When you finish watching the new SonyLIV anthology Victim, it almost feels like they got an excellent short film from Pa. Ranjith, and to make it an anthology package, they just chose some random scripts that even the makers of those films hesitated to create. You kind of feel bad for Pa Ranjith as his movie got included in a rotten bundle.
Dhammam is the Pa Ranjith film in the series. As always, caste politics is the core of this Ranjith film. But what amazes you is the craft involved in the making. The story unfolds in real-time, showing how caste gets a more significant priority over one’s life.
To narrate the story, Pa. Ranjith doesn’t go after monotonous preaching. He uses the landscape extensively to set the ambiance. Then he shows a deep-rooted casteist mentality by placing a brutally injured man at the center of the drama. Even the hierarchy of injury somewhere indicates the level of hatred. Dhammam’s finest quality is its ability to make us read the many layers of its politics.
Kottai Pakku Vathalum Mottai Maadi Sitharum from Chimbudevan is one lame comedy that, somewhere, reminded me of some of those reels you see on Instagram with the moral of the story and stuff. The most annoying part was the impeccable planning of the whole thing, which gets revealed at the very end of the movie. Thambi Ramaiah repeats his usual over-expressive style while Nasser helps the film to have a casual feel. The decision to list this movie right after Dhammam requires some courage.
The next flawed one on the list is Mirrage from Rajesh M. No matter how many times you troll or spoof filmmakers for unimaginative writing, they will still come up with the same old tricks, and Mirrage is the perfect example of that. Even though it is conceived as a horror thriller, this schizophrenia-based short film tests your patience. To make things difficult, the acting from both Priya Bhavani Shankar and Natarajan Subramanian was on the louder side.
Confession from Venkat Prabhu looks slightly better because of the mediocrity of the other two films. Confession starts off very interestingly with a layered approach to depict a conflicted character. But towards the end of the film, when the main character, played by Amala Paul, gets exposed, the film somewhat destroys the curiosity it created till that point. And frankly, the ambiguous ending looked confusing rather than amusing.
Except for the Guru Somasundaram starrer Dhammam, every other film in this anthology feels like a hastily assembled short film with no clarity about what to achieve. The anthology format gives you the option to not watch a particular episode. And that’s perhaps the only good thing about Victim from the audience’s point of view.
Except for the Guru Somasundaram starrer Dhammam, every other film in this anthology feels like a hastily assembled short film with no clarity about what to achieve.
Green: Recommended Content
Orange: The In-Between Ones
Red: Not Recommended