Another week ticks by and we are at another weekend with so many new releases. So lets get down to business and nail down each one of them. So I have finished watching the Tamil flick starring Dhanush named Karnan on Amazon Prime. Dhanush as a performer has always been among my favourites. I find his performances gritty and hard hitting, a performer who has the ability to speak through his eyes. If you have watched his films like Asuran or Vada Chennai, then you’ll exactly know what I am talking about. So his new release in an almost similar setup to Asuran really made me interested on how similar or different the end product will actually be. So then is Karnan worth your time, stay tuned.
Story & Screenplay
Karnan follows the story of a young man from a village where people are treated as outsiders and the untouchables so much so that other people in neighbouring villages want to keep them oppressed. And thus begins the revolt. Now, this story might seem quite routine on paper, but it is anything but that! Based on a true incident that occured in 1995(year in the film changed to 1990 following a controversy), the story is absolutely brutal and just so engaging. The screenplay takes its time to warmup. It takes a good amount of time to dwell into its characters and the climate of the village where they belong. The buildup here is necessary for you to be sucked into the drama and also what eventually transpires towards the back end of the film. The first half is perfectly represented by an animal in the film whose feet are tied, indicating the state of our protagonist. That until he breaks the shackles when all hell breaks loose at the halfway mark. The emotions are real and the tension is palpable. You also get a glimpse of the brutality shown by the police who resort to unfair techniques. And the action sequences standout because they have a lot of emotion attached to them. The simmering tension translates into goosebumps with our main protagonist going berserk in a fitting climax. This is what you call masterful storytelling!
Dialogues, Music & Direction
The dialogues are conversational for most parts that leave a lasting impact. The music is really good here but the real hero is the sound design and BGM. To give you a perspective, in one of the fight sequence, screams of a pregnant lady are being used as a BGM which makes you really uncomfortable while watching brutality all around. This is a refreshing technique that indeed heightens the drama. A special mention of the cinematography that is excellent. The story as mentioned before may have been routine but it took an extremely unapologetic and skilled director to turn this script into a masterpiece. He just does not hold back and literally goes all guns blazing, eventually coming out on top! Distinction marks to the direction!
The performances are excellent. Yogi Babu impresses in a serious role as Vadamalaiyaan. Gouri Kishan has her moments to shine particularly early on as Poyilal. Lakshmi Priyaa Chandramouli as Padmini is brilliant and a treat to watch. Lal as Yeman is wonderful and such a joy to watch. An extremely skilled actor that manages to evoke the right kind of emotion for his character throughout. Rajisha Vijayan as Draupadhi exudes of emotions with a tad of innocence as well. Her long glances will make you fall in love with her character. She portrays it beautifully. Natarajan Subramanium as SP Kannabiran will really make your blood boil, a sign of a job well done by the actor. Dhanush as Karnan is simply outstanding. He is in red hot form here, with that simmering anger that will spur you on as well and make you root for him throughout. And the pain that he showcases through his eyes is brilliant. A fine and memorable outing for him!
Karnan is a brutal portrayal of a harsh reality that might still be lurking about in some parts of the country. This is a gem you cannot miss! Available on Amazon Prime and Highly Highly Highly Recommended.