Most films tackling a burning social issue deal with how it affects society but rarely shed light on the inner trauma and psychological fracture the victims suffer. Kudos to Michael Arun for attempting this little gem that focuses on the healing as much as the pain of child abuse.
Ajay and Abhinaya are the parents of an eight year old girl whose life is shattered by an animal in human form who rapes her on the way to school. The rest of the screenplay deals with how the child and her loved ones cope up with the stigma and what happens to the accused.
Ajay as the father Aadhi with limited expressions does justice to the role. Abhinaya is a little loud in her emotions and is unnatural in a few scenes but is in no way a deterrent. Baby Sathanya holds the entire film on her little shoulders and she is excellent as the victim and has conveyed such a difficult pain very convincingly. Kishore as the cop is good as usual and the actor who has played the unrepenting abuser is also worth mentioning. The rest of the cast are ok.
Claps are heard in the theater mostly in shame when the broken girl says that she called the police because she knew her parents would always be busy. Later when the girl goes back to school and looks back uneasily three little boys follow her holding their hands ready to protect her. This five second shot is more mass than your hero's self serving punch dialogues in the next theater. There are many such emotionally moving moments in 'Nisabhdam. The physical and psychological wounds are shown clearly causing shudders to the audience but it is necessary as even an abuser may repent if he sees this.
The film is not without its flaws but let's not even go there as this is such a relevant film in times when we are witnessing our little flowers trampled almost every other day.
Music by Shawn Jazeel is classy and all his songs penned by Na. Muthukumar enhance the story telling.
Cinematographer S.J.Star raises the quality of the narrative by exemplary lighting and subtle movements. Editor Lawrence Kishore is another technician along with the rest of the crew who gets a pat on the back for the great work.
Director Michael Arun is a welcome addition to the new wave filmmakers who are well and truly taking Tamil Cinema to the next level. The reality is the criminals may or may not get the punishment they deserve and even here the fate of the rapist is cleverly left open.
In the final shot the girl is carried by her father resolved to her life and there is an unspoken conversation between her and the cop Kishore that sums up the theme of 'Nisabhdam' .The audience are already on their feet applauding and leaving not only with fear but with a lesson and surprisingly hope and that is the victory of the filmmaker.
Verdict : Go for it especially parents of young children as you can no longer afford to shy away from the pain.