SonyLIV's Victim: Who is Next? comprises four thrillers, namely Dhammam (directed by Pa Ranjith), Mirrage (Rajesh M), Kottai Pakku Vathalum Mottai Maadi Sitharum (Chimbudevan) and Confession (Venkat Prabhu)
Last Updated: 08.00 AM, Aug 05, 2022
Story: SonyLIV's Victim: Who is Next? comprises four thrillers directed by Pa Ranjith, Rajesh M, Chimbudevan and Venkat Prabhu where they try turning around the conventional ideas of victimhood.
Review: SonyLIV's latest offering Victim-Who is Next? is a heady concoction of four engaging stories that turn around the conventional ideas of victimhood. The anthology begins with Pa Ranjith's power-packed Dhammam (compassion). The plot is set in rural Tamil Nadu where Kema (Poorvadharini), the school-going spirited daughter of a Dalit farmer (Guru Somasundaram) stands up against a dominant caste man (Kalaiyarasan). The characters meet in a narrow pathway in a farm and both of them do not want to give way to each other.
We get many interesting moments where Kema, who had no qualms about dirtying her clothes, while attempting to catch a fish, does not want her feet to get muddy, while giving way to a dominant cast man. The plot is crisp and firmly asserts the fact that the power equation has changed, and culminates with an interesting climax and some compelling performances from the star cast. Tenma's background completes the tense moments on the screen. The cinematography by Thamizh A Azhagan is brilliant, too, thus making Dhamman the highlight of the series.
Rajesh M's Mirrage and Venkat Prabhu's Confession revolve around the stereotypical trope of damsels in distress. In Mirrage, we see Priya Bhavani Shankar, an IT professional travelling for work, encountering an insane caretaker Madasamy (a scary Natarajan Subramaniam) at a guesthouse located in a secluded location on ECR. The film has many chilling moments that really make you jump out of your seat, but the climax turns out to be a predictable one. Priya Bhavani Shankar and Natarajan both have pulled off their roles in a convincing manner. Here, too we see a shift in the power equation with Priya's character trying to dominate the scene at first and later, when she is at the mercy of the caretaker for survival, it's Madasamy's character all the way.
On the other hand, in Confession, we meet Anjana (Amala Paul), a media professional, who leads a complicated life and lets the cat out of the bag, when she is threatened at gunpoint to confess all the 'wrong-doings' in her life. When she doles out the list of her 'wrong-doings', the scene comes across as sexist.
The introductory shot has Amala Paul looking all tense in an elevator and is seen dashing to her house. When we expect something majorly dramatic to happen, we are told that she was only in a hurry to use the bathroom and we break into a smile. Amala Paul is seen as extremely comfortable in her role as a media professional, who has many secrets in her kitty.
While Amala Paul romances the camera, Krish's character as her husband, living and working in the UK, strikes a discordant note. The actor struggles to render his lines in what seems like a forced accent and his face, too, is devoid of any expressions, thus coming across as unconvincing. Prasanna' character, who seems to moonlight as an assassin, has put up a nuanced performance. The short manages to keep the audience hooked, though the climax could have been pulled off in a better manner.
Chimbudevan's Kottai Pakku Vathalum Mottai Maadi Sitharum is a light-hearted story in the otherwise tense anthology. It revolves around a journalist, who is at the risk of losing his job, interviewing a sage, who has the ability to perform miracles. While Thambi Ramaiah plays the middle-aged reporter, Nassar plays the sage, who has supposedly lived for more than 400 years. Their conversations as they delve into world affairs and question the status quo, though narrated in a funny manner, makes one think. What's interesting is that the director has provided four climaxes for the short and each one has a unique twist. It's up to the audience to choose their favourite climax.
The four stories in Victim: Who is Next? make for a compelling watch with Dhamman and Kottai Pakku Vathalum Mottai Maadi Sitharum standing out.
Verdict: Though all four films do not work on equal measure, Victim: Who is Next? is quite an interesting watch that will keep you hooked to the screen.