‘Jai Bhim’ movie review: Suriya is earnest and the film is honest. Yet, there are trade-offs

‘Jai Bhim’ movie review is without a doubt one of Tamil cinema’s most daring films. It isn’t afraid to strike where it hurts the most. And its politics aren’t hampered by the presence of a celebrity like Suriya.

Jai Bhim' movie review: Suriya is earnest and the film is honest. Yet, there  are trade-offs - The Hindu

There is a goosebumps-inducing scene in this nearly. Three-hour-long film where a tribal woman — also the protagonist — turns her back on power. Refusing to bend down to the system of supremacy that has literally exploited the benefits of their labor.

Looking at it solely through the lens of masala norms in Tamil cinema, it’s simply a “mass” moment made for a Dalit character to allow her to stare her oppressors in the eyes and tell them, “You cannot break me.”

‘Jai Bhim’ movie review This superficiality, however, stems from the awareness of having a. Tamil cinema star portraying a Saviour and leading from the front, rather than from Jai Bhim himself. Thanks to Suriya and, to a lesser extent, Tha Se Gnanavel, the film thankfully avoids succumbing to the Saviour Complex. Suriya, on the other hand, appears to be more of an ally in this scene. But that doesn’t change the fact that the above image is a testament to the small sacrifices that must be made in order to mainstream stories of injustice and exploitation — all of which have now emerged from the Dalit movement.

Is it possible for us to forgive and forget this stream of awareness in exchange for these trade-offs? This is an excellent spot to pause for reflection. In the instance of Jai Bhim, the answer is both yes and no. However, these are issues that exist outside of the film.

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