By: By Moviebuzz

Critic's Rating: 3/5

Saturday 21 October 2006

Movie Title




Star Cast

Jeeva, Nayantara, Ashish Vidyarthi, Pasupathy

A science fiction thriller in Tamil? Hard to believe, but National award winning director S.P.Jananadhan?s E is essentially a diatribe against multinational pharmaceutical and big business who makes guinea pigs out of the poor in third world countries.

E is a bold new cinema with some great performance from its lead characters especially Jeeva who has come out with a powerhouse performance. Easwaran (Jeeva) alias E is a bastard born in one of Chennai?s notorious slums in North Madras area. He is a henchman for a local thug and has no conscience or morals and does all odd jobs for a price.

This vagabond is always looking out to make a fast buck and dreaming of the big day, when he is able to do a make a fortune. Police stations, humiliations and beating are nothing new to him and he takes everything lightly as he has no emotions or human feelings. The only person whom he likes is an old lady who brought him up.

Jyothi (Nayanthara) a bar dancer comes as his neighbour and after a few skirmishes between them; she takes a liking for him. Even though he is an uncouth animal, she tries to reform him but fails. Meanwhile there is Dr Ramakrishnan (Ashish Vidyarthi) who runs a charitable hospital and is an undercover agent for a multinational pharmaceutical company.

He shortlists people from the slums and experiments banned medicines on them. Nellai Mani (Pasupathy) is a criminal who is on Ramakrishna?s trail to kill him but one of the attempts is thwarted by E who rescues the doctor. Now E?s mission is to hunt down Mani who is on the run and hand him over to the doctor or police for a reward. Suddenly E meets Mani and everything goes topsy-turvy as Mani?s influence and Jyothi?s advice changes E?s attitude towards life which leads to a stunning climax.

The basic thread of E is taken from a Brazilian director Fernando Meirelles (?City of God? fame) latest critically acclaimed The Constant Gardener. Meirelles?s film is all about how the big bad white men run British government hand-in-glove with the greedy pharmaceutical companies makes guinea pigs out of poor African nations.

In E, Jananathan changes the milieu to a slum in Chennai and through the villain talks about a ?Biowar? (??). The characterization of Jeeva is a mix of Vikram and Surya?s character in Pitamagan. Still the film poses a provocative query: ?People in slums can be used as guinea pigs? The first half is quite entertaining but the second half drags and is slow paced.

Jeeva has come out with a superb portrayal as E. His body language, dialogue delivery and mannerisms are commendable. He has proved once again after Raam that if given a well-etched out role, the young man can perform well. Nayanthara sans make-up has come up with good performance. Karnas, Pasupathy and Jeeva?s mother character are all life like. Ashish Vidyarthi has nothing much to do. Music by Srikanth Dev has nothing much to write about with Ore Murai Thappu Pannalama? being the only hummable number.

On the downside the film lacks entertainment and the second half drags.

Verdict: Average

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