Genre: Psychological Thriller
Director: R Kiran
Cast: Masanth Natarajan, Vatsan M Natarajan
The film’s hero, rather the film’s protagonist, is Santosh (played by Masanth Natarajan). He lives in Coimbatore and he’s a meek kind of guy. He’s on Facebook a lot and what he does mostly is look for messages that talk about violence against women, especially rape. So he shares those messages or he posts messages like “burn all rapists” or “kill rapists”. In short, he’s a keyboard warrior. He then gets in touch with another guy who seems to like the same things he does on Facebook. And things get moving when they decide to meet in real life and we get to the film’s central philosophical dilemma.
Santosh says ordinary guys like him can only express their anger by venting out on Facebook or writing things there. Whereas, this other guy asks, “why not kill these rapists?”. After all, we accept vigilante justice in the movies, so why not accept it in real life as well. Now, this material could be played like a thriller. You might be reminded of Fight Club, where you have a meek guy and an alter-ego where he executes this guy’s thoughts. Or you could think of a film like Anniyan, which is referenced here because of the multiple-personality disorder and we have this meek guy and this superhero-like persona that emerges from him.
But the director has a slightly different idea. He is deliberate both in terms of his approach and with his pacing. And what he has ended up making is a psychological thriller. Kayamai Kadakka kind of worked for me because I really liked Masanth Natarajan’s performance as the meek guy and I liked the premise—this interesting idea of what we think of doing versus what society prevents us from doing.
But the film comes across as a little too controlled. I would have liked it be a little more free-flowing, with more variety in the pacing. I know it’s not a thriller and I don’t mean nail-biting sequences. But even with the twist and the turns and the action sequences, they turn out to be a bit flat. And yet the film keeps you glued because you’re really looking forward to what this conflict is really about; the one about what we are and what we would like to be. And the best part about Kayamai Kadakka is the fact that the director and his DOP Sundar Ram Krishnan proved that you can make a great-looking film on a micro-indie budget.
This is a very carefully-designed film. Rain is used at key moments, the way the faces are framed is in a way that it gives lots of pauses for us to think what the characters are thinking. These formal compositions are a little unusual in this genre and a little unusual to me as well so that kept me watching.
This movie is a promising debut and it’s available on www.moviesaints.com.