Mayakkam Enna – Review

Rarely do we see, nowadays, intense relationship drama in Tamil Cinema, which set high standards five decades back using the very same genre. Directors such as K. Balachander, K. Bhagyaraj and Visu not only ruled the industry by churning out intriguing themes in volume but also changed the face of Tamil Cinema with their mercurial ability of writing offbeat screenplays.
Along those lines, Director Selvaraghavan, who stormed into the scene in early 2000s, with Kadhal Konden, a bold insight into an orphan’s life, victimized by grueling child labor, and its lethally sensitive exposure in the real world, has been trying to raise the bar ever since with a few bizarre and uncompromising flicks such as Pudhupettai and Aayirathil Oruvan. His latest venture, Mayakkam Enna, is a snapshot of what greatness he could accomplish with a simple story and intense character byplay.
Mayakkam Enna is an emotionally charged story of a freelance photographer, Karthik Swaminathan, who has repressed dreams of becoming the icon in wildlife photography amidst enduring constant rejection and humiliation from the outside world. He is raised by his friends who support his self-indulgent attitude. They call him genius too! As his life goes by with cheap assignments, he finds his love at a point where he becomes a victim of exploitation in the very hands of who inspires him.
How does his mind work since then?
Does it consume love or hatred?
Is it still beautiful or dented?
Is it persevering or submissive?
Who better than Selvaraghavan, with aplomb, could handle the meandering journey of a self-deprecating loser seeking pleasure only in doing what little he knows? And Selva does it once again with a difference using his authentic scene-twisting and dramatic characters and engagingly provocative screenplay. The scene in which Karthik emotively alternates between pull light switches to show his different facets is sheer novelty to say the least! And that exquisite lens work of the falling leaf in the wild will create flutters in your stomach!

Love shows the genius to the world and only love can show it to the world.

Such beautiful and sensitive themes are rare to find in this increasingly alarming trend of movies plagued by worship of self-styled heroes, shallow characters, wham-bam action aided by overly ramped camera work, and Hollywood rip-offs.
Dhanush, playing Karthik, deserves a standing applause for his uncanny acting, which only serves as the fulcrum of the movie’s fragile nature. He is an asset to Tamil Cinema and how well has he grown in stature ever since that juvenile actor from Thulluvadho Ilamai. Richa Gangopadhyay, playing Yamini, though silent for most of the time, manages to express what’s needed. Her character as a vulnerable lover and a stern wife is quite complex in itself and it lends weight to carry tough situations with ease. GV Prakash’s songs and BGM are apt to the situations. Oda Oda song deserves a special mention for its catchy tune and creative video.

If you are a fan of Selvaraghavan, who has the reputation of making movies that could touch high drama at one moment and instantly fall into a trough of emotional subtlety at the next moment, then you will be enthralled to the core. Though clouded by moods of confusion, depression, desperation, hatred, betrayal, and exploitation, it manages to put a smile on your face as the end credits roll by. Such is the bittersweetness and delicateness of the story! And Selva has handled it with real care.

Mayakkam Enna – Multifaceted brilliance!


  1. Anonymous | 25th Dec 11

    Watched Mayakkam enna today Praveen. I must say that I read your review before watching the movie.

    The movie somehow gave me a feel that Selva is losing steam after Pudupettai. In my opinion Selva's best so far was and is Pudupettai.

    Mayakkam enna also failed to create magic like in 7/G Rainbow colony.

    I wonder if it was really worth such a rave review after seeing the protagonist and his gang of friends being drunk for 3/4ths of the movie. Even the sober moments lacked a pragmatic screenplay.

    Mayakkam enna is one flick in which I may not concur with your verdict of a display of 'Multifaceted brilliance' by Selva.


  2. K Praveen | 25th Dec 11

    Thanks for visiting Anon. I agree that Pudhupettai is Selva's best yet. Why I thoroughly liked the movie is that it shows how pathetic life of a genius can be at the background when all the world knows is his achievements. It's not that inspirational movie everyone awaits to see how a man struggles and through relentless efforts grows on to become a great man. It shows how love can help a depressed man come to the limelight. A pragmatic screenplay would work the opposite way such movies that travel on human psyche. But again, I totally understand why easily it could disappoint a viewer. It is a fragile movie that could potentially break in the viewer's eye before it reaches the heart. Luckily for me, it worked out 🙂

  3. cumincoriandercardamom | 5th Jan 12

    I just felt the movie did not live up to the recommendation you have given.

    Agreed that some moments were done nicely, but as a whole picture it did not come togather. There was no continuity between one scene and the next.

    I feel it is just ok

  4. Trade Printer | 6th Feb 12

    I Agree to read excellent content to use for me. By Printing

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