Thamizh Talkies: Rise of the underdog
The writer is a content producer and art curator
Pa Ranjith’s Sarpatta Parambarai reiterates why the ‘triumph of the underdog’ is a story we can see again and again, because it resembles our own tryst with life. The roaring success of this film also reiterates the ‘trend’ of OTT releases becoming blockbusters. Nevertheless, the whole collective viewing experience of watching the movie in a theatre is sorely missed. I wish for the day when I can walk into the theatre, first day first show, especially for a film like Sarpatta. For this film reminds us why we so love the movies. Once in a while, a film jolts you out of your own complacency and makes you question the status quo. Sarpatta is also that film which tells you what a wondrous art form moviemaking is! The narrative is breathtakingly engaging, and it draws us into its era, its world. Ranjith’s film proves that a human being is capable of pushing all limits when it comes to talent—be it the talent of those in front of the camera or that of those behind it as well. It is the magic of ‘alignment’ which happens when there is clarity in vision and execution.
We are the stories we tell ourselves. A story gains greater ground when it becomes a movie. Sarpatta is Pa Ranjith’s finest film to date, in my opinion, a film in which his ideology and craft have blended in perfect proportions, and we are served a grand emotional spectacle. Most of us are like Kabilan (a career-defining performance from Arya) waiting in the wings, for that one chance to enter the ring (of life). Every Kabilan needs a Rangan Vaathiyar (a stupendous, consistent portrayal by Pasupathi) to be able to sustain what happens when we enter the ring.
Thank you Ranjith for Neeye Oli, for reminding me that our life choices define us and no matter how far those choices push us back, we all have the indefatigable spirit to rise from any pit and claim our place under the sun. An important line gets tossed at sea by Mariamma (Dushara Vijayan is a real find) who questions why we make the mistake of mixing honour with clan-pride. It’s also a great feat to express valour and entertainment through a single character—Dancing Rose—which is now growing in momentum on social media and even being seen as 'an act of this decade'