Pyaar Prema Kaadhal
Pyaar Prema Kaadhal: A Supposedly Progressive Rom-Com That Loses Its Charm Mid-Way
Movie Review by Trijai Nerthi (Rocheston Certified Movie Critic)
Directed by Elan, Pyaar Prema Kaadhal is a Tamil romantic comedy starring Harish Kalyan and Raiza Wilson in lead roles. The film, unlike many predecessors, has a modern take on romance. In fact, it stays true to the genre without actually picking sides with its characters. The film sets off in the right direction but eventually succumbs to a cliched perspective. Nevertheless, Pyaar Prema Kaadhal has to be acknowledged for at least attempting to deliver a fresh take on modern romance.
A reluctant and naive boy next door, Shree (Harish Kalyan) falls hopelessly in love with Sindhuja (Raiza Wilson), a strong and independent woman. Hailing from a middle-class family, Shree is used to having a simple and traditional outlook on life. Whereas Sindhuja finds a few traditions to be repressive. When these two opposing characters step into a relationship, many differences of opinions arise. Shree wants to take the usual route and settle for marriage but Sindhuja insists that a live-in relationship is a way to go. Whether or not this couple finds a way to be together despite their differences forms the crux of the story.
First of all, Director Elan has to be applauded for attempting to showcase a balanced perspective when it comes to the opposite genders he deals with. Unlike most Tamil films that pander to the male ego, Pyaar Prema Kaadhal shows you both the sides of the central equation. It doesn’t place the blame on either of the characters. Instead, it has them take responsibility for their actions, a concept that is fairly new to Tamil cinema.
In Fact, Sindhuja’s character development is done quite well. She is ambitious, not bitchy. She is modern, not loose principled, she is well off but not a brat. These differences have been established quite clearly in the film. Most of the regional films these days gets these characteristic differences mixed up, leaving you with a plethora of stereotypical characters and their cliched stories.
The lifestyle differences between Shree and Sindhuja and their relationships with their parents are quite fascinating to observe too. For instance, Shree appears quite close to his family. He interacts with them on a regular basis and carries a lot of respect for them. But when it comes to disclosing details on his personal life, he is quite reluctant. Whereas the relationship Sindhuja has with her father is quite friendly and aloof. It is free of overpowering sentiments. But she is quick to share updates on her personal life with him. It is interesting to note these differences.
However, Pyaar Prema Kaadhal has more than its fair share of flaws. For one, it spends so much time building up a modern and progressive take on relationships only to shatter it towards the end. It does this by succumbing to a decision that is socially acceptable while letting talks of dream and ambition fly away. Even though the film sets off in the right direction, the climax is a complete disaster.
Pyaar Prema Kaadhal is quite similar to Oh Kadhal Kanmani and Shuddh Desi Romance in its approach to modern relationships. But somehow, the chemistry between the central characters don’t always appear as natural as it did in the two films mentioned above. Their actions and romance feels pretentious in some moments. Moreover, since you are taken through a routine of Shree and Sindhuja fighting and making up over and again, things start to feel tedious and repetitive after a while.
Since the film takes up a light approach, certain emotions in the film tend to appear shallow. From the beginning till the end, Pyaar Prema Kadhal fails to establish a lasting emotional connection with the audience. It takes itself too lightly for us to take it more seriously.
Director Elan spends so much time concentrating on the character development of Shree and Sindhuja that the roles of the other supporting characters are half-baked.
As Shree, Harish Kalyan delivers an impressive performance. He effortlessly steps into the shoes of a boy next door with a balance of naivete and nervousness. Raiza Wilson is tremendous as Sindhuja. For her first lead role, she fills in her character’s shoes with utmost poise and conviction. She appears tailor-made for the role of a modern woman. In fact, one of the reasons why Pyaar Prema Kaadhal is entertaining is because of the lead actor’s wonderful performances.
Yuvan Shankar Raja’s background score lends great support to the screenplay. His songs though are average. In comparison to his recent work, this album is better. But these songs are definitely not the music director’s best.
On the whole, Pyaar Prema Kaadhal is not as progressive as it thinks it is. However, it must be applauded for its efforts. All this aside, if you are a sucker for romantic comedies, you might not mind this one all that much.