Marainthirunthu Parkkum Marmam Enna Review: Well-intentioned, but fizzles too early
Rahesh, who earlier made Thambikottai(2011), returns with a film that has its heart in the right place, but whose idea of justice is too far-fetched for its realistic tone
Maraindhirundhu Paarkum Marmam Enna (MPME) begins with a voice-over by Radha Ravi that goes: "Indha ulagathula modhalla vandhadhu thirudan dhaan. Avana kandupudikka dhaan rendaavdha police vandhuchu. Annilerndhu innikku varaikkum police rendaavdhu edathula dhaan irukaanga (It’s only after thieves came that police did. Police have always been second)."
It seems like an intriguing start but crumbles almost immediately, when just a few scenes later, an inconsequential character mouths these same lines to a couple of corrupt cops. It’s needless repetition that adds nothing to the story. MPME, a film that tries hard to toe the line of realism, gets frequently bogged down by such contrivances.
In cinema, success of one subject spawns several of the same theme. Remember the 2016-film Metro, starring Shirish and Bobby Simha? MPME is not too dissimilar to that film, which dealt with the chain-snatching menace, the repercussions of the crime and the machinations behind it. It is not just the central theme; even certain scenes, like the gang leader Mattai (Mime Gopi) explaining the rules of chain snatching, makes you feel like MPME is a watered-down version of Metro.
Director: R Rahesh
Cast: Dhruvva, Saranya Ponvannan, Aishwarya Dutta, JD Chakravathy
The lead character, Japan (newcomer Dhruvva), is introduced in a flashback as a thief who steals from a chain-snatching gang. Barely when you have settled down for the flashback, the film returns to the present where he is inducted into the gang as its newest member. This refreshingly quick flashback and the ensuing training montages are some of the better scenes in this 114-minute film, and Achu Rajamani's loud but thumping score sets the audience up for a gritty ride. However, just as this loudness becomes unbearable after a while, the one too many flashback sequences make the film tedious. Also, the frequency of flashbacks becomes a downer because continuity in this film seems optional. A character, who is bald in one scene, appears with a head full of hair in the next and goes back to being bald in the scene after.
When there is a gang of thieves, the police can't be far behind, and here we have Dilip Chakravarthy (JD Chakravarthy), a no-nonsense cop out to clean the city off its chain-snatching menace. Bigg Boss-fame Aishwarya Dutta plays Bharathi, an aspiring cop whose reason for falling in love with Japan has an interesting subversion of the stalk-till-she-says-yes cliche.
However, MPME, as stated, suffers from the excesses syndrome, and in yet another long-drawn flashback, the filmmaker attempts another subversion of the love angle and this time, it feels like a tasteless exercise to show how creepiness transcends generations.
In a film that tries hard to sidestep cliches, director Rahesh sticks to one inescapable cliche: Saranya Ponvannan, with her usual excellent comic timing, is cast as Iyappan's (Japan's real name) good-natured and doting mother.
Somewhere in the film is also a plot twist that is quite visible from afar. It helps the filmmaker dole out one advice after the other about women's safety. While this does get preachy, the relevance of the advice cannot be denied.
Rahesh, who earlier made Thambikottai(2011), returns with a film that has its heart in the right place, but whose idea of justice is too far-fetched for its realistic tone.
Good intentions don't necessarily translate into good cinema, and Maraindhirundhu Paaarkum Marmam Enna stands testament to this.