Keerthi Pandian who made her acting debut in Tamil cinema with Thumbaa is now back with her second outing, Anbirkiniyal, which is directed by Gokul of Idharkuthane Aasaipattai Balakumara and Jungaa fame. Keerthi Pandian's father, Arun Pandian has produced this film and he has also made his acting comeback through this one. Anbirkiniyal is the official Tamil remake of the critically acclaimed super hit Malayalam film, Helen that starred Anna Ben in the lead role. Has Anbirkiniyal turned out to be an impressive remake? Here is our take on the film!
Anbirkiniyal (Keerthi Pandian) aspires to travel to Canada to settle down the financial dues of her family. However, in the meantime, she works part-time in a chicken store to support the family. One fine day, she gets trapped inside the freezer room of the chicken store, late in the night due to unforeseen circumstances and the rest of the film is all about Anbirkiniyal's survival for life. She is frozen due to the cold temperature and she finds various ways to survive. Who locked her inside the freezer room and did she manage to come out forms the remaining plot.
Keerthi Pandian is earnest as Anbirkiniyal and the young talent delivers quite an impressive performance. It is a physically demanding character and it is good to see Keerthi Pandian take up the challenge in the initial stages of her career. She breathes life into the character of Anbirkiniyal. Arun Pandian's performance looks artificial and dramatic in many places. Considering the mood of the film and the characterization, the performance doesn't seem to fit in and it disconnects you from the film. Praveen Raja, as Charles, Anbirkiniyal's boyfriend, has good control over his actions and he delivers a measured performance. The actor who played the Police officer suits the character well and the majority of the casting has been to the point.
The makers have done a fair job in remaking the film without losing its originality. The core emotion did lack a bit, but in the larger picture, it can be overlooked. The film might appeal a little less for those who have seen the original, but for those who are seeing it for the first time will definitely be invested in the film.
The film demands your patience for the initial few minutes and once things get set after the first act, the proceedings become engaging. The nail-biting moments in the second half, inside the freezer room, are neatly captured. Director Gokul needs to be appreciated for executing this film on a fairly impressive level. Probably, if the emotional angle had been handled even more effectively, the film would have looked even more complete. The emotional relationship between the father and the daughter doesn’t hit you on the right levels.
On the technical front, Javed Riaz’s background music has good intensity and conveys the mood of the film. The music acts as good support, aiding Keerthi Pandian’s performance. The songs do not leave an impact. Cinematographer Mahesh Muthuswami garners attention with his frame compositions and he makes good use of the close-up shots.
Verdict Anbirkiniyal is a fairly engaging survival drama with an earnest performance from Keerthi Pandian!