Cinematic Sense of Place as a Window to Politics of Dominant Ideology, materialism and Morality in Tamil Cinema: A Case Study of the film Madras

Indu Lakshman1 & Kalyani  Suresh2

1Independent Researcher

2Department of Communication, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Ettimadai, Coimbatore, India. Email:

Volume 9, Number 1, 2017 I Full Text PDF

DOI: 10.21659/rupkatha.v9n1.16

Received January 19, 2017; Revised April 6, 2017; Accepted April 10, 2017; Published May 7, 2017.


In the theoretical conceptualization of contemporary space, cinema not only focuses on story telling but also provides a window to the cultural and traditional practices of the place and people. The armamentarium of the transitions of Tamil cinema after the 1970’s to date has shown an upward swing in the conscious use of sense of place as part of the visual narrative. This article studies the anatomy of place as portrayed in the Tamil film Madras (2014) against the backdrop of the reality and ethos of the slums of North Madras. The Wall – the main protagonist in the film and the power and value given to it, is the fulcrum on which the sense of place is established. This article takes the North Madras community’s sense of place as a window to the politics of dominant ideology and materialism infused with morality, as articulated in the film.

Keywords: sense of place, Madras, Tamil cinema, ideology, materialism, morality