Arun (Vikram Prabhu) past catches up with his present when he and his friends start a company to bring together those in love by setting them up in pre-planned scenes. What happens when he is forced to set up his true love (Keerthy Suresh) to fall for another guy?
If you go to see Idhu Enna Maayam with Vijay's earlier film, Saivam in mind, you'd come back dejected. The trick is to see the film for what it is - a full-of-cliches breezy romcom.
The film opens with quick-cut scenes of Arun in his current scenario. His friends, a group that's involved in theatre, too, pop in and out of the frame, setting the story in the present. When the group comes across a dud of a guy trying to express his love to a girl, juxtaposed cleverly with a similar movie scene running on a telly in a cafe, Arun gets this idea to make what they all are passionate about - theatre and drama - their profession. So, they all start setting up elaborate scenes to bring together 'romantically challenged' people in love. So far, so good; you wait to see director Vijay live up to the promise he showed in Madrassapattinam and Saivam. And so, even if the odd, elusive feeling that you've seen something similar (read Ilayathalapathy Vijay in Shahjahan) flashes by, you want to push it aside and enjoy the scenic visuals, and those cleverly spaced close-ups; you want to see what happens next. The pacing is good, and a semi-serious, often broody Arun and friends manage to elicit a few laughs.
And then, the movie goes into flashback mode at a point that forces Arun to contemplate his college days, and the love he lost, and that is when the plot starts to disintegrate. What one thought might be parallel stories at the start (the present, the past, and the varied play scenes the cast sets up), converges into a cliched excuse of misunderstood love. To top it, though debutant Keerthy looks like a collegian, one does find it tough to accept Vikram as one. That apart, the cliches just pile on, and the plot starts dragging its feet as the pace slows down considerably. In fact, when the movie cuts back to the present again, and Vikram starts to deliberately mess up the staged scenes, for a moment, our sympathy actually veers towards the other guy, who is for sure going to lose his money, and his love. And by the time the 'twist' comes, you're wishing Vikram just get over with it. For, from the moment the film bangs you back into the present (well, there's a war scene of sorts playing on the TV in the background), till the end, there is no progress in the story - it's just an extended series of ploys the hero adopts to make sure his love doesn't fall in love again.
Mind you, Vikram does look good in parts - the hockey scene is one of the best in the movie, his dance steps are fluid, and he actually does the broody part better, but the problem with Idhu Enna Maayam is, instead of letting the plot rule screen and take the conclusion to another level, Vijay has tried to fit every scene, including the climax, into a pre-conceived, tried and tested template that leaves the actors no choice but to fall in line with the banality.