DAVID (2013) 

Director: Bejoy Nambiar
Casts:  Vikram, Jiiva, Tabu, Isha Sharvani, Lara Dutta, Nassar
Modern Mafia, Bramfatura, Prashant Pillai, Remo Fernandes
Anirudh Ravichander, Maatibaani

Language: Tamil
Genre: Drama

Kollywod have become a welcoming platform for experimental cinema and of course it is a healthy practise indeed. Many youngsters are coming up with many imaginative ideas, which translate into fresh visuals and experience. David is such touted piece and coming from Mani Ratnam’s school of direction, plenty of hopes were pinned on the director, Bejoy Nambiar. Judging from the trailer, David promised a new treatment of parallel storytelling. So does David deliver what it has promised?

The story revolves around the lives of two Davids in two different parts of the world in two different eras. At 1999 in Mumbai, there is a 19 year old David (Jiiva) who is a musician born into a family of devout Christians. A happy go lucky teenager, by chance loses all semblance of his peaceful existence when his family gets dragged into a political issue.

Meanwhile at 2010, in Goa, 30 year old David (Vikram) is a fisherman living in the small fishing village of Betul in Goa. He falls in love with the deaf and mute Roma (Isha Sharvani). 

However the only hitch is that she is getting married to his best friend Peter in 10 days!

Both David's are about to take a step, which is going to change their lives forever.

Story Screenplay
Bejoy have tried to experiment in storytelling by portraying two distinct characters in parallel sides. He has crafted each story with difference not only in content but also the ways he treat the two stories are pleasingly diverse. The film also looks very fresh from start to end.

However, that is pretty much it. What starts off as a stylistic entertainer, soon drowns in the mundane pace it meanders upon. The main problem that hinders us from emotionally connecting with the characters is the abrupt intercuts between the two stories. Due to that, the director struggles to set the emotional graph intact.

Especially the story of Vikram looks very ordinary and the pay offs are very predictable which depletes the effect intended in the climax. One might feel that Jiiva’s story could have materialized as the main plot that might even made David a classic political entertainer. Since the film is made in two languages, during the Vikram’s segements, some of dubbing are jarringly out of sync.

In addition, certain trivial matters such as the scene where Vikram’s friend sings Osthe song, which was released in 2011 when they are actually at 2010, could have been avoided.

Even though Bejoy Nambiar have tried to give a stylistic film, at the end we might question the plot on what the director wanted us to feel ultimately.   

Casting & Performance 

Even though his side of story is the weakest link of the film, Vikram proves his mettle by coming up with a strong portrayal as a drunkard. It is a great relief to see, Vikram performing such a casual, comedic role after some time.

On the other end, Jiiva as usual comes up so convincingly as a 19-year-old rock star looking for a break. His expressive eyes and casual persona proves his experience meticulously.

Tabu after a long time gives a matured performance in Tamil. As Vikram’s best friend, her subtle rendition is remarkable.  Isha Sharvani as the deaf and mute girl impresses with a neat performance.

Other supporting casts, including seasoned artistes such as Nassar and Saurabh Shukla are praiseworthy.

Technically wise, David is a rich film. As mentioned earlier, Bejoy’s hard work to create two different worlds is evident in each technical department.

He even went on to shoot the two stories with two different cinematographers Rathnavelu (Vikram’s portions) and P.S.Vinod (Jiiva’s portions).  Rathnavelu have filmed his story with a scorching look of the beach whereas P.S Vinod has filmed his story with cooler tones of blue and sillouhtes, supporting the gritty and energetic content.

Art director Rajeevan Nambiar’s choice of costumes and set design gives a sense of freshness in the visuals. Especially the Anglo Indian culture of Goa have been brought out interestingly.

Sreekar Prasad’s intercuts looks abrupt but we also understand that the screenplay is such. It somehow cuts the emotional focus and it is quite difficult to refresh again when the story is cut to again. But the sense of maturity and style is of course there.
David has 7 music directors and the whole bunch of them have given a unique sense audioul design for each segments. ‘Kanave Kanave’ by Anirudh and ‘Manamey’ by Prashant Pillai will surely ring in your ears even after the film ends.

In overall, Bejoy Nambiar have attempted to give a visually captivating film and have succeeded in presenting as envisioned. 


Bejoy Nambiar’s attempt to present hyperlink cinema with difference should be commended but the languorous pace and aimless screenplay prevents the full potential of the concept from unveiling.

Verdict: Style over substance

Rating:  3/5


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