Inga Naan Thaan Kingu Movie Review: A chaotic assembly of random ideas and weak humour

Inga Naan Thaan Kingu Movie Review: A chaotic assembly of random ideas and weak humour

The film is aiming for a chaotic energy demanded by comedies, but an incoherent story and barely working comedy make it two hours of chaotic randomness
Inga Naan Thaan Kingu(1.5 / 5)

Inga Naan Thaan Kingu begins with a prologue detailing terrorist serial bombings, which ends in a bomb threat to Chennai. Then the film introduces us to Santhanam’s Vetrivel and his wacky attempts to get married. And then new characters barge into the frame and the whole affair turns into slapstick comedy, with a hint of family drama. And before you catch a break, the film pulls the carrying-the-dead-body comedy trope and drags you along with the corpse for the remainder of the story. Such a cornucopia of randomness might work well for the kind of chaotic energy demanded by comedies. And that is precisely what Inga Naan Thaan Kingu is going for. However, the incoherent story and the barely working comedy ensures we are left with two hours of nothing but chaotic randomness.

Director: Anand Narayan
Cast: Santhanam, Priyalaya, Thambi Ramaiah, Vivek Prasanna, Bala Saravanan

Even with a group of vaguely-defined 'terrorists', Santhanam’s protagonist remains the most horrible person in the story. Vetri buys an apartment for 15 lakhs to fulfill society's (alleged) expectations for an eligible bachelor. And he aggressively hunts down a prospective bride, just so he can get a dowry of 15 lakhs to repay the money he borrowed for his apartment. The cherry on top of this convoluted sundae is the fact that he borrowed this money from a friend, whose company he works in, and who he still treats horribly. You can definitely wring humour out of a supremely unlikeable protagonist, by pointing out his flaws with a joke or two. However, the film somehow presumes we would still like him, and wants us to sympathise with him, whenever someone gives him a dose of his own medicine.

Thambi Ramaiah and Bala Saravanan play Vetri’s father-in-law and brother-in-law, respectively. They work in pairs, and are written like the dimwit-duo characters in classic comedies. While their gags are usually a hit-or-miss, their cartoonish shenanigans get progressively over-the-top only to crumble into inanity by the end. Santhanam attempts plenty of meta-humour in the film; where he references real-world happenings, his own films, comments on the casting choice of the film, the flow of its screenplay, and its similarity with other films. Some meta references are refreshing. Like when Vetri is caught by the terrorists and he looks at Gopi Prasanna’s character and says, “Ivanukku ellam double acting role kudutha ippadi thaan nadakkum.” However, after a while, the meta references reek of desperation to connect with the audience. This desperation is all the more pronounced in the scenes where Santhanam uses the word ‘cringe’ to lash out at Thambi Ramaiah and Bala Saravanan’s characters. Even before the jokes land, and even before you process them, Santhanam jumps in to tell you how ‘cringe’ it is. The modern definition of cringe has evolved to denote something that is awkward or embarrassing. By that definition, one wonders if the failed jokes are cringe or if the protagonists’ desperation to call out cringe, has ironically become cringe in itself.

The premise, the setting, the long list of supporting cast, and even the brand of wacky adventure, feels outdated. However, even with an incoherent screenplay, the dialogues and the humour could have saved Inga Naan Thaan Kingu, which is unfortunately not what happens. D Imman delivers passable tunes in his signature style but even the composer succumbs to the film’s desperation to connect with the audience, with the mashup of all the viral ‘funny’ dialogues that plays during a chase sequence. As the film haphazardly jumps from one plot thread to another, we wonder if the film has anything to say and how the title connects to the theme of the story, or if it has any theme at all. One could argue that it is best not to dissect a mainstream comedy film. In which case, at least the humour could have worked or the story should have felt like a coherent whole. What we are left with are small patches of chuckles in a two hour long succession of one random plot thread after another.

Inga Naan Thaan Kingu suffers from a muddled screenplay with random ideas stitched together with paltry humour. While the supporting characters try to make up for the weak dialogues with physical humour, a visibly uninterested Santhanam pulls down the film even further. As the film throws one gag after another, and attempts a joke with every dialogue, some lines do manage to crack a smile, through sheer statistical probability. But as the tedium sets in towards the end of the film, we remember the long patches of dull moments more than the occasional jokes that made us laugh.

Cinema Express