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Chekka Chivantha Vaanam - Simbu Character analysis

Caution: Heavy Spoilers ahead

Chekka Chivantha Vaanam is ace director Mani Ratnam's latest creation. The movie had an ensemble cast featuring Simbu, Vijay Sethupathi, Arun Vijay and Aravind Swami. The female leads were Jyothika, Aishwarya Rajesh, Aditi Rao Hydari, and Dayana Erappa.

Here is a character sketch, and analysis of the character Ethiraj, played by Simbu.

I see Ethiraj as a person who longs for the love of his parents. He's been so badly affected that he no longer wants to be a burden for them. He wants to stay away from his family. He has an inferiority complex that his parents love Varadan and to some extent Thyagu more than him. If Varadan finds happiness outside the house, Ethi finds it inside the house, with his parents.

Ethiraj has been longing for this so much that you can see him relish a few moments with the family, to the fullest. When the three brothers meet the injured Senapathy in the hospital, Thyagu is closest to him. He is also closest to Senapathy's wife while he is removing the bandage on her head. Meanwhile, Varadan is in the middle, he doesn't care about his dad. All he wants is the dad's position and power, whether he is alive or dead. Which is why he doesn't try multiple assassination attempts. In the same hospital scene, if you notice Ethiraj, he will be the farthest from Senapathy, and his shadow will look like a person facing away from Senapathy.

Ethi doesn't want to be there. He arrives just so that others won't feel bad. When he is informed about Senapathy being admitted in the hospital, he asks if it's really necessary for him to come. When Senapathy is discharged, he patiently waits near the lift. Waits for his dad to talk to him. I loved the small beautiful moment he has with Senapathy inside the lift where he says "I have your genes. I will do... In fact, We three will do what you did." He then looks up and his eyes become moist. A gentle reminder that he is also Senapathy's son. On the other hand, he also lets go of some of his emotions.

Later, he opens up to his mom that he feels like an unwanted kid. He is waiting for love for a very long time. More than his family, he spends most of his time with kids in the house. In the airport, he doesn't hug Thyagu, he hugs Thyagu's kids. In the naming ceremony of a baby, he is seen playing with a drone camera with kids, while others including Rasool are more focussed on the discussion between Senapathy and Chinnappadasan.

Ethiraj never wanted power in the first place. He wanted love. Some parental love. A few days with his mother alone. Imagine Ethiraj lying down on his mother's lap, she tells him stories, and strokes his hair. He gently falls asleep. Such moments are things Ethiraj could only dream when he falls asleep.

His only love, Chaaya was killed and he needs to exact revenge on the one who caused it. His mindset is simple. If I don't get to live with the only one I loved the most because of a rift between others in the family, then why should you guys live with your loved ones? Following that he goes on a mad rampage, till he meets his mother. God knows how much he was longing for those repeated slaps and advice! 

The meeting with his mother only temporarily stopped his objective. He had to know if it was Thyagu or Varadan who killed Chaaya. He has no other enemies. When Varadan was killed in the climax, only Thyagu was left. There was no point in killing a dead body. It doesn't matter if Varadan killed Chaaya.

But what if Thyagu had done it? He casually utters a statement hoping for Thyagu to fall for it and he does. Now Ethi takes revenge on Thyagu and finally we have a showdown between Rasool and Ethi. After achieving so much, when he is the last man standing, the power of Senapathy's throne makes him die.

He tells Rasool - "I give you 2 options. Either you die, or you join hands with me." That's the only mistake Ethi probably committed. If he had not been attracted by the throne, he would have lived a normal life with his mother, and be happy with what he initially wanted - Love.

"என்னை எட்டிப்போனவளை எண்ணி எண்ணி அழுதது காண் அழுதது காண்"

Ethi still searches for the Kuruvi he lost. Maybe he'll find her in heaven.

Read about other characters by clicking their names:

1) Vijay Sethupathi / Rasool

2) Arun Vijay / Thyagu

3) Aravind Swami / Varadan

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