Ilayaraja Review: A feel-good inspirational tale
After delivering two highly acclaimed hard-hitting films in ‘Melvilasom’ and ‘Apothecary’, director Madhav Ramadasan has come with his new film ‘Ilayaraja’ starring Ajay Kumar, aka Guinness Pakru in the lead. A bunch of newcomers are also part of the movie, both in the cast and crew. Let’s see what the movie has to offer.
‘Ilayaraja’ tells the story of Vanajan, a vertically challenged middle-aged man who works as a road side peanut vendor. He finds it hard to meet ends for his family, which comprises of his ailing wife, father and two school going kids. Vanajan’s children – Subbu and Ambu are gifted with special talents. It is basically an inspirational tale of how the underprivileged defy all odds to lead a better life.
Ilayaraja’s story penned by Madhav Ramadasan had potential to be just another poverty porn, but luckily it is more cheerful and avoids unwanted melodrama for most part. The narrative is fast paced and the initial half moves swiftly by quickly establishing the characters and their lives. The major conflict also manages to raise curiosity. However, the predictability of such stories coupled by a some overstretched portions in the latter half pulls down the movie a tad. With a rewarding all-smiles climax, the movie gives an overall satisfying feel.
Coming to the performances, Guinness Pakru as Vanajan and Harisree Ashokan as his father have given their career best. Pakru was very restrained yet powerful in his portrayal of the lead role. His moving performance makes the audience root for Vanajan and his family. Harisree Ashokan, in a never-before-seen look, was extremely conniving as the old man who stands as a pillar for the family. The two kids had the most screentime and they were good in parts. The amateurishness that comes with child actors were evident but the makers have managed to cover it up to a large extent.
Technically, ‘Ilayaraja’ is not a very memorably work but the songs were all impressive.