Jude Anthany Joseph’s ‘2018: Everyone is a Hero’ is painted in very broad strokes but ends up a solid account of a tragic time

Posted on May 10, 2023


Spoilers ahead…

Tovino Thomas gets the most fully fleshed-out character, and even a love interest – and later, he gets to do the biggest saving acts. He is both a star and a character actor here.

2018 tovino

There are two ways to make a movie about a large-scale disaster. One is to reduce the scale, like Lakshmy Ramakrishnan did in the exquisitely moving and understated House Owner. The story revolves around the 2015 Chennai floods, but it remains an intimate narrative about just one couple, played by character actors. By focusing on a tiny part, you get a sense of the whole. The other approach is seen in Aashiq Abu’s superbly written, superbly crafted medical thriller Virus, where a galaxy of stars come together to battle the Nipah virus. Jude Anthany Joseph’s 2018: Everyone is a Hero follows the Virus model, and here, a galaxy of stars come together to tackle the devastating Kerala floods. But unlike the former film, the director and his co-writer Akhil P Dharmajan go for the broad strokes, with dashes of hysterical melodrama. 2018 does not rise to the levels of Virus, but on its own, it is a solid account of a tragic time.

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