Orange Mittai (ஆரஞ்சு மிட்டாய்) directed by Biju Viswanath is not your familiar Kollywood Cinema. There are no flashbacks, no explicit ending, no explanations of why the characters behave the way they do. It’s about an old man (Kailasam) played truthfully by Vijay Sethupathi who calls an ambulance complaining of chest pain, what happens in the ambulance journey to hospitals over the course of a day is the story. Over the day(s) a father and son bond get established between the two strangers – the paramedic (EMT) “Sathya” played brilliantly by Ramesh Thilak and the patient for unexplainable reasons. In the background is hanging a marriage decision for the love between Sathya and Kavya (played by Aashritha).
Orange Mittai tries to give its meaning to the saying “Journey is the Destination”, a Belgian film Mobile Home (2012) was the closest one I can think of that focus on a journey in recent times.
Kailasam comes out repeatedly as a tough nut, in every instance where we expect him to explain his unusual behaviour, we are only greeted with silence. He is a man with serious illness, when he gets down from an autorickshaw in the middle of the night and start to dance in the road, our emotions get muddled. We feel joyous for the life inside the old man and at the same time, we are scared for his life. The dance is a must-see performance by Vijay Sethupathi. The film runs for just under 110 minutes, I like to see if this becomes a trend to produce Tamil films that are less than 2 hours, please don’t remind me of the 3-hour films like Lingaa or Yennai Arindhaal that came in recent times.
Orange Mittai felt like watching an International Film Festival Movie, unfortunately, that’s the only success of it, if the Director had concentrated more on its core theme it could have left a bigger impact on me.