Jeeva - A Bold Knock!!!
Suseenthiran burst onto the screen with 'Venilla Kabadi Kuzhu' a film based on Kabbadi. Now after 5 years he turns his attention towards the most popular sport in the country. While we have had films like Chennai 28 in Tamil which took a look at the part the game plays in the life of the general public there has been no movie that tracks the life of a professional or an aspiring cricketer. The trailer of Jeeva promised exactly that.
Jeeva tracks the life of a professional cricketer from his childhood days. The film is about Jeeva’s ambition for the game, the toll it takes on his other relationships and whether he can overcome the hurdles thrown at him to reach his destination.
Vishnu is perfectly cast. The fact that we are aware of his cricketing past is definitely a huge factor that helps both in his performance and the audience being able to relate to his character. The actor does score big in the emotional sequences. Lakshman plays a pivotal role as his friend. A crucial portion of the film rides on his shoulder and he pulls it off commendably. Sri Divya is believable as Jeeva’s love interest who has her side of genuine justifications. Charlie and Marimuthu are brilliant in their portrayals. Both their characterizations are a welcome relief from what we are used to.
D. Imman makes a big impression. The BGM score in Jeeva makes the emotional sequences all the more convincing. The songs too are a pleasant listen. The match sequences are realistic and this is so vital for a film like this. Kudos to cinematographer Madhi for being able to achieve this.
Suseenthiran continues his fine form. A notable aspect of this man is that he makes quality films within a reasonable time frame. Though it occupies only a small portion of the running time the crux of the film is about the politics being played by the selectors of the game. The director makes no bones about it and there is no mincing of words even in the dialogues. While this portion of the film could evoke polarized response depending on your sensibilities it certainly takes guts for a filmmaker to achieve this on screen.The film starts of pleasantly reminding us of our childhood with scenes involving rubber ball cricket, deciding the batting order by guessing numbers, one pitch catch and other unique rules of gully and terrace cricket. When a coach asks young Jeeva from where did he learn cricket the kid replies ‘From Sachin on TV’ and the audiences erupt into a rapture. Such simple and effective scenes are those that almost everyone who has played cricket can relate to. Another heartwarming scene is the one where the Stadium watchman helps out Jeeva in his practice by sending throw downs.
The love track of the film is in no way less compared to the cricketing portions. But we are eagerly anticipating more of a cricketing story and the romantic portions do seem to occupy a little more space than necessary. Soori’s comedy during a crucial phase of a club match could have also been more refined. While it does evoke some laughter it is definitely misplaced in a film like this where cricket and life mean the same for the people concerned. While the below scene is not much of an aberration to the storytelling it will not fail to take the notice of keen cricket enthusiasts. People are watching the India vs Australia match from the 1996 world cup live on TV in a petty shop . Sachin is batting under floodlights but it is shown to be daytime at the place of this shop. This is probably being noticed because we believe Suseenthiran is maker of definite calibre and these small glitches can be avoided.
Suseenthiran impresses once again with Jeeva. With a sensitive issue as the crux he delivers another winning performance.