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Thodari (English: The Train) is a 2016 Indian Tamil-language action thriller film[2] co produced, written and directed by Prabhu Solomon. It stars Dhanush and Keerthy Suresh in the lead roles, while D. Imman composed the film's music.[3] The film revolves around a pantry worker who risks his own life to save his girlfriend and fellow passengers on board when the train goes out of control and hijackers enter the scene.

Thodari poster.jpg
Directed byPrabhu Solomon
Produced byT. G. Thiyagarajan
(Presenter)[clarification needed]
Sendhil Thiyagarajan
Arjun Thiyagarajan
Prabhu Solomon
Written byPrabhu Solomon
Keerthy Suresh
Music byD. Imman
CinematographyVetrivel Mahendran
Edited byLvk Doss
Distributed bySathya Jyothi Films
Release date
  • September 22, 2016 (2016-09-22)
Running time
167 minutes

Thodari was released theatrically on 22 Septemper 2016, along with a Telugu dubbed version titled Rail. It was later dubbed into Hindi as Express Khiladi in 2018.[4]



The film starts in New Delhi Railway Station where Poochiyappan (Dhanush) is a server in a railway catering company and is on duty in the New Delhi-Chennai Express. He is working along with his team members and best friend Vairam (Karunakaran) under his supervisor Chandrakanth (Thambi Ramaiah).

During the journey, he meets Saroja (Keerthy Suresh) and falls in love with her in the first sight. She is the make-up artist of the actress Srisha, and she wants to become a successful singer. Poochi tells about Saroja to Vairam who promises to help him woo her. Poochi then devises a plan, and makes her talk on the phone to a great poet Vairamuthu, who is actually Vairam. However, he soon realises that Saroja is not good at singing from any angle though continuing to support her. Saroja remains close to Poochi as she wants to enter the singing industry without knowing the true fact.

The train then stops at Jhansi where Central Minister Rangarajan (Radha Ravi) boards the train along with his two bodyguards. One of them, Nandhakumar (Harish Uthaman) doesn't get well along Poochi and Saroja. He also gets humiliated by the minister in front of Poochi and he wants to take revenge. Poochi asks him to apologize to Saroja for hitting her earlier to which he agrees in order to get his lost gun back. He soon realises that the gun is with the minister and not with Poochi and Saroja. He vows to murder them. Meanwhile, at Nagpur Jn. few robbers board the train without the knowledge of anyone as the driver celebrates his retirement.

Next morning, Srisha's mother spots Saroja along with Poochi and asks him to call singer Vairamuthu in front of them which leads to the truth. Saroja, now devastated asks him never to show his face again. When he tries to apologize her, he is confronted by Nandhakumar, who locks him in a room. The train is stopped midway after hitting some wild bulls, the reason for which was blamed upon the assistant driver who failed to alert the driver due to his sobriety. Nandhakumar tries to attack Saroja but she escapes. Due to a fight between the guard of the train and the assistant driver, a green flag was waved. The driver notices and thinking that the assistant driver has fully checked the brakes' connection, he starts the train. As the train starts accelerating, Saroja is unable to board the passenger compartment in the moving train so she boards on the engine. At the same time, the guard and the assistant driver fall off the train which leaves them behind. A message is passed onto the railway administrator that the guard is not on the train. However, the driver, numb from thinking of the incident does not hear it. After a few moments, the driver dies of a heart attack, and while falling, pushes the controls forward making the train speed up, which is watched by Saroja much to her horror. The train starts to skip stations much to the alarm of the station masters and the railway administrator. At the same time, the burglars attack the passengers, and order not to stop the train. The passengers get terrified due to the high speed. Poochi then overpowers Nandhakumar and attempts to save Saroja. He kills all the burglars and gives Saroja a walkie talkie for communication. Nandhakumar tries to kill Poochi but is himself killed by the edge of an oncoming rail tunnel.

News spreads like fire that the train driver is dead and the train is hijacked. Many mistake the robbers for terrorists and Saroja as their leader. Officers from the police and railway administration are given responsibility to bring down the train. When they realise that the train is not hijacked but out of control, they take help from Poochi and Saroja to stop the train by guiding Saroja on how to turn on the emergency brake. However, due to a short circuit earlier, the brakes do not work. They devise a plan to detach the engine from the passenger compartment. Poochi is successful after a long attempt in doing so and he jumps to the locomotive to save Saroja. Saroja realises her love for Poochi. At Chennai Central Railway Station, the whole station is evacuated as the oncoming train approaches. The locomotive crashes into the station and both Poochi and Saroja are injured, but alive. The detached passenger compartments arrive in Chennai, safe with passengers unscathed. They are interviewed by the media, and Poochi is named a national hero.



In early 2015, Prabhu Solomon approached Dhanush to play the lead role in his next film and by February 2015, the director had started pre-production work with a recce in North India.[5] Keerthy Suresh was signed to play the leading female role.

Thodari is the first Indian film that was shot entirely on a train.[6] The film's shoot took place predominantly on the Duronto Express, and the film features the lead pair travelling from Delhi to Chennai.[7] Hence, initially, a grand train set was put up at Binny Mills, Chennai during July 2015 for the film's initial schedule.[8] Production continued for sixty days straight, with the makers alternating between shooting the film in sets and on a live train.[9] Shoot progressed through the middle of 2015, with scenes also filmed in Goa and Hyderabad. In October 2015, a schedule was shot in Orissa, after which production was completed for scenes featuring Dhanush.[10][11][12] Prabhu Solomon continued to shoot further scenes featuring parallel stories throughout late 2015 and early 2016, with Ganesh Venkatraman filming scenes during January 2016.[13]


Soundtrack album by
Released06 June, 2016[14]
GenreFeature film soundtrack
LabelLahari Music
ProducerD. Imman
D. Imman chronology
Soundtrack album by
Released04 September, 2016
GenreFeature film soundtrack
LabelLahari Music
ProducerD. Imman

The soundtrack of the film is composed by D. Imman.[15] The last time he scored music for a film starring Dhanush was in 2006 for Thiruvilaiyaadal Aarambam and this is the sixth time Prabhu Solomon is collaborating with Imman.

All tracks written by Yugabharathi.

1."Adada Idhuyenna"Haricharan, Vandana Srinivasan4:52
2."Oorellaam Kekkudhey"Shreya Ghoshal, Maria Roe Vincent4:09
3."Manusanum Manusanum"Gana Bala3:34
4."Pona Usuru"Haricharan, Shreya Ghoshal4:33
5."Love In Wheels"Chinnaponnu, Nathan & Woodwinds3:03
6."Adada Idhuyenna" (Karaoke) 4:53
7."Pona Usuru" (Karaoke) 4:25
Total length:29:09
Telugu Track-List
1."Are Re Yentidhi"VennelakantiHaricharan4:52
2."Oorantha Vinnadhi"VennelakantiShreya Ghoshal, Maria Roe Vincent4:09
3."Manishi Manishi"SahithiShenbagaraj3:35
4."Poye Pranam"VennelakantiHaricharan, Shreya Ghoshal4:34
5."Love In Wheels"VennelakantiAnitha Karthikeyan3:04
Total length:20.14


  1. ^ "Dhanush's 'Thodari' cleared with celan 'U' - Times of India". Retrieved 4 December 2016.
  2. ^ Thodari release delayed in Karnataka
  3. ^ Avinash Pandian. "Dhanush next movie titled as Rail?". Behindwoods.
  4. ^ "Express Khiladi Full Movie". Hotstar.
  5. ^ SUBHA J RAO. "Dhanush, Prabhu Solomon team up". The Hindu.
  6. ^ "Thodari will be a talked about film: Prabhu Solomon". Retrieved 4 December 2016.
  7. ^ "Dhanush-Prabhu Solomon film titled 'Rail'". Retrieved 4 December 2016.
  8. ^ "Dhanush-Prabhu Solomon film shoot progressing in Chennai". Sify.
  9. ^ Avinash Pandian. "Dhanush — Prabhu Solomon project shoot begins in the outskirts of Chennai". Behindwoods.
  10. ^ Avinash Pandian. "Poochiyappan will be Dhanush's character name in Prabhu Solomon film". Behindwoods.
  11. ^ "Dhanush completes Prabhu Solomon's film!". Sify.
  12. ^ Avinash Pandian. "Dhanush — Prabhu Solomon's film is 60% complete". Behindwoods.
  13. ^ "Ganesh wraps up shooting for Prabu Solomon's film". The Times of India.
  14. ^ Thodari audio launch: what's the buzz?. The Hindu (6 June 2016)
  15. ^ "Thodari (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) by D. Imman on iTunes". iTunes. Retrieved 16 June 2016.

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