The thing about Cheran films is that they are straight from the heart. And it is also for your heart. Even chilling truths of personal lives are extrapolated in a warm manner. They are also told in an unhurried manner, like a grandma regaling the young ones in the household or a lover singing softly into the ears of his ladylove. But they are not sweet nothings. They are, on the contrary, sweet somethings. Though his movies are set in rural milieu, the emotions, are at once, global and personal. Cheran's villages are not kitschy or cheesy but are almost tangible.
Thavamai Thavamirundhu is no different, but it takes off from where Autograph left. If Autograph was introspective, then TT is intensely reflective of bondings within the matrix of the family system. It also asks searching questions about the sad predicament of old parents who are increasingly left alone in their autumn of their lives by sons who chase their own dreams and destinations.
Muthiah (Raj Kiran) and Sarada (Saranya), a honest and hard working village couple, who bring up their two sons Ramanathan (Senthil) and Ramalingam (Cheran) the hard way. Muthiah being an illiterate wants his sons to be well educated. Naturally, he goes out of the way to provide them quality education. But problem arises with the arrival of a daughter-in-law. Ramanathan gets married to Latha (Meena),and the new comer to the family is hardly empathetic to the emotions and beliefs of her in-laws. Meanwhile, Ramalingam too elopes with a college mate (Padmapriya). The aged parents are left clutching at the straws of life. Eventually, Ramalingam understands the folly of his ways and he comes back and tries to piece back the shattered shreds of their family lives.
It is a simple and sentimental tale unspooled with lot of care and conviction. Cheran's films work because they are real and cane be related to.
Cheran the director has also wrested strong performances from his cast. Starting with patriarch Raj Kiran. The mellow emotions that he comes up with are amazing. Ditto in the case of Saranya. Both cut a wonderful performance. Cheran as usual is bankable while Padmapriya, the new girl from Malayalam, is graceful and utterly convincing. Even Senthil, another newcomer, is very realistic in his portrayals.
Cheran has also given the film the right texture that adds an extra perspective to the village ambience. Sabesh Murali's music is soft and soothing. M S Prabhu's camera too provides feats for the eyes.
Autograph was a movie most of us could relate to either personally or through a known one. Thavamai Thavamirundhu is a movie which brings about the best in family values, which again most of us will be able to relate to. In gist, if you enjoyed Autograph, Thavamai Thavamirundhu is a movie you might not want to miss.
Cheran's sincerity and honesty make it for a good watch. Another jewel in his crown!