Very rarely does a murder mystery thriller hold the audience’s mind captive and after quite a long time Dhuruvangal Pathinaaru does exactly that. In an industry that’s rusted by commercial cop flicks that shows the lead shouting on top of his voice and giving Sherlock Holmes a run for their money with their investigation skills, debutante Karthik Naren has delivered a convincing flick in the form of Dhuruvangal Pathinaaru.
Deepak (Rahman), a retired cop, opens about a case that made him redundant, to an aspiring IPS officer. In a series of flashbacks, he recalls the day when he received news on a suicide case which was followed by another case of a young girl missing. While it’s obvious that the two cases are going to conjoin and Deepak with his constable, a new recruit, almost zeroes on the culprit behind it, fate has it that they aren’t able to nab that person, nor close the case. Why wasn’t there a full stop to this case forms the plot of Dhuruvangal Pathinaaru.
Rahman, who was last seen in this year’s Kuttrame Thandanai, can be called as someone who’s got an impeccable talent of picking up scripts and roles that fit him like a tee. Credit has to be given to him for being a crew member to a project which is guided by a captain who’s in his early 20s. Being the only recognizable face in the film’s main cast, he brings in the star value and experience to the table which would’ve lacked in his absence.
As the title hints, the film can be viewed in different perceptions and Rahman amplifies that thought in the last shot where he says if another person had said the same story, the characterizations of the roles would’ve differed. The real hero of the film, Karthik Naren has made an edge-of-the-seat thriller without giving in to any commercial aspects such as unwanted heroism or out-of-the-blue song shots. He also scores in giving us a glimpse of how the police work as a system, minus the second-to-none leak-proof executions that commercial films have made us believe. His characterization of Rahman too is legitimate as a cop who makes mistakes, forgets important things and wouldn’t mind getting inputs from someone under his pay-scale. A straight-forward story has been made interesting with twist after twists and this is where he shines thanks to the way in which the script has been executed and all the minor details which we might look down to ends up playing a major factor in the end when the knots get undone.
As far as the talented crew is concerned, the brothers Sujith Sarang and Sreejith Sarang steal the show. Sujith’s Cinematography with the colors he has used sets the mood for this thriller and his shots in the rain sequence, which plays a pivotal role in the film, is spectacular. Sreejith, on the other hand, is the editor of D 16 and his razor-sharp cuts play a major role in making the film crisp without many dull moments to kill the momentum. Jakes Bejoy’s background score also enhances the thriller feel of the flick. The rest of the cast too have done what’s required for the script without dwelling into the zone of over-acting.
D 16 does have its fair share of flaws. A couple of logical loopholes are apparent. While the director’s confidence to not tread upon the path of spoon-feeding the audience is praiseworthy, a couple of scenes could’ve been explained more for laymen’s better understanding. Rahman’s Tamil pronunciations could’ve been better too.
Despite the minor drawbacks, D 16 is an engaging thriller that has marked the debut of a promising director to Tamil cinema.
My rating: 3.75/5