“Thirumanam”… An outdated “message movie” about the circus around weddings

Posted on March 1, 2019

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Spoilers ahead…

Read the full review on Film Companion, here: https://www.filmcompanion.in/thirumanam-movie-review-baradwaj-rangan-cheran-msbhaskar/

There are two fascinating characters in Cheran’s Thirumanam… Sila Thiruthangaludan (Wedding… with few corrections), and they’re not the bride and the groom. I’m talking about the bride’s brother, Arivudainambi (Cheran), and the groom’s sister, Manonmani (Sukanya). They’re both of a certain age. They’ve seen a lot of life, carry a lot of baggage. And they’re both unattached. Their story might have made a much better movie, but sadly, we are stuck with their bland younger siblings: Mahesh (Umapathy Ramaiah) and Aadhira (Kavya Suresh), who fall in love and tell their families they want to get married. The surprise is that no one opposes. What creates the drama, then, is the opposition in their families’ views about a big, fat, Indian wedding. Manonmani is from a “jameen kudumbam,” and she wants the works. Arivudainambi is a humble IT officer. He finds her demands, um, taxing.

This isn’t a bad premise, but Cheran loses the plot very early on. At every stage of the wedding preparation – fixing the venue, choosing the invitation, buying clothes – Arivudainambi gives a running commentary about how wasteful it all is. Cheran seems to think that no one, today, has thought about any of this, and we need a movie to open our eyes. All of this “wisdom” comes in form of data dumps. People just stop in their tracks and talk. A lawyer holds forth about how problems in couples today arise from needing space and sexual incompatibility and how there are no joint families anymore to make the newlyweds adjust to one another (conveniently forgetting that joint families come with their own set of problems). She’s apparently speaking to Arivudainambi. She’s really speaking to the audience. She’s giving a Message™.

Continued at the link above.

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Posted in: Cinema: Tamil