For a film that is centered around the brutal real life story of the infamous Dandapalya gang that wreaked havoc in and around Bangalore during the late 90s by slitting the throats of women before raping them, "Karimedu" at times walks on some really silly and (inadvertently) cliched terrains.
I walked into the theater without a reference point (it came to my knowledge only later that the film was in fact a dubbed version of the Kannada hit "Dandupalya") and while director Srinivas Raju does deserve a fair bit of credit for touching upon a really sensitive topic; particularly at a time when the entire nation has its arms up in fury and protest with regards to what happened in Delhi, "Karimedu" doesn't really work well as a feature film.
From the get go, poor dialogues (perhaps lost in translation) accompany the narration. To save time, the film literally opens with the police character narrating the film's plot to the villains while interrogating them.
The characters are forcefully thrust onto the screen, without any back story or explanation regarding their motivations whatsoever. We are introduced to the world of these evil "mirugams" who stalk, capture and kill their prey on a continued cycle. It makes for an interesting premise, no doubt, but the very haphazard nature of the screenplay coupled with some abhorrent gore makes for a very difficult watch.
Indeed. For a good while now, cinema goers have been coerced (or influenced?) into believing that realism amounts to good cinema, which isn't exactly true. There is realism. And then there is plain nauseating. Unrestricted use of blood, sleaze and (Pig) meat only add to the repugnance.
The casting is alright, for the most part, even if the characterizations aren't. We are to accept that Makarand Deshpande is a terrifying rapist because of the eyelashes; and that Pooja Gandhi is all bad because she smokes a beedi and carries a Pig on her back. That's fine.
It's almost as if even the film isn't sure of what it exactly is, often fluctuating between a (needless) love story and the Inspector's fairly fruitless pursuit of the villains, which are both interweaved within the "rape" episodes.
It gets to a stage where the rapists become so central to the story, that we are almost being egged on to root for them. The slow motion shots of these men walking away from their victims like Reservoir Dogs would testify to this claim.
And speaking of testifying, how apt that such a film should end in Tamil Cinema's age old and favorite "court scene"?
We have the evidence. We have the criminals, and we have the proof. But no. It is only the long, exasperating speech about righteousness and justice from the cop that will convince the Judge to give out a fair and favorable sentence and cause an uprising amongst the (till then quiet) public.
For a film that has mutilated bodies and bloodshed galore, the only time I freaked out was at the final shot which alludes at the possibility of a sequel.
Rating : 2/5
Verdict : Bloody hell. Literally