Screenplay and Direction
Technical Aspects and BGM
Entertaining, thought-provoking drama!
Summary : Seethakaathi is a highly entertaining and an equally thought-provoking sophomore feature from Naduvula Konjam Pakkatha Kaanom fame filmmaker Balaji Tharaneetharan. In fact, one can safely say that Seethakaathi is the most experimental meta-film made in Tamil cinema on the demarcation between art and mainstream cinema.
Cast: Vijay Sethupathi, Parvati Nair, Remya Nambeesan, Gayathrie, Mouli
Cinematography: Saraskanth TK
Music: Govind Vasantha
Editing: R Govindaraj
PRO: Suresh Chandra
Written & Directed by Balaji Tharaneetharan
Produced by: Passion Studios
Release Date: 20-12-2018
Run Time: 02:50:00
Seethakaathi is a highly entertaining and an equally thought-provoking sophomore feature from Naduvula Konjam Pakkatha Kaanom fame filmmaker Balaji Tharaneetharan. In fact, one can safely say that Seethakaathi is the most experimental meta-film made in Tamil cinema on the demarcation between art and mainstream cinema.
The decades-old fallacy that arthouse cinema is no more saleable to film buffs is shattered to smithereens in Balaji Tharaneetharan’s endearing story-telling, which is close on the heels of Naduvula Konjam Pakkatha Kaanom zone, especially during the well-constructed pre-interval and post-interval sequences.
As Vijay Sethupathi revealed in a recent press interaction, his screen-time in the film is limited and just 40 minutes from the beginning of the title card. But it’s those poignant moments which shape the rest of the two hours of the film’s running time. Balaji Tharaneetharan’s dramatic narrative is peppered with enjoyable stretches of comedy—sometimes rip-roaring, sometimes adequate but neither over-the-top nor tiresome at any point. His story-telling never even makes you think about the absence of an exceptional performer like Vijay Sethupathi. And, that is the most significant victory for Seethakaathi.
Vijay Sethupathi as Ayya Aadhimoolam has smartly underplayed his role with a terrific body language and pitch-perfect dialogue delivery, which excels especially during the stageplays. His character is the cornerstone of the film, and Balaji Tharaneetharan takes his time to establish the strength of the role with impactful sequences.
Balaji Tharaneetharan deserves to be applauded for extracting some stellar performances from lesser-known actors like Rajkumar (plays Saravanan) and Sunil (plays Dhanapal). More than 60 minutes of the screenplay is dedicated to them, and they keep you entertained without any boredom. Balaji’s belief in his writing and his characters are what make Seethakaathi a fantastic film.
There are a lot of beautiful meta moments in the film, which should be savored only on screen. Composer Govind Vasantha’s stimulating background score is the lifeline of the film. If his music in 96 floored you, watch Seethakaathi to see what he has accomplished and to understand the depth in his original compositions. It’s an extraordinary work from a relatively new composer and quite impactful as well.
Overall, Seethakaathi offers a beautiful movie-watching experience. It’s an excellent product of numerous bold decisions coming together: the producer’s belief in this quirky but radical premise, director Balaji Tharaneetharan’s uncanny choice of actors for the most pivotal roles in the screenplay and the gutsiest of them all, Vijay Sethupathi’s strength of will to make this his 25th project. And every single decision has been paid off richly in the end, making the entire film a rewarding watch.