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An urban-centric thriller, fit for a remake
For a film that was made with a modest budget of Rs four crore, comprising a cast which was just up and coming, its overall collections of Rs 12 crore...
For a film that was made with a modest budget of Rs four crore, comprising a cast which was just up and coming, its overall collections of Rs 12 crore was a great highlight. 'Maanagaram', the debut film of director Lokesh Kanagaraj was released in 2017 and showcased its lead pair of Sundeep Kishan and Regina Cassandra.
The venture was placed as an action thriller film which features a complicated set of events between the lead duo and another character who is interwined in the entire issue. It mixes and matches the life of the hero in search of a job with one more job seeker and how their actions affect all of them, including the heroine.
The film is set in the metropolis of Chennai and engages the narrative among gangsters, criminals and policemen who are all chasing each other and adding to the confusion and tension which naturally arises.
Kanagaraj, who was given a critical acclaim for this film received reviews which read: 'an absorbing emotional thriller that is a must-watch" and "with a solid story, deft handling and a seamless screenplay (despite a complex script), extracting the best of performances from the entire cast, picture-perfect frames (Selvakumar), engrossing music (Javed Riaz) and crisp editing (Philomin Raj), Lokesh has weaved a captivating thriller which is not to be missed".
Another leading daily said: "Director Lokesh Kanagaraj gives us an exquisite, even-handed thriller — handsomely shot, tightly edited and propped up by a grungy score — that unobtrusively makes its points while narrating a gripping story".
Four years later, it is no wonder that its appeal has sustained itself to be remade into Hindi with new age stars who have been making a splash across both silver screens and OTT platforms. Noted cinematographer and director Santosh Sivan, who is known for working with the very big names of Indian cinema is helming this project – Mumbaikar – in Hindi.
This will be his third film in Hindi, starring Vikrant Massey and Vijay Sethupathi, (making his debut in Hindi) in over two decades. In 2001, Sivan had directed 'Ashoka' starring Shah Rukh Khan and Kareena Kapoor, followed by ' Tahaan' in 2008, which was critically acclaimed.
The film's producer Shibu Thameens is a leading cine personality of Malayalam film industry. If all of these notables combine and produce a film, half as gripping as the original, it would still be a great entertainer.