Browsing All Posts filed under »Cinema: Malayalam«

Interview: Kamal Haasan (on the ’50th day of Vikram’ event organised by Galatta)

August 5, 2022

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Krishand’s ‘Aavasavyuham’, now on SonyLiv, is an eco-drama that’s  a brilliant subversion of both form and content

August 4, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… The film plays like a revenge story mixed with a mockumentary, and.  The eco-issues spoken about are all too real. But the treatment is surreal.  The best thing about Krishand’s new film, Aavasavyuham, is its English title: “The Arbit Documentation Of An Amphibian Hunt”. It describes so well what’s about to follow, the […]

A small milestone at Galatta Plus

August 4, 2022

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Fahadh Faasil aces another role in Sajimon Prabhakar’s ‘Malayankunju’, which transforms a survival drama into an intense tale of redemption

July 22, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… The film is a story of redemption, the transformation of a machine into a man. And the agent of this transformation is a natural calamity. There’s a lot of rain in Malayankunju, directed by Sajimon Prabhakar. The roofs are leaking into buckets on the floor. Outside the home, plastic sheets are not helping. […]

Despite some pacing issues, Abrid Shine’s ‘Mahaveeryar’, with Nivin Pauly and Asif Ali, is an utterly original creation that’s bizarre in the best way

July 21, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… This is possibly the strangest courtroom drama you have ever seen. (I think it has “potential cult classic” written all over it.) Abrid Shine is an absolute original. His Poomaram, about an inter-college arts festival, is one of the best Malayalam films of the recent crop – “new gen” or whatever they are […]

In ‘Iravin Nizhal’, R Parthiban pulls off a technical feat that’s always fascinating, even if the film remains a bit distant

July 12, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… The non-stop travelling by the camera reflects this man’s non-stop physical travels, his non-stop mental travels. R Parthiban is known for being different. His latest feature, Iravin Nizhal, is the world’s first non-linear single-shot film. Now, let’s break that up and look at the “single-shot” part first. Everything is captured in one 90-odd-minute […]

Nithin Lukose’s ‘Paka’, on SonyLIV, is a powerful Romeo-Juliet story that puts aside the romance to focus on the endless cycle of revenge between the two families

July 7, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… The walls of both family houses are filled with pictures of those who have been murdered from times before the events of this film began. These walls are a testament to the increasing violence between the two families. Paka is structured on the classic Romeo-Juliet story: in this story, they are named Johnny […]

Interview: Kichcha Sudeep (Vikrant Rona)

July 4, 2022

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The Galatta Plus conclave, Session 2: ‘The changing landscape of Indian cinema’

June 29, 2022

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Jis Joy’s ‘Innale Vare’ is a pretty engaging thriller with Asif Ali and Nimisha Sajayan in top form

June 10, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… Building up a thriller is half the struggle. The “how will they end it” question is the other half. Both are satisfactory. Is Innale Vare a cautionary tale about technology? Or is it a cautionary tale about human behaviour? The first thing we see in Jis Joy’s film is a piece of technology: […]

Abhijith Joseph’s cop-thriller ‘John Luther’, starring Jayasurya, has some good ideas that are let down by the writing

May 31, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… The cleverest touch is something that happens to Jayasurya, something that hinders his job. There’s not an iota of sadness or self-pity. The work must go on. It’s strange how two films released the same week are so similar, yet so different. Rajeev Ravi’s Kuttavum Shikshayum is about cops investigating a case. Broadly […]

Interview: Rakshit Shetty (777 Charlie)

May 30, 2022

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Rajeev Ravi’s ‘Kuttavum Shikshayum’, starring Asif Ali, is a superb police drama that ditches easy thrills for solid procedural detail

May 30, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… This is not a glamorous script. It’s not about supercops. It’s chess-like writing, where each move is incremental, the result of thought rather than action. Kuttavum Shikshayum, directed by Rajeev Ravi, is like a balloon. It’s flat and limp and unremarkable at first, and as narrative air keeps going into it, it expands […]

The new Mohanlal-Jeethu Joseph thriller, ’12th Man’, on Disney+ Hotstar is talky and dull

May 21, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… The film is not unwatchable, exactly. But none of the characters are terribly interesting, so it never matters who the culprit is going to be.  Jeethu Joseph’s 12th Man opens with a secret that quickly is told to someone, who tells it to someone else, and so on – until the secret is […]

Rahul Riji Nair’s cyber-thriller ‘Keedam’ has solid performances from Rajisha Vijayan and Sreenivasan, but the plotting never transcends the basics of the genre

May 20, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… What the film does well is instill in us a deep fear of what hackers are capable of. But that cannot sustain a feature. Rahul Riji Nair has had an interesting career. He started out with indie-ish films like Ottamuri Velicham and the superb Kalla Nottam, where the GoPro camera dictated our point […]

Mammootty is spectacular in Ratheena’s ‘Puzhu’ (SonyLIV), the rare film where a man from a dominant caste is depicted as a victim

May 19, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… The filmmaking is solid, but the writing does not match up. The excessive focus on the protagonist leaves the  other characters stranded.  In an early scene in Ratheena’s Puzhu, a young boy reads aloud pages from a textbook. These pages are about the “toilet-cleaning community” and how Gandhiji opposed this. Many decades later, […]

10 Questions: Parvathy

May 12, 2022

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Interview: Parvathy (Puzhu)

May 9, 2022

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Dijo Jose Antony’s ‘Jana Gana Mana’ is a well-performed drama (Prithviraj Sukumaran, Suraj Venjaramoodu) about the slipperiness of truth

May 2, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… The form does not match the powerful content, but this is a very effective and very watchable drama. Dijo Jose Antony’s Jana Gana Mana opens with a voiceover that says truth always triumphs. That is what we are taught to believe, right? But is that statement itself true? Because, today, aren’t we surrounded […]

In ‘Antakshari’, a fairly engaging thriller directed by Vipin Das, Saiju Kurup plays a music-loving cop who gets involved in a mystery

April 22, 2022

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Spoilers ahead… I wished for more focus in the narrative, but Saiju Kurup holds it all together with one of his strongest performances yet. Let’s first talk about the title – Antakshari – of the Malayalam thriller directed by Vipin Das, now streaming on SonyLIV. Antakshari – as many of you may know – is […]