In a government boat, Radhamani, a ticket collector, attempts to secure a gold loan in exchange for her daughter’s new necklace. What she discovers is a slew of difficulties that he had not anticipated.
It’s been almost ten years since we’ve seen Navya Nair in the Malayalam film scene. The multiple State-Award winning actress makes a strong comeback with V K Prakash’s Oruthee, which is based on a true event from the life of a middle-class woman.
Radhamani (Navya) is a ticket collector in a Kochi boat and works to provide for her family, which consists of two school-going children, an elderly mother and her husband who works as a clerk, outside of India. When her tiny daughter gets sick with food poisoning, she attempts to obtain gold financing by pawning their expensive jewelry. She has no idea that what lies ahead are problems greater than the astronomical hospital bill she is attempting to pay off.
The battle between the individual, who must deal with a variety of problems, and society’s mass machinery is seen in this film. The protagonist is Navya, a middle-class woman plagued by one problem after another who nevertheless manages to face them head on, along with a doubtful spouse, some significant businesses and her financial constraints. Navya takes on the role of the eponymous character literally with fire in her eyes and provides it with all possible energy and sentiments.
No, she is not a superhero but rather a commoner who radiates enough empathy to connect with the majority of the audience. There are times when one might question whether her performance would steal the show, yet what she adds to the narrative is exactly what it needs. Her portrayal of Radhamani is without a doubt the film’s high point. Vinayakan also stands out as an honorable police officer whose tale complements that of the protagonist.
The conclusion of the film is entirely foreseen, but it is sufficiently moving to entice people to support Radhamani and the few individuals who back her. There are a couple of parts in the movie that might seem hard to believe, such as the several-hour long chase sequence, however truth can frequently appear stranger than fiction in situations like these.
Oruthee is definitely worth a look for Navya’s performance, as well as the bravery of the woman whose life the film is based on.
Stars: Drishya Dinesh, K.P.A.C. Lalitha, Vipin Mangalashery
Movie Rating: 3.5/5