Saturday, November 21, 2009

College tale has something for everyone

Down South
Nov 22, 2009 12:00 AM | By Devan Nair

Although Ninaithale Inikkum shares its title with a 1979 classic movie with Kamalhassan and Rajnikanth in the lead roles, the film is clearly not a remake but is based on the hit Malayalam movie Classmates.

Prithviraj, Shakthi, Karthik and Priyamani share the lead roles, with veteran writer and director K Bhagyaraj in a major role. The film is directed by debutante GN Kumaravelan, the son of popular director GN Rungarajan.

Ninaithale Inikkumis a beautifully woven tale with something for everyone. Although it is essentially a college story, the issues apply across all ages and backgrounds.

The film opens with Shiva (Prithviraj) returning to his alma mater for the opening of a new wing. However, it is also a reunion for the students whose lives have been greatly influenced by their time at college.

Although the title suggests a lot of sweet memories about their college days, there are also some painful memories that return to haunt some of them.

Never before has there been a film that so accurately captures the spirit of college life with such vigour and realism.

There is the moving story of enmity between Vasu and Shiva and their mutual friend, Shakthi (Shakthi), who tries to bring them together. There is also the romance that unfolds between Siva and Meera (Priyamani) and the challenges that come their way.

In addition, there is the love of Shakthi's father (Bhagyaraj) whose understanding of human nature touches one's soul.

More than anything, Ninaithale Inikkum is a celebration of life through the eyes of its young director.

What captures and maintains interest is the strong element of suspense throughout the film, proving that a story's screenplay is more important than the story itself. There are many major turning points until the hair-raising turn of events before intermission opens the way for a shocking climax.

Apart from the well-crafted screenplay and script, Ninaithale Inik- kum has some outstanding performances. Prithviraj handles the role of Shiva with spirit and realism, playing the same role he played in the Malayalam version.

National award winner Priyamani plays the role of Meera with passion. Her powerful facial expressions and expressive eyes transform her character into an unforgettable one.

Kathik is in one of his most impressive roles of his career.

However, the star of the film is Shakthi (son of P Vasu), who has made huge improvements in his acting since his debut in Thottaal Poo Malarum.

A close second to this role is Bhagyaraj, who gives new meaning to the term "Old is Gold".

The film's other star is its music composer, Vijay Anthony, who has written some melodious songs, including the hauntingly beautiful Nanbanai Paarthu.

This is an impressive first-effort from director Kumaravelan. It is one of the few films in recent times that the entire family can watch without being embarrassed by any scene. Ninaithale Inikkum is a very touching story and should not be missed.

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