Ayal Sasi (2017) Malayalam Movie Review – Veeyen


‘Ayal Sasi’ strikes us as a counter measure to religious bigotry and cultural hysteria. Sajin Baabu and his deliciously irreverent work promises to force no amendments; rather it revels in an odd sense of acceptance and  focuses on the absurdity of it all, where in lies its absolute charm.


ayal-sasi-malayalam-movie-review-veeyen

As the camera gently pans high above the ground, a Maruti Omni with a casket tied across its top, makes it way steadily across a road, under an extensive green canopy of trees. This is a disheartening finale for a man who has made frenzied efforts to move back to nature, dusting the very last bit of urbanization off his self, only to discover that the remains of a wreckage called life, cannot easily be scrubbed away.

Sajin Baabu’s ‘Ayal Sasi’ is much more than a satirical take on contemporary society in Kerala. It’s an almost participant tone that the film adopts, and follows Sasi faithfully, as the man totters around, striving hard to come to terms with the sudden and irrevocable turn of events that has altered his life in ways that he had never foreseen.

Sasi (Sreenivasan) leads an almost unruffled existence with his friends in the city, and makes do by selling paintings that he buys for a pittance from students at the Fine Arts College, and carting them off as his own for a higher price. Sasi also owns a lake side mansion, far from the maddening crowds, that he barely visits.

ayal-sasi-malayalam-movie-review-veeyen

What makes Sajin Baabu’s film interesting is that it never tries to be perfect; and instead achieves an appeal in its casualness, a strange allure in its airiness. It is a paper thin line that Sajin Baabu daringly walks on, in the film, and so resourcefully flips sides from comedy to tragedy and back, over and over again.

The humour in ‘Ayal Sasi’ is neither the biting kind nor the thunderous sort, and instead is one that consistently delivers the tongue-in-cheek quips and sallies. The film also has a flair to find humour in the most bizarre of circumstances, and works on a fodder as fear to build up a few hilarious instances.

Sasi is a man who is horrified at the nothingness that exists beyond his flamboyant self, and wraps it all up with one facade after the other. A chance visit to a doctor strips him of his disguise, and he stands bare before his friends. When told that he has barely six months of life left, Sasi does not take to the bed, and instead devises a strange plan to leave behind a solid mark, before he makes the final exit.

ayal-sasi-malayalam-movie-review-veeyen

There are the slightly sloppy scenes that sound patchy, a sense of inconsistency that one even suspects could be deliberate, and an excessively elongated climax that infinitely stretches on. And yet, at the heart of it lies a film that questions your qualms and prods you to reshuffle your prerogatives.

A frail looking Sreenivasan almost makes you wonder if the actor had actually fallen ill, and as Sasi and Manuel, he offers you glimpses of a performer whom we had lost sight of, long back. It’s wonderful to see him back in true action yet again, and he is ably supported by a group of staunch artistes as Divya, Kochu Preman, Sreekumar and Anil Nedumangad.

‘Ayal Sasi’ strikes us as a counter measure to religious bigotry and cultural hysteria. Sajin Baabu and his deliciously irreverent work promises to force no amendments; rather it revels in an odd sense of acceptance and  focuses on the absurdity of it all, where in lies its absolute charm.


Verdict: Laudable Experiment


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