Banner: AGS Entertainment
Producer: Kalpathi S. Aghoram
Cast: Cheran, Dipa Shah, Y. Gee Mahendra, Lakshmi Ramakrishnan, Jayaprakash, Selva, Marimuthu, E. Ramadoss, Yugendran, Avi Kapur, Manicka Vinayagam, Shruthi
No wonder superstar Rajinikanth has awarded 100% marks to celebrated director Mysskin’s cop movie Yudham Sei (Wage War), produced by Kalpathi S. Agoram under the banner of AGS Entertainment.
Unlike numerous cop movies in the past that normally travel chop-chop like a bullet train from top to bottom with templated suffocating ‘mass ingredients’ (superman stunts, punch dialogues and ‘whatever-else-can-be-added’), Yudham Sei has something very unique: a simple and classic way of unfolding the story at a comparatively slow pace WITHOUT losing the audience’s interest. Let’s say, as real as normal life! Though the film can be labeled a cop movie or a crime thriller, an interesting thing happens in the second half when the film simply “ignores” its cops and takes the form of an emotional, family thriller by addressing the anguish and dread of every common man living in a vitiated society. It gives a moment of repose for the audience to contemplate on a crucial question posed by its one of the central character Judas (Jayaprakash) at his nearing death: “What will you do to the men who gangraped your only daughter? Won’t you tear them apart?” Whatever your answers, by the second half, the film slowly leaves its identity as a cop movie and jumps tracks into a thought-provoking case study of a well-settled family which turns against the whole system. In this sense, Yudham Sei is definitely neither a pukka cop movie nor an emotional family thriller. It’s a hybrid. Is it this a new genre? Will it bear fruit at the box office or will it remain bare? Read on…
The film begins in typical Mysskin style. A young woman tries to hire an auto rickshaw at night in pouring rain, but the auto driver refuses to take her. When she starts to walk away, she sees an unconscious girl in the auto rickshaw and inquires about her. Suspicious over the whole situation, she makes a call from her mobile phone, but is attacked by the auto driver. Later, we see random cardboard boxes all over the city containing severed human hands.
Enter JK aka J. Krishnamoorthy (Cheran), a dull CB-CID cop tormented by the death of his parents in an accident and his sister’s sudden disappearance. He has been searching for his sister for three months without any result. Now he wants resign and go looking for his missing sister. His superior Chandramouli refuses to accept his resignation and insists that he start investigating the sensational case of abandoned body parts.
JK accepts the case unwillingly and forms a team, comprising sub-inspectors Prakash, Tamil (Dipa Shah) and forensics expert Judas Iscariot (Jayaprakash). While the probe is on, more severed hands are found in public places and young girls begin to disappear around the city. Is there any relation between these two events? How does JK find the links between them and trace the criminals? What is their intention? Answers to these questions form the rest of the film.
The best thing about Cheran as JK? Though he has many action scenes in the film, including an impressive fight using just a nail cutter, he performs them convincingly without turning on a super hero image. His mannerisms are apt as a troubled police officer and definitely, it’s a never-seen-before performance by him. Jayaprakash as forensic expert Dr. Judas Iscariot is convincing. Y. Gee. Mahendran as Dr. Purushothaman and Lakshmi Ramakrishnan as Annapoorni, who decide to avenge the death of their daughter, are up to the mark; Lakshmi Ramakrishnan’s performance deserves special mention. The film has neither romance nor sentiments nor masala (with the sole exception of a four minute item song by director Ameer and Neetu Chandra).
Coming to the technical parts, Sathya’s cinematography and K’s (Krishna Kumar) background score are the major highlights. Sathya’s camera angles are fantabulous and K gives remarkable support. However, K could have avoided some strange pieces of music here and there!
About the slips, it is difficult to quickly grasp how the suspects are interlinked in the story as they are too many; most of them don’t even make a proper screen presence. So one needs to pay keen attention or must watch the movie again to get a clear grasp of the plot. Second, it looks like the film is urging the victims to wage an open war (Yudham Sei) against crime that naturally violates the law and order of the land. However, this is also excusable, since super hits like Unaipol Oruvan already portrayed the same angst by a common man. Third, the dying scenes of Dr. Purushothaman and Annapoorni are not convincing. Fourth, the boy’s character is almost untouched. In spite of these petty flaws, Yudham Sei is a pretty and intelligent well-made movie, especially for open-minded moviegoers who can appreciate a good film with a good plot.