. It has its fair share of flaws, but it's a film that will keep you guessing throughout its running time.