From the banks of river cooum, in Chennai comes one of the purest love story between Amy Wilkinson and Malli. Dubbed from a Tamil hit film, Madarasapattinam, the film recreates Madras from the 40s when streets were almost vacant, political enthusiasm was at its zenith and colonialism was almost coming to an end.
Amy Wilkinson, 60 years later returns to Chennai in search of her lover, Malli, to whom she bid adieu a long, long time ago. With just an old photo of Malli in her possession, she wanders the streets of new madras, far different from what it was 60 years ago, enquiring several people about Malli. Cut to flashback- The year is 1945 and Amy, daughter of then governor of Madras, visits her dad to stay with him. She falls in love with Malli much to the disgust of her beau, Robert, a British police officer. What
happens between Malli and Amy forms the rest of the story.
The film has definitely drawn inspiration from films such as Lagaan and Titanic, but without attempting to replicate it. What makes this film different from others is the way it's been narrated and giving the audience an experience of a lifetime. Especially in a scene where the entire country is celebrating independence, two lovers face separation and that forms the film's central theme. The story isn't exceptional and neither are the characters but what keeps the film alive is the novelty in script. Most part of the film is spent on introducing the characters, setting up their relationship and the second half is mostly about the couple's desperate attempts to be with each other.
A lot of research seems to have gone into recreating the right look of Madras from the 40s and it shows on screen. It's bound to make one nostalgic about the historic moment when patriotism was at its peak just before India's independence. I'm glad that the director doesn't narrate events which led to Independence instead concentrates on portraying the poignant love between Amy and Malli. In simple words, director Vijay wisely uses Madras of the 40's just as a backdrop to paint a love story that would perfectly sync in it. Brilliant!
Arya and Amy were perfect in their roles without overdoing anything. Arya as Malli and his efforts to learn English is hilarious to watch. While, Amy on the other hand steals the show with her endearing beauty that can keep you hooked on to your seats.
G.V Prakash's music serves as a lullaby and puts you to sleep and Nirav Shah's cinematography is the showstopper. Had it not been for Nirav, we wouldn't have got an opportunity to see a city that's real beauty was long lost. Direction by Vijay was impeccable, although few may accuse him of lifting bits and pieces of theme from foreign films, rest would actually appreciate his effort to bring forth a lively experience.
Critic: Haricharan Pudipeddi
(3 / 5) : Good