Director Srinivasan’s Carbon is an investigative thriller that keeps you hooked from the start till the end, thanks to a novel plot with twists.
AT A GLANCE
- Director: Srinivasan
- Cast: Vidharth, Dhanya Balakrishnan, Marimuthu and Munar Ramesh
- Rating: ***1/2
The story revolves around Shankar, played by Vidharth, a wannabe policeman who ends up taking up a job in a private firm because of a quarrel with his dad, a role played by Marimuthu.
Shankar has an unsettling gift: he gets prophetic dreams. One night, he dreams of his dad getting hit by a black SUV. He wakes up breaking into a sweat. Shankar frantically looks around for his father only to realize that he has had an accident.
Shankar rushes his unconscious dad to the hospital, where doctors tell him that it’s imperative that they perform a surgery. But the surgery costs a fortune. The only way out for Shankar is to find the person responsible for the accident and claim the insurance amount.
With the cops not making any serious effort to find the person responsible, Shankar decides to carry out the investigation himself. One night, he dozes off next to his dad’s bed out of sheer exhaustion. That’s when he dreams of the SUV that caused the accident. The door of the SUV opens. Just when the driver is about to walk out, Shankar is woken up by the cleaner in the hospital ward. In a desperate attempt to try and have the same dream the following day, Shankar tries to recreate the same setting where he had his dream.
However, things don’t go according to plans. While he waits for the dream to recur, Shankar realizes that it was not just a hit-and-run case. It was an attempt to murder his dad. Who would try to murder his dad and why? Does Shankar catch the criminal? Does he save his dad?
The film is a gripping thriller. Full marks to director Srinivasan for narrating the story in a neat and compact manner. Half of the credit goes to editor K.L. Praveen for his brilliant cuts. There are no unnecessary scenes. The story moves at a smooth pace, right from the word ‘go’.
The first 10 minutes of the film showcases the strong bond between Shankar and his father. Despite not being on talking terms with each other, they care about one another. The beginning of the movie also explains Shankar’s dreams and their tendency to come true.
Sam CS’s background score gets the audience shaking in their seats with anticipation.
Vidharth as Shankar is outstanding (incidentally Carbon is his 25th film). He plays Shankar’s part to perfection and wins your heart hands down.
Dhanya Balakrishnan, who appears right before intermission, is perfect for the role and delivers a commendable performance. The second half of the movie is as intense as the first primarily because of Dhanya’s characterization and contribution.
Maarimuthu as Vidharth’s dad also delivers a commendable performance. The care and concern that he showcases towards his son despite being strict strikes a chord with the audience.
Director Srinivasan throws light on a message that Tamil cinema industry often disregards: every dad is a hero to his son. Sons have a strong bond of love and attachment with their fathers. It is just as strong as their bond with their mothers, if not more.
Some of the dialogues in the film hit the nail on the head. For instance, when the heroine tells Shankar: “Sons are supposed to be close to their mothers. You seem to be different.” To this, he replies, “When a man’s mother passes away, her place is filled by his wife. But when a man’s dad passes away, that place remains vacant which is why sons miss dads a lot more than their mothers. The position that a dad holds in a son’s life is special.”
The film is not entirely devoid of problems, however. Some scenes towards the end make no sense and there are lapses in logic. The way cops are portrayed is also somewhat unrealistic. But these are small lapses which can be forgiven.
On the whole, Carbon is a good investigative thriller that is worth a watch.
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