'Mei' aims to expose dishonest and corrupt medical professionals but the execution has no mystery to it, right from the first frame.

Mei review Aishwarya Rajesh-Kishore star in insipid medical thriller
Flix Kollywood Friday, August 23, 2019 - 18:24
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The word ‘mei’ in Tamil translates to ‘truth’. It also has another meaning - ‘the body’. Director SA Baskaran’s Mei is a mystery with a dated story and a message that we’ve heard in almost ALL the films made on medicine till date.

At its core, Mei aims to expose dishonest and corrupt medical professionals, but the execution has no mystery to it right from the first frame.

The film stars Aishwarya Rajesh, debutant Nicky Sundaram (also the film’s producer - Sundaram Productions) and Kishore in important roles. Mei begins with an abduction, a young woman boards an auto to go home late in the night - and jumps to another timeframe, a month later.

Nicky plays Abhinav, an NRI who comes to live with his uncle, who runs a pharmacy in Chennai. On his arrival, it is made clear that he’s here to cope with some trauma he’d gone through in New York. Although he does not call himself a doctor, he finds his way around the pharmacy too well to raise doubts.

Aishwarya Rajesh plays Uthra, a medical representative who lives in a working women’s hostel. The two of them meet through an incident involving a hurt pedestrian (Charle VTM), with Uthra deciding to help the latter trace his lost daughter.

People go missing and there’s a suspicious racket going on in a hospital. One of the main protagonists becomes a suspect and goes on the run, with help from others. No points for guessing where the film might go from here. There’s the corrupt cop Karunakaran (Ajay Ghosh) who tries to foil the efforts of his superior, the sick but good cop, Muthu (Kishore). As he gets close to solving the case, Muthu is faced with a dilemma that could very well affect his own image in the department.

The film gives us very little information about the characters except what they are doing at present. Abhinav, a doctoral student, has not been able to touch the scalpel ever since he lost his mother on the operation table; Uthra had no family growing up and Inspector Muthu, who barely speaks, had a recent heart surgery (we’re shown his scar as he buttons up). Apart from these details, we don’t know much about any of these characters to care enough when they face trouble. Aishwarya Rajesh does what she can with her role, but has very little screen time.

The film’s narrative is also weakly tied together, and it barely pulls through the 2 hour runtime. There’s no mystery in a story when all the characters and their actions are predictable. The placement of songs in Mei seems forced, and the director could have done without them.

Even in all its haste, Mei manages to tell us that the woman who was abducted in the first shot is of “good character”, no bad habits and nothing scandalous. Such attention to detail, yawn.

Two other details that the makers didn’t miss: One, Abhinav is tall and hence this presents them with a fantastic opportunity for some of the most-original body shaming jokes (not). Two, milk as much melodrama as possible in the climax sequence. Might seem unresolved but with all that wailing who is going to notice?

To tell the reader the mei, although the film  had a well-meaning plot-line, it fails to make anything out of it.

Disclaimer: This review was not paid for or commissioned by anyone associated with the series/film. TNM Editorial is independent of any business relationship the organisation may have with producers or any other members of its cast or crew.

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