Touching tale told truthfully

Spotlighting on trials and tribulations and pitiable plight of fishing fraternity, national award winning director Tehmerku Paruvakatru’s Neer Paravi (Water Bird) turns out into touching and soulful outing for as a realistic tale told with enriching entertainment.

Thenmerku in a delectable manner brings out the struggles and sorrows, dreams and aspirations of the community who live a hardy existence facing harsh elements of nature and impoverishment.

What complements further Thenmerku’s poignant portrayal is the exquisite and evocative cinemaphotography by N Balasubramaniyam which captures the azure sea in all its pristine glory and art director V Selvakumar adding lustre with his erudite craftsmanship.

However, the film is tad slow paced and meandering at times teasing one’s patience while its climax is cliched and contrived going against its otherwise overall laudable attempt.

Thenmerku weaves a wondorous tragic romantic tale focuses on Arulappaswamy aka Arul a good-for-nothing wastrel and habitual drunkard. His vagabond ways are a disappointment and embrassement for his toiling, godfearing patents — Loudraswamy and Mary as also local padre and boatman Udhuman Gani.

The lad, falls for the elfin charms of Esther, an orphan being looked after by benign Sister Benita.

With cupid striking, the beau seeks to turn a new leaf and despite his kinsmen not keen on his venturing into rough seas, the determined lad on reform path, buys a boat, weds his woman and even as things turn blissful, destiny wills otherwise. 

If first half delves on Arul’s drunken state, the second half, focuses on Arul’s forays to turn a new leaf and what a Sisyphean struggle it is to do so.

Writer Jayamohan’s pithy dialogues perk up proceedings as they bring out in succinct details the symbiotic relationship between the sea and various denizens, whose Christian life revolves around their pastor.

On acting front, Vishnu speaks with his expressing eyes with minimalistic dialogue while Sunaina too comes up with a measured, matching performance acting as perfect foil. Seasoned veterans like Nandita Das (in a non-descript role), Saranya, et al show their class and true mettle. The film’s music is a huge let down. In sum, Neer Paravai comes as a pleasant autumn breeze and must-see watch even for the discerning. Bravo!

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