Tamil Reviews

Demonte Colony Review: A Long Night

demonteWhat I loved about Demonte Colony – more than the two-hour long fare at the theatre – was the intriguing tale about the little locality near Alwarpet. It’s bang in the middle of the city, flanked by Park Sheraton on one side, and a row of well-loved restaurants on the other.

There’s also the bustling TTK Road leading to Music Academy which runs almost parallel to Demonte Colony Street. The colony itself, though, is home to wild, brambled vegetation, and a row of rundown structures. It’s probably one of the few streets that remains virtually unmarked on Google Earth; just a green, dense mass. Hover over the lane, though, and numbers pop up; all deserted and haunted addresses if legend is to be believed.


And these ghostly owners seem to have chosen well; for a measure of land in the area is now worth several crores. More intriguing is the fact that there have been no claimants to the settlement – for John Demonte, a Portuguese merchant after whom the colony is named, was said to have bequeathed everything he owned to the Archdiocese of Mylapore.


There’s something admirably strange happening with Arulnithi. He seems to have foregone romance. Oru Kanniyum Moonu Kalavanikalum, for all its faults, did not have any, and neither does Demonte Colony. Of course, it begins unremarkably enough, with a perfunctory introductory number for Arulnithi, and some very un-comic comedy sequences starring the other leads, one of whom is

an aspiring filmmaker. Nothing really happens for the first 15 minutes, except for a well-positioned poster of Aranmanai that the camera lingers on. Some ambiance that the director seems to have deemed prudent to create, along with other typical horror motifs.

Predictable? Not really. Demonte Colony begins in a haunted bungalow, yes. A bungalow that, as the tale goes, was the residence of John Demonte, who was rendered mentally unstable when his wife is raped (not what happened, but this is Tamil cinema). But, thankfully, that’s not where all the action takes place. And what I loved more? When the friends settle down to watch a horror movie (Ju-on, at that), they become the pei padam themselves.


Of course, there’s the venerable altar where no vengeful spirit dares venture, a Nokia phone that hilariously bids “good bye” before dying on them, an Ouija board with which ‘a spirit’ is invoked – and, our aspiring filmmaker who has several questions for it. The chief among them being,

Neenga good spirit-a, bad spirit-a?”


Demonte Colony does scare, though. I might not agree with the means, however. Give me horror without a haunted bungalow. Give me horror that happens in broad daylight. And, give me horror where it does dawn. Not just a long night of… climax.


The Demonte Colony review is a Silverscreen original article. It was not paid for or commissioned by anyone associated with the movie. Silverscreen.in and its writers do not have an advertising relationship with movies that are reviewed on the site.