Another friday goes by and there is no respite from the lockdown. Yet, it is the OTT platforms that are releasing some brand new content every week and they deserve a round of applause for the same. Ok, I am not boasting but I have finished watching Ponmagal Vandhal the latest offering from Amazon Prime, last night and this will probably be one of the first reviews of this movie(it releases on Friday but incidentally when I checked, it was uploaded on Thursday night). So the million dollar question, is it worth your time…stick around!
Set in Ooty, Ponmagal Vandhal is the story of Venba, a lawyer by profession who takes up a 16 year old case to prove the innocence of a psycho killer who is said to have killed many girl children and a couple of youngsters. The story is interesting though not very novel. The screenplay is quite well written though it could have done without the lighter moments at the start. While the first half meanders between some heavy dialogue baazi in the court, it is the twist at the half way mark that does take you aback(though it might be a little predictable). The screenplay does slow down considerably in the second hour only to lift itself in the final 30 mins. But it is the emotion thread that is maintained throughout which is really the life of the movie. More importantly, it effectively raises questions about a very pertinent issue. This is a dialogue heavy movie and the dialogues are pretty good(though a few at the end are just cliched and at times quite heavy). Music is decent. Director J J Fredrick has done a commendable job with the direction though in some parts he could have been tighter with a few sequences.
Prathap Pothen as the judge is quite good. Bhagyaraj as Venba’s father has his moments. Thiagarajan is decent but could have been more menacing. Parthiban who had directed and acted in the excellent Oththu Seruppu Size 7(highly recommended, netflix) has once again proved his mettle as an actor. Such a fine performance. Jyotika as Venba has delivered a powerful performance and deserves alot of the applause for her role. All other performances are decent.
Standing at just over 2 hours, Ponmagal Vandhal is a good watch for the weekend. There was a controversy surrounding the movie wherein a few theatre owners are protested its realease directly on the OTT platform. Well, in times like these this is probably the best way out considering the amount of money invested in each film. For the moment, do watch and enjoy this movie.
PS : This is the first film from Kollywood to release directly on an OTT platform!