The movie

013CIFF21 Pebbles

Length: 74 min
Country: India
Language spoken: Tamil
Language subtitles: Engels
Director: P.S. Vinothraj
Release date: 2021


Winner of the Tiger Award at this year’s IFFR, P.S.Vinothraj’s visceral father-son drama (remarkably, it’s his debut feature) does what pure cinema is supposed to do: it creates a world, immerses you in it, and provides an unforgettable story to keep you transfixed - and, crucially, it does this primarily through visual means. A raging, alcoholic father (Karutthadaiyaan) hauls his young son (first-timer Chellapandi, a natural) out of his rural school and sets out to retrieve his wife from her home village, where she has fled. The journey they undertake will see the resourceful boy hold his own against his violent dad… ‘The best dramatic feature I’ve seen in this year’s New Directors/New Films series [in New York]… With the stark clarity of its story and the audacity of its style, it presents a complex view of social life, material conditions, and the struggles for selfhood… Vinothraj is an extraordinary observational filmmaker.’ — Richard Brody, The New Yorker