Review: ‘Victim: Who Is Next?’ Is a Thrilling & Well-Intended Social Commentary
Victim: Who is next? directed by Pa Ranjith, Chimbudevan, M Rajesh and Venkat Prabhu is satire packaged as thriller.
Victim - Who is next?
Review: ‘Victim: Who Is Next?’ Is a Well Intended Social Commentary
Victim: Who is Next? is a four part anthology series consisting of Pa Ranjith’s Dhammam, Chimbudevan’s Kottai Pakku Vathalum Mottai Maadi Sitharum, M Rajesh’s Mirrage and Venkat Prabhu’s Confession.
The idea to rope in directors who are known for different genres and unique filmmaking styles, looks very interesting on paper. However, it doesn’t seem to fully translate into the final execution.
In this anthology series, Dhammam shines better not just because it is part of the mediocre lot. This Pa Ranjith directorial is easily one of the best shorts in the recently released Indian anthologies because it is a brilliant satire camouflaged as a gripping thriller.
The story revolves around a little girl and a much larger man. They both don't want to give way to each other in a narrow pathway, for two different reasons: Ego for one and self respect for the other. Things escalate quickly and it impacts everyone associated with these two characters.
Starring Minnal Murali fame Guru Somasundaram, Kalaiyarasan and Hari Krishnan in the lead, Dhammam lets you burst in hysterical laughs. Pa Ranjith has struck the right chord in delivering an anti-caste short film centered around a heavy topic - social justice - with the most engaging and entertaining screenplay. We all might know the popular proverb, 'Leaders are not born but made'.
However, what we may not have noticed is that 'casteists' too fall under that category. This short film delves into explaining how no one is born casteist but they're made one and influenced to continue being so.
Chimbudevan’s Kottai Pakku Vathalum Mottai Maadi Sitharum
Watching Chimbudevan’s short makes one feel that he shoddily copied his own popular fantasy film Arai En 305-il Kadavul. With supernatural characters, the premise looks similar, the treatment of the stories are similar but the experiences after watching them, not so much.
This Thambi Ramaiah and Nasser-led drama aspires, and till the end it only aspires, to deliver sarcasm, suspense and social message. However with quirky climax versions and over the top editing pattern, it is quite commendable that Chimbudevan has tried hard to adapt to the shorter format of storytelling and cater to a younger crowd.
M Rajesh’s Mirrage stays true to the thriller genre. However, the short film chooses the usual horror story elements like an abandoned villa in the outskirts of the city, a spooky night backdrop, a lone girl (Priya Bhavani Shankar) and a suspicious caretaker (Natraj).
It does succeed in passing the chills and letting the audience stay hooked until the final reveal. But what does not sit quite well is the stereotypical portrayal of Natraj’s character - right from his slang, job and behavior. Barring the twist that tries to justify it and an important awareness message on mental health towards the end, the short film is full of cliches.
Venkat Prabhu’s Confession, like his previous directorial Manmatha Leelai, is written by his assistant Manivannan. The story revolves around a sniper (Prasanna) who is tasked with killing a woman (Amala Paul). This short deals with adultery and questionable morality.
There is no hero or a villain. It explores the grayness in the characters of this world, trying to humanize them and lets the audience understand the reasons behind their actions. However, the camera gets sleazy in an attempt to capture the sensuality aesthetically.
Victim: Who is Next? is streaming now on Sony Liv. It is available in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and Kannada. Each episode is 30 minutes long with English subtitles.
Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.