Jan 18 2018


Published by at 9:33 pm under Review,Tamil Cinema

Aramm Movie Actress Nayanthara Cute Expression Images

Aramm starts off with Madhivadhani(Nayanthara) explaining her actions to her superior(Kitty) after resigning the post of District Collector. As we learn from her conversation, she oversaw the rescue efforts of a little girl who was trapped inside a hole dug for the purposes of installing a borewell. Having a woman district collector, even if played by a superstar like Nayanthara, helps keep the movie realistic and maintain focus on the issues that the movie takes up. She oversees the efforts and suggests ideas but doesn’t jump into action (I couldn’t help imagine how different the movie would’ve been if headlined by a big star like Vijay. He would’ve had a romantic interest, duets, fights with politicians and their rowdies and would’ve eventually dived into the hole and saved the girl single handedly!)

We first get to meet girl Dhansika(Mahalakshmi) and her family. This is a lovely stretch that beautifully captures all dimensions of the life . We see her parents Puleendran and Sumathi(Ramachandran Durairaj and Sunu Lakshmi are fantastic) and their struggle to make ends meet, their focus on their son Muthu’s(Kakka Muttai‘s Ramesh) education, their attempts to provide the best for their kids and their playful relationship. Told with emotions(Puleendran’s acknowledgement of his son’s swimming talent even as he asks him to focus on studies is honest) and humor(the visual of Muthu in the swim cap designed by his mom is hilarious), it gives us characters to root for outside even as Dhansika is trapped inside the hole.

The stretch is also used to establish the difficult lives of the villagers as they struggle for water and other basic amenities. This struggle for water is something that is always in the background. It starts off with a sly instruction from a politician who wants to avoid empty pots in a photograph to be used for a government ad. But it understandably comes up in many of the anguished laments and rants of the villagers. The water scarcity is what leads to the film’s core issue as Dhansika falls into a hole dug for a borewell that was never installed because of the lack of water.

The situation after Dhansika gets stuck in the borewell hole offers a lot of opportunity for drama and the film uses it well to create sustained suspense. The close-up views of Dhansika inside the hole give a realistic, claustrophobic feel to the proceedings and illustrate her situation well (Mahalakshmi’s expressions play a big part in this) and various factors like lack of oxygen, ground fragility, etc. are used to introduce a time factor into her rescue efforts. As different rescue efforts fail because of various reasons, the helplessness of the people involved is understandable and we root for them to succeed and save Dhansika.

Dhansika’s plight is also used to illustrate the apathy of the elected officials to the suffering of the villagers. This is one aspect where the film abandons all subtlety and makes politicians the bad guys. The officials like firemen, doctors and army men are concerned about Dhansika and do their best to save her. But among the 2 politicians we see, one is confident he can pay off the parents after letting the girl die while another hides the councilman, on whose land the hole was dug, in his own house.

3 responses so far

3 Responses to “Aramm”

  1. Kumar says:

    Wasn’t there a Malayalam movie with the same storyline (based on true events) a couple of decades ago? It was a good thriller, but I’ve forgotten the name of the movie!

  2. Joseph Cherian says:

    The Malayalam movie starring Jayaram and Urvashi, directed by Bharathan was MALOOTTY. The collector and drinking water issue were not there.

  3. Kumar says:

    Ah yes! Malootty was the move I had in mind. Bharathan – what a talent! Don’t recall all the details, but do remember being fascinated by the unique plot and the acting, especially by Baby Shamilee (think this move came around the time Anjali was released).