Yeidhavan: An unaffecting, even if sincerely written, thriller

There are films that entertain even though not much of consequence happens. Yeidhavan’s the opposite. So much happens, but you would be forgiven for not realising it, considering how little you are affected. Sample this. A close relative of the hero dies in a road accident. A medical college cons hundreds of crores. A suave villain decides that the best way to wrest control is to go on a killing spree. The hero himself, Krishna (Kalaiyarasan), embarks on a revenge mission, not just to avenge his dead sister, but to save the lives of other medical students. He says as much, because he’s noble like that. And yet, none of these incidents affect you in the slightest. I suppose you can’t be blamed, considering the characters themselves don’t seem too affected by the tragedies of the story. For instance, you never truly get a sense of Krishna’s mourning after his sister dies. This is also the sort of film to sneak in an item song, just as the gloomy hero is figuring out his options. Yeidhavan is cliched like that.

Genre: Thriller
Director: Sakthi Rajasekaran
Cast: Kalaiarasan, Satna Titus, Aadukalam Naren
Storyline: A young man sets out to avenge his sister… and hundreds of medical students

The story itself is a tad tangled. A bunch of robbers manage to annoy the rich villain, Gaurav, who has inherited an unlicensed medical college. When the hero’s family gets affected, he joins hands with these very robbers (what?!), and somehow manages to make them to do his bidding. They dutifully abide by his rules for reasons best known to the director. ‘The enemy of my enemy is my friend’ is an interesting angle, but what if their dynamics seem fake? Eventually, you simply put your hands up and resign to the whims of the story. The screenplay has its own whims. In one stretch, you’re shown the beginning of a scene, and then the end, with a character taking us into the flashback to show us what happened in between. Why complicate the structure just for gimmicks?

I rather liked actor Saretheran’s (Gaurav) performance. He plays the role with a certain charming condescension for the lesser privileged. Aadukalan Naren gets a strong character, and a poignant end too, but despite the decent writing, the actual scene never tugs at your heartstrings as it should. This—the little emotional effect the material has—is a problem throughout. The average dialogues are a big reason why. Even Gaurav seems to recognise this issue at one point. His father advises: “Anubavam romba mukkiyam pa. Adhukku mariyadha kudu.” Gauran responds, “Romba pazhaya dialogue pa.” I wanted to wake up somebody in the theatre to tell them that no, the problem wasn’t just with this one line.

This review was written for The New Indian Express. All copyrights belong to the organisation. Do link to this page if you’d like to share this review.

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