Enakkul Oruvan

Enakkul Oruvan (English: A Man Within Me) is a 2015 Tamil-language Indian psychological thriller film directed by debutant Prasad Ramar and produced by C. V. Kumar. A remake of the 2013 Kannada film Lucia directed by Pawan Kumar. The film features Siddharth and Deepa Sannidhi in the lead roles, with Santhosh Narayanan composing the film’s music. The film was released on 6 March 2015 and was dubbed in Telugu under the title Naalo Okkadu.

Plot

The plot is non-linear, and the end scene of the film shows the real beginning of the story. The plot starts with the protagonist being in a state of coma and continuing only on life support. The film, from the beginning, tells two stories of the same person, one in colour and the other in black and white.

A detective from Mumbai crime branch starts investigating the incident that caused the protagonist’s (Siddharth) current state. The Detective going through his belongings stumbles upon some scribbled notes and a mysterious pill. Meanwhile, police capture two suspects and interrogate them for information.

The story starts with Vicky who is from a village and working as an Usher/”torch-shiner” in a movie theatre owned by Durai (Aadukalam Naren). Vicky suffers from insomnia. On one of his sleepless nights Vicky is contacted by a drug dealer who gives him Lucia pills as a solution to his sleeping problems. This drug is said to have the capability to help one dream the life they want but has the side-effect, that on discontinuation the same dreams shall turn into a nightmare.

With the help of the Lucia pills, Vicky starts seeing himself as being a successful actor called Viknesh surrounded by people he knows in the real world. Film actor Viknesh’s life is depicted in black-and-white. Durai, the theater owner where Vicky works, had directed a film in his youth produced by a thug, who now wants Durai to sign off his theatre for his debt. In the black-and-white life, Viknesh and Durai gets a number of death threats from a person. More events from the dream are followed by similar events in reality as Vicky falls in love with Divya (Deepa Sannidhi) who is a model in the dream and a waitress in reality.

In the dream, Viknesh and Divya hit it off easily at the beginning but later friction arises when Viknesh expresses his discontent on Divya working in film industry. Meanwhile, in reality, Vicky struggles to win Divya’s heart, who rejects him first due to his low salary and falls later for his humble character. Divya’s attempts to get Vicky educated and lead him to earn a better job turns out to be futile and also results in death of Durai in the hands of goons. Frustrated, Vicky chooses to leave Divya and continue to work in the theatre, despite the threats. Vicky and his foreign friends redecorate the theatre and release Durai’s film to the audience. He later reconciles with Divya, who agrees to marry him.

In the dream, Durai is kidnapped, and Viknesh rescues him with the help of police. In the process, all of the goons are either arrested or killed except for the contract killer. Viknesh feels Durai is not safe with him and decides to fire him. Viknesh breaks up with Divya and sends off all his servants so as to be alone. Later, a visually disturbed Viknesh finds himself in a thrashed room. Viknesh gets hold of the torch and through its light sees the “torch-shiner” Vicky inspecting the screen of the theatre.

Divya misses Viknesh and tries to get back with him but Viknesh is in his own shell and shuts out everyone from his life. Divya receives an unexpected call from Viknesh some days later and he asks her to meet him. He tells her that he cannot decide if the present moment is a dream or reality but he is ultimately happy. He says that he should not confuse his dreams and real life. Asking Divya to close her eyes, Viknesh jumps off the roof to the confusion of everyone present, including the contract killer waiting to kill him.

At present, the detective with the help of the suspects, performs a sting operation on the drug dealer and learns more about the Lucia pills. Meanwhile, Divya is caught in an attempt to kill Viknesh by pulling him off life support. During her interrogation, the whole investigating team along with Divya watches a re-run of an interview of the film star Viknesh. In the interview, Viknesh expresses his dissatisfaction of the stardom and reveals that he is actually color blind from an accident in his childhood. He tells the interviewer that he dreams of being a normal person and in fact in one of his dreams he is a “torch-shiner” who gets no attention from people and is happily in love with the dream of his life.

The detective is now convinced that Viknesh is living in his own versions of reality and chose to be in his dream over the real world by attempting suicide. Divya cries near a comatose Viknesh in the hospital and simultaneously Vicki is shown happily married to Divya and have a daughter. Viknesh’s health begins to deteriorate and the doctors attempt to defibrillate him. Simultaneously, Vicky, aware and alive in his dream world finds everything disappearing around him and is killed by a shot to the head. Viknesh wakes up from his coma to see the astonished doctors and Divya and Durai’s relieved faces.

Cast

• Siddharth as Vicky/Vignesh
• Deepa Sannidhi as Divya
• Srushti Dange
• Aadukalam Naren as Durai
• John Vijay as Vajravel
• Ajay Rathnam as Paranjothi
• Ramdoss
• Andreanne as Marti
• Yog Japee
• Uday Mahesh as Ranjith
• Mahadevan as creditor
• Mippu
• Vettri as Aravind
• Indrajith
• Supergood Subramani
• Amit Bhargav as hero (cameo appearance)
• Kalyan as dance master (cameo appearance)
• Sherif as dance master (cameo appearance)
• Nalan Kumarasamy as director (cameo appearance)
• Srinivas Kavinayam in a cameo appearance

Production

Producer C. V. Kumar purchased the Tamil remake rights to the Kannada film Lucia (2013) in October 2013 after being recommended into doing so by his technical crew. The director of the original, Pawan Kumar, revealed that he would work on the pre-production of the film and help a new director understand the script. The team held initial talks with actor Bobby Simha about portraying the lead role, but he was eventually dropped. In early December 2013, C. V. Kumar signed on Siddharth to play the lead role in the film, while newcomer Prasad Ramar, co-writer of Pizza was assigned the task of directing the venture.
Principal photography for the film started on 10 February 2014 and it was announced that Kannada actress Deepa Sannidhi would portray the leading female role. Bangalore based Amit Bhargav was signed for a role in the film. In September 2014, the film, which was started as Lucia, was titled Enakkul Oruvan named after the 1984 film of the same name.

Release

The satellite rights of the film were sold to Zee Thamizh.

Critical reception

The Times of India gave 3.5 stars out of 5 and wrote, “This film doesn’t quite capture that film’s (Lucia) ambitiousness and visual pizzazz but still makes for a solid effort, especially for a debut film”. Baradwaj Rangan wrote, “It’s a thrillingly mad conceit, a Möbius-strip movie with a superb slap-on-the-forehead twist. Imagine the little boy in Cinema Paradiso all grown up and starring in a Christopher Nolan head-scratcher written by Charlie Kaufman, and you’ll have something like Enakkul Oruvan. Prasad Ramar…sticks fairly close to the template of the original but a lot is lost in the execution…Enakkul Oruvan lacks the intimate texture and delicacy of Lucia. When you open up a niche, crowd-sourced film into something more mainstream, you are going to get more… “commercial.” Watching Enakkul Oruvan, you’re left with the feeling of waking up from a dream and coming face-to-face with harsh Kollywood reality”. Indo-Asian News Service gave 3 stars and wrote, “While Enakkul Oruvan mostly remains faithful to the original, it lacks its indie spirit and somehow still feels commercial. The film would’ve worked with someone with no image and stardom, but Siddharth doesn’t disappoint”. Deccan Chronicle gave the same rating and wrote, “Despite few shortcomings, (Enakkul Oruvan) culminates into a climax that may possibly leave you melted and concentrated. It is the apotheosis of the intense”. Rediff gave 3 stars out of 5, calling it “an engaging and admirable effort by the debutant director, definitely worth watching”. Sify wrote, “Enakkul Oruvan is a bold and unique attempt with sharp performances and a tight script, it is 136 mints well spent. It is sans the normal commercial aspects for a Tamil movie and the icing on the cake is the intelligent screenplay by Pawan Kumar which is well supported by top notch cinematography and music”.