A gifted cricketer dreams of finding a place in the state Ranji team but romance and politics in the sporting body threaten to dash his hopes.
In a key scene in
, the central character Jeeva tells his girlfriend Jenny that he cannot imagine a life without cricket, and he knows only too well the pain that giving up an ambition causes a person. This should give you a clue about what Suseenthiran's
is all about. It is about an aspiring cricketer who wants sporting glory and is not hesitant to shy away from the disappointments that stand in his way. For, Jeeva has been passionate about the sport ever since he was a boy.
This is proper sports drama material and Suseenthiran pads up the film with the tropes that the genre needs. So, we get Jeeva's interest in the game as a kid (he knows the price list of every kind of bat in the sports shop), his family life (ignored by his father after his mother's death, he is brought up by the caring family next door), his romance with Jenny, his new neighbour, his friendship with Ranjith, another youngster with cricketer dreams, and the politics that almost dashes his hopes.
Though it has its heart in the right place the problem with Jeeva is that it is uneven. Cricket takes a backseat every time the director decides to focus on the love angle, taking some fizz out of the film. The romantic track, as such, is not that bad — it is just... usual. Jeeva and Jenny fall in love (cue a romantic song, some comedy), get caught and are separated (cue bar song), he meets her again (cue wooing song). Then, cricket itself becomes an issue as her father wants a well-settled man. Thankfully, Jeeva's domestic life is refreshing. He is almost a son to his neighbour Arul Prakasam (Charlie) but his own father (Marimuthu) doesn't resent this. Even in the one scene when he stakes his claim, he regrets his words immediately and asks for forgiveness. Both Charlie and Marimuthu are fab in these roles.
The dialogues in a film in this genre should be rousing but somehow, we don't feel the punch in the lines. The sporting action, often punctuated by Vishnu's narration, is hardly nail-biting, and the politics in the sport (the cricket administrator favours cricketers from his own community) is not brought about in a hard-hitting manner, and the character of the administrator feels caricature-ish. But the earnestness with which Suseenthiran goes about telling this tale makes up for the disappointments. The relationships between Jeeva and those around him is well set-up and he also maintains a light touch so that things never get too heavy. Madhie's pleasing camera work and Imman's melodious songs are an added plus.