Ennakul Oruvan- So Close No Matter How Far

Having not watched Lucia, the trailer of Enakkull Oruvan made me really curious. It seemed to be a highly intriguing concept and the trailer left me guessing. It had shades of all the mind-bending Hollywood movies I’ve seen. After watching it, it still feels like a mix of those movies, and doesn’t really stand out on its own. Enakkul Oruvan is a fantastic attempt but somewhere along the way, it doesn’t wow you the way you expect it to.

The story revolves around a nobody, who works as a torch holder at a theatre. His insomnia drives him to try out a pill that not only promises to put him to sleep but also let him live his dream world. It talks about the contrasting dreams of people on two ends of life’s spectrum. The nobody, Vignesh (aka Vicky) is not only able to live his dream life but also woo the girl of his dreams without any of the difficulties he faces in real life. Apart from its crux story, the movie also narrates the love story of Vignesh.

Enakkul Oruvan started off brilliantly; pacey and well set up. But throughout the movie, you keep wondering whether it could have been better. Through the movie the narrator shows the difference between dream and reality by keeping the dream in black and white. He baits us fantastically for his plot twists (although he gives the worst possible excuse for it) and hopes we get blown away. If I had not watched Inception, I probably would have. The movie is inspired by Inception that the climax seems exactly the same. And for some reason, the entire dream world seems to be a drag; something you want to fast forward and get back to to see how it affects his reality. It feels like debutant director Prasad Ramar has tried to incorporate too much but was far too lazy to execute it.

Siddharth has delivered a truly excellent performance. In a lot of recent movies we see that the direction often does little justice to the actor’s performance, and the pattern continues here too. His depiction of two roles that are highly polarised is fantastic to see. Deepa Sannidhi has also done a commendable job and this could probably be her breakthrough in Tamil cinema. Aadukalam Naren did a really good job in his supporting role. But the buck stops there. Every other performance was either mediocre or worse. John Vijay is an actor I’ve enjoyed seeing on screen, but I couldn’t help cringing at his performance in the movie.

Where this movie scores full marks is the music department. First we have to trace back a couple of paragraphs. The BGM was incredible but one has to concede it sends you back to Hans Zimmer’s Inception. Having said that, the songs were unbelievably good. “Endi Ippadi” is highly contagious and “Poo Avizhum Pozhudhil” is jaw-droppingly good. Santhosh Narayanan is quickly growing to be one of the best in the industry.

The camera work started off highly interestingly with First Person Views in the dream scenes but that did not sustain for too long. The dubbing was botched, to say the least (especially John Vijay’s). On the whole, despite its negatives Enakkul Oruvan is definitely a positive step forward for Tamil Cinema. For those who haven’t seen Lucia or Inception, this is definitely a fantastic experience. Although this is a remake, it’s good to see the kind of movies being made in the Tamil Industry. Enakkul Oruvan is a definite watch.

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