மாமன்னன் (2023)

156 min - Drama, Thriller - 29 June 2023
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Director:  Mari Selvaraj
Writers:  Mari Selvaraj


Genres: Drama, Thriller


Official Website: 
Country:   India
Language:  Tamil
Release Date:  29 June 2023

Box Office

Company Credits

Production Companies:  Red Giant Movies

Technical Specs

Runtime:  2 h 36 min

An Important Encounter That Makes You Want To Ignore Its Flaws
This was Udhayanidhi Stalin’s final film before he stepped away from the spotlight to concentrate on his political duties, and he made a fitting choice for the role.

What’s Good:The responsible political voices who discuss evil with an impeccable and balanced vision. What’s most meta right now is an actor who happens to be a politician, overthrowing the very system he symbolizes in order to reestablish it.

What’s Bad:The screenplay falters repeatedly, and its attempts to expand the canvas laterally come out looking weaker.

Born into a marginalised society, Maamannan (Vadivelu) is the MLA for Kashipuram constituency and supports a social justice and equality-focused party. In addition to being an Adimurai teacher, his son Adiveeran has a hobby pig farm. The opponent, upper caster Rathnavel (Fahadh), is against any “lowborn” holding a position of authority. What transpires in the movie when Adiveeran makes his father sit in front of Rathnavel in order to push him to break the bonds of oppression and conditioning?

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Maamannan, a member of the Dalit group, became an MLA after advancing through the ranks of the Samathuva Samooganeedhi Makkal Kazhagam (SSMK) in Tamil Nadu’s Salem district. Athiveeran, also known as “Veera,” is the son of Maamannan and an Adimurai practitioner. He stopped communicating with his father because he was physically and emotionally abused as a child by members of the dominant community in the area, which was motivated by caste. Rathnavelu, 40, hails from a prominent community and serves as the SSMK district secretary for Salem. He is the younger son of the late former minister, Sundaram.

Rathnavelu had not held public office, but he had pushed hard following his father’s death, utilizing all available methods to get to the position of district secretary. Rathnavelu and Maamannan frequently become at odds because of his brazen, confrontational behavior.

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Three months prior to the elections, Veera’s buddies and his romantic partner Leela run a free tutoring center that Rathnavelu’s men damage because it interferes with the operations of a private teaching center owned by Rathnavelu’s elder brother under his father’s name. In revenge, Veera and his cronies demolish Rathnavelu’s coaching center. Realizing that the problem could harm him both within and beyond the party, Rathnavelu calls Maamannan and Veera to resolve it amicably. Veera observes that Rathnavelu and Maamannan are seated in seats during the meeting, whereas Maamannan is standing. Rathnavelu says that Maamannan has never sat down in his home and that it has been his habit for eternity whenever Veera urges his father to take a seat. Rathnavelu becomes upset, slaps Veera, and pushes Maamannan to intervene when his son is hit, in response to Veera’s constant pleas that he sit down. Rathnavelu is kicked down by an irate Veera as payback.

In order to stop more mayhem, Rathnavelu orders his men to beat up Maamannan and Veera as he rushes to get his gun. However, his wife, Jyothi, locks him inside the room. The guys that attack Veera and his father are defeated by him, and they flee. Rathnavelu is instructed to keep put by Chief Minister Ka. Sindhanai Rajan, despite his preparations to counterattack and kill Maamannan and Veeran. Rathnavelu, unable to assault Maamannan and Veeran, lets his hounds run wild and murders the pet pigs that Veera had bred. This harsh emblem causes much pain to Veera and Maamannan, as well as to their friends and relatives. Rathnavelu and Manamannan are told to meet Sindhanai Rajan at the party headquarters in Chennai. He demands that Rathnavel either give up his party membership or apologize to Maamannan. Along with a few of his supporters, Rathnavel leaves the party and joins the biggest opposition group, MSSMK (Marumalarchi Samathuva Samooganeedhi Makkal Kazhagam). The political scene is rocked by the dismissal of a district secretary for the ruling party. Maamannan is running for a third term as an MLA; thus, Rathnavel selects a rival of his choosing to face him. To fully focus his energies on defeating Maamannan, he even runs his wife Jyothi in his place for a different constituency.

Rathnavel confronts Maamannan, saying that without his backing, Maamannan will undoubtedly lose the next elections. Rathnavel fights hard during the election campaign to unite the caste system’s powerful castes against Maamannan. Rathnavel even murdered the chairman of a caste association in an attempt to stoke support for his candidate. To some extent, all of his schemes are successful, but the young people in the constituency rebel against Rathnavel’s dictates about who each street should vote for. In the subsequent elections, Maamannan triumphs by a significant margin, leaving Rathnavel humiliated and defeated. Following the SSMK’s reelection, Maamannan was appointed Speaker of the Legislative Assembly. Veera and Leela are still involved in their community-based social welfare work.

Screenplay Analysis:

Filmmaker Mari Selvaraj, who has a lot of negative press associated with him, has a unique voice in Indian cinema. His approach to narrating tales about the disparities in India has always been to juxtapose the current world with mythological or historical narratives. It is admirable that the world has advanced and left them behind, despite the fact that not much has changed in the locations where the internet is still a foreign notion. One such film that dealt with a man turning rogue by taking things in his hand and demanding the rights he was never politely granted was Karnan, which we all watched with chills down our spines.

Following in the literary footsteps of Gulzar Sahab (Hu Tu Tu, Machhis), Mari crafts a film about youthful heroes who rebelliously want to bring about change. However, he attempts to give his main character a more grounded approach in Maamannan. Yes, he is a fighter and capable of taking down a gang of guys who belittle his father for his mere birth, but he also understands that a man-on-man conflict would only resolve problems between two individuals and that the war he is engaged in involves the entire society.

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The most satisfying thing to witness is filmmakers growing through their work, and Selvaraj, who has made some of the most complex and introspective movies, makes it obvious that even his stories are open to new ideas and dawns.

Maamannan is a highly contemplative movie. Instead of concentrating on making you believe what it says, it invites you to join it in the quest to provide certain people with their rights. It never feels prejudiced because of the excellent balance. It is unnerving, and let’s face it—it is never easy to listen to tales of privilege and unfairness that throw the underprivileged under the bus. because they force you to consider your personal privileges.

When three little boys, lowborn as they were, choose to take a dip in the temple pond, four men stone them and murder them. Maamannan makes sure you feel those moments. These children represent a “danger” to them. Mari allows you to delve into the depths of metaphor. The best one pits pigs against well-groomed canines and becomes a reoccurring theme that defines the film.

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What Maamannan lacks in the midst of all that rich tale material is a script that gives the source material credit. The early part of the book is devoted to merely setting up the main conflict, and it’s fascinating to watch how that conflict is resolved through an election. However, the second half devolves into a plodding race with a repetitive pattern that plays continuously. Additionally, Keerthy Suresh’s character and the setting surrounding her are underutilized by the narrative. Rather than being significant plot points, the children she coaches serve as scene fillers.

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