Aruvam movie review: Siddharth's film for the masses can't help but be all over the place
Siddharth is impressive in a mass avatar but his role in Aruvam is exactly the same as the one in his release last month, Sivappu Manjal Pachai.
Aruvam had an impressive teaser cut, with many exciting ingredients, especially the ‘food safety issue’ mixed with horror elements. The teaser had Siddharth in multiple avatars, and was packaged with the right doses of action, comedy, and social commentary on food adulteration. However, the supernatural thriller, directed by Sai Sekhar, fails to live up to the expectations raised by the teaser.
It looks clichéd with nothing new in story and treatment. At the end of the day, it turns out to be an ordinary and predictable revenge drama. Siddharth is an actor who chooses his scripts with great care, and has two big horror hits in the passable Sundar C-directed Aranmanai 2 and Milind Rau’s fantastic Aval. In Aruvam, instead of concentrating on his storyline, the director has made it like a mass film.
The first few minutes is the introduction of Jyoti (Catherine Tresa), who is a soft-natured girl and a lower primary school teacher, who would not even hurt an ant. In the opening scene, she refuses to step out of her car, as she would step on a few ants. Jyoti has a pure heart but has a problem: she does not have a sense of smell. In one scene, she takes the rotten carcass of a dead dog and buries it while her friends are put off by the smell. And soon, our hero Jagan (Siddharth), an orphan, falls for her like a ton of bricks on first sight at a traffic signal. Initially, Jyoti keeps Jagan away as she feels guilty that it was her disability which led to her mother’s death in a cooking gas leakage. She feels she is unfit to lead a normal married life.
Meanwhile, a few bad men, led by Kabir Duhan Singh, Madhusoodanan, Stunt Silva, and others, want to kill Jyoti. She is, in a way, linked to Jagan, who has a back story as an honest and daring food safety assistant commissioner, who took on a mafia that thrived on food adulteration. The plot goes bizarre from a nice romantic story to a supernatural thriller, where a ghost wants to take revenge on a group of men. What follows is total mayhem.
Catherine, who has equal footing as Siddharth, and has two different get-ups, is adequate, though her role could have been better etched out. Siddharth is impressive in a mass avatar but his role as the fiercely independent and righteous food inspector is exactly the same as the one in his release last month, Sivappu Manjal Pachai, where he played an honest and sincere traffic cop. Satish, as the hero's sidekick, provides some laughs in scenes where they raid hotels selling adulterated food. The songs in the first half act as speed-breakers. However, the redeeming factors are the terrific action scenes choreographed by Stunt Silva, and captured on Ekambaram’s camera.
Aruvam could have been a far better film if the writing was convincing, and the mix of romance and supernatural had a bit more logic and conviction.
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