Pulikuthi Pandi on SUN NXT, with Vikram Prabhu, Lakshmi Menon: A generic drama with a solid surprise

Posted on January 19, 2021


pulikuthi pandi


M Muthiah has a good head for plot, but his screenwriting is like what you’d find in a TV serial. Still, the last hour made me sit up.

Spoilers ahead…

“A film by M Muthiah” carries the same cachet as, say, “a film by Quentin Tarantino”. The two directors may exist at the opposite ends of the artistry continuum, but you know exactly what you’re going to get. You know you are going to get a Komban, a Kutti Puli, a Marudhu: a crude mix of action and romance and comedy and sentiment. Pullikuthi Pandi, though, springs a small surprise. The film is not great. It’s not even good. But it’s not all bad. I actually liked the opening. The ruthless villain (Sannasi, played by Vela Ramamurthy) and his ruthless son (Saravedi, played by RK Suresh) are established in a ruthless stretch where a woman is decapitated. The son tells the father: “Periya Karuppu koil-la aada nee vettu, avala naan vettaren.” Blood flows in this film like milk on the cut-outs of big stars during FDFS shows.

Had this been the tone throughout, we’d have had a solid twist on the Thevar Magan thesis: that however much we try to resist violence, it is all around us and it will slowly pull us into its vicious circle and bathe us with bloodlust. But Pullikkuthi Pandi takes too long to get there, and we are left with a most generic film for about an hour and a half. The hero-intro is generic, with Pandi (Vikram Prabhu) singing “Venaam madhu pazhakkam” in a local drinking establishment. (The setting is Sivagangai.) The comedy is generic, with the hero’s uncle falling into a pile of dung and someone commenting, “Idhu dhaan nejamana sanitiser.” The screenwriting, such as it is, is generic, too: the hero-intro song is followed immediately by an action sequence, and the heroine-intro occurs soon after.

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