‘Parole’ is a film that hardly has anything original or memorable about it. Trying hard to cash in on an actor’s stardom, it throws in liberal doses of political and familial sentiments hoping to workup the goose bumps, none of which serves any purpose.
Tinu Pappachan in ‘Swathanthryam Ardharathriyil’ seeks to craft an ultimate jailbreak film, and constructs a sweaty, scorching hell of a prison at Kottayam for the purpose. He then gets his inmates ready for the final getaway on a midnight express, and takes us along on their trail to escape, that has its fair share of moments and a few non-moments.
‘Vikadakumaran’ does not manage to work wonders with the slender thread of promise that lies at its core. This one has a plot that gets creakier with time, and at two hours and ten minutes, it huffs and puffs along, before eventually running out of steam.
‘Kuttanadan Marpappa’ tries to make do with the done-to-death romantic tropes and ends up a much less assured version that it originally must have set out to be. The leaden comic touches do not much help either, and it isn’t a wonder that it ends up in the water, quite like many of its characters who literally do in the film.
Heartbreaking, hilarious and hopeful by turns, ‘Sudani from Nigeria’ is a glorious triumph whichever way you look at it, be it the exemplary performances, the proficient scripting or the competent direction. Words would probably do little justice to this gem of a film, that should not, at any cost be missed in the theatres.
I wonder if Sanal had any intention to subvert the horror norms with ‘S Durga’, but in crafting a terrorizing film that takes you on a night ride with the beasts that assume human shapes, he has precisely done so. In the process, he has compellingly stripped a stained society of its genteel masquerade and makes it stand stark naked before you, unleashing the uncontainable fiends that wordlessly roam within, whom you had guardedly kept your gaze away from, all your life.
The intrigue that shrouds the title ‘Ira’ barely makes its ways into the film. It is less about victims or even victimization and more a customary plot on the hunters and the hunted; a generic fare that simply isn’t rousing enough to have your hair standing on its ends.
In an age when exaggeration and embroidery reign supreme, Abrid Shine silently strides onto a Youth Festival venue, unleashes his cast and crew on the fest grounds, and crafts a tiny gem of a film that exhorts what a distinct film maker he is. ‘Poomaram’ has none of the baloney that gets carted under the pretext of campus films these days, and instead hauls you back right onto those college grounds, where a massive expanse of a verdant tree stands tall, copiously shedding a splatter of blue flowers and fragrant memories, every time a breeze decides to blow by.
‘Kalyanam’ makes a celebration of being lost in its formulaic twirls, and forces an unabashed repetition of household instances from a dozen romantic capers of yore. It’s a pretty tiresome marriage, as my fellow spectator insists, one of which, the jubilations are very unlikely to last long.
Prajesh Sen’s sparkling directorial debut ‘Captain’ shines the spotlight on the life and unfortunate demise of an incredible footballer, who wore unrivalled accomplishments on his sleeve. A glorious tribute to a player who eventually got worn out grappling with personal demons, Sen’s malleable biopic is a perceptive portrayal of the player, and more importantly, the man that V P Sathyan was.
Kamal’s ‘Aami’ falls short of the requisites of an elegant biopic by a mile, and plays along like an unimaginatively scripted radio show, never really drawing you in, and never really letting you leave either. There is little of that captivating life that had enamored us here, or even less of the angst and authenticity of the woman who had chosen to live and love on her own inimitable terms.