Iravukku Aayiram Kangal: What Works, What Doesn’t , Film Companion
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Iravukku Aayiram Kangal (IAK) is a murder mystery with multiple characters directed by debutant Mu.Maran. Arulnithi, Ajmal and Mahima Nambiar play the lead roles.

Plot: Cab driver Bharath (Arulnithi) leads a content life with his daily work commitments and girlfriend Sushila (Mahima). Ganesh (Ajmal), a roadside romeo, keeps running into Sushila and troubles her, which forces Bharath to go after him. We learn that Ganesh operates a nefarious gang with two female partners (played by Vidya Pradeep and Suja Varunee). There are quite a few men who fall prey to their plans. A murder is a key hook in the plot and given the presence of many possible suspects, the film takes its course without any needless deviations.

What Works:

  • The twisted climax is the film’s best part and viewers are bound to debate and come up with their own interpretations. The director leaves the film open for a sequel.
  • Arulnithi has always made script-driven choices. IAK is another worthy addition to his resume. His role demands him to be grim and brooding, with the exception of a few casual scenes with his girlfriend.
  • Among the large support cast, veteran actor Anandaraj (one of the gang’s victims) and the glamorous Vidya Pradeep leave a mark. Anandaraj has made a seamless transition from villain roles to the character actor – comedian space.
  • Composer Sam CS keeps the film going with his engaging background score. But he could’ve explored some silence too! DoP Aravinnd Singh captures the film’s tense mood with impressive rain sequences. It’s a complex yet largely convincing edit by San Lokesh.

What Doesn’t:

  • For a taut, dark crime thriller (running to just 2 hours), the film doesn’t offer that many edge-of-the-seat moments. The interesting climax becomes a case of too little, too late.
  • Ajmal looks good but his performance is let down by his own dubbing thanks to his shaky Tamil accent. The team could’ve opted for a professional dubbing artist.
  • Mahima keeps getting the same kind of roles in film after film. Talk about being typecast!
  • With the large number of characters in the mix, the screenplay needed more clarity. At times the narrative felt like a complex jigsaw puzzle.

Final Word: IAK is a film made efficiently on a tight budget. It’s an honest attempt by the debut director with the unconventional final act lifting the film to an extent. Passable fare!

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