“Oru kadha sollatta” asks the cartoonized Vedha, breaking the three and a halfth wall before the movie begins, thereby making us question our own morality and judegement for the next 2.5 hours of mind blowing filmmaking. We get ready to listen to the story of a protagonist cop chasing the antagonist villian but Pushkar and Gayathri unexpectedly hit us with such an astonishing story that we also feel like one of the characters in it. We can see the amount of detailing that needs to have been taken care of for writing a screenplay like this and seemlessly integrating it with a mythological story that is used to teach moral lessons to kids. This film also teaches us moral lessons, but the only difference is that it doesn’t treat us like kids.
The characters were not written to be perfect. They have flaws in them, just like every other one of us, but it also shows us how those flaws play a role in their decision making skills. Vikram is any other arrogant ass cop who bosses everyone around but is fortunately right most of the times. Vedha is your next door gangster who raised from the ground and built his own empire. If we go by the life sciences lessons we learned in our primary schools, the good guy is the one who should teach a lesson to the bad guy. But the film makes us question our own understanding of good and bad. Vikram splits everything as black and white. If he thinks something is bad, he deals with it immediately. If he thinks someone is not innocent, he shoots them. And he has a justification for that as well. Vedha sees everything in everyone’s shoes. He takes a calculated decision, even though what he does is against the law. These two get mixed up in an incident and they both set foot to teach a lesson to the other and they do end up teaching the lesson but they also learn something that they did not expect.
Pushkar and Gayathri also have an interesting choice of colour palette for their scenes. Oram po had a flamboyant yellow shade all over for the auto scenes and a pink shade for the romance scenes. Va quarter cutting had a greenish tint for the whole movie since every scene was about only one thing. But we can see the difference clearly in Vikram Vedha. Starting from the clear differentiation of white and black dress for Madhavan and Vijay sethupathi during the initial negotiation, the dress and the background colours going fron green to blue to red and black for each time period and the growth of Vedha as a gangster, and Vikram also going from white to brown and then finally ironically to greyish black, for someone who doesn’t believe a middle ground between black and white exists. These colous, symbolic camera placements and the music gives us the whole grand experience of conveying the exact emotions each and every scene is supposed to convey.
Vikram, brilliantly portrayed by Madhavan, has a lot of good traits in him but we judge him only based a few traits that we subjectively think as bad. Vedha, equally brilliantly potrayed by Vijay Sethupathi, is quite the opposite. He is a bad buy but we try to sympathise or relate to him based on a few subjective good traits. The well crafted writing forces us to judge these characters and then question our own judgement, thereby making us think more about the movie. What more could make a movie any better? I especially loved the John Doe-esque introduction scene for Vedha in Vijay Sethupathi’s own style. And to add to this, the music perfectly complimenting each and every emotion. Sam CS has played his part perfectly in this film. Be it the amazingly shot Yaanji or the brilliant story telling in Karuppu Vellai, the music keeps lingering long after we come out of the theaters.
It takes tremendous efforts to write such a tightly knit screenplay and Pushkar and Gayathri deserve all the priase there is for this. Although there were a lot of meta and self aware dialogues in the film, my favourite was when Vedha asks Vikram if wants to listen to a love story in the climax when Vikram is disinterested, Vedha frustratingly replies something in the lines of “Aama neenga love story lam sonna kekka mattinga”, which I think is slightly hinting their dropped film with Jai. I wouldn’t mind listening to a love story from the Pushkar and Gayathri who gave us something like Vikram Vedha.