Every year, there will be a movie and a director who will surprise you with his finesse and brilliance. Balaji K Kumar has made me bamboozled with his splendid writing,spell binding direction and an almost a near perfect movie.
Vidiyum Munn starts with a tension that grips you right away when you see Rekha (Pooja) and Nandhini (Malavika Manikuttan) running frantically to escape from something. We gradually get to know why they are running and what did they do? They are running from a gang that forces Rekha's pimp to search for them. Vidiyum Munn doesn't rush itself. The characters slowly evolve including the antagonists. Although every character has the ability and a sub plot to enter in to a verbal or visual back story, none of them are dealt with except for the one that matters. The movie never preaches you on child trafficking and child abuse but there is a bit of uneasiness that might affect you more abysmally than expected.
Pooja shows fear in her eyes. Her underplay works brilliantly because her character needs to show the frailty and strength of a woman at the same time. She in fact cakewalks her role. Vinod Kishan as Chinnaya (last seen as one of the four boys in Naan Mahan Alla) looks as cold as ice. His eyes doesn't blink throughout the movie and they pierce you like a sword. After a long time, it was wonderful to see someone who can show striking villainy with silence. He is a revelation. John Vijay is in his own self while Amarendran as Singaram is brilliant in portraying a pimp trying to save his life. But the star of the movie is that little bundle of brilliance by the name Malavika Manikuttan. Her adult like quips and childish desires will make you laugh while her emotions will make you cry. The whole movie swivels around her and if she had faltered, it would have ended up in the drain.
Although Sivakumar Vijayan's camera is brilliant for most parts, VFX to create night effect ends up tad artificial. Only then you realise why cameramen like PC Sriram are gods in this profession. Girish Gopalakrishnan's background score is adequate and uses silence to create the necessary creep to the proceedings. Sathyaraj needs a special kudos for his smart editing.
Vidiyum Munn is one of the well written Tamil movies in recent times. A well crafted screenplay that doesn't force itself on you but engulfs you like a spider web. When you are in it completely, the final scenes hit you like a bolt as you don't expect them. The movie doesn't list statistics or bore you with monologues on child trafficking, it injects you with reality, slowly but strongly.
Vidiyum Munn shows what movies can be in Tamil cinema. Different but entertaining. Backed by strong writing, apt casting, magnificent acting and perfect direction, Vidiyum Munn is pure Cinema. Balaji K Kumar has announced his arrival with a movie that Tamil cinema can be proud of. Hearty welcome Balaji, looking forward to your reign here.
A whopping 4/5 and a double thumbs up for Vidiyum Munn. Watch it in theatres and support this brilliance. Miss it at your own peril.
1.I usually get messages and friendly banters from friends about my bad ratings to the movies I review. But sometimes I do give some wonderful reviews but people don't watch them. Vidiyum Munn is one such movie. Go watch it.
2. The movie is based on a 2006 British movie London to Brighton. Balaji Kumar is credited with only Screenplay, Dialogues and Direction in the movie.