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Diary Movie Review

Actor Arulnithi manifests a leaning towards the thriller genre. He delivers yet another thriller in Diary. The story is about a novice sub inspector who gets fixated on a 16 years old unsolved case, and his journey to solving the case. The actor who was last seen on screens in the mystery thriller film Dejavu is back on screens with his supernatural mystery thriller flick Diary. Actress Pavithra Marimuthu has played the female lead role in the flick. Director Innasi Pandiyan has directed the movie. So, how has the supernatural mystery thriller drama Diary come out? Is it solid enough to propel actor Arulnithi to the winning side, and revive his bankable lead hero image? To know that let us get into the movie review. 

Diary Movie Poster 01

Diary Movie Poster 01

The movie follows the life of Varadhan Annadurai (Arulnithi), who has just cleared S.I training, and has joined the police force as a rookie. To test the competence of the batch, their superior officer tasks them to pick up an unsolved case, and solve it. Annadurai selects a 16 years old murder case of a couple in Ooty. (Yeah, why not prove your competence, and concomitantly have a little vacation going). He is sent to the station in Ooty to begin his investigation. He receives complete details of the case. Upon reaching Ooty, Annadurai takes the assistance of S. I Pavithra krishnan (Pavithra Marimuthu), and starts his investigation. He meets with the investigating officer who investigated the case. After thoroughly reading the case, and gauging the fashion in which the robbery was perpetrated, Annadurai looks for similar types of robberies throughout Tamil Nadu. Through his batchmate he gets an info of one such robbery having taken place in Kumbakonam. Annadurai prepares to get to Kumbakonam along with Pavithra Krishnan to know more details about the case. 

Moments before the journey, their car gets stolen. Soon they zero in on a suspect Sathya (Thanigai), a carjacker. They track him down, and reach the spot, only to find that he has fled the scene with Annadurai’s service revolver which was in the car. Meanwhile, in a parallel plot we see the last bus from Ooty to Coimbatore starting its journey with a bunch of passengers. Among the passengers are a gang of thieves who have just murdered and robbed a couple escaping to safety, a daughter of the local MLA Gunasekaran (Jayaprakash), who is eloping with her lover, and a group of tribal people. Annadurai leaves Pavithra Krishnan to keep looking for Sathya, and coincidently boards the bus at a bus station to reach Coimbatore. Moments later henchmen of Gunasekaran ambush the bus, and attempt to kill everyone in it. Annadurai fights them. During the struggle, the bus crashes into the canyon on the side. What will happen to Annadurai, will he survive the accident, and solve the murder case, is what makes the crux of the story. 

Director Innasi Pandiyan has built an interesting thesis to create Diary. Even his treatment of the plot is good. To be fair, he has succeeded in building the mystery till the very end. But for a mystery thriller, it is the conclusion that makes or breaks the whole film. It is at this crucial juncture, director Innasi Pandiyan gets lethargic, and squander everything that he built from the beginning. To his credit, he does well up to the point where he places knots in the plot. But from the minute when he starts to unravel the knot, he gradually loses his fineness. 

Looks like storyteller Innasi Pandiyan was engrossed in having commercial elements in the film. Romance, comedy, sentiment, and songs are mandatory in Tamil cinema, right? So, instead of keeping the plot crisp, and absorbed on the case. We have boring romantic sequences, events to milk our emotions, and comedy. Thankfully, comedy works here and there. Perhaps, if director Innasi Pandiyan had stayed clear of distractions, and had been a tad creative with the ending, Diary could have been a satisfying thriller drama. This is not to paint, Diary as unwatchable. For those who could overlook illogicality, randomness, and enjoy the suspense in build up, Diary could make for a fine time killer.  

As his character is in his familiar zone, actor Arulnithi stands tall among the performers, and shoulders the film independently. Actress Pavithra Marimuthu’s character does not have much room to perform. Nonetheless, the actress has done justice to her part. Veteran actor Chaams serves his purpose for being on board. Actress Nakkalites Dhanam lives up to her role. Veteran actor Jayaprakash makes his presence felt even in a short screen time. Actor Ajay Rathnam is inconsistent. Actor Sha Ra is operational in his stereotypical role. Actor Kishore is effective as usual. Actor Senthi Kumari is functional. Actor Thanigal is operational. Director Innasi Pandiyan as a performer is adequate. Actors Salem Pugazhenthi, Hosur Matheswaran, Karthik Ramasamy, Surender Thakur, Sooraj Pops, Akon, and Ranjana Nachiyar, have all chipped in and have done their part well. The rest of the cast has delivered what was asked of them. 

On the technical front, music director Ron Ethan Yohann’s tracks are average. But his background score helps in fashioning the mystery pulse of the film. Cinematographer Aravinnd Singh has done a fine job covering the drama. His frames are rightly stationed to engender the mystery element effectively. Editor S P Raja Sethupathi has brought forth his prowess in his trade, and has complimented the work of his colleague well. 

On the whole, the intriguing paranormal idea of Diary is marred by director Innasi Pandiyan’s sluggish screenplay, and convenient conclusion.

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