February 22 2020
‘Ispade Rajavum Idhaya Raniyum’ review: disorderly romance
18 March 2019

A film that’s just as confused and complicated as the love story it portrays

The first meeting between Gautham (Harish Kalyan) and Tara (Shilpa Manjunath) isn’t the sort that one would expect after seeing the cutely-in-love kind of posters of the two in the promotional material. He picks a fight with her a few minutes into seeing her for the first time, and drops her into a swimming pool. A little later, she’s in trouble, and he has to save her from some rowdy elements. Ironically, a few months later, when they get to know each other, she saves his number as ‘Rowdy’ on her phone.

There’s another nice little scene in the first half, and that’s when the two of them are just getting comfortable with each other. She’s wearing his jacket and bidding him goodbye. He pulls her over for what you think will turn into a ‘moment’. But he says: “Give me back my jacket.” Like he doesn’t care much about her.

Ispade Rajavum Idhaya Raniyum
  • Genre: Romance
  • Cast: Harish Kalyan, Shilpa Manjunath, Ponvannan
  • Storyline: The romance between a short-tempered guy and an indecisive girl

He soon will – Ispade Rajavum Idhaya Raniyum, as the title suggests, pretty much revolves around the dynamics between the two. It’s a format that Kollywood has done before – in films like Vinnaithaandi VaruvaayaaNeethaane En Ponvasantham and Kaatru Veliyidai as well – and Ranjit Jeyakodi’s latest offering is let down by lack of clarity about the complications in the romance.

The male lead, Gautham, a very Arjun Reddy-like character, is well performed by Harish Kalyan, but its writing is quite one-dimensional. Gautham is always one to pick up a fight, irrespective of the situation he’s in. He’s surrounded by a group of friends (Bala Saravanan and Ma Ka Pa Anand, whose funny lines don’t create any kind of stir) who make no attempt to stop him from all the violence.

Any cinematic attempt at chronicling a complicated relationship, like the one tried here, needs strong leads. It looks like director Ranjit Jeyakodi was quite content with Harish and didn’t bother much about Tara (the female lead, played by Shilpa Manjunath). Tara is a wannabe-Jessie (what Trisha played in Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa) – but the performance is nowhere near, lacking the different dimensions needed to play the complicated, indecisive female protagonist. Her take on the romance is relatable, but that doesn’t make this insipid romance attractable. The quote that kick-starts the film is: ‘The hottest love has the coldest end’. InIspade Rajavum Idhaya Raniyum, the beginning itself is cold... a character is pushed into a swimming pool. The rest of the film is in troubled waters.



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