Dora (2017 film)

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Dora
Nayanthara's Dora poster.jpg
Film poster
Directed byDoss Ramasamy
Produced byA. Sarkunam
Hitesh Jhabak
StarringNayanthara
Thambi Ramaiah
Harish Uthaman
Sulile Kumar
Music byVivek–Mervin
CinematographyDinesh Krishnan
Edited byGopi Krishna
Production
company
A Sarkunam Cinemaz
Nemichand Jhabak
Distributed byAuraa Cinemas
Release date
  • 31 March 2017 (2017-03-31)
Running time
137 minutes
CountryIndia
LanguageTamil

Dora (English: God's Gift) is a 2017 Indian Tamil-language horror thriller film directed by Doss Ramasamy and produced by A. Sarkunam. It features Nayanthara in the lead role, with actors Thambi Ramaiah, Harish Uthaman and Sulile Kumar in secondary roles.[1] The film's production began in March 2016 and principal photography commenced in June 2016, with Dinesh Krishnan working as the cinematographer.[2][3] The film was released on 31 March 2017.[4]

Plot[edit]

The film opens with Pavalakkodi (Nayanthara) in the hospital, and her father Vairakannu (Thambi Ramaiah) weeping for her misfortune. Later, the scene cuts to the present.

Pavalakkodi and Vairakannu live in a small house. Vairakannu is a single hardworking father who brought up Pavalakkodi, his only daughter. Pavalakkodi takes care of her father in his old age and doesn't wish to marry. They lead a happy life. Nearby in an apartment, three thieves, shown to be builders and street sellers, intrude and rob all the jewels, before raping and killing the housewife. To investigate this case, a police officer (Harish Uthaman) arrives at the site but finds no clues about the men, other than a Rajasthani blanket in the house. Upon asking, the house owner and maids say nothing, providing very little leads. The police officer uses the Rajasthani blanket to try track the criminals.

The story moves to Vairakannu, who wishes to go to the Kuladevi temple in town in order to try arrange a marriage for Pavalakkodi. They ask Vairakannu's sister for a car to go there, but her aunt refuses, and her husband tries to hit Vairakannu. Pavalakkodi angrily defends her father, berating her aunt for forgetting that it was Vairakannu's sacrifices and love for her that gave them their wealthy life. She challenges her aunt and uncle, promising to start up her own taxi business and surpass them in success.

Vairakannu and Pavalakkodi gather all their savings and go to buy a car. They arrive at a car store, where for one brief moment, Pavalakkodi's heart starts beating faster and she instinctively senses something unsettling, but chooses to ignore the feeling. After looking at many modern cars and models, Pavalakkodi is mysteriously attracted to a particular vintage car, not sensing the supernatural presence within it. Pavalakkodi decides to buy the car and takes it home.

That night, Pavalakkodi wakes up hearing strange noises coming from the car, but doesn't find anything strange. Mysterious incidents start to happen with the car, much to the ignorance of Pavalakkodi and Vairakannu (such as only functioning when Pavalakkodi touches the car, mysteriously stopping in a graveyard, and moving its vehicle parts on its own). Vairakannu returns home one day, worrying for his daughter's well-being when he's gone. Pavalakkodi, in a brief state of guilt and sympathy, ends up agreeing to marry someone, as long as that man would stay at their house and take care of her father. A marriage proposal soon after turns out to be from the family of the same police officer investigating the murder from earlier. Although the groom's parents like Pavalakkodi, the police officer refuses to marry her, too busy invested in his murder case. Pavalakkodi is left offended and furious. In the meantime, the three murderers attack another victim, strangling him on an abandoned road to steal his briefcase of money.

Later, Pavalakkodi gets an order for a Tirupati trip for 20 days. This time, she hires a driver to replace her father. As the driver takes the clients on the trip, he starts to lose control of the car, which starts driving on its own. It ends up following a man on a bicycle, who turns out to be one of the three criminals behind the two murders. It feverishly chases the unassuming man, horrifying the driver and the clients, who end up escaping when the car loses sight of the criminal and finally stops. The terror-stricken driver calls Pavalakkodi to pick up the car, warning her about the car's paranormal abilities. The confused Pavalakkodi goes out in the night to drive the car back, only to face the same thing when the car sees the cycling criminal again. Horrified, Pavalakkodi ends up being strapped to the seat against her will, helplessly watching as the car chases the criminal, who finally takes notice and tries to escape. But the car catches the man in under an isolated tunnel, and as it gruesomely mauls the criminal, its shadow on the wall takes the form of a giant dog. Pavalakkodi escapes the crime scene, only for the car to follow her and park itself back in her backyard.

Pavalakkodi and Vairakannu go visit a priestess at the Kuladevi temple, who tells them that the car is possessed by the spirit of a dog, who for some reason is connected to Pavalakkodi and will not leave until it completes its goal. The priestess gives the duo a blessed coin, telling them to attach it to the car, and that way the spirit would definitely leave when it completes its mission. Later, the tired Pavalakkodi begs the car to tell her its aims and why its here. The car ends up driving her to a villa, where she meets an ageing man, who seems to recognise her and the car. There, he narrates to her the story of the dog, Dora.

Dora was a stray dog, found as a puppy on the streets by the ageing man's orphaned granddaughter Aarthi, who loved Dora a lot. The two grew up together as best friends and as a family. One day, Dora, Aarthi, and her grandfather, were driving in their vintage car. Just then, they get stopped by the same three men responsible for the murders in the beginning of the film. After robbing them off their gold and jewels, they attack the grandfather and drag him and Dora out of the car, whilst one of the men grabs Aarthi and starts to sexually assault her. The other two hijack the car and drive away with young Aarthi, brutally raping her. Dora manages to chase after the car, but the men escape, leaving Aarthi in shock and injured. Aarthi gets taken to the hospital, but the assault on her was so severe and traumatic that it leaves her brain dead, with no hope of recovery. The grieving grandfather agrees to donate Aarthi's heart to another patient in need of an immediate heart transplant. The patient turns out to be Pavalakkodi, who had intercepted the three criminals when they were running away and suspicious of the men, grabs hold of one of them, only to get hammered in the chest and taken to the same hospital. Pavalakkodi and Vairakannu don't find out who the anonymous donor is, and the grandfather decides not to report the attack. Dora spends the rest of her days inside the car, eventually dying and causing her spirit to enter the vintage car. The grandfather sells the car, wanting to get rid of the memories. Dora's spirit believes that since Pavalakkodi has Aarthi's heart, the girl now lives on as Pavalakkodi. The spirit now has only one goal; to get revenge and kill the criminals responsible for Aarthi's death right in front Pavalakkodi.

Pavalakkodi, enraged by what happened to Aarthi, agrees to help Dora with her revenge. She remembers her heart speeding up at one point when she was going to buy the car, and deduces that it meant that one of the criminals had been near by back then. Using this information, she and Dora track down the other men, arranging a plan of revenge. Meanwhile, the first criminal's body is found by the same police officer assigned to the murder cases, who recognises the man and manages to track down the car, eventually suspecting Pavalakkodi as the culprit. But Pavalakkodi manages to evade the officer's leads and accusations, killing the second of the three criminals without getting caught. The last man, Mukesh Yadav (Sulile Kumar), finds out that Pavalakkodi is the one behind the murders of his friends, and kidnaps Vairakannu to use as bait. He lures Pavalakkodi to an empty construction site, forcing her to turn off the car and throw away the keys (meaning Dora can't do anything as her engine needs to be on) and then attacking her. He mocks her vulnerability and her claims that the car is haunted, taunting Pavalakkodi by breaking the windows and denting the car. Pavalakkodi attempts to hotwire the car using the blessed coin she had tucked into the car earlier on, but is stopped by Mukesh Yadav, who continues to attack her. The coin leaves Pavalakkodi's hand and miraculously enters the car's engine through divine intervention, starting the car and enabling Dora to attack Yadav before he could sexually assault Pavalakkodi. Yadav gets savagely killed by Dora, with Pavalakkodi watching on, finally getting justice for Aarthi and the other victims.


Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

In December 2015, A. Sarkunam announced that he would produce a horror film starring Nayanthara, which would be directed by his former assistant Dass Ramasamy.[5] The film began production during March 2016, with scenes involving Nayanthara and Harish Uthaman being shot across Chennai.[6] Thereafter, Thambi Ramaiah was signed to play Nayanthara's father in the film.[7]

The film began production untitled and briefly developed under the title of Tik Tik Tik, before being titled Dora in July 2016.[8] India's Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) gave the film an A certificate, an adults-only rating restriction, based on the film's horror content and violence. The filmmakers made cuts to the film and attempted to have the film recertified, but the censor board did not change the rating.[9]

In mid March 2017, Sridhar, a television screenwriter, accused Doss Ramasamy of plagiarising his script Alibabavum Arputha Carum, and threatened to take legal action against the makers of the film. Doss subsequently filed a complaint at the South Indian Film Writers Association. After reading both the scripts, the association declared that Dora was an original script and not a plagiarsed one.[10]

Release[edit]

The satellite rights of the film were sold to Zee Tamizh.[11]

Soundtrack[edit]

Dora
Soundtrack album by
Released8 February 2017 (2017-02-08)
GenreFilm soundtrack
LabelSony Music
ProducerVivek–Mervin
Vivek–Mervin chronology
Pugazh
(2016)
Dora
(2017)
Gulaebaghavali
(2018)

The film's music was composed by duo Vivek–Mervin, in their third film venture following Vadacurry (2014) and Pugazh (2016). The soundtrack was released on 8 February 2017 through Sony Music. Later, the soundtrack for the Telugu dubbed version was also released in March 2017.

Track listing (Original)
No.TitleLyricsMusicSinger(s)Length
1."Enga Pora Dora"Mohan RajanVivek–MervinMervin Solomon4:29
2."Vaazhavudu[12]"Vignesh ShivanVivek–MervinMervin Solomon4:39
3."Ra Ra Ra"Ku. KarthikVivek–MervinAnirudh3:36
4."Break Loose Theme" Vivek–MervinInstrumental 
5."Run Baby Run Theme"Mc Akram, Mc RudeVivek–MervinMc Akram, Mc Rude 
6."The Evil Within Theme" Vivek–MervinInstrumental 
7."Search For The Truth Theme" Vivek–MervinInstrumental 
8."This Is It Theme" Vivek–MervinInstrumental 
Track listing (Telugu dubbed)
No.TitleMusicSinger(s)Length
1."Gundello Nindave"Vivek–MervinSaicharan4:29
2."Batuku Lankanala Bandira"Vivek–MervinAnurag Kulkarni4:39
3."Ra Ra Ra"Vivek–MervinSweekar Agasthi3:36
4."Break Loose Theme"Vivek–MervinInstrumental 
5."Run Baby Run Theme"Vivek–MervinSweekar Agasthi 
6."The Evil Within Theme"Vivek–MervinInstrumental 
7."Search For The Truth Theme"Vivek–MervinInstrumental 
8."This Is It Theme"Vivek–MervinInstrumental 

Critical reception[edit]

Indiaglitz called it "a decent spirit revenge thriller" that "gets it right in parts" and rated it a 2.5/5.[13] Thinkal Menon from The Times of India gave it a 2.5/5 saying that it was "let down by the predictable screenplay and weak scenes that have enough loopholes".[14] Anupama Subramanian from Deccan Chronicle gave it a 2.5/5 and said that while "Nayanthara's terrific screen presence rules the film", "there are very little spooky moments".[15] Behindwoods claimed that "Nayanthara and the car manage to save a cliched horror-revenge saga, to an extent!" and rated it 2.25/5.[16] Srivastan from India Today gave it a 2/5 and said that it had "no memorable moment to ponder on after a tedious watch".[17] Karthik Kumar from Hindustan Times said that "this Nayanthara film drowns in its own mediocrity" and rated it 1/5.[18]

In contrast, critic Baradwaj Rangan from Film Companion rated it 3.5/5, calling it "a surprisingly well-written (and emotionally solid) horror film whose heroine kicks real ass".[19] It was dubbed in Telugu language with the same name.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Nayanthara’s next is 'Dora' "
  2. ^ "Nayanthara is Dora now"
  3. ^ "‘Dora’ first look: Nayanthara’s new horror film"
  4. ^ "Nayanthara's Dora Releases on March 31st". Retrieved 2017-03-02.
  5. ^ "Nayanthara to Act in Director Sargunam's Next Production". Retrieved 25 December 2016.
  6. ^ "Harish Uthaman talks about his film with Nayanthara". 7 March 2016. Retrieved 25 December 2016.
  7. ^ http://www.indiaglitz.com/thambi-ramaiah-plays-nayanthara-dad-in-new-horror-movie-tamil-news-149268.html
  8. ^ "Nayanthara's next film has been titled Tik Tik". 20 April 2016. Retrieved 25 December 2016.
  9. ^ "Nayanthara's Dora gets an 'A'". Deccan Chronicle. 2017-03-23. Retrieved 2017-03-29.
  10. ^ "Nayanthara's Dora cleared of plagiarism charges, to release on March 31". The Indian Express. 16 March 2017. Retrieved 30 March 2017.
  11. ^ http://cinema.dinamalar.com/tamil-tv-serials/62493/Chinna-thirai-Television-News/Dora-movie-in-Zee-Tamil.htm
  12. ^ "Dora - Vaazhavudu Tamil Lyric Video Song".
  13. ^ http://www.indiaglitz.com/dora-tamil-movie-review-21030.html
  14. ^ http://www.timesofindia.com/entertainment/tamil/movie-reviews/dora/movie-review/57940852.cms
  15. ^ http://www.deccanchronicle.com/entertainment/movie-reviews/010417/dora-movie-review-nayantharas-terrific-screen-presence-rules-the-film.html
  16. ^ http://www.behindwoods.com/tamil-movies/dora/dora-review.html
  17. ^ http://www.indiatoday.in/story/dora-movie-review-nayanthara-thambi-ramaiah/1/917992.html
  18. ^ http://www.hindustantimes.com/movie-reviews/dora-movie-review-this-nayanthara-film-drowns-in-its-own-mediocrity/story-gKcgNQH4Hd5qnGZUPnMVOP.html
  19. ^ http://www.filmcompanion.in/article/dora-movie-review

External links[edit]