Kathakali is a 2016 Indian Tamil-language action-thriller film directed by Pandiraj, starring Vishal and Catherine Tresa. Co-produced by both Pandiraj and Vishal, Kathakali released on 14 January 2016. The Telugu dubbed version with the same title was released on 18 March 2016.
Amudhavel (Vishal), after spending 5 years in the United States, returns to Cuddalore for his marriage to his long-time girlfriend Meenu Kutty (Catherine Tresa). He is forced to invite to his marriage a local don Thamba (Madhusudhan Rao), despite a previous history between them. Thamba was responsible for dragging Amudhavel and his elder brother Gnanavel (Mime Gopi) to jail 5 years ago on a false charge after Gnanavel, who worked in Thamba’s fishing business, decided to leave Thamba and start his own fishing business. Thamba was also responsible for chopping off the leg of Amudhavel and Gnanavel’s father Rajarathinam when he had tried to intervene in the fight between Thamba and his sons, confining him to a wheelchair. To escape from Thamba and his gang and not cause any more harm to his family, Amudhavel had emigrated to the USA.
While Amudhavel is in Chennai doing wedding shopping with Meenu Kutty, he gets the news that Thamba had been killed the previous day. Unfortunately for Amudhavel, he is soon suspected of murdering Thamba due to their enmity. Thamba’s henchmen set Amudhavel’s house on fire, forcing Gnanavel and his family to go into hiding. Inspector Saravana Vadivel (Sreejith Ravi), a cruel and merciless police officer, is assigned to bring Thamba’s killer to justice. Since Amudhavel is the prime suspect, Vadivel orders him to present himself at Cuddalore the next day and prove his innocence, failing which he will be considered as the murderer of Thamba and will be thrown into jail. Amudhavel leaves for Cuddalore at midnight, with policemen heavily guarding the bus and route in which he is travelling to prevent him from escaping.
Amudhavel manages to escape from the police at Puducherry and meets up with Gnanavel and his family. Amudhavel and Gnanavel then leave for Cuddalore to meet Vadivel. They soon find out that Vadivel has no intention of hearing their story and is determined to throw them into prison. They escape from Vadivel and the police. While on the run, Amudhavel finds out that Vadivel himself is behind the death of Thamba. Vadivel had been humiliated in front of his wife by Thamba, because of which he had decided to take revenge on Thamba by sending men to kill him and then framing his death on Amudhavel. Amudhavel confronts Vadivel, forcing him to reveal that he was the murderer of Thamba in front of Thamba’s teenage son, who then kills him.
In the end, it is revealed to the audience that, though Vadivel had plotted to kill Thamba, the real murderer of Thamba was none other than Amudhavel. Amudhavel, who was determined to take revenge against Thamba for the atrocities he committed against him and his family, had stabbed Thamba and escaped before Vadivel’s men arrived and further stabbed a dying Thamba to death.
Directed by Pandiraj
Produced by Pandiraj & Vishal
Written by Pandiraj
Starring Vishal, Catherine Tresa
Music by Hiphop Tamizha
Edited by Pradeep E Ragav
Production Pasanga Productions & Vishal Film Factory
Distributed by Sri Thenandal Films
Release dates 14 January 2016
Running time 125 minutes