Mouli’s Nala Damayanthi is a clean comedy with some warm moments but leaves you with somewhat mixed feeling. The plot is too much fret and froth about nothing other than making the Australian police and immigration department look like a set of idiots. The screenplay is a mess as it hops between Thathamangalam a village near Palakkad and Melbourne. Still thanks to Maddy, Nala Damayanthi is watchable and Mouli’s intentions are honourable to wallop out some fun and frolic out of Kamalhassan’s wafer thin story line and shoestring budget.
Ramji is an uneducated, innocent village bumpkin who is a good Iyer cook. When he is not able to give the promised dowry for his sister, he takes up the offer to go to Australia and be a cook for some rich Chettiar there. After a hilarious air travel he lands in Melbourne to find that the Chettiar is dead and to make things worse he loses his passport and visa.
Thanks to his stars he bumps into another Tamilian ( Sreeman) who owns his own restaurant and his wife (Anu Hassan). Their spastic son takes an instant liking for Ramji and he becomes a cook and stays with them. But soon the immigration department takes him into custody and the only way out is to get into a marriage of convenience with Damayanthi (Geetu Mohandas), a Srilankan Tamilian who is an Australian citizen. But she is already engaged and agrees for this marriage to make a few dollars.
The rest of the film is how the Australian police and immigration are on Ramji’s trial and how he blunders due to his innocence. Kamalhassan makes a cameo appearance along with his Sandiyar gang, which is the surprise packet in the film. Maddy as Ramji does a sparkling act and makes you laugh especially those scenes in the plane. Newcomer Geetu Mohandas is ok. Music by Ramesh Vinayagam disappoints but the camera of debutant Siddharth has etched the tourist destinations in Australia well.
Verdict: Comedy Caper