Namma Veetu Pillai
Right as you delve into the world of Pandiraj’s films, you get a sense of deja vu. And that feeling is quite heavy when you see Namma Veetu Pillai, because it follows the same trajectory as the director’s previous film Kadaikutty Singam starring Karthi. Both films stressed upon the importance of familial values and how the presence of relatives makes or breaks a family. Namma Veetu Pillai begins with the introduction of a highly dysfunctional family. There’s a past as to why the family fell apart. Arumpon (Sivakarthikeyan) is literally ‘namma veetu pillai’ (‘Our son’) to everyone in the extended family. At least that’s how he wants it to be. However, the friction between the families gets widened when Arumpon’s sister Thulasi (Aishwarya Rajesh) comes of marriageable age. Arumpon is forced to get her married to a local goon, Ayyanar (Natrajan Subramanian), which turns their life upside down. Throw in a lot of melodrama, brother-sister sentiments, and you get Namma Veetu Pillai. Since the film has Sivakarthikeyan in the lead role, make sure you add in a forced love story featuring Anu Emmanuel, some goon bashing and not to forget, some lectures on how the star manages to win every battle even if he faces setbacks. Pandiraj’s films are high on emotion, mostly about family. Namma Veetu Pillai is no different and there are a lot of things going on in the film. There’s a flashback on Thulasi and Arumpon’s parents, there is a sub-plot about the friction between the family and there is a sequence about Ayyanar’s loyalty. While Kadaikutty Singam’s character arcs were crystal clear, Namma Veetu Pillai sub-plots don’t really add much to the depth of the story. The complexity within the family gets repetitive after a point. Every time there is an emotional sequence featuring Arumpon and Thulasi, before the actors can make you feel for them, D Imman’s BGM pushes you to start feeling the apt emotions. The stunt sequences are incorporated just to boost Sivakarthikeyan’s mass image and to please his fans. Surprisingly, Soori’s comedy works in a few places in this film. There are a few sequences that have been written interestingly. Take the scene where Sivakarthikeyan, Soori, Aishwarya Rajesh and Anu Emmanuel engage in a con-call. Though the dialogues are redundant, the sequence serves its purpose. There is a stretch where Sivakarthikeyan and Anu Emmanuel talk about what a girl likes in a guy. The entire dialogue exchange is cringy. Anu’s character says that the guy shouldn’t scold a girl if she wears lipstick. Siva’s character says that a guy shouldn’t shut a girl down if she wears leggings. To think that these are the worrying aspects in a relationship makes you question where the world is heading. Sivakarthikeyan as the mass hero delivers whatever is required of him. He is there romancing the heroine, mouthing punch dialogues, bashing up goons and giving the audience moral science lessons. Aishwarya Rajesh as the benevolent sister fits her role perfectly. The show-stealer of Namma Veetu Pillai is veteran actress Archana who plays Sivakarthikeyan’s mother. Her expressions are so perfect that you almost see her live the role. Director Pandiraj’s Namma Veetu Pillai starring Sivakarthikeyan is reminiscent of the filmmaker’s previous film Kadaikutty Singam. However, the emotional connect seems to be missing in Namma Veetu Pillai.