10 Endrathukulla has all the right ingredients – Vikram, Samantha, Car chases, villains across states and colourful Nepal outdoors. Mani Rathnam alias James Bond (played by Vikram) is a crook who plays Transporter of packages, like in Fast and Furious he drives cars with superhuman skill and gets the job done before you can count ten, that’s how the film get its name. Shakeela (played by Samantha) is his driving school student (cliche warning) living in a local women’s hostel who fails to learn driving. James Bond unknowingly takes up an assignment from local criminal Doss (Pasupathy) of handing over Shakeela to the big bad guys in North India who are ready to pay Rs.1 Crore to Doss for her.
The credit roll thanked the people of Nepal for their hospitality even after the devastating earthquake they suffered, I thought it to be a customary thank you note, instead, you see a significant portion of the film to have been shot in Nepal, which is shown as a remote place somewhere in North India dominated by caste war. The first car chase by Vikram was certainly adrenalin raising and a delight to watch but from that point, it’s all downhill. Samantha in her second role as a royal warrior has played the sword fighting scenes well. The Dhaba item song “Gaana Gaana” by D.Imman is a hummable tune, but the setting feels completely artificial.
A good film is all about how well a Director manages to give life to the story he has seen in his mind. 10 Endrathukulla has a story that I am sure sounded like a sure winner in the discussion room when writer and director Vijay Milton (the famous cinematographer) presented it to Producer AR Murugadoss. Unfortunately due to sub-optimal screenplay, we are left counting the time for the film to end.