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Nibunan poster.jpg
Poster of Nibunan
Directed by Arun Vaidyanathan
Produced by Sudhan Sundaram
Arun Vaidyanathan
Written by Balaji Nag
(Kannada dialogues)
Screenplay by Anand Raghav
Arun Vaidyanathan
Story by Arun Vaidyanathan
Starring Arjun
Varalaxmi Sarathkumar
Sruthi Hariharan
Music by S. Navin
Cinematography Arvind Krishna
Edited by Sathish Suriya
Distributed by I Studios Entertainment
Release date
  • July 28, 2017 (2017-07-28)
Running time
126 minutes
Country India
Language Tamil

Nibunan (English: The Expert) is a 2017 Indian Tamil-language action thriller film co-written, co-produced and directed by Arun Vaidyanathan.[1] The film features an ensemble cast of Arjun, Prasanna, Vaibhav, Varalaxmi Sarathkumar and Sruthi Hariharan in the lead roles. It was Arjun's 150th film.[2] Featuring music composed by Navin and cinematography by Arvind Krishna, the film began production in late 2015 and was simultaneously produced in Tamil and Kannada, with the latter titled as Vismaya (English: Amazing). The two versions of the film had a worldwide theatrical release on 28 July 2017 and received positive reviews from critics as well as the audience.[3][4]


Ranjith Kalidoss (Arjun) is a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) in CB-CID, who along with his partners Inspector Joseph (Prasanna) and Inspector Vandana (Varalaxmi Sarathkumar) takes on high-profile cases and closing them successfully. Counter to his high intensity job, Ranjith has a peaceful family life with a wife, Shruti, a daughter, a younger brother, Sandeep and their family dog, Rocky.

Ranjith's boss assigns his team a task to pursue a group of five criminals, who continue to avoid justice with their influence and power. Ranjith suggests a more direct approach to taking them out, but his boss declines to go along with it.

Before they could pursue the current assignment, they get dragged into another mystery. A parcel arrives at the police station one day that contains a small horse doll hanging on a noose. The figure has 4 holes but otherwise no other clues. Not thinking much of it, the team decides to ignore. A few days later, a local communist leader goes missing. He is later found in warehouse hanging from the ceiling, tortured, shot, and his face covered in an animal mask, very much like the doll they received.

The killer continues to taunt the team, sending them clues as he kills more people, which includes a lawyer and a doctor. Ranjith follows one of the clues and finds the killer. But before he could take him down, the tremors he has been experiencing lately slows him down. The killer knocks out Ranjith and gets away. When his team arrives, they inform him about a dead body in one of the buildings. But, Ranjith already knows and describes what he would find without seeing it.

Back at the office, Ranjith manages to piece things together and connects the serial killings to a case he investigated few years earlier. Emmanuel (Suman) and his wife (Suhasini) are a rich couple in town lived with their 16-year-old daughter and a caretaker. The couple were very successful business people, but had very little time for their daughter. The caretaker took care of their daughter. One day, the couple came home to find their daughter murdered and the caretaker missing. The house had been ransacked. The police close the case concluding it was a burglary gone bad and the caretaker is on the run.

A local communist leader pushes to reopen the case, which lands with Ranjith. He quickly focuses the attention on Emmanuel. He sees a new golf club in his bag and his investigation leads to the missing golf club with the caretaker's blood on it. He interrogates Emmanuel and his wife with the evidence and they confess the truth. They came home one day to find the caretaker having sex with their daughter. Emmanuel, in anger hits him with the club and kills him. When their daughter threatens to call the police, her mom tries to stop her. In the scuffle, she accidentally falls on a sharp object and dies. Not able to wiggle their way out (as Ranjith and the lawyer refuse to take bribes and hush up the truth) and driven by guilt, Emmanuel and his wife hang themselves. The doctor is involved in the autopsy of the daughter and the lawyer (Prosecutor) is set to argue the case at the court and is present with Ranjith during the interrogation and confession.

Ranjith concludes the three people that are killed were all involved in the case, and he himself is the last target. The killer is someone seeking revenge for the deaths of the couple and is probably connected to the family. His boss takes over the case and tells Ranjith to get medical help for his condition(Parkinson's disease). His team continues the investigate looking for a connection between Ranjith's case and the murders. There were no other family members that could be the murderer. Emmanuel has a nephew, Christopher (Krishna in Tamil and Karthik Jayaram in Kannada), but he lives in the US. They are looking for someone with Pharmaceutical knowledge as the killer manufactured his own brand of anesthesia to knock out his victims.

Ranjith gets admitted to the hospital, where as he continues to try and crack the clues, he concludes it must be Christopher, as he has the motive, means and the know how. After checking with immigration services, they find Christopher did arrive in India not too long ago. A police officer is dispatched to Christopher's house to investigate, and he finds all the evidence supporting their theory, but before he could alert his team, he is killed. Christopher baits Ranjith's team and captures Joseph and Vandana. Having no choice, Ranjith leaves the hospital to meet Christopher at a warehouse. There, he finds Joseph and Vandana standing on the floor with nooses around their necks.

After a long struggle, Ranjith manages to overpower Christopher and hangs him. The press arrives at the site, and Ranjith tells them Christopher is another victim of the serial killer.

A few days later, Joseph and Vandana meet Ranjith at his house and ask him why he didn't inform the press that Christopher was the serial killer. Ranjith then reveals his plan about their earlier assignment. He plans to kill the five criminals and blame it on the serial killer and also frame the last of them as the serial killer himself. During the closing end credits, it is shown that his plan worked.



In July 2015, director Arun Vaidyanathan announced that he began working on a new action thriller film featuring Arjun in the lead role, which would be his 150th film as an actor. He revealed that the film would be based around the adventures of a police officer and it would be made simultaneously in Tamil and Kannada, with filming taking place in Chennai and Bangalore. Vaidyanathan stated the script had been on his mind for several years, but he only began scripting it from December 2014.[5][6] Umesh, Sudhan and Jayaram of Passion Film Factory, who had earlier made Kappal (2014), agreed to produce the film, while Aravind Krishna and Sathish Suriya were signed as cinematographer and editor, respectively.[7] Actors Prasanna, Vaibhav and Bobby Simha were signed on to play further leading roles during August 2015, though Simha later opted out. Likewise, Varalaxmi Sarathkumar was selected to appear as a police officer and Sruthi Hariharan was signed on to play the wife of Arjun's character.[8][9][10] Following six months of pre-production, the film began canning scenes in November 2015 in Bangalore.[11][12][13] In May 2017, the team chose to release the film's teaser by requesting 150 celebrities in the Indian film industry to release it via their Twitter page.[14]


Soundtrack album by Navin
Released 2017
Recorded 30 June 2017
Language Tamil
Producer Zee
Navin chronology
Vil Ambu
(2015)Vil Ambu2015
Naalu Peruku Nalladhuna Edhuvum Thappilla
(2017)Naalu Peruku Nalladhuna Edhuvum Thappilla2017

The film's music was composed by Navin and the album released on 30 June 2017 by Zee Music South, featuring four songs.

Track list
1."Vaa Daa Modi Paakalam"Arunraja KamarajArunraja Kamaraj3:39
2."Idhuvum Kadandu Poogum"Arun VaidyanathanPradeep3:57
3."Kaakichattaiku Marupakkam"Madhan KarkyNavin3:15
4."Hunt of the Shadows"Various1:49
Track list
1."Ba Ba Baaro"Arunraja KamarajArunraja Kamaraj3:39
2."Nam-Ee Olave Sashwatha"Arun VaidyanathanVasuki Vaibhav3:57
3."Kaaki Shirt-Ina"Madhan KarkyVasuki Vaibhav3:15
4."Hunt of the Shadows"Various1:49


The Tamil and Kannada versions of the film were released across India on 28 July 2017 and received primarily positive reviews from critics. For Nibunan, a critic from The Times of India wrote "watch it for the suspense-filled plot which has decent family moments, the surprise killer and the way the team uncovers the mystery through mind games", while rating the film with three and a half stars.[15] India Today called the film a "convincing whodunnit", while The Hindu's reviewer called it a "killer premise".[16][17] Meanwhile, for Vismaya, a reviewer from the Deccan Herald concluded that the film was "an edgy crime thriller" with a "nifty narrative", while the Times of India wrote it is "an interesting watch for those who like their films to have them at the edge of their seats".[18][19] Likewise, The New Indian Express's critic wrote it was a "smart thriller" that "manages to extract thrills and nuggets of applause from a display of the vagaries of human psyche".[20] In contrast, The Hindustan Times wrote the film gets "predictable and tedious beyond a point".[21]


  1. ^ ""Arjun has more to perform than his stunts in Nibunan" – Arun Vaidyanathan". Top 10 Cinema. 11 May 2017. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  2. ^ Davis, Maggie (28 July 2017). "Nibunan Movie Review: Arjun Sarja's 150th Film Receives Average Response From Critics".
  3. ^ Upadhyaya, Prakash. "Nibunan critics review: Arjun's multi-starrer garner positive response".
  4. ^ Anantharam, Chitra Deepa (24 July 2017). "150 and counting: Tamil 'action King' Arjun" – via
  5. ^ Rao, Subha J. "Arun gets ready with a thriller". Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  6. ^ "Arjun will do a thriller with Arun Vaidyanathan — Times of India". Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  7. ^ "Bobby Simha and Vaibhav join Arun Vaidyanathan's new crime thriller with Arjun". 19 August 2015. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  8. ^ "Simhaa, Prasanna, Varalaxmi join Arun Vaidyanathan's next". Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  9. ^ "Varalaxmi Sarathkumar has been roped in to Arjun's film to be directed by Arun Vaidhyanathan". 17 August 2015. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  10. ^ "Just happy to be part of Arjun Sarja's 150th: Sruthi Hariharan".
  11. ^ Rao, Subha J. (28 June 2017). "Hit and (A)run" – via
  12. ^ "Arjun film to start rolling in Bangalore". Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  13. ^ "Arun Vaidhyanathan on his film, a multistarrer". 22 October 2015. Retrieved 23 May 2017.
  14. ^ Reporter, Staff (14 May 2017). "Actor Arjun's 150th movie gets Superstar's viewing" – via
  15. ^ "Nibunan Review {3.5/5}: A thriller loaded with suspense, mystery, serial murders, sentiments and more".
  16. ^ "Nibunan movie review: A convincing whodunnit from Arjun Sarja". India Today.
  17. ^ Ramanujam, Srinivasa (28 July 2017). "'Nibunan': Killer premise" – via
  18. ^ "Vismaya Review {3/5}: It's an interesting watch for those who like their films to have them at the edge of their seats".
  19. ^ "An edgy crime thriller". 29 July 2017.
  20. ^ "Vismaya review: A smart thriller".
  21. ^ "Nibunan movie review: Mild thrills aside, this Arjun film is mostly predictable". 28 July 2017.

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