The recently released Tamil flick “Appa”, directed by Samuthirakani has received immense praise for its immaculate portrayal of the hardships faced by almost every high school student in Tamil Nadu, and also across the country. The mere difference between our state and the whole country is that we people are forced to score high marks in our boards, whereas the students around us face a much more daunting task of scoring well in their boards and also in the competitive exams being held. Moreover, this film also shows the system of rote learning and vomiting the memorised scripts in the answer sheets in the higher secondary scheme of things.
The director himself plays a pivotal role in this film donning the role of a caring and passionate husband, and afterwards a father (‘Appa’ means father in Tamil which is the title of this film). The story is about how a father raises his son amidst a society where education is regarded as the only means by which a child could achieve self-sufficiency in his/her life. He clearly tries to explain that education alone is not important and that it’s only a small part of an extremely big package called Life.
Ultimately, the director explains the things which he wanted to express through his flick in a simple and organised manner. Each character has been essayed certain individual characteristics which impresses us to a certain extent, without crossing the danger line. The crux of the film is its children, who acted extremely well and made justice to their very important roles in the film.
There are many noteworthy moments in the film for which the director should extremely be proud of. For example, one of the scenes portrays how an adolescent child should be made to mingle with his/her opposite sex without much fuss. Many parents skip this part, mostly by intent, which makes it hard for the children to mingle and communicate with the opposite sex. This is the missing part of the jigsaw in our country, which makes it hard for people, especially girls to venture out without fear.
The second half of the film concentrates more on the atrocities of some private schools, who by very unfair means make students pass out of school with very high grades. How could we forget all those innocent lives lost, in the name of suicide inside such heavily guarded campuses? I don’t wish to state how such things happen, as you all know exactly what’s happening inside. However, this movie throws light on everything related to this, very subtly.
Personally, I feel that this is one of those rare flicks with a strong social message in a time where commercial movies comfortably gulp over such story oriented movies. With this flick to his name, Samuthirakani is slowly yet steadily stamping his authority in Tamil Cinema, both as a director, and as an actor. Spend your two hours in this very inspiring movie which spurs every parent to find that hidden spark in his/her daughter or son. It isn’t tough. Just let them be themselves, and you’ll get to know what they’re interested at rather sooner than later.
Director – Samuthirakani
Cinematography – Richard M. Nathan
Music – Ilaiyaraaja
Editing – A. L. Ramesh
IMDB Rating – 8.5/10
My Rating – 9/10
*With insights from imdb.com