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Sivappathigaram Review

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    It's a violent raid and in the police-students clash, many students run and hide in a room next to the college canteen. Just what Shanmugaraja wanted. He sabotages the LPG cylinder in the canteen and triggers off a violent explosion and fire in which at least 40 students hiding in the adjoining room are killed and the college is in an awful state.

    Upon pressure from the ruling party, the principal acknowledges falsely to all media and the public that the tragedy was caused by negligence on the part of the canteen authorities and it was a horrible mistake - no mention of any crimes committed.

    This is when Ilango and Sathya plan revenge on this heinous crime and the people behind it. They vow to do something to change things in the system. To start with, they want the blood of the 4 politicians directly involved in the murders of the students.

    ........but there is one more minister left to die.....

    Madurai's famed Kal Alagar Thiruvizha, a festival where thousands converge and colourful, gorgeous stalls of flowers, artifacts, religious objects, shows and much more, is on full-swing. This is also the time the final victim-to-be is to visit the place. Sathya and Ilango plan their move and the Ravindran and his police teams plan theirs to stop and arrest them.

    Will the police find and capture Sathya? Does he die? Do the revenge plans of Ilango and Sathya get closure, despite police vigilance? What is the message at the end of the tale?

    These are questions answered in a beautifully sequenced set of climax action shots and MUST be watched on the big screen.

    The film is succinct and well-taken.

    Vishal has always been an action hero, but in this film, he has shown the audience that he can combine his action punches with acting skills in a role with meaning. His dialogue delivery is good and there is not fault to be found in the simple, yet heartfelt way he speaks, especially toward the end. Here he makes some notable comments: he says that times have really changed - where one only needed to hold an MBBS degree to become a doctor, now needs an MS or more to even begin. Where one could become a professor bank manager with just a PUC certificate, then needed at least a BA degree and now, and MBA degree! Standards at the workplace are just getting higher and higher and people need to have basic qualifications to prove themselves worthy. Why then is there absolutely no such standard in politics? Right now, anyone and everyone can become a hotshot politician and throw his weight about. It's free money and free power for and over the people that is used irresponsibly? Why can't something change? Why can't we ensure that our politicians are indeed worthy of their job?

    ......yedhenum seiyanum, sir, yedhenum seiyanum.....

    The romance between Sathya and Mamtha is shown beautifully. Their love is expressed in silent words and meaningful looks and it's not all running and jumping around trees. Unfortunately, since Mamtha's role has little to do with the message, she is not pivotal to the film and is just a pretty part of Sathya's life here.

    Gopinath's cinematography is beautiful and the village environs are shown in all their richness - the blue skies are bluer, the green fields are lush and one can almost imagine oneself right there. The Madurai Kal Alagar Thiruvizha has especially been shot fabulously, when the festival was actually on, and the life and colour of the event has come out great on screen.

    Vidyasagar's music is noteworthy. He has brought the lilting folk songs of South India beautifully to the mainstream audience. The song Atrai Thingal is an especially good song.

    The director Karu Palaniappan has, quite simple, made a good film. He has combined the look and colour of an art film with an intense and responsible public-awareness message, but has toned it all down to a palatable film where there are all the elements of a commercial entertainer with a message. Everything has been subtly packaged and it is not over-dramatised or over-trivialised.

    The producers, Screenplay Entertainment, have made a good movie. Period. Mr. Mohan Radha and Mr. B.S. Radhakrishnan have already been veterans in bringing tele-serials into everyone's homes and this first film of theirs too will prove noteworthy in their future work. Moreover, on a behind-the-scenes perspective, the company is endeavouring to run like any other professional corporate in their schedules and working methods.

    All in all, the movie is worth watching and will prove to be a good film for the careers of all involved - from Vishal to Karu Palaniappan to Screenplay Entertainment.

    Sivappathigaram will stay in people's minds and hearts.

    Cast- Vishal, Mamta Mohandas, Raghuvaran, Manivannan, Kanja Karuppu.
    Banner - Screenplay Entertainments
    Producer - MR Mohan Radha, BS Radhakrishnan
    Director - Karu Palaniappan
    Music director - Vidyasagar

    Date of Release - 24th November, 2006.

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