Cast: Aadhi, Pasupathy, Bharath, Dhansika, Anjali and others
Director: G. Vasanthabalan
Producer: T. Siva (Amma Creations)
The cat is finally out of the bag. After raising expectations and curiosity about it in the media, Vasanthabalan’s much-awaited Aravaan has finally arrived. The film is a huge challenge even for a talented film-maker like Balan as he was attempting a period-type film and getting the sets erected and the mood of the film to suit the films’ backdrop meant that he had to stretch himself to the maximum possible extent.
Movie Review : Aravaan
Aravaan Movie Gallery | Audio Launch | Press Meet
Balan’s last offering prior to Aravaan was the highly successful and critically acclaimed Angaadi Theru and, as such, expectations were huge about Aravaan which has taken a long time in the making. The film is based on the Sahitya Academy award-winning novel Kaaval Kottam.
Brace yourself for a never-before experience before you go to the theatres to watch this film: it’s not the usual commercial pot-biolers though it has the songs and fight sequences in it. The film speaks of the labourers of the State who lived in the 18th century and sweated it out getting very little in return. The start and the end may not be the way viewers would have wanted them to be; then, Balan doesn’t compromise in these aspects when he makes his films.
The film is a photographer’s delight for sure as the sequences have been beautifully choreographed. Let’s now have a look into the story. In a village set in the 18th century backdrop, Kombhoodi’s (Pasupathy) group siphons off a good deal of the village’s grain and meat in-take.
Kombhoodi’s group finds out something fishy: someone was stealing their goods while claiming to be from their own village. The search leads them to the maverick Varippuli (Aadhi) whose courage impresses Kombhoodi. On the way back to Vembur, Varippuli beomes an integral part of Kombhoodi’s thieving kothu. Though he claims to be an orphan, the villagers find out that Varippulit has an intriguing past.
Varippuli turns out to be a native of Chinnaveeranpatti and was known as Chinna. There is also a backdrop to why and how he turned into a thief: it’s a mix of betrayal, murder, deceit, mystery, love and honour. Watche the film to find out about the rest of the story.
Aadhi, Pasupathy, Dhanshika, Singampuli: each one of them has has performed excellently and have done their parts admirably well. Everybody appears to be living in the village and not acting in a film. Bharath impresses in his camoe and so does Anjali. Balan and Venkatesan, the script writer, deserve accolades of the highest order for producing such a film. The way they have brought in front of the eyes of the viewers the old Tamil Nadu is an visual extravaganza.
Aravaan is the tale of one man who chose to live, not unlike the characters from the epic Mahabharata, with honour, integrity and courag. Showing such qualities on screen without getting into cinematic and artificial world is quite a difficult task but managed well by Balan and his team. Understandably, the film moves not at a great pace which shouldn’t be complained about in view of its backdrop.
Balan hasn’t made any compromises in making his film and the film deserves rich success purely for his noble intentions. Playback singer Karthik, who debuts as music director with this film, has scored refreshing music. Siddharth’s camera-work is extra-ordinary, especially during the night sequences. The art-work takes the cake and brings the time period to life.
Aravaan is a choronicle of life which existed in the 18th century Tamil Nadu showcasing the lifestyle, humour, sorrows, loves and losses in painstaking yet interesting fashion. This is a tribute to our own history which had long been forgotten.
Go and watch it in theatres and patronize the movie in a big way!