Kaaviya Thalaivan Review
by Sai Shyam G
Kaaviya Thalaivan is a team’s unified dream to deliver a truly unparalleled experience on screens for the Tamil audience. It is pretty evident that the team has worked very sincerely for the same, when you travel through the movie. The movie has a stellar star cast that includes Siddharth, Prithviraj, Vedhika, Anaika Soti, Nassar and Ponvannan. Find out why the movie is so special.
Set in the pre-independence era, the movie revolves around a renowned drama troupe, headed by Thavathiru Sivadas Swamigal (Nassar). Kaliappa Bhagavathar (Siddharth) and Gomathi Nayagam Pillai (Prithviraj) are the kingpins of the troupe, but the latter becomes jealous of the former, due to the latter becoming the centre of attraction. What will happen next? Watch the movie to know the answer.
Siddharth can be proud of taking up this film and this is a performance that he can cherish all his life. He is brilliant in this once in a lifetime role. There are scenes in which he gives goosebumps to the audience by his sheer dialogue delivery. For instance, the scene in which he acts as the ‘Rajapart’ for the first time, is sure to receive thunderous applause from the audience.
Prithviraj should be praised for taking up this role, which has to be underplayed to be a loser. The director is known for giving considerable attention to the losers in his films. For example, in Veyyil, Pasupathi was the cynosure of all eyes. Similarly, Prithviraj has good scope in this film and he scores while showcasing his pain and disappointments. Vedhika effortlessly fits into the role and her introductory performance needs a special mention.
Nassar yet again proves that if given the right opportunity, he can walk away with the honour. His majestic performance as the unflinching master is sure to impress everyone. Anaika Soti’s lip-sync is a concern throughout the film. The rest of the supporting cast including Ponvannan, Thambi Ramaiah and Singam Puli do their best to relive as people in the pre-independence era.
Being a film that is predominantly based on stage plays, music is a very vital part of this movie and AR Rahman’s music has taken this movie to a different level altogether. There are plenty of songs in the film, that are used as a part of plays and all of them make an impact. Not to forget, the ‘Vangamakka’ song welcomes us into the movie and sets the mood of the film aptly. The background score is rich and AR Rahman has used plenty of instruments, which give a grandeur feel to the movie.
Nirav Shah has done a tremendous job in setting up the lightings for stage plays, without making them look repetitive. There are plenty of sets in the movie and art director Santhanam has come up with grand and unique designs. Both the art director and cinematographer have shared a great rapport in bringing out the splendid visuals. Praveen KL’s editing keeps the first half absolutely engaging, while the second half could have been trimmed a little.
Direction – Vasanthabalan
Firstly, director Vasanthabalan needs to be praised just for attempting a film like Kaaviya Thalaivan. The entire movie revolves around stage plays and the conflicts develop right there. The director reveals about the two main characters at the very beginning with just a poignant scene. While Gomathi Nayagam Pillai says ‘I want to become famous one day and receive accolades from everyone’, Kaliappa says ‘I need none to watch my performance, but I just need to realize that I have become a good actor’. Such conflicting ideologies explained through just two dialogues. There are plenty of scenes where Siddharth commands applause, and the credits should go to Vasanthabalan and dialogue writer Jeyamohan.
Yes, the movie becomes predictable after a while, as we have seen the plots unfolding in the same manner before. But, somehow, you are kept interested in the movie, as it unfolds in a completely new environment. The movie is not flawless though. The director seems to have lost his way after setting up the first half brilliantly. The second half wanders between becoming a patriotic drama and a revenge drama. A little more clarity could have made this a much better film. Also, the narrative flow seems to get repetitive and the movie does not end on a high. However, overall, there are very few people who dream different. Support this dream (film) from a dedicated team!
Written by Sai Shyam G | Follow @saishyamg