Release Date : Mar 01,2013
Nankam Pirai 3D
Review by : Behindwoods Review Board
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Production: Sudha Screens
Cast: Aryan, Monal Gajjar, Naasar, Prabhu, Shraddha Das
Direction: Vinayan
Screenplay: Vinayan
Story: Vinayan
Music: Babith George
Background score: Babith George
Cinematography: Sathish.G
Dialogues: Raja
Editing: Nishad Yousaf
Stunt choreography: Akbar
Lyrics : Pa Vijay
Distribution: Sudha Screens

Bram Stoker is credited for reeling out the character of Dracula from the depths of folklore and bringing it forth to the mainstream through his novel, simply titled ‘Bram Stoker’s Dracula’. His novel has influenced many writers and filmmakers and has spawned many off-shoots in the Vampire genre. Director Vinayan is one such filmmaker who’s taken the effort to bring the Prince of Darkness, Count Dracula to the Tamil audience. The director has dwelled on many fantasy films in the past in Malayalam, and later presenting it in Tamil, and he continues that trend with Nankam Pirai.

Nankam Pirai is about the resurrection of Count Dracula from his Transylvanian home and his bid to be reunited with his long lost love.

Despite adding elements pertaining to the local sentiments, such as the presence of Hindu mythology and replacing the Count’s pack of wolves with homegrown Alsatians, the director does make an honest effort to stay faithful to the novel. He’s rightly labeled the Count’s love interest as Meena, there is also the presence of Dracula’s dreaded ‘Sisters’ and he’s even considered featuring a local representation of the Count’s greatest loyalist and patron, Igor, who remains unnamed in this movie and is played by the late Thilakan.

While the intentions of carrying forward Dracula’s legacy is made clear through the story, the film lets itself down for the most part in the first half. Character establishment and some of their motives are callow. An unimportant comedy track featuring Mano Bala and Ganja Karuppu does little to help the film’s cause in being engaging. But what the film lacks in the first half is almost nearly salvaged after the interval as the screenplay gets racier and interesting with no songs to serve as roadblocks. The sequence of events that lead to the build-up of the climax manages to draw you into the movie.

Performance wise, the film has a mix of fresh faces and seasoned actors. Sudheer, who plays Dracula, is more of an anti-hero and does well with his towering presence and the fact that he’s built like an ox adds to his menacing demeanor. Nasser as the powerful priest is theatrical in his portrayal but it works well for the movie. Prabhu appears to be a tubby version of the beast-slaying Prof. Van Helsing, also providing comic relief. The other hero Aryan is well built enough to pass off as Dracula’s opponent. Monal Gajjar’s role is meaningful while it seems like Shradda Das was included to up the glamour quotient.

Technically, the film in the 3D format is a disappointment and at times even a strain on the eyes. The visual effects and graphics are left wanting considering the standards that the public have witnessed in the recent past. Music by Babith George is average but the background score is well done. Sathish G’s camerawork is compromised because of the jarring 3D effects. The film, originally in Malayalam, has a strong dubbing feeling throughout despite having a native comedy track.

Usually, fantasy films and those coupled with 3D would be inviting for children but sadly Nankam Pirai isn’t for the young audience. The U/A certification is rightly justified and should be reserved for young adults and adults only.

Verdict: Hardly any horror or 3D to feast upon.