Thursday, 23 August 2018

Echcharikkai - Idhu Manidhargal Nadamaadum Idam: Just another kidnap rigmarole

There is a scene in the pre-climax of Echcharikkai - Idhu Manidhargal Nadamaadum Idam (EIMNI), where one of the antagonists, Thomas(Vivek Rajagopal) mocks at former DIG Natraj(Sathyaraj) as he seems to be a 'retired case', for which he replies like what to do, I am being called again and again for the duty. Not just this scene, but every other scene we see this 'retired' hero making a good show off and save the kidnap saga.

Having made popular yet controversial short films like Lakshmi and Maa, filmmaker Sarjun KM's first feature film comes like a cliched thriller with some mere imposition of philosophies and ideologies. Sarjun's attempts to bring in karma to his narration lack relevance. We are also shown one of the three definitions of Silappathikaram 'Oozhvinai uruthu vandhu oottum' written on a car, which is appreciable for implying it on a modern-day storyline. But, the line is only partially justified as the resolution of climax lacks substance.

However, the decision Natraj makes during a helpless situation in the climax to save his daughter, though is predictable, has made sense and strongly points out that money makes not many things. From the very beginning, Sarjun develops the relationship between the father and the daughter, on how sincerely Natraj cares for his daughter, despite EIMNI being a movie of one-day incidents.

On a parallel narration, we see how the two kidnappers have a weaker bond which is reasoned in their backstory. But, this weakness seems to be one-sided and has a better reasoning in the climax which is brilliant.

Being an innocent kidnap victim Swetha in the beginning and, as time rolls, essaying an unexpected transformation could have established a better scope of acting for Varalakshmi Sarathkumar. But, the feeble characterisation and infirm screenplay by the writer have restricted her.

The same happens with Sathyaraj, but the seasoned performer has tried to pull it off to a certain extent. Be it, the first scene where he watches 'Finding Dori' with his daughter, or during the investigation sequences, Sathyaraj with his screen presence salvages the day.

It was Kishore as David, a non-event. In this plot, David should have been with an intense characterisation among all others, but Sarjun lets us down, here.

Apart from the philosophical lag in the writing and execution, there are also a lot of logical loopholes in the screenplay. One major blunder was the number plate of the car used to kidnap. We see two different cars - one in the scene where it gets stolen and another when the kidnap happens. Even in a later part of the movie, Natraj says, the kidnappers have not taken any risk of changing the number plates.

The movie ends with a note on how fate plays with money earned in unethical ways, and how a situation makes a man an opportunist. But, Sarjun's intent gets crippled because of his weak writing.

- Santhosh Mathevan,
Chennai, August 23, 2018.

A part or complete version of this review by Santhosh Mathevan has appeared in This viewer's note is completely based on the perceptions of Santhosh Mathevan alone. This does not reflect the views of two or more people or a community. Queries and criticism shall be addressed to the writer only.