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PT Sir Movie Review: A lacklustre exercise of woman empowerment for heroism’s sake

PT Sir Movie Review: The Hiphop Tamizha Adhi-starrer ditches a premise with abundant potential for a hero vehicular story talking about gender crimes 

PT Sir Movie Review: A lacklustre exercise of woman empowerment for heroism’s sake
PT Sir

Last Updated: 11.05 AM, May 24, 2024


PT Sir story

Kanagavel (Hiphop Tamizha Adhi) is a physical education teacher at a school in Erode, where a chain of education institutions is run by Guru Purushottaman (Thiagarajan). Exhibiting childish eccentricity while at the same time pursuing his colleague and teacher Vanathy (Kashmira Pardeshi), an incident involving Nandhini (Anikha Surendran) makes Kanagavel level up and take on Guru Purushottaman and the empire he built.

PT Sir
PT Sir

PT Sir review

They say sports require utmost discipline. But that’s not the case with the world in which PT Sir is set. Kanagavel’s quirks are limited to grooving to synchronised dance steps along with students and contesting with the same children for the sake of Vanathy. As much as it isn’t funny to show a minor in that light, it is the same when a teacher jokes about the private parts of a male student. But the film’s bigger problem lies elsewhere.

When Kanagavel says that he does not want to give up his sports period to other teachers to complete their syllabus and even is against the school’s management to cancel Sports Day citing impending exams, the first seemed to go somewhere. Wouldn’t it be just apt for the title if the film dealt with the concept of a physical education teacher going up and arms against his fellow colleagues and making Sports Day really happen? 

It seems to be a small conflict, yet it is bestowed with an abundance of layers that can be brought into the writing. Well even if PT Sir spends a few comical scenes to establish this, the course of film changes and we see Kanagavel voicing out for women empowerment and safety, as if there is a dearth of Tamil heroes taking up being the caped crusader of that of a saviour. Just when I hoped this would not be a Bigil in uplifting women in sports, it turned out to be an Etharkkum Thunindhavan where men spoke about violence against women and the ordeals they go through, rather than taking the onus of gender crimes.


PT Sir is a film that has nothing to do with the title, and that isn’t the biggest grouse I have with the film. It is the dangle between victim shaming and the male saviour complex that the film has to offer. Amid the unbalancing momentarily tonal shifts between humour and seriousness that the film indulges in through a couple of scenes, there is an act where multiple generations of women narrate their ordeal of daily life assaults that they go through and yet choose to remain calm and flippant about their angst. Why? Because that’s the routine of life, right? 

I do understand that it may be the plight of many women, especially in Tier 2 cities, but what is the need for the film to voice out many such instances of victim shaming when all the film tries is to take the survivor’s stance? Why choose to reiterate the wrong side, which is already in abundance and completely ignore the sensitive take on women’s plight? And why, out of all the heroes, who are still protected or rather restricted, by his mother, who reasons a lousy flashback that is tied to his marriage and astrology, should he be the one to save the day? Right, since when have mothers of sons stopped worrying about their offspring until they transferred their responsibilities to the daughters-in-law?

At one point, the film also makes a character say, “Maanasthi, uyire vituta” (honourable woman who took her life), while referring to a character’s demise following what happened to her. Even if these kinds of dialogues may come from characters who are not necessarily painted in the right shade, PT Sir has an abundance of sublimely reiterating the abuse and posing a blame game on the survivors with no efforts of redemption or comebacks. Yes, we do get a lecture on women's safety and a 'twist' of sorts at the end of a long-drawn battle, but at what cost? And do we still need lectures from the hero on women's safety when the onus is still on men? Isn’t that an already established fact or are we still dwelling on it? PT Sir is a film that raises so many questions—not the right ones that need to be asked in a gender-biased society, but ones on why we are still stuck in the vicious cycle of milking survivor’s trauma as fodder for heroism.

PT Sir verdict

PT Sir is forgettable, thankfully for its benefit, because the film's process of uplifting womankind only makes way for men to show their heroism. And all that I would say after watching the film is, let’s not milk feminism and women's empowerment anymore.

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