Rocky is a 2021 Indian Tamil-language neo-noir action film directed by Arun Matheswaran in his directorial debut, while it was produced by C. R. Manoj Kumar under RA Studios and distributed by Rowdy Pictures.[1] It stars Vasanth Ravi, Bharathiraja and Raveena Ravi in the lead roles. The music was composed by Darbuka Siva, while the cinematography and editing were handled by Shreyaas Krishna and Nagooran Ramachandran.[2]

Promotional poster
Directed byArun Matheswaran
Written byArun Matheswaran
Produced byC. R. Manoj Kumar
StarringVasanth Ravi
Raveena Ravi
CinematographyShreyaas Krishna
Edited byNagooran Ramachandran
Music byDarbuka Siva
RA Studios
Distributed byRowdy Pictures
Release date
  • December 23, 2021 (2021-12-23) (India)
Running time
121 minutes

Rocky was released on 23 December 2021 on Christmas weekend to widespread acclaim from critics and became a box office success.[3]


Narrative structure
Prologue: "Aadhi Muran Pudhir" ("The God Paradox")
Chapter 1: "Un Amma Unna Yen Peththa Theriyuma?" ("Do You Know Why Your Mom Gave Birth To You?")
Chapter 2: "Ketta Kadavul Nalla Saathan" ("Evil God, Virtuous Devil")
Chapter 3: "Naatukku Pogalam" ("Let us go back to our homeland")
Chapter 4: "Oru Kazhugu 100 Moonji" ("1 Eagle; 100 Faces")
Epilogue: "The Seedless Fruit"

Rocky, an assassin who gets released from prison after finishing his sentence, learns that his younger sister Amutha has left the city. He stays at his friend Mahalingam's house and enquires a gangster named Saamy about Amutha, but to no avail. Mahalingam learns through Nadarajan that Amudha is in Sellur, which he informs to Rocky. It is revealed that Rocky lived with his mother Malli and Amutha in Madras. He worked with a drug smuggler named Manimaran. Malli objected to Rocky's decision for working with Manimaran as her husband had worked with Manimaran and subsequently lost his life.

Rocky heads to Sellur where he meets a pregnant Amutha, who berates him for his mistakes, but eventually reconciles with him. Suddenly, Manimaran's henchman and an Inspector arrive, where they knock out Rocky and kill Amutha. Rocky awakens alongside Nadarajan, who learns about the incident. They reach the Inspector's hideout and brutally kills the Inspector and the henchmen. Rocky heads to Saamy's lodge where he tortures Saamy's assistant, who reveals Manimaran's location in an abandoned construction site in Minjur. They reach the site only to fight with his goons, which results in Nadarajan being killed. Rocky kills most of the goons including Saamy.

Rocky reaches and confronts Manimaran only to learn that they also killed Amutha's husband and Amutha's daughter is the only lone survivor. She is held by Manimaran's right-hand Thanraj at knifepoint. Rocky escapes along with Amutha's daughter after knocking out both Manimaran and Thanraj. They leave for Malli's village in Tamil Eelam. It is revealed that Rocky killed Manimaran's son as he was jealous of Rocky taking over the smuggling consignments. Manimaran's son was berated by Manimaran due to which he killed Malli. During the journey, Rocky learns that his niece's name is also Malli. During the journey, a bond grows between them.

Thanraj kills Mahalingam and traces Rocky and Malli in Dhanushkodi, where he tries to kill him, but Rocky kills Thanraj by stabbing his eyes with a sharp object and kills the remaining henchmen. While reaching Dhanushkodi, Rocky faces Manimaran and the entire criminal fraternity of Madras. Rocky mows down and kills all of them using a M134 Minigun, which was actually a part of the consignment secretly kept by Rocky. Accepting his defeat, Manimaran commits suicide by slitting his throat. With no one else to trouble him, Rocky and Malli leaves on a boat to Malli's village, where Malli asks Rocky that if she can tell him a story about an eagle.







In April 2018, Vasanth Ravi, during an exclusive interview with ETimes, revealed that he signed his next project after his debut film Taramani (2017). He further revealed that it was written and directed by debutant Arun Matheswaran, who worked as an associate of Thiagarajan Kumararaja.[4] On 26 September that year, the official title Rocky was announced by the production house. Initially, Mysskin was chosen to play the main antagonist, but opted out due to unknown reasons.[5]



The soundtrack and score was composed by Darbuka Siva and the album featured three songs. The audio rights were acquired by Lahari Music.

Track listing
1."Aalilalilo"Madhan KarkyChinmayi Sripada04:44
2."Naan Sinam Ariven"Kaber VasukiAnthony Daasan04:51
3."Vanma Padhaiyil"Kaber VasukiJames Thakara, Kaber Vasuki04:52



Ashameera Aiyappan of Firstpost gave 4/5 stars and wrote "With Rocky, Director Arun Matheswaran and DOP Shreyas Krishnaa manipulate the space on-screen with great finesse to communicate the emotional psyche of the characters."[6] M. Suganth of The Times of India gave 4/5 stars and describe the film as "gloriously violent, superbly shot and deeply sentimental film."[7] Manoj Kumar. R of The Indian Express gave 3.5/5 stars and wrote "None before Arun Matheswaran had dared to graphically depict violence in such a way. The film's setup innately compromises the separation between good versus evil. It is a demon versus demon and we have to root for the lesser evil."[8]

Thinkal Menon of OTTplay gave 3.5/5 stars and wrote "Rocky is an undiluted action film which is nothing short of a feast for fans of gangster flicks. It stands out for its fine technical aspects and performances from the lead cast."[9] Behindwoods gave 3.25/5 stars and wrote "Rocky doesn't hold back it's punches and ends up as an excellent arthouse revenge film, Try out for Bharathiraja and Vasanth Ravi's exceptional performance."[10] Janani. K of India Today gave 3/5 stars and wrote "Rocky is not a plain revenge drama, it is layered and carefully structured. The film is a leaf out of the John Wick universe, but remains rooted in Tamil Nadu."[11]

Baradwaj Rangan of Film Companion wrote "Rocky is best seen as a showreel of Arun Matheswaran and has a fantastic eye for composition, where he also uses the big screen beautifully."[12] Praveen Sudevan of The Hindu wrote "Revenge dramas have existed for generations in Tamil cinema. There are scores of good and bad ones, but Rocky will probably be among the best, because it is spectacularly bloody and poetic at the same time."[13] Haricharan Pudipeddi of Hindustan Times wrote "Arun Matheswaran’s Rocky is a no-nonsense, extremely ultraviolent revenge drama. It is unarguably the most violent film in Tamil cinema's history."[14]


  1. ^ "Vasanth Ravi's 'Rocky' to hit the screens on December 23". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 7 December 2021. Retrieved 6 December 2021.
  2. ^ "Vasanth Ravi, Bharathiraaja-Starrer Rocky To Hit The Theatres on December 23". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 20 December 2021. Retrieved 8 December 2021.
  3. ^ "Tamil film 'Rocky' to release on 23 December". Mint. Archived from the original on 20 December 2021. Retrieved 14 December 2021.
  4. ^ "Acting cannot be taught; there is no set principle: Vasanth Ravi". The Times of India. 18 April 2018. ISSN 0971-8257. Archived from the original on 21 August 2023. Retrieved 9 January 2024.
  5. ^ "Vasanth Ravi turns an action hero". The Times of India. 26 September 2018. ISSN 0971-8257. Retrieved 9 January 2024.
  6. ^ "Rocky movie review: A stunning tapestry of anger, blood, and violence". Firstpost. Archived from the original on 15 December 2023. Retrieved 27 December 2021.
  7. ^ "Rocky Movie Review: Rocky is gloriously violent and deeply sentimental". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 4 May 2022. Retrieved 9 December 2023.
  8. ^ "Rocky movie review: A bold, relentless depiction of senselessness of violence". The Indian Express. Archived from the original on 11 December 2023. Retrieved 27 December 2021.
  9. ^ "Rocky movie review: Vasanth Ravi, Bharathiraja excel in this blatant blood-splattered tale of revenge". OTTplay. Archived from the original on 9 December 2023. Retrieved 9 December 2023.
  10. ^ "ROCKY MOVIE REVIEW". Behindwoods. Archived from the original on 9 December 2023. Retrieved 9 December 2023.
  11. ^ "Rocky Movie Review: Vasanth Ravi's John Wick-style film is tastefully gruesome". India Today. Archived from the original on 25 December 2021. Retrieved 27 December 2021.
  12. ^ "Despite A Generic Narrative, Rocky Signals The Arrival Of A Genuine Cinematic Voice". Film Companion. Archived from the original on 9 December 2023. Retrieved 9 December 2023.
  13. ^ "'Rocky' movie review: Arun Matheshwaran announces his arrival with a bloody, brilliant revenge drama". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 22 October 2023. Retrieved 9 December 2023.
  14. ^ "Rocky movie review: Vasanth Ravi's slow burning, violent revenge drama dares to push boundaries". Hindustan Times. Archived from the original on 9 December 2023. Retrieved 9 December 2023.