Director: R Subramanian
Cast: Arun Balaji, Bhama, Pavan, Mahadevan, Sriranjani, Dayal, Sai Jagan
A conflict between two men, each right in their own way, snowballs into a major issue leading to tragic consequences forms the story of 'Sevarkodi'. Director Subramaniyan (apprenticed with director Radha Mohan and has also penned the dialogue for the latter’s 'Abhiyum Nanum'), keeps this as the core of his plot to weave a tale that is fairly engaging with some good moments. The debutant who has meticulously planned his script, creates the right ambience, and moves his narration confidently, the scenes having a smooth natural flow.
The film chronicles the events of a year in the life of Bala from an affluent family (debutant Arun Balaji), and of Kaali a driver (Pavan). It opens with the Soora Samhaaram festival and ends with the same the following year. The director draws an allegory of the triumph of good over evil, just as the festival is being celebrated. Bala takes on his tormentor Kaali in their final showdown. But the parallel doesn’t seem quite right in the Bala-Kaali context. For, Kaali though hot-blooded and selfish, had tormented Bala genuinely believing that Bala was the cause of the unfortunate turn in his life. Circumstantial evidence had been against Bala. And Bala oblivious of the whole matter, after his initial denial, had accepted that he was the culprit.
For a first timer, Arun Balaji plays his role with easy assurance and conviction. Pavan is the perfect foil. Sai Jagan as Kaali’s loyal helper leaves his mark.
There is Bala’s love affair with Valli (Bhama from Malayalam screen). But appreciably the director doesn’t make this a conflict in his protagonist’s life. The attitude of the two families and their coming to terms with it, have a realistic touch.
The interaction between Valli and Bala’s father (Mahadevan) who initially resented and grudgingly gave in, has a humourous touch. There are some thrilling chases (Dilip Subbarayan), like the one where Kaali driving a trailer lorry, in murderous rage chases the car with Bala and Valli in it. On the flip side, there are a couple of loose ends. Like Kaali’s killing of the dreaded gangster Annachi creating no ripples, with neither the cops nor the goons present bothering to track Kaali. There are too many songs popping up at regular intervals.
The final moment has a poignant touch. Where a disturbed Bala, his tormentor now out of his life, regretfully says to his dad, ‘Till the end he still believed that I was the culprit’.
The film boasting of no big names, and a debutant maker at the helm, delivers much more than what one would have expected from it.