Pariyerum Perumal (Eng: Horse mounting deity) is a 2018 Indian Tamil language drama film written and directed by Mari Selvaraj. Produced by Pa. Ranjith, the film stars Kathir and Anandhi in the leading roles with Yogi Babu in a supporting role. The film features music composed by Santhosh Narayanan. The film received many positive reviews and awards.
Pariyerum Perumal narrates the story of a youth hailing from Puliyankulam village near Tirunelveli. Pariyerum Perumal alias Pariyan (Kathir) belongs to an oppressed caste. The movie begins with the brutal murder of his beloved black dog ‘Karuppi’ (Lit. Blackie in Tamil). The canine hunting companion of Pariyan is the first one we see becoming a victim of caste hegemony.
Pariyan moves on to secure a seat in a law college, where he wishes to become a lawyer like B. R. Ambedkar. He meets Jothi Mahalakshmi alias Jo (Anandhi), a naive girl from Ambasamudram who takes it upon herself to teach English to Pariyan. She eventually falls for his innocence and honesty. This newfound friendship irks Sankaralingam (Lingesh), a fellow law student and Jo’s cousin. He awaits a chance to teach a lesson to Pariyan and establish his caste superiority. He does so while the blissfully unaware Jo invites Pariyan to a family wedding.
Pariyan is almost beaten to death by Sankaralingam and his fellows, and they also urinate on him. It was stopped, and Pariyan was warned by Jo’s father (G. Marimuthu), who asked Pariyan to stay out of Jo’s life. Jo, unaware of all this yells, at Pariyan the next day for not attending her sister’s marriage as she had invited only him in the whole college. Pariyan’s answers made Jo cry and have a fight with him.
Pariyan, who becomes upset the next day, drinks alcohol and attends the class, which leads him to the principal’s room. He is asked to bring his father (Vannarpettai Thangaraj), so he bribes a person (Shanmugarajan) to be his father, and the man does the job successfully. Another day, Pariyan’s teacher tries to solve out the problem between Pariyan and Jo, but Pariyan points out that Jo gave an invitation only to him making clear that he treats her only as his friend, which infuriates her. The very same day as he sits in Sankaralingam’s bench, the latter gets infuriated, pushes Pariyan into the ladies’ toilet, and locks the door, which once again leads Pariyan to the principal’s room. Pariyan is again asked to bring his father. This time, he brings his real father, who is a Hijra dancer.
The principal understands Pariyan’s innocence and asks him to be bold and continue to fight like this. As Pariyan comes out of the principal’s room, he finds his father brutally ragged by Sankaralingam and his fellow mates, and they pull Pariyan’s father’s dhoti. Pariyan’s father runs out of college half-naked, followed by Sankaralingam and his group, and Pariyan runs at their back. Later, Pariyan admits his father in the hospital and decides to take revenge, but his mother asks him not to do so. He is informed that Jo is waiting in the hospital for him. An emotional Jo makes Pariyan realize how important he is for her, and though she loves him, she asks him to be the same old Pariyan, who was very friendly with her. Pariyan makes a promise to be like that. Meanwhile Jo’s father realizes that Jo is mad at Pariyan, and he hires an old man who kills lower-caste people without any evidence. That old man is well-known to Pariyan.
The old man asks for a lift in Pariyan’s cycle and later pushes him down. The old man then puts Pariyan on a railway track to kill him in the same way that Karuppi was killed, but Pariyan wakes up and escapes, which leads to a heavy fight between the old man and Pariyan. Pariyan realizes that he was sent by Jo’s father and Sankaralingam. He beats Sankaralingam and others brutally. He then says to Jo’s father that the life he is living is a gift given by Pariyan, because if Jo comes to know the activities of her father, she will not spare him. He asks him to leave him and goes. The old man, who realizes that he has failed in his attempt to kill his mark for the first time, commits suicide on the railway track.
At the end of the movie, Jo brings her father to meet Pariyan, and as she goes to buy tea for them, Jo’s father asks for an apology for his mistake. He speaks to Pariyan well and then say, “We can see. We do not know what will happen in the future,” to which Pariyan replies, “Until you being the same and me being treated as a dog, nothing will change”, indicating about caste difference.
Directed by Mari Selvaraj
Produced by Pa. Ranjith
Written by Mari Selvaraj
Story by Mari Selvaraj
Starring Kathir, Anandhi
Music by Santhosh Narayanan
Edited by Selva RK
Production Neelam Productions
Distributed by Lyca Productions
Release date 28 September 2018
Running time 154 minutes