The advertisements for this movie “Madrasapattinam” (மதராசபட்டினம்) were brilliant – the 1947 days scenes shown in TV Ads, titbits about that period in Radio Ads and so on. It created a good amount of buzz around the movie and the curiosity to watch it. Last weekend, I went for this movie in Mayajaal. I took a (big) risk by taking my 7-year-old son to this movie, which I haven’t done earlier (other than Children movies/cartoons), surprisingly he enjoyed this movie especially seeing the old Madras and he was thrilled.
Director Vijay has told interestingly an otherwise usual love story, the old Madras theme has helped him a lot in the effort. The story as such feels greatly inspired by a combination of Titanic and Lagaan. Throughout the movie, the pace, scenes, dialogue are all well done. At many of the places, you can guess what is likely to happen but nowhere you feel bored.
The Art Director V.Selvakumar and Cinematographer Nirav Shah have done a superb work by recreating the Old Madras in front of us. For example, the olden day “Spencer Plaza”, “Tram” are all realistic recreations of the gone era. To a large extent, this has helped to transport the audience to that time – you can feel the pace of the life in those days. Both Arya and Amy Jackson have done their respective roles well, Arya comes out well in the Kusti fight scene – his hard work is clearly visible.
The Director has left his touches in places – like in the scenes of a man sleeping all the time, but suddenly getting up in the crucial fight scene; In the scene (which happens in the height of independence struggle) where the labourers are meeting to decide their course after the British Governor orders the removal, voices are heard saying let us avoid confrontation. There are misses as well – like in the midnight of 14th August when independence was got, why will the police keep going after 2 lovers, I am sure they had bigger problems on that day especially who they are answerable to?
Overall, a fine work, don’t miss.