Set in the backdrop of Northern Chennai, Veppam is an action packed thriller that revolves around five people a student, a mechanic, an artist whos working for an ad agency, a man who works at a photocopy shop and a commercial sex worker.
Set in the backdrop of Northern Chennai, Veppam is an action packed thriller that revolves around five people a student, a mechanic, an artist whos working for an ad agency, a man who works at a photocopy shop and a commercial sex worker. less
First timer Anjana manages to interestingly narrate a tale of brotherhood, friendship and revenge set against the backdrop of Chennai's underbelly, that too, in style. And it is definitely refreshing to see a female director refraining from making a chick-flick or a feminist film or a film on devadasis. It works predominantly because of the able assistance lent by the technical departments, mainly editing, cinematography and music.
The story is narrated from the perspectives of different characters and these narratives overlap seamlessly not confusing the viewer one bit, except for the intentional loose ends all of which get tied in the end.
Balaji and Karthik lose their mother very young and their father abandons them. They are brought up by their kind neighbour. His daughter, Revathi, is in love with the younger brother, Karthik. Balaji assists his guardian in his banner painting business and takes care of his brother who studies engineering. Karthik's best friend is Vishnu, his childhood pal. Then there is a lady don, Ammaji, who controls all illegal trade in that area. It is with her help that Jothi, the father who abandons his kids, runs his flesh trade and drugs business and dreams of making it big at any cost.
Vishnu is an aimless wanderer till he falls for Viji, one of Jothi's priced call girls. He wants her at any cost and offers to peddle drugs for Jothi and asks for Viji in return. Vishnu manages to convince Karthik to help him in his assignment. Both set out to Pondicherry to deliver the packet and mid-way realize, through Viji, that they are about to be killed. They return without delivering the parcel and life turns into hell for everyone.
The film starts off well, the events unfold interestingly and circumstances lead to unexpected twists that keep you guessing each one's motive. Once the plot becomes clear, the film should have ended, but it doesnt. The final showdown at the junkyard is an absolute letdown, too filmy and completely spoils the spirit and seriousness of the story that was established till then.
Most of the performances are good and they elevate the film in a big way. Muthukumar as Balaji puts in a very convincing portrayal. Nithya Menen is a scene stealer and is someone to watch out for. She reminds you of actress Revathy in her younger days and can go places, provided film makers patronise her. Nani as Karthik is not bad. Karthik Kumars role of Vishnu is not quite well etched (he shows no surprise or shock on realizing that the girl he likes is a prostitute and decides to do anything to get his girl). Bindhu Madhavi as the call girl doesn't have much to do but brings out the required oomph without resorting to too much skin show. Ammaji, the lady don, is hardly menacing.
Camera work by Omprakash is first rate - the starkness, shaky camera and the colours, all add to the film's flavour. Anthonys editing skills need no mention. He is at his best once again. Joshua Sridhar has a distinct style of music making which fits well into the mood of the film.
A big hand to Anjana for giving a racy film. We'll forgive the flaws.