Padaiveeran (2018) – A Tragic Story of a Good Man
Padaiveeran (2018) is a drama film that is written and directed in Tamil-language by director Dhana Sekaran. The film is starring Vijay Yesudas as the point-of-view protagonist and Amritha Aiyer as his co-star. Other major characters are played by Bharathiraja and Akhil.
The film was released on February 2, 2018 in India only. The cinematography for the film is led by Rajavel Mohan which was edited by Bhuvan Srinivasan. Music score and composition was done by Karthik Raja. The project was produced and published by Evoke Films.
The village of Aiyanaar Patti is a place where caste segregation is still in practice. Because of this, citizens of the village are generally stereotyped as criminals which, in turn, traps them in a permanent state of poverty. The village is also constantly in conflict with rival castes.
Padaiveeran Muneeshwaran (Vijay Yesudas) is a young boy who grew up in this world together with his like-minded friends. He is often arrested for small crimes such as petty theft. He was raised by his doting uncle, Krishnan (Bharathiraja), ever since his parents died. However, the rest of their relatives have a tendency for violence.
Muneeshwaran is aimless about his own future until he falls in love with Malar (Amritha). He knew he can’t give her a good life as he is at the moment so he was inspired to join the police force when he learned that the villagers respect them. There is another reason why he wants to join the police force and that is to prove that his caste is not a clan of petty criminals.
Trouble brewed involving Muneeshwaran’s village and another caste. War broke between two clans and it became the police force’s duty to de-escalate any conflict. This involves breaking fights and arresting rioters. One of the participants of the conflict involves Muneeshwaran’s violent relatives such as his less admirable uncle and cousins.
Padaiveeran is suddenly forced into a situation where he has to decide between his duty to his profession as a constable or his loyalty to his family. He thinks back to why he became a police officer in the first place. He wants to relieve his caste of stereotypes and that is why he decided to arrest his own uncle and cousins.
In the end, the leaders of both castes decided to form a truce so they can all celebrate the annual temple festival. The arrested members involved in the violent riot were released including Muneeshwaran’s family. He attended the festival because he wanted to make sure that there will be no trouble caused by his family.
Tragedy struck when Muneeshwaran’s uncle and cousin attempted to murder him as an act of revenge. They poured fuel on him then set him on fire. Malar and Krishnan tried to save him but the other members of the caste stopped them. The entire village, outside his two beloved family members, are part of this ambush. As a final act of defiance and service, Padaiveeran grabbed onto his violent uncle, killing them both in flames.