Ruthu CA


Once again, Suseenthran and Vishnu Vishal brings caste atrocities into narrative, this time with Maaveeran Kittu. Despite the lapses the movie has in creating an efficient drama, it still holds significance as it talks about the evils of the caste system in an undisguised form. While it has two of the ultimate weapons against casteism discussed – democracy and love, there  is an utter disregard for the revolutionary potential of the latter that breaks caste and class boundaries. There is a clumsy distance between fiction and reality in the film. Kittu, the ‘threat’ to upper caste men, is shown to have an agency for him almost everywhere else apart from the police station. What is more unreal is Chinnarasu’s plan in which Kittu is asked to get caught and beaten up by the police (read turn himself into a pawn) and the postman’s intervention because of which he is freed, perhaps the only instance when the SI does not want to take law into his own hands. But there are other significant depictions in the movie that should be discussed seriously- that of the issue of the public path, the irrationality of untouchability, the bureaucracy and police in lieu with the upper caste men, the naattaamai and the naattukoottam as the villain rather than one single person as is usual, and the timeline of the movie which helps the audience reflect how caste has clung on like moss. The most important of all such is Chinnarasu, who is the only remaining spokesperson for the downtrodden masses. While the naattukoottam wants him dead so as to end the lower caste people’s ‘arrogance’, he resolutely fights within the democratic framework. He educates his brethren that there is nobody to stand up for them, neither the government nor the leftist political parties, but themselves. He says, “We are not against everyone in power. We are against the very notion of power”. What also has to be appreciated is that Kittu’s sacrifice is not glorified. Rather the movie grieves that it takes an injustice of such magnitude for the oppressed voices to be heard. The reasonable success in the box office should make it as a precedent for better movies to emerge in the future – movies that talk not only about the spectacular incidents but also of the everyday discriminations of caste system which lingers as a plague in the society.