Ayothi Review - A Surprisingly Neat Emotional Drama!
Ayothi is an emotional drama starring Sasikumar in the lead role. The film is directed by debutant Manthira Moorthy in Trident Arts production. Music is composed by N.R.Raghunanthan.
A family of four from North India visits Rameshwaram for darshan. One of them dies in a car accident driven by Sasikumar's friend. The hero takes over the situation, to help the innocent family fly back to their native place for the cremation process.
To the simple line, the director has incorporated a lot of emotional layers which adds immense value to the script. The film focused from the work go and doesn’t deviate at any instance. Right from the scratch, the film is very true to its genre, predominantly revolves around a North Indian family and the dialogues are in Hindi which keeps the treatment authentic. The movie doesn’t rely on Sasikumar, in fact we get to travel only with the story-driven supporting characters in most of the initial portions. The hero enters their world when he is naturally brought into it, even then he underplays for a period of time. Heroism comes to the limelight only in the later stages of the film as it demands at a point, that too handled neatly within the believable limits because the struggle to achieve the goal is visible. Emotions work so well as the supporting characters have solid setups and payoffs. There might be doubts whether the film is eyeing to end in a morally regressive way, but completely convinces the audience by showing a pivotal character realizing what is right via a death and the message conveyed is noble, presented in a touching manner. There are a few melodramatic portions that go overboard, and some scenes take cinematic liberty for granted as quite a bit of logical loopholes exist. Has traces of Naadodigal, especially the climax where a woman approaches the hero asking for help. Great decision to lock a crisp runtime of just two hours, but can’t deny the fact that lags and sluggish pace were felt due to the realistic tone.
Sasikumar does a decent job, however he would have nailed it when he was in his prime form, but he makes the film believable because of his brand of portraying roles of a man with an uncontrollable helping tendency. The young debut actress who has played an innocent daughter role emotes brilliantly, undoubtedly one of the recent best debut performances, also blasts when she takes command and accuses her dad. Lagaan actor Yashpal Singh has done a key role, played his part perfectly. The little boy is great too, he too gets his share of being the major part in a sentiment scene in the later half. Pugazh is thankfully just a supporting character here and doesn't annoy us on-screen, for the first time.
Technical finesse is missing as the budget constraints are evident, but nothing is bad at the same time. Decent camera work, has a few pixelated aerial shots though. Certain cuts are planned and taken in such a way while shooting, but certain places are abrupt, Sasikumar’s intro scene and footage during the final credits could have been chopped off. Music-wise a satisfying outing, songs are pretty good with apt lyrics and likable voices. There is not much breathing space with respect to the background score, yet elevates certain emotionally-charged situations.
Sasikumar gives ample space for the strongly portrayed supporting characters in this off-beat flick which is emotionally appealing despite its dips. A thin plot developed well in writing and executed in a tidy manner.
Rating - 3/ 5