With an end that turns out to be superbly touching and a driving narrative that is consistently engaging, Jean Paul Lal’s film is a winner all the way. A perfect weekend watch for a family on the Christmas vacation, this is a lovely film that has both its heart and soul right in place.
Filmmaker Vivek proves beyond doubt that he has an eye for visual detail, and even does a brave crossover to a few alien realms, but what he seriously lacks here is a compelling tale that would keep the viewers dangling on the edge. Which is why, despite all the creepy moments, and that final mandatory twist at the end, ‘Athiran’ feels like it actually set out to be so much more than what it actually turned out to be.
‘An International Local Story’ is a sparsely funny attempt that will not have connoisseurs of comedies laughing their hearts away in merriment. Notwithstanding the efforts of its director, it hardly has anything on offer except a harmless chuckle or two that you might encounter on the way.
‘Varikkuzhiyile Kolapathakam’ makes for gripping viewing, and the atmospheric skill that the director displays in the film is admirable. With a brisk running time of not much more than a couple of hours, it unspools a tale of mystery that retains your focus right on the screen.
The ritzy shine that ‘Ranam’ sports is of a make-believe kind, and it starts wearing away if you start scratching at its exterior with your nails. And lying beneath all the pizzazz is a hoary saga of gang fights and rivalry that is as drained out as the urban blight that Detroit has become internationally infamous for.
There are a few things that ‘Mazhayathu’ achieves without being sermonizing and its real resonance lies in its exploration of an issue that is frighteningly real. It flashes a light on a society that thrives on suspicion, where we have lost the basic impulse and inclination to trust and hold someone – even the dearest ones around – in staunch conviction.
Dijo Jose Antony’s ‘Queen’ is a flamboyant celebration of the campus, with all the colours, vigour and liveliness intact. However, beneath all this panache and flair lurks a theme that constantly shifts tone, that is imbalanced in tenor, and which carries a faint sense of familiarity all through.