Remembering Nayanthara’s Stellar Turn in Kolamaavu Kokila

Good Luck Jerry is a Hindi remake of a sleeper hit from 2018 which cemented Nayanthara's reputation of 'Lady Superstar'
Nayanthara in Kolamaavu Kokila
Nayanthara in Kolamaavu Kokila

In a film industry that's constantly criticised for not writing more interesting roles for women, a film with a female protagonist who happens to be both the picture of innocence and a drug dealer is a refreshing change. Good Luck Jerry will be a chance for Janhvi Kapoor to flex her acting skills and if she's lucky, maybe it will give the young actor's career the boost that the original Tamil film gave its leading lady, Nayanthara.

Good Luck Jerry is based on the Tamil film Kolamaavu Kokila (2018), directed and written by Nelson. It saw "Lady Superstar" Nayanathara playing Kokila, a young woman from a working-class family in Chennai, who struggles to make ends meet after she's fired from her job as a spa manager when she rejects her boss' sexual advances. At around the same time, Kokila's mother is diagnosed with lung cancer. The only way Kokila is able to earn money is by helping a smuggling gang deliver a shipment of cocaine. All this could have resulted in a weepy or earnest film, but Kolamaavu Kokila chose to be quirky and goofy instead. Did Nelson's dark comedy make sense? Not entirely, but there was a lot to love in it all the same.

The Tamil original became a sleeper hit with audiences applauding the film's witty narrative treatment. The previous year had seen Nayanthara shine in films like Dora, Aramm and Velaikkaran and the success of Kolamaavu Kokila cemented the actor's stature in the male-dominated Tamil film industry as a solo movie star. It also arguably paved the way for the actress to headline titles such as Imaikaa Nodigal, Mookuthi Amman and Netrikann.

Kolamaavu Kokila was also good for Nelson, who went on to make the dark action comedy Doctor (2021, starring in Sivakarthikeyan) and most recently, Vijay's Beast (2022).

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