Fresh after the success of Ko, Jiiva makes his appearance in Rowthiram, his home production, under the direction of newcomer Gokul, in which he essays the role of a young man who does not keep mum to the injustices around him and fights for the aggrieved souls. It is a first time combination for Jiiva and Shriya and the team certainly looks fresh and good.
True to the title of the film, Rowthiram deals with the anger of the protagonist, its upshot on his family and its cascading effect.
For a debut director, Gokul shows promise. He attempts to pack in his first film, romance and a lot of action and succeeds fairly. He shows mettle in the scenes that build up suspense when Jiiva gropes in the dark on the whereabouts of his family and also in the ironical climax. He is successful in building up the curiosity to know about the identity of Gowri. The scene where the gang moves to throw acid on Jiiva is well conceptualized and suggests the substance in Gokul. The dialogues between the gangsters are quite natural. Gokul also makes a noticeable cameo and it is a pity that his role is very small.
Some scenes are neatly done especially the family and the romance blocks. However, these are not sufficient to buoy the story up as there is inconsistency in the pace. While the first half fairly manages to hold the attention, Gokul stutters to keep the audience hooked in the second half and his struggle to move the film forward becomes evident. The long action sequences also exhausts. The snag for Rowthiram comes from its lengthiness.
It is a cakewalk for Jiiva who has delivered his role with understanding and subtlety. He shows the anguish through eyes in the sequence where his family leaves him without information. His agility in the action sequences are a plus to the film.
Shriya provides the color and warmth to this otherwise ‘manly’ and ‘hot’ film and surprisingly keeps her glamour in check in most places. Prakash Raj does a small cameo and in the supporting cast, it is Jaiprakash who walks away with the acting honors with his natural and nuanced portrayal. Ganesh Acharya as the gangster has not much to do but to jive to the ‘Goli Maaro’ number.
On the technical side, it is stunt master Anal Arasu who has much work with the film being action-centric. His stunt choreography would be spoken about but the slow motion shots in most of the action scenes act as a downer. Costumes and accessories by Deepali Noor especially for Shriya are refreshing and relatable. Cinematographer Shanmugasundaram is adequate in his responsibility.
There is no lasting effect in the music of Prakash Nikky. The songs are well picturized and choreographed although a couple of them do not justify their presence for instance Goli Maaro Gangster and Malai Mangum Neram.
Rowthiram has positives going in its favor. If the screen play had been more linear and taut, it would have made a huge impact.
Verdict: Rage that could have been more powerful