Thambi - The guessing game is on but sans the tension!
You can draw n number of parallels for Thambi with Jeethu Joseph's earlier blockbuster Drishyam/Paapanasam. This film too revolves around a family and a secret that is waiting to be unearthed. But there we had a dead body and what ensued was a cat and mouse game between the hero and the police. Over here there is an impersonation and the rest of the film is about the need for this and who is the mastermind behind this elaborate plan.
Thambi, much like Drishyam, is deliberately paced in a certain fashion. There is no real rush in the first half as we get introduced to the various characters. But right through we are never really completely into the narrative or the characters. There is a sense of aloofness. The suspense is pretty much there and we are eager in deciphering it and play the guessing game but there is really no tension as such.
Kaarthi reiterates that he is a capable performer. Always keeping it subtle, he delivers another performance that covers a range of emotions. Sathyaraj is pretty good with an aura of mystery surrounding his character and Jyothika has relatively less to do in the film. We sense an indifference in the performance to certain revelations in the film but this does sort of make sense after the big reveal in the climax.
Thambi is one of those films that doesn't have much to complain about but the film never really sucks you in. Twists keep piling up in the second half and this keeps it interesting. But there is never really that single 'wow' moment that makes you sit up.
A reasonably engaging thriller that keeps you occupied in your seat but not at the edge of it.