Malayalam cinema regains vigour
Rose Mary John
Neethu S Kumar
Remya P P
The last few years have seen a dynamic change in the Malayalam movie industry. Despite the cold war among various associations in the industry, it produced a number of good films and witnessed the entry of new directors and actors.
The ‘Malayalam Cinema Today’ section of the 17th IFFK showcases this new spring in Malayalam Cinema through seven movies which portray lives realistically. The films listed in this section are ‘Ozhimuri’, ‘Chayilliam’, ‘Askashathinte Niram’(colour of sky),’ Friday’, ‘Indian Rupee’, ‘Ee Adutha Kaalath’(In recent times), ‘Ithramatram’.
‘Ithramatram’, directed by K.Gopinath is the cinematic adaptation of Kalpatta Narayana Menon’s novel of the same name. It depicts suddenness of death and how it impacts people through the story of Sumitra(Sweta Menon). The brilliant acting of Biju Menon and Sidique enrich the background score by Thomas Kottukappally. K.G.Jayan’s hypnotic cinematography ensures that the chill of the Wayanad air is infused into the ambience of the film.
Director Madhupal’s film ‘Ozhimuri’ penned by Jaya Mohan dwells on divorce in the matrilineal system that prevailed in the Nair community in Southern Travancore. Lal, Asif Ali, Bhavan, and Mallika enact the central characters. The cinematography of Azhakappan lends depth to the visual effect of the film.
Dr.Biju’s ‘Akashathinte Niram’, India’s only entry in the competition section of the recently concluded Shanghai International Film Festival explores man’s mysterious bond with his habitat and its elements. The film narrates a young burglar’s unexpected journey to a pristine isolated island. Indrajith excels as the protagonist while Nedumudi Venu and Pritviraj play catalytic roles.
Set against the backdrop of the backwaters of Alappuzha, Lijin Jose’s debut film ‘Friday’ talks of birth, death, and life on a Friday. The film has Fahad Fazil, Ann Augustine, and Tiny Tom in lead roles.
‘Ee Adutha Kalath’ (In recent times) is a black comedy film written by Murali Gopi and directed by Arun Kumar Aravind. Kerala State Award winning cinematographer Shehnad Jalal handled the camera. It shows the life of six different people living in a city.
Renjith’s film ‘Indian Rupee’ is a satirical take on today’s youth who are constantly on the lookout for means to make quick money. Pritviraj, Tini Tom, Thilakan, Jagathy Sreekumar, and Rima Kallingal lend life to the characters.
Manoj Kana’s ‘Chayillyam’, a movie that explores the ‘Shades of Red’ that make up the feminine psyche has also found a place in this section.