Writers & Supervisors: K.S.Ravikumar / R. Madesh
Kochadaiiyaan is an unique attempt from Rajni. Not because of the computer-generated-photorealistic-animation (phew that’s a very big word with zero meaning and negative output!), but because it dabbles with the unwritten philosophy of life. Beyond the huge kingdoms and epic wars, Kochadaiiyaan is a battle between people with myopic views and it’s opposite. While this in itself is a giant leap for Rajni, the script proudly goes one step further and teases us at times by swapping people from the either side of ideology and at times by depicting a guy with both ways of life.
The last time Rajni tried something on these lines in Baba, he got a heavy beating in box office and rightfully so. But this time the stark difference comes in the form of the organic flow in the narration. While many writers are happy to just mount scene after scene primarily to fill-up the timeline and at times to convey the story to the audience, only few people passionate about the art see the strength of narration. To the uninitiated, narration encompasses the talent to identify which part of the story’s continuum is fit to be shown, which part is better left hidden, which perspective of the same plot is interesting, in which order the scenes flow smoothly. While this approach is necessary for any script, it is all the more necessary in Kochadaiiyaan for it balances a very thin line between revenge and justice, in that the hero has his own flaws. While any Rajni film will celebrate these flaws or worse make him a two dimensional saint irrespective of his inherent flaws, in this computer generated form, he is more flesh and blood. Fittingly, there is a scene in Kochadaiiyaan where Rajni intelligently uses his own blood to escape from captive. The script’s integrity enhances even more when it reveals that Rajni still has to pay for his sins in the sequel.
Amidst these engaging character arcs is the epic score of Rahman. Right from the gusty voiceover at the beginning to the songs, he acts as a lifeline thread to the film, elevating the script’s level to greater heights and covering its shortfalls whenever needed; case being the ‘idhayam’ song. While the poor choreography depicts the song as a dance number and hence a speed breaker to the tense narration, Rahman’s structuring of the song, aided by Vairamuthu’s lyrics, fills the necessary gap. This song again is an example of the wonderful detailing present in the script level. While most scripts would have just jumped into the flashback without prodding, this script takes effort to show the agony and dilemma in the heroine’s mind which instigates her to take the uncharted path in love. But the script isn't just about the story; it also gives ample space for its stars to stamp their presence. Besides Rajnism, I loved how the dancing prowess of Shobana was elegantly tied into the narrative instead of being a forced cameo.
But then, most of the merits I listed out go to the script. With K.S. Ravikumar at the helm of affairs, aided in his absence by R.Madesh (erstwhile right hand of Shankar), little can be deciphered what was the creative contribution of director Soundarya besides creating an underwhelming animation of the wonderful script. But then, with all the resources in the world at its disposal, what Avatar and Tintin lacked, Kochadaiiyaan has in abundance – solid script.