The film starts off with a bang but is let down by the last minute tear-jerkers inserted haphazardly into the climax.

Sivappu Manjal Pachai review Entertaining first half let down by melodramatic climaxScreenshot from YouTube/ Think Music India
Flix Film Review Friday, September 06, 2019 - 18:52

Director Sasi’s latest film, Sivappu Manjal Pachai, starring actors Siddharth and GV Prakash, encapsulates its protagonists’ change of relationship on screen in its very title. While the movie begins with an emotional tribute to the relationship between orphans Madan (GV Prakash) and his sister Rajalakshmi (Lijomol Jose), it soon morphs into a clash of male egos.

Madan, an unlawful street racer who dodges cars through traffic in Chennai’s roads, inevitably crosses paths with Rajasekar (Siddharth), a no-nonsense traffic cop. The racer’s activities are unquestionably illegal but Rajasekar too, instead of merely following the law, commits an excess by humiliating the young man for his crime. A moral dilemma is presented to the audience, who will now have to choose a side.

But this escalated tension soon gives way to comic relief when Madan finds out that Rajasekar is his sister’s potential groom. What follows is a series of hilarious efforts by Madan to stop the upcoming marriage, despite his sister clearly being besotted with Rajasekar.

Siddharth and GV’s chemistry crackles on screen as their egos battle it out. From childish pranks to potentially life-threatening sequences, the two are constantly trying to one up each other.

And just when you think that Rajalakshmi’s character has been reduced to a doll that two children are fighting over, a voice of reason comes in the form of Madan’s girlfriend Kavin (Kashmira Pardeshi). In fact, throughout the movie, much to the director’s credit, any sexist notions propagated by the two protagonists is countered by women who shine light on the ‘filth’ in their minds.

While the first half of the film is entertaining and refreshing, the second is dragged out by emotions that smack you in the face out of nowhere.

While Madan is having his own problems with bike crews across the city, Rajasekar has to deal with a powerful Gutkha smuggler. And as these personal fights culminate into a joint battle in the climax, the director has used liberal doses of melodrama, leaving you drowning in an over-the-top ‘maama-machan’ sentiment.

The film starts off with a bang but is let down by the last minute tear-jerkers inserted haphazardly into the climax.

The women actors, right from Lijomol, Kashmira and Dheepa Ramanujam to the artist who plays Madan’s aunt, have all performed very well. When they appear on screen, they carry the scenes on their shoulders effortlessly.

Siddharth makes for a dapper cop while GV is a convincing rebel and racer. The races keep you on the edge of your seats for the most part, except in scenes where the VFX remind you more of Road Rash than Chennai lanes.

Even the music is largely used to carry the narrative forward. And while Siddharth and GV have outdone themselves in their respective roles, even their acting calibre falls short of the high octane emotions the director seeks to deliver.

For the audience, the movie starts with a green signal, as they are ready to race with the characters, and ends with red, as they hope the melodrama would just stop.

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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