Aruvi directed by Arun Prabu Purushothaman is simultaneously socio-political, satiric and deeply emotional. Beginning the proceedings in the attire of a thriller, this movie changes its tone consistently and makes sure it has its viewer with it in that smooth transition. With no shades of typical eccentric comedy one sees in Tamil films, Aruvi is an affecting experience.

Aruvi is the first child in her family and was given all freedom in her childhood. But at one particular point in her adult life she had to go through a phase where she got judged and was left alone without getting a chance to express what she had to say. The movie actually tells us an incident that happens afterwards where a courageous Aruvi does something that sort of exposed a lot of mindsets.

The above summary might seem hazy but trust me I was trying my best to keep the films main content least exposed (I might expose it a bit here and there in the rest of this review). Firstly it is the bold realism that captures your attention. After a series of montages establishing the journey of our character in brisk pace without losing the essence, Arun Prabu Purushothaman sets the wheel moving when he shifts the plot to a TV show. Arun uses that plot brilliantly to expose many flaws in the society. The way the characters in this particular part appears at the end, gives a new level of freshness to the content.

Aditi Balan as Aruvi is brilliant. From the earlier innocence to the bold transformation and then to the challenging physical toll on her body, the debutante showed commendable conviction in her depiction of the title character. Anjali Varadhan as the transgender companion Emily of Aruvi also delivers an endearing performance. Lakshmi Gopalaswami reinvents herself in a character role. The largely fresh or unfamiliar cast had actors who were perfect for their respective roles.

The making is the highlight of this film that merges distinct phases of this movie very smoothly. The initial portions are kind of rough. Then it slips into a mood where the dark humor and satirical tone offers a lot of thought provoking and hilarious moments. Then the last quarter of the film has an extremely emotional tale. Arun Prabu Purushothaman deserves to be appreciated for giving a solid space and identity to a transgender character. His screenplay addresses a lot of socio political imperfections through the loneliness of a misunderstood young girl. Shelley Calist’s frames make sure that the movie stays intriguing and the cuts keep it on an engaging pace. The peculiar tracks were very much in sync with the mood of the movie.

From an interesting beginning that goes on to a satiric debate and ultimately ending on a touching tale of a lonesome girl, I left the theater with a heavy heart after watching Aruvi.  Aruvi is one well balanced movie which has touched upon many thoughts in a very compelling way.

Rating: 4/5

Final Thoughts

Aruvi is one well balanced movie which has touched upon many thoughts in a very compelling way.


Green: Recommended Content

Orange: The In-Between Ones

Red: Not Recommended


Categorized as Review, Tamil

By Aswin Bharadwaj

Founder and editor of Lensmen Reviews.

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