Karthi Sivakumar, having started his career as an assistant director to filmmaker Mani Ratnam, made his big acting debut in Paruthiveeran which was critically acclaimed. He went on to prove his mettle and carve his own path with films such as Naan Mahaan Alla, Madras, and Kaithi. Here we list out seven of his career-best performances.
After making his solid debut with Maanagaram a few years ago, Lokesh Kanagaraj returned strongly with Kaithi, a relentless, punchy action film that has its heart in the right place. On paper, it’s is a story that spans across a single night and it follows events that happen in four hours. In unarguably one of his best on-screen avatars, Karthi never gets projected as the hero but he still makes one root for him with his solid performance.
With the untimely demise of his father, Sulthan sets off on a mission to reform his father’s henchmen and save a village. The rest of the story uncovers his journey henceforth. Sulthan is directd by Bakkiyaraj Kannan.
It was extremely gutsy of Karthi to pick Paruthiveeran as his debut film. Not only did he experiment with something off-the-beaten-track, but he also made a strong impact with his arrival. Centered on a brash, foul-mouthed young man who dreams of getting locked up in Madras jail, the film allowed Karthi to showcase his range so early on in his career. Karthi’s unabashed performance fetched him many awards.
Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru
Karthi plays an honest officer in the thriller, which is based on a real-life police operation conducted by the Tamil Nadu cops in the early 2000s. The film was directed by H Vinoth, who had delivered a very honest film without fear or favour. And it has Karthi delivering one of the best performances of his career.
Naan Mahaan Alla
Suseenthiran directed Naan Mahaan Alla could be easily written off as your regular masala pot-boiler. The film feature Karthi in the role of a happy-go-lucky guy whose life revolves around his simple middle-class family. But the film is a thriller inspired by some shocking real incidents. It saw Karthi deliver a very raw performance of a guy who sets out to avenge the death of his father by a local gang. The movie was lauded for its taut narration and highly realistic stunts. A decade since its release, the film still has a very large fan base.
Madras, from director Pa Ranjith, gives us a realistic peek into the lives of middle-class families in a housing board in Vysarpadi, north Madras. The film is about how politicians use their egos to leverage the lives of common people and provoke them to promote the culture of violence, which is prevalent in the country even today. In Madras, Karthi’s performance is easily his next best after his National award-winning debut flick, Paruthiveeran.
M Muthiah’s rural action-drama Komban may not as good as the aforementioned films but it sure managed to showcase Karthi in a very different dimension. Sporting a thick handlebar mustache and dhoti, the film saw Karthi play a good-hearted village ruffian to a tee. Not many actors can convincingly pull off rural-based characters in Tamil cinema as comfortable as Karthi, who slips into his role with utmost ease. If not for his refreshing performance, there’s nothing worth even a discussion in Komban.
Pandiraj’s rural drama Kadaikutty Singham showcases Gunasingam, a family-loving farmer who hails from a small town, tries his best to keep his big family united despite him being misunderstood by many. However, things do not remain the same when he falls in love with the most beautiful girl in the village. Winning the heart of his disappointed family is the story of the movie.
Directed by Vamshi Paidipally, Thozha is a story of an aimless youth who lands a job at one of the richest homes. Little does he know that his interaction with the handicapped boss, Nagarjuna, and his secretary Tamanaah will change his life forever. Karthi’s role in Thozha is memorable and will leave you asking for more.