I am not a Tamil film buff but I wanted to watch '3', just to see if the film would live up to even half the hype that 'Kolaveri di' managed to create. That said I know that we should judge a film on its own merit and not on the basis of a fun (soup) song that went viral. Even on its own, it's very clear that Aishwarya had no idea whether she wanted to make a romantic film or a tragedy at the onset.
The film's first half is an endearing love story, where teenagers Ram (Dhanush) and Janani (Shruti) fall in love with each other. It's actually amazing how convincing 28-year-old Dhanush is as a schoolboy. The love story holds the film together in the first half as their love blossoms and they decide to marry despite familial opposition. There's an element of suspense that underlines the first half when you realize that Ram is dead and Janani has no idea what happened.
However, the second half is a long drawn saga with no romance, no suspense, no redeeming element whatsoever. While Aishwarya might have thought that she was writing an Oscar-winning script for her husband, nothing prepares you for the agonizing pain the second half inflicts on the viewer. There is little thrill and you suddenly realize that you are watching a tragedy. You hope against hope that some twist in the plot will you put you out of your misery but that never happens and the movie keeps spiraling downwards.
Dhanush is in his elements for the most part but the 'Kolaveri di' song looks much better in the video than in the film. Shruti is good in parts but overacts in some of the more emotional scenes. Aishwarya fails to translate the script to tell a compelling story. She handles the romantic moments with ease but the suspense part definitely needed a more deft hand. She should have probably just stuck to a simple story for her first time.