Sometimes...amidst all the magnificent fireworks which light up the night sky, a simple candle steals the heart. It not just serves the purpose of giving useful light, but also looks beautiful too.
Engeyum Eppothum is one such movie. Right from first frame the movie oozes with freshness and a serene calmness only to be shattered by a saddening climax. Anjali and Jai form such a lovely pairing that whenever they come onscreen it makes you smile unconsciously. After Kani (Angadi Theru) Anjali scores again as Manimegalai in this movie. A dominating yet subdued lady lead, a first for our kind of cinema i guess. Jai plays the innocent villager role to the T and all his scenes are a laugh riot. Loved the exchanges between him and Anjali. Especially the scene where she asks him to meet one police constable. After the meeting she asks him does he knows who that police constable was. He innocently replies "if he is a constable for me, will he be D.I.G for you". Believe me, the instantness of the reply was so tickling i literally laughed out loud. The way Anjali bullies him into getting things done are really funny and original. Their characterisations have been etched deep and neat. The same cannot be said about the other lead pair though. Ananya is out to steal many a heart with her performance for sure. She does full justice to the role of a pony tailed barbie doll from a non-metro, who goes wide eyed with fear with the very thought of the fast based city life and literally takes her cousins words about meeting strangers as law. Her goofups and her misunderstanding about Sarva create real life fun situations which would have happened in anybody's life. On the other hand, its hard to believe anyone would be so naive to go to this length to help a girl, how much ever good looking or genuine she may be, on the very first meeting itself. The director has one the extra mile to prove that city dwellers are as good as villagers when it comes to helping people. But it is the only character which sticks out in the entire setup as artificial. The other major character, infact the momentum shifter, show stopper, chief villain of the movie, is the BUS itself. It plays the role of love vehicle to perfection turning villain in the end and the entire Ananya-Sarva romance sequence is built on their bus journeys.
To me, the success of this story lies in its abilities to light up every single minute details of our daily life, which we otherwise tend to ignore. Be it the sleepy co-passenger who irritates us asking for his destined stop at every single bus halt only to miss the stopping sleeping or the father who is desperate to meet his loved ones, being apart from his family for years, trying to assure his kid that he is really on the way to meet them or the newly wed husband, who is smitten with the love bug that he cant stay away from his wife :) best of the lot being, the site adiching paiyan and the responsive ponnu and how they trade their phone numbers and details. Every single character is sethukified by the director and shows how much observant he has been. He also does a neat job on distinguishing between the village and city culture. All of these are brought to a shattering halt with the accident which throws every single character off balance.
There are many theories on what the title means. Some of my friends even felt that the movie ends abruptly as if they over ran the budget and decided to stop. But i feel that only makes the movie more perfect. Life happens everywhere. Its all around us. Engeyum Eppothum is all about it. It tells us to see the world around us and soak in its glory. It asks us to pause to smell the roses. It shows us that life is not confined to the confined spaces of home or office alone.
It also gives a heads up that accidents are incidents waiting to happen. After watching the movie, i felt like reading about the recent plane crash news in which lot of people from Trichy lost their life. The rate at which accidents happen in our city, i almost always ignore such news and even curse the broadcaster for never missing a chance to beam such gory incidents when so many other important ones lie sleeping on the back burner. But, had our own, touch wood, been in any of those accidents, would we be so callous? Its not that we need a 140 mins movie to teach us this basic human concept. But it sure pushes the paper in its own sweet way.
Gils Verdict: Its a movie for all ages and a must watch. Go for it.