Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Akam (2012)

Director: Shalini Usha Nair
Writer:    Shalini Usha Nair
Cast:       Fahad Fazil, Anumol
Language: Malayalam

The film is an adaptation of Malayattoor Ramakrishnan's classic psycho-thriller novel 'Yakshi' but set in modern times. It features a young architect Sreeni who starts suspecting that his beautiful wife Raagini is a yakshi (Ghost). 

In what was a pleasant surprise, this is a film which takes the intelligence of audience for granted and doesn't spoon feed you with details. Good that they didn't compromise on it as it wouldn't have met with commercial success even otherwise. It is ironic that the film was produced by Box Office Cinema as there was no cat in hell's chance of it being a box office hit.

The protagonist who was an eligible bachelor before his face got disfigured in a car accident. He is coming into terms with it and meets his future wife under mysterious circumstances. Without knowing much about her he ends up getting married to her even as he feels uncomfortable with the way in which they met. He latches onto the idea said in jest by his boss that she must be a ghost. I suspect it is a deliberate falsehood that he preferred to be true over the possibility that she was a prostitute. He later go on to call a prostitute to his home from a number he finds in a seedy place which I think was near the place he first met Raagini. The insecurity over his appearance is clear in their first meeting itself when he makes her see his plush apartment. Even his boss gives a Freudian explanation for the dream he is having about a lighthouse. Towards the end when he harms his wife by nailing her, his neighbor turns up first whom he mistakenly calls by his boss' name. Don't know whether it a deliberate error to suggest us something about things that he imagined.

The film is a technical brilliance when it comes to visuals and sounds. Trivandrum never looked this good. There is a scene in which Sreeni puts his disfigured face near the running treadmill belt and the scene cuts to pelting rain. I hope the film gets the recognition it deserves when the channels screen it but it is really a mood piece that should be enjoyed without ad-breaks.

Rating: 5/5