It is not cinematograp her-director Santosh Sivan’s first celluloid take on the Srilankan civil war. Terrorist, his directorial venture from years back, had a young pregnant suicide bomber caught in a dilemma between her mission and her feelings. It was a poignant and sensitively crafted film.
As an ode to the film, the director has taken a few shots from it in this film, though the connection is rushed through.
There is a total lack of clarity of purpose, focus and sensitivity, as the director takes a look at the ethnic war through the eyes of a group of orphans at a shelter home in Srilanka. The home run by a kind-hearted woman (Saritha) houses a group of orphans, all victims of the ethnic war. One of them is Nandan (Karan), a teen with Down Syndrome.
The film opens with a young Tamil refugee rescued from a ship wreck, narrating her life and that of her group of friends on the island. Their friendship, hopes, fears and their little pleasures in the midst of the war, all form a part of the story. But lack of depth in the characters and incidents ensures that we fail to empathise with their plight, desires or aspirations. In such circumstances, no actor is able to create an impact with their performance.
There is an intriguing opening shot of a blood spattered thumb print which resembles the Srilankan map. Innovative and imaginative, it captures attention. This beautifully depicted imagery, apart from the couple of shots of aerial bombings (though nothing that one hasn’t seen before) is all that the film can boast of.
Inam is a pretentious piece of work, one is not exactly sure what the director wishes to convey. The film is neither entertaining nor thought provoking.
We enter the theater with great curiosity, anticipation and expectation. And we leave with a feeling of shocking disappointment and total dissatisfaction.
Film: Inam (Tamil)
Director: Santosh Sivan
Cast: Sugandha, Karan, Saritha, Karunas, Janaki.