Namma Veettu Pillai movie review: Pandiraj doesn’t bank entirely on Sivakarthikeyan’s ‘saleability’, and that’s the best thing about Namma Veettu Pillai.
Namma Veettu Pillai movie cast: Sivakarthikeyan, Aishwarya Rajesh, Anu Emmanuel, Bharathiraja, Natty
Namma Veettu Pillai movie director: Pandiraj
Namma Veettu Pillai movie rating: 3 stars
Namma Vettu Pillai is not a great film, but Pandiraj gets many things right. Nothing new – it’s a lot you’ve seen – brotherly spirit, mother-son spirit, clichéd romance, ego clashes, melodrama, conflict between in-laws and adversaries’ heroes / triumphs.
Arampan (Sivakarthikeyan) is extremely protective of his sister Thulasi (Aishwarya Rajesh). No, they are not for blood relatives. You get their backstories later. Thulasi shares an uneasy relationship with her extended family. What happens when she decides to marry Iyenar (Nati) forms the rest of the story. It reminded me of the recently released Shivappu Panjal Pachai, which I did not like.
Pandiraj does not bank solely on the ‘salability’ of Sivakarthikeyan, and this is the best thing about Nama Vettu Pillai. It is more of a Pandiraj film than Sivakarthikeyan – which was not the case with Mr. Local and Seema Raja.
There are a lot of similarities between Pandiraj’s previous outing Kadikutty Singam and Namma Vettu Pillai. Both have very large star casts, emotional moments, generic revenge subplots, lungi-sporting men, but Sivakarthikeyan is better than Karti-starrer in terms of film writing and presentation.
Nama Veetu Pillai is as much about the weaknesses in Nayak as the injustice done to him by Iyer. The film comes together when the story builds on the bond that Arampan shares with his mother (played by Archana) and Thulasi. Although Namma Vettu Pillai revolves around the character of Sivakartikeyan, she is not proud. This is why the film works Arampan is a self-made man and respects women. Sivakarthikeyan is very well liked through every scene.
The excerpts associated with Sivakarthikeyan and Aishwarya Rajesh are moving forward and make you original to their characters. Thankfully, like Seema V Raja, Nama Vettu Pillai’s usual silly comedy tracks between Sivakarthikeyan and Sori. Pandiraj keeps the writing simple, free and clean.
The list of characters in the film is long, but each has a memorable role – be it Archana, director Bharathiraja, Vela Ramamurthy or Samuthirakani.
But the problem is that the film does not rise above the usual family drama. This could have been a lot better as Pandiraj avoided a few things – including an unnecessary role played by Yogi Babu.
Like any other rural drama, Namma Vettu Pillai also has an ‘act’ when a girl collides with puberty. And, towards the end this is the customary panchayat scene. Elements such as these may appeal more to B and C center audiences.
But what bothered me was the role of Anu Emanuel. There is something uncertain about her characterization. She aspires to be a collector, but no one, including the audience, takes her seriously. During a conversation, she questions Arpon whether she wears leggings or does not wear lipstick. Discussing such kind of not-relevant things in an important point of the film dampens your mood. I’m not asking for a “solid, sensible” romantic track. Something superficial, at least, will have to be done.
Namma Vettu Pillai has gallery moments to play – but that’s all right. Once a director establishes what he or she wants to do, as a viewer, you are ready for it. Pandiraj shows what he wants you to see and goes through every emotion, which makes the characters reach the audience.
Pandiraj, along with Namma Vettu Pillai, proves once again that they can make commercial films, which strike a raga all along. This is the case with commercial cinema. You know what you are going to say. But the challenge is how do you present the same story in a different way.
Also, I like how Pandiraj uses his film to criticize certain things in our lives. It is not really about raising an issue or offering a solution, but living with it.
D Imman’s background score and songs are a huge strength for Namma Vettu Pillai. Sid Sriram weaves magic with the song Anke Kudve Porakanam. This is a fixed earworm and once heard it will be on the loop.
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