Synopsis: A young man haunted by his actions in the past gets caught in the rivalry between two gangsters.
Review: Given the good run that Vijay Sethupathi has had this year, it is only natural that the law of averages catches up with him. And it does with Rekka, a half thought-out action film that seems to have been made rather hastily. The film has been built up as the actor’s entry into mass hero territory, even though SU Arunkumar’s Sethupathi got there first, and in style.
Vijay Sethupathi plays Siva, a brave young man who helps love jodis get together when they face opposition from their families. That is how he crosses the path of David (Harish Uthaman), a gangster in Kumbakonam, whose bride he saves from marriage. And David decides to have his revenge on the eve of Siva’s sister’s wedding, by forcing the latter to kidnap Bharathi (Lakshmi Menon), the daughter of a powerful minister in Madurai, and the fiancée of his Coimbatore-based rival Chezhiyan (Kabir Singh).
During its first half an hour or so, until Siva agrees to kidnap Bharathi to save his sister’s wedding, Rekka promises to be an edge-of-the-seat action entertainer with moves and countermoves, but by the time it ends, we only see a shambolic mess. And Rathinasiva’s set-up — two rival gangsters, one intrepid hero, a past that haunts him — is quite promising, along with the prospect of seeing Vijay Sethupathi as an action hero.
But once Siva steps foot in Madurai, things start getting progressively bad and actions that we are meant to be considered as heroic come across only as childish. We see Siva thinking out moves before making his attempt to kidnap the girl, but the way his plan is executed on screen feels far-fetched and laughable. The villains, too, are so ineffective. There is a nod to Ghilli, which also had a scene involving one man rescuing a girl from a crowd of henchmen, and it only makes the difference more felt.
As for Bharathi, she simply comes across as a strong contender for Loosu Ponnu of the Year title. And we get tonally deaf duets, where both the leads seem distinctly uncomfortable.
Even in the second half, we expect the flashback showing what haunts Siva to resonate with us, but even that disappoints, by being too lengthy. And this angle is brought back into the narrative set in the present in an unconvincing way. For an action film, Rekka hardly lands any punch.