Ponniyin Selvan - Part 1 (U/A)
30/Sep/2022 History, Drama 2hrs 47mins

Ponniyin Selvan - Part 1

Critics Review


Engaging big scale epic minus the drama!

Your experience could largely vary depending on your familiarity with Kalki's novel. PS 1 is largely condensed, and plot driven. So, the emotions of characters and the significance of crucial events don�t register as impactfully as one would have liked. But it also has some other things going for it. It delivers on the joys of watching a big scale movie with a studded star cast. Most importantly, it remains engaging despite the lack of high moments and has us anticipating the second part!(more)

Source: Bharath VijayaKumar, MovieCrow


Mani Ratnam's epic adaptation is family friendly GOT

Mani Ratnam�s adaptation of the epic is high on VFX and does not follow the usual template of a period film. He takes his own sweet time to build the world of Ponniyin Selvan and throws in crucial details through his characters matter-of-factly. There are several high moments sprinkled throughout the film. Be it Vanthiyathevan�s meet-up with Nandini or the epic Nandini-Kundavai face-off, Aditya Karikalan�s monologue or Arunmozhi Varman-Vanthiyathevan�s climax fight - you get grandeur-laden visuals, backed by strong storytelling. The dialogues, especially Vanthiyathevan and spy Azhwarkadiyan Nambi (Jayaram) work well as they manage to bring relief with their clever wit.(more)

Source: Janani, India Today


Mani Ratnam's adaptation of Kalki's Ponniyin Selvan is spectacular

The casting is more or less spot on. Karthi is terrific as the playful Vandhiyathevan, and along with Jayaram, who plays the spy Alwarkadiyan, infuses humour into the largely serious proceedings. Aishwarya captures the spirit of Nandhini with her beguiling looks, while Vikram, Jayam Ravi and Trisha are effective as the royalty. The frames have grandeur, but unlike in the Baahubali films, here, it is more understated. Shooting largely on real locations, cinematographer Ravi Varman gives us spectacle in the visuals of grand fort walls, the spacious halls with multiple pillars and high ceilings, a solitary boat on a wide expanse of the ocean and innumerable bodies lined up on the beach. While AR Rahman's chopped-up songs are mainly used to further the narrative, his score helps in lending a rousing quality to the proceedings in the second half.(more)

Source: Suganth, Times Of India


Epic story gets Mani Ratnam's royal treatment

In PS: 1, he has to deal with both in equal measure. For every ounce of goodness he shows in Arunmozhi Varman, there's a scheming Nandini to balance it. For every second of earnestness in Aditha Karikalan, there are moments of fun that Vandhiyathevan provides. Ponniyin Selvan: 1 is 167 minutes of powerful storytelling backed by visual splendour.(more)

Source: Srinivasa Ramanujam, The Hindu


Ponniyin Selvan has grandeur written on each frame, signed by Mani Ratnam the master craftsman.

The film gets its casting on point with each actor fitting their character to the T, and they all emote so well. Vikram gets a meaty scene to showcase all his acting capabilities in the interval block, Jayam Ravi looks super perfect as Arunmozhi Varman, while Karthi is the one who carries the film throughout. (more)

Source: Behindwoods, Behindwoods.com


Aishwarya Rai is a revelation in Mani Ratnam's masterful adaptation of classic

Karthi as Vanthiyathevan keeps the mood in an otherwise serious film very lively with his slightly exaggerated but strong performance. Vikram as Aaditha Karikalan lands a very emotional part and as a tragic hero delivers a measured performance. Jayam Ravi as Arulmozhi Varma only appears in the second half but has enough scenes to score and leave a mark. One of the reasons the film leaves the intended impact is because of the superb casting which includes good work by the supporting cast as well. As usual, AR Rahman brings out his A-game in yet another collaboration with Mani Ratnam.(more)

Source: Haricharan Pudipeddi, Hindustan Times


Mani Ratnam's largely faithful and brilliant adaptation has no dull moments

The difference between Mani Ratnam�s brand of commercial films and the rest becomes evident with Ponniyin Selvan. He doesn�t make demi-gods out of his heroes, they are just kings. Also, the filmmaker respects the audience. When Kundhavai sends Vanthiyathevan to Sri Lanka, the film takes a huge leap. The next time when we see Karthi, he is in a boat in the ocean. He trusts audience intelligence to fill in the gaps and that�s why PS 1 is rewarding. He also understands that Ponniyin Selvan is itself a mainstream page-turner that panders to the audience. Hence, he neither dumbs it down nor intellectualizes it. Instead, he retains the flavour of the widely-enjoyed book in this thoroughly enjoyable film.(more)

Source: Kirubhakar Purushothaman, Indian Express


Mani Ratnam Brings Out The Divinity In Aishwarya Rai Bachchan Yet Again But Rest Everything Is Just Too Scattered

Ponniyin Selvan is an iconic book and one that has enthralled readers in the South for years, the adaptation does manage to explain why showing the basics, but the big show lacks the thunder it must have. Part 2 has a lot to answer and if the approach stays like the first, hopes are dim.(more)

Source: Shubham Kulkarni -, Koimoi