Ayogya: Film Review – The Grey Shades Of The Cop World

Verdict: Ayogya offers thoughtful and fresh ideas through the lens.

After all the unexpected delays in release, Ayogya finally made a grand opening on Saturday. Though it is a remake of the 2015 Telugu film Temper, Ayogya adds many more elements to the context. Starring Vishal and Raashi Khanna in the leading roles, Ayogya assembles a brilliant cast including Parthiban, K. S. Ravikumar, Pooja Devariya, and Vamsi Krishna.

What’s Ayogya About:

Ayogya means “the one without values”, and that perfectly describes Inspector Karnan (Vishal). His ambition to become a police officer is purely inspired by the possibilities of making the most of the corruption in the system. He makes money using all evil means and he takes bribes regularly, with no regrets. His assistant Khader (Ravikumar), a just and ideal policeman driven by values silently sits and watches his superior officer going the wrong way. The trigger for a change is a nice and empathetic girl, Sindhu (Raashi Khanna). A series of events provoke Karnan to reflect on and reconsider his ways and what follows is a drastic change.

What Works:

Ayogya has many moments to it. There is a showdown between Karnan and Khader at the beach where they discuss how different their universes are and how both of them are right in their own ways. It is a powerful scene where two people with extremely different value systems try to find their middle ground and miserably fail at it. The film says there is no middle ground. You either go with the flow and exploit all the opportunities around you without ethics or moral values, or you step out of the worldly pleasures and bravely stand up for what is right. Karnan is in constant dilemma, confused by his “ego, centered around him like WiFi” as he quotes. The relationship between the bad guy in the movie Kalirajan (Parthipan) and Karnan is also beautifully portrayed in the film. Director Venkat Mohan brings out the complexities of allies-turned-enemies and how the intensity of a relationship never changes though the nature of the relationship changes. Ayogya does not show any mercy while depicting the brutal violence against women. There is no sugar coating done here for viewing pleasure. A girl is brutally gang-raped, and the glimpses of it are thrown over and over again, not letting anyone forget the brutality of the crime. Ayogya has many such disturbing, yet powerful moments.

What Could’ve Been Better:

Ayogya has certain scenes to serve the mass audience, which does not contribute to building up the plot. The film still tries to play it safe with item numbers, unrealistic heroism, and a few other tried-and-tested elements. The film, however, picks up on the second half and is then on a roll. A few powerful visuals of the film are not for the weak hearted.

Why You Should Watch:

Films surrounding the concept of sexual violence never goes irrelevant, though we hope someday it does. The film reminds you of how a small change in your values can impact people’s lives. Ayogya is a film to watch with lessons to take home. The acting by the entire cast is impeccable, there is a lot of drama and theatrics, but none of it looks overstretched or out of place. Ayogya is a powerful film with a powerful message and is a must watch.

Anjali Menon: