An Attempted Masterpiece…
Pudhupettai taglined ‘Survival of the fittest’ is rightly so by the projection of a youngster who fears “Survival” in the beginning, challenges “Survival” later and goes on to master “Survival” in the end. However, the aspect of the movie becomes entirely different after the last few frames are seen by the viewer.
Kumar is a common guy. He witnesses his dead mother killed by his father. He gets jammed by the loss. He cries and then he flees. Now he is left in the world that is open, unprotected and ruthless. He has to survive. For the next 30 minutes , a chain of very interesting scenes hit the viewer with surprises, shock and involvement. Dhanush playing Kumar stands tall with some terrific and expressive acting. Sneha playing Krishnaveni is a sex worker held by the goons who are lead by a character called Anbu of ‘Avatharam’ fame.
The scenes start rolling and for every roll, Kumar steps towards that so called stature called “Fittest”. The scene in which Kumar’s incredible GUTS is witnessed with 100 people surrounding him is simply brilliant. Followed by that, a stunt scene that has the mixture of Black, White, Color gets the viewer hooked to the seat. It’s the point where the revelation of Kumar’s extraordinary ‘survival instinct’ is shown with amazing camera work and BGM.
The movie’s first half leaves at the point where the viewer’s expectations are soaring high. However, the director takes a backward turn in the second half trying to move the viewer’s momentum backwards. What seemed to be an rolling Masterpiece after the first half transforms into a soap package in which the scope for superior filmmaking is larger actually speaking. But, in honest viewpoint, certain scenes are very unrealistic and needless.
The movie staggers into multiple directions after the marriage scene of Sonia Agarwal which arouses uncontrollable laughter from the restless crowd. Sonia Agarwal’s character is totally pointless and doesnt make a bit of sense in the movie. However, Sneha does a commendable job in delivering the required melodrama as and when needed. The scene where she stares at Dhanush after the sex, is a directorial marvel. All the supporting characters have given a tremendous performance to not spoil a good scene. Lots of scenes are carved humorous even at gruesome action points.
But some scenes in the second half, like the scene in Political Party Office, are a real treat. I strongly feel those scenes are untimely and kinda abrupt, kindling all sorts of irritation in viewers. The director also projects lots of skin show in the name of projection of reality as seen from his last 4 movies but it doesn’t give broad viewership.
The point to be pondered upon is the final 15 minutes of the movie. The director, who has convincingly created a wonder until that, has played all sorts of spoilsport which is worsened further by some bad screenplay. The BGM on the whole could have been better. I feel it is really unoriginal and misappropriate in ‘second-half scenes’. Shades of ‘Godfather’ track is seen at some points. Where is the song “Oru Naalil” that created sensation all round in the recent Tamil albums??? The song “Pul Pesum” is not worthy of listening and viewing as well.
In spite of this confused second half of the movie, Dhanush’s performance is simply amazing and continues to amaze until the last frame of the movie. A viewer who is given so much of expectations in the first 120 minutes, is let down in the last 45 minutes with lots of bad screenplay. The Director has conveyed what he wanted to by some powerful scenes in the first half and some points in second half. However, the beauty of completion is a major lacklustre. The whole character of Kumar becomes a confusion to a common viewer with those dragging and misleading scenes.
Movie-masterpiece like Nayagan, Moonram Pirai are called so, only by packaging the entire concept in one scene called Climax. Beauty of presentation lies right there. This movie has missed it there and missed it badly. However, undeniably, the effort of the director to have provided scope for such powerful filmmaking amidst hopeless Tamil movies is very much laudable. Kudos Selvaraghavan!!!
Pudhupettai – A solemn attempt to make a Modern Masterpiece…But not quite there!!!!
Cinematography by Arvind Krishna
Climax and misdirecting second-half scenes
Sonia Agarwal’s character