Pannaiyaarum Padminiyum Review

Pannaiyaarum Padminiyum Review

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Rating: 8.70/10

VERDICT: Pay a visit to Pannaiyaar and his Padmini. They'll guarantee you a suave, poised and promising ride.


STORY (1/1)

Set in the 1980's when technology was budding, a village landlord falls in love with a Premier Padmini, which belongs to his acquaintance. Find out what happens when he gets to take care of the car for a period of time and the entire village develops feelings for the classic vehicle, in this coming of age drama. 


Debutant Arun Kumar who is another winner of Naalaya Iyakunar, has tried his level best to stretch his original short film into a feature length. And he deserves to be called a winner. He has utilized a uniform template to tell his story to the audience. From start, Pannaiyaarum Padminiyum takes its' own sweet time to reach the climax. It is expected for the screenplay to unravel in a leisurely pace since we are watching a drama. For this film, it has worked excellently. The slow and steady narration provided enough time for the audience to understand the bond everyone has with the vehicle. Moreover, the cute love episode that takes place between the aged couples Jayaprakash and Thulasi is a never-before-seen matured love story in Kollywood. Hats off to the director for his intelligent and pure thoughts! Nevertheless, since the story is wafer-thin, there is a tendency to get tired while watching the film. The argument sequences between the bus driver and Vijay Sethupathy are some examples of redundant scenes in the pre-interval phase. If such scenes were removed, the screenplay would have been compact with shorter run time.


If anyone were to enjoy this film the most, it would be our parents for sure. This is because it was fun to watch Jayaprakash's and Thulasi's interactions. Dialogues penned for them are mostly quarrels, but if one looks closely, it was actually their way of expressing love to each other. Subtle yet meaningful. We have a new comedian in K-town! Bala Saravanan scores with his minimal dialogues whenever he appears on screen. With all that being said, dialogues didn't have a heavy role to play. It was about body languages and facial expressions all the way through.


In recent times, many Tamil movies had stunning camera angles such as crane and extreme wide shots. It was refreshing to see static lenses after a long time and such set up was necessary for this melodrama. Close-ups were extensively used to convey emotions flawlessly. The outstanding cut-in and point of view shots have successfully made us believe that the car indeed had soul.

EDITING (0.5/1)

Award winning Sreekar Prasad could have used his scissors better. Trimming down unnecessary portions would have done the film lot good. The constant slow-mo scene transition was a brilliant notion though.


Jayaprakash is a very talented performer. He stands out among all the actors in his age group due to his unique voice and acutely realistic acting. Just when he was constantly being offered underrated minor roles, here came Arun Kumar with the titular character for him. Splendid performance is an understatement! He literally lived as the landlord character he played. With least possible words, he made us love him and his car. His competition came in the form of Thulasi. As Chellama (The landlord’s wife), Thulasi didn’t make the task easy for Jayaprakash. The way she speaks and smiles reminds us of an adorable mum who loves her husband to the core. The conversations between the landlord and his wife are one of the film’s highlights and the duet song for them deserves special mention! With these two main characters being upfront and running the show, Vijay Sethupathy hasn’t got a chance to boast his acting skills as he did in Pizza, Naduvala Konjam Pakkatha Kaanum, Soodhu Kavvum and Idharkuthaane Aasaipattai Balakumara. Nonetheless, he carried out the script as Driver Murugesan who is comical and innocent at times. Bala as the unlucky servant is probably the best find of the year so far. Premier Padmini, the vintage vehicle earned every hearts by mere appearance.


Arun’s characters were simple and straight to the point. A polite Pannaiyar with his strict-loving wife; a comical driver with the Padmini he drives! Only if we could understand why the landlord’s daughter was such an ungrateful and rude person; otherwise, with minimal additional casts such as Peeda the helper, Malarvizhi the lover and the pitiful kid who yearns to sit in the car’s front seat, the movie faced no unwanted characterization conflicts.

MUSIC (1/1)

Songs (0.5/0.5): Generally, Pannaiyaarum Padminiyum is a successful music album. Visual presentation made the songs even more fascinating. Enga Ooru Vandi at the beginning convinces that the car is indeed a prime for the village. No one flirts with a girl he loves in a funeral on, except for Vijay Sethupathy. Watch how he does it with a cheeky manner in Pesuraen Pesuraen. Kaadhal Vandacho will be the reason to remember this album for. Have you ever seen a well done duet piece for old couples? I'm sure the answer is no but Enakkaaga Poranthaayae is here to provide you with the first experience of its kind.

Background Music (0.5/0.5): Justin Prabhakaran’s music format suggests that he might be a hard core fan of Ilayarajaa and James Vasanthan of Subramaniapuram fame. The grandeur intro background score for Premier Padmini oozed a heroic sense. As the film proceeded in the second half, he used spine-chilling chords to perfection. It gave us the expectation of a sad ending (which we did not want to see) and glued us to our seats.


Pannaiyaarum Padminiyum is set in the 1980’s, and thanks to the art director C.S Balachander for letting us know that. Normally, you would be able to detect mistakes in the settings of a periodic film, but fortunately not for this one. From the landlord’s house to the things he own; from Premier Padmini to the temple zones, it will leave you in awe when you come to know that all those were indoor sets! Parfect!

Uneshddarann Nagandran

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