Pandhayam is yet another different theme from S.A. Chandrasekar, the filmmaker whose films like Sattam Oru Iruttarai and Naan Sivappu Manidhan have set new trends in the industry. Incidentally, Pandhayam is SAC’s 66th film and as the title indicates, it deals with the challenging contest between a young man and a powerful gangster.

Shakthi (Nitin Sathya) is a fun-loving youngster. His incomparable sense of humour and mischievous nature set him apart from his peers as profoundly as his probing intellect. But by a twist of fate, Shakthi’s happiness and carefree life goes into turmoil. His friend is killed in a fire accident; this tragic incident brings about a change in his life and his attitude.

Masanam (Prakashraj) is a menacing street rowdy, who through his deliberate and forbidding stance, has graduated to his present level of a big gangster. Everything in his life has taken place according to his whimsical plans. Shakthi learns that Masanam was responsible for his friend’s murder. But why was this murder committed? The love affair of his friend and Masanam’s sister coming to Masanam’s notice. Knowing Masanam’s power, with great maturity and cold-blooded planning, Shakthi keeps the truth to himself and maintains a low profile, plodding through life without showing his simmering feelings and planning a fitting revenge which he will extract from Masanam.

Masanam’s wife Visalakshi (Radikaa) was also a target of one of her husband’s extremely calculated conspiracies. Though Visalakshi remains trapped in the web of her husband’s deceit, she is not ready to forgive or condone her husband’s mistakes. This seemingly docile woman conceals a strong and secret desire to give her husband a good dose of his own medicine. Her apparently placid life is but a camouflage under which conflicting currents circulate, seeking an outlet.

Shakthi shifts residence to the city in search of a livelihood. Predictably, he meets Masanam’s younger sister Thulasi (Sindhu Tolaani). Charmed by Shakthi’s easy wit and attitude, Thulasi falls in love with him. Now, having successfully charmed Thulasi, does Shakthi use the opportunity to his benefit? If so, how does he continue to woo her without earning the gangster’s wrath? Does he use the affair as a powerful ruse to shake Masanam’s carefully-constructed unscrupulous plans? What is Visalakshi’s role in the plot? Does she gang up with Shakthi and extract her pound of flesh? Watch the challenging Pandhayam on the big screen to know!

Bold themes such as Pandhayam have always remained director SAC’c forte. The film bears a lot of resemblance with his earlier hits too. Prakashraj and Radikaa’s excellent performances and Nitin Sathya’s balancing act help in giving the needed impact and in raising the film above the stereotypes. Still, there are certain clichéd patches in terms of dialogues and scenes. A more powerful script would have definitely improved the film. Vijay’s cameo (that audiences keep looking forward to right from the first scene) is thoroughly profoundly enjoyable. The ‘Surangani’ remix and ‘Chinna Mamiye’ rap in Vijay Antony’s music are indeed enjoyable.

Saluting the filmmaker’s continuous passion to be a part of the industry and give his best, Pandhayam is further proof to his insatiable love for the creative profession.

Cast:Nitin Sathya, Sindhu Tolaani, Prakashraj, Raadika
Banner:    V.V. Creations
Producer:Shoba Chandrasekaran
Story, screenplay, dialogues, and direction    S.A. Chandrasekaran
Music:Vijay Antony
Camera:    Srinivas Devamsam
Choreography:Ashok Raj, Sundar

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