Intelligent thrillers are a rarity these days and Dreams on Frames' Tamil film Meipporul (The Truth) hopes to provide a distinctive fare, challenging its viewers, as opposed illogical entertainers. Directed by Natty Kumar and Krish Bala, the film is apparently the first Tamil film to be completely shot in the US, with engineers and doctors working as part of the cast.
Meipporul begins with a normal American family beaten up by a deranged baby-sitter, Lisa (Lee Kuhn).
Cut to the protagonists of the movie: Sam David Raj (Krish Bala) and Devi (Anusha) are a happily married couple in San Francisco. They live normal lives in the company of friends Vishwa (Narayan) and his girlfriend Lakshmi (Rani Jeya Kumar).
Things start getting weird when Sam runs into Rajan, who hands him a missing wallet. It turns out that Rajan has a unique power -- he can predict the future with uncanny precision. Sam is inclined to disbelieve it. When Rajan predicts Sam's date of death, things go haywire.
The film's crew makes sure you sit on the edge of your seat right through the film. The screenplay is good, with few loopholes. B Lenin's editing is crisp, while Chris Eldridge's cinematography is slick and brings modern San Francisco to life.
But you can't say the same about the performances. Except for Anusha and Narayan, who do a neat job, everyone else seems to be new to the business of acting. And it shows. The screenplay is full of unnecessary pauses, and slows the film down considerably. Actors seem to be waiting for their cue to speak.
There's not much to say about Yugendar's songs, except that you're thankful they're done in montage format, instead of falling prey to Tamil cinema's bane.
Despite its rather stilted performance, Meipporul is refreshing for its Hollywood-style take on things. Worth a watch.