Movie Review: DON

Director: Cibi Chakaravarthi
Cast: Sivakarthikeyan, Priyanka Arul Mohan, S. J. Suryah, Samuthirakani and others
Banner: Lyca Productions, Sivakarthikeyan Productions
Music: Anirudh

Siva Karthikeyan is high on the success of his last film Doctor. He has changed gears and has now come back with a campus drama called DON. The film has SJ Suryah and Priyanka Arul Mohan in key roles and has been directed by Cibi Chakravarthi and is doing well on the big screens.

Plot

Chakravarthi(Siva Karthikeyan) belongs to a lower-middle-class family. His dad’s(Samuthrakani) dream is to make him an engineer and enrolls him in one. Chakravarthi reluctantly joins the course and indulges in his own kind of fun. This is the time, professor Bhoominathan(SJ Suryah) enters the scene. He is the head of the disciplinary committee and employs crazy rules. Chakravarthi and his batch decide to teach him a lesson and try various things in the process. Who wins this teacher versus student game is the rest of the story.

Performances

After a long time, we get to see Siva Karthikeyan in a very carefree and entertaining role. He as the reckless student evokes good comedy and romance and also mimics Tamil stars superbly in a few scenes. But things change in the second half as the film turns into a coming of age story and Siva’s act in the last half an hour is emotional and creates a good impact.

SJ Suryah gets one more meaty role and continues where he left off in Simbu’s Maanadu. His banter with Siva Karthikeyan is handled well by the director turned actor and forms the highlight of the film. Priyanka Arul Mohan is okay as the hero’s love interest and does not have much to do. Samutrakani as the strict father rushes with his lines initially but is very good in the climax.

Technicalities

Don is Anirudh’s 25th film and his music is strictly okay. None of the songs create an impact on the listeners. But Anirudh is the king of BGM and he elevates most of the scenes. Don is directed by Cibi Charkavarthi and his writing is okay. There is nothing much novel but the manner in which he brings in the father and son thread by the end looks nice. This gives scope for neat dialogues. Cinematography by KM Bhaskaran and editing by Nagooran Ramachandran are neat and serve the purpose.

Analysis

Don is set in an engineering college and takes you on a nostalgic ride. The comedy, songs, and ragging bring the college day memories and though this aspect looks routine, Siva Karthikeya in an energetic role after a long time keeps the audience on their toes. Director Cibi recreates scenes of many hit Tamil films in the campus comedy and makes use of them effectively.

Things start getting interesting with the entry of SJ Suryah and the banter he shares with the hero is also elevated nicely by the director. The tongue-in-cheek humor keeps the atmosphere light and the audience does not get bored. But once the love angle and mid portions of the film arrive, the director has run out of ideas. He did not know what scenes to fill this space with to take the film to the key pre-climax and end.

The narration can be tagged into two aspects with the first two hours being smart, banking Sivakarthikeyan’s skills, while the last thirty minutes or so is all about the actor surrendering completely to the director. This is where the emotional thread is highlighted between the father and son. How a carefree youth gets serious in life and how one incident changes his aim is shown so well by the director Cibi.

In all this, there is a slight message that is given that sounds preachy after a while. But as the film has enough comedy and some emotional moments cleverly packed, it makes up for a passable watch if you watch it with low expectations.

Bottom Line – Timepass Comedy