ANUPAMA SUBRAMANIAN DECCAN CHRONICLE
Mankatha is an Ajith film with other characters revolving around `Tala’. For the most part it is Ajith, who in his 50th film plays the role of a suspended cop whose interest lies solely in making money.
Director Venkat Prabhu’s interesting take on betting and IPL cricket match-fixing is the prime mover although it tends to meander to the conventional “say no to drugs“ (or betting) cliché till a gripping turn saves the plot towards the end.
Vinayak Mahadevan (Ajith) from Mumbai a suspended cop with a dominating personality whose dream is to pursue riches and who comes across an underground betting and cricket-IPL spot fixing network which has funds in excess of Rs. 500 crores. The scheme is run by Arumuga Chettiyar (Jayaprakash), who owns an underground theatre. Vinayak romances Chettiyar’s daughter Sanjana (Trisha) in order to gain valuable information into the operation.
Vinayak teams up with several young folk to get his hands on the money while Prithviraj (Arjun), who is a CBI officer in charge of the anti-betting squad always seems to be a step ahead of them. The last 20 minutes or so sums up the film.
Ajith’s screen presence and aura is such the inconsistencies in screenplay are forgiven. His impeccable style with a salt and pepper look a la George Clooney is a treat to watch.
The actor who gets a chance to don a negative character after a long gap shines and sweeps you off your feet.
Arjun lives up to his reputation of `Action King’ tag. A pretty looking Trisha appears in a few scenes and a song and vanishes.
For that matter all the female leads Anjaili, Lakshmi Rai and Andrea are reduced to mere cameos. The second half of the film travels at jet speed with several unexpected twists and turns.
The background score of Yuvan Shankar Raja is good while two of the songs are peppy and hummable. Sakthi Saravanan’s new tone is not very pleasing but is tolerable. Watch out for the behind-the scene end title cards which are superb! A mass masala entertainer strictly for Ajith fans!
CAST: Ajith, Arjun, Trisha, Jayaprakash, Lakshmi Rai, Anjali
DIRECTOR: Venkat Prabhu
Source: Deccan Chronicle (Dated: 3-9-2011)