Amithabh Bachchan’s Don inspired at least four remakes. The first was the Rajnikant starrer in 1987, next came the SRK version and then the Tamil and the Telugu versions. but of hem all if I was to single out one movie for its style quotient it will be without a doubt the Tamil Billa starring Ajith. No wonders this was Ajith’s biggest hit and also the biggest Tamil grosser for the year of its release. its awesome to look at and even though we know the story and all possible permutation combinations yet there is an eerie feeling about it.
Ajith plays David Billa a suave and ruthless executioner who is as elusive as he is merciless. But as fate would have it he is killed in an encounter with the cops. DSP Jay decides to put in Velu(Ajith), a look alike of Billa to get his hands on Jagdish, the master mind behind Billa. But everything doesn’t go according to plan and soon Velu finds himself hunted by both the law as well as his accomplices.
The story moves at a brisk pace and its actually a journey from one action set piece to another. There is also a femme fatal in the form of Sasha(Nayantara), who is hell bent on killing Billa as he murdered her sister and her to be husband. The rest of the story remains faithful mostly to the originals of the 80s and yet succeeds to pump in enough gusto to go on for a two hour plus run time. There is enough Masala to keep you interested. But the USP of the movie as I said earlier was style quotient. Ajith brings in a unique charisma to the character of Billa. a devilish charm. we are all too familiar with the Big B and Rajnikant. The fact that this was my first Ajith film paved the way for no preconceived image and worked wonders for me. This was the first time that for the initial first half I could actually take the protagonist to be evil. Its very difficult to hate someone like SRK, Big B or Rajni as we have seen them as heroes forever. But for Ajith it was a different story and this fact made this movie even more worth while for me.
Highly recommended for all those who enjoyed the earlier version and even for those who didn’t.