Pretty much similar to the unproductive climactic sequence that involves man and a shark and the ultimate finale that follows, ‘Pranaya Meenukalude Kadal’ tells a story that hardly transcends. With waves and waves of clichés lapping against its shores, this is a sea that appears as bland as it is blue.
Lijo Jose Pellissery’s ‘Jallikkattu’ is a searing reminder of how primal we still remain and how readily the facades of culture and civilization topple down all around us, when the primordial instincts within us, run riot. Uncompromising to the core and often beguiling the viewer, this is a fascinating film set on an astonishing momentum that reaffirms the director’s reputation as a fabulous film maker who ruthlessly shreds up and throws genre conventionalities to the winds.
‘Manoharam’ has those sparks that you cannot definitely miss, but leaves you wanting for much more. It’s surely not without its charms, and yet it rarely rises above the level of its conventional premise.
A story that could have struck gold a couple of decades back, Mammootty in a role that does justice neither to him nor to the hundreds of thousands of his admirers all over the world and slipshod film making that is all over the place – Ramesh Pisharody’s ‘Gana Gandharvan’ is best summed up in these three terse statements.
‘Rubaru Roshni’ is a stark reminder of the arbitrary ways traversed by the human mind and its immense potentiality to heal and be healed. Brimming with subtle nuances it narrates three heart wrenching tales that should serve as visceral memoirs of the immense power to forgive, if not to forget, and the indomitable goodness that we all sport within.
Arun directs his experienced and gifted cast quite sensitively, and rewards us with one of the most emotionally charged films of the year. This is also the reason why ‘Finals’ turns out to be my personal pick from the festival releases this year – a film that skillfully blends a heartbreaking tale with impeccable performances and some genuine, ingenious directorial vision.
‘Ittymani: Made in China’ lives up to its title in that it strikes you as a disastrous duplicate, and a trite one at that. Preposterous and preachy to the core, this is a film that does no justice to the talented thespians that it has on board.
It goes without saying that it’s a miracle that the film makers believed that a theme as this could work wonders in 2019. And it’s even a greater marvel that they got several sensible heads to give a nod to this project that could have probably made a ripple a good fifteen or twenty years back.
Appearing laboured and disconnected, and carrying very little intrigue, ‘Love Action Drama’ is a perfect example of what could be termed as fluff entertainment. There is barely a silent moment in this almost two and a half hour long sight and sound blast, and all you keep wishing for amidst all the cacophony is that it had a sound story to tell as well.
‘Porinchu Mariam Jose’ does not have specific points where it starts losing its way. Rather the antique tale that it narrates usurps both the aspirations of its maker and the efforts of its terrific cast, rendering it a stylized cinematic piece that is bracing to look at, but which sounds obsolete to the core.
‘Ambili’ lacks the beautiful dexterity that had made the director’s ‘Guppy’ a one of a kind experience. But it does pick up the brush and in a few masterful strokes leave a beautiful painting on screen that leaves you all impressed by the artful flourishes on show.