Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Ee Adutha Kaalath (2012)

Director: Arun Kumar Aravind
Writer:    Murali Gopy
Cast:       Indrajith, Murali Gopy, Tanushree Ghosh, Anoop Menon

The film features the lives of six different persons from different strata of the social life of the Trivandrum city, interconnected due to unexpected events beyond their control.

The film starts with a line about Rubik's cube's possible number of combinations and out of these one fits it perfectly. Like this, film is trying to piece together all these different characters into its narrative. It doesn't manage to do it in a perfect manner but considering the budget it is a very good effort. Film is interesting because of the aspects of modern Kerala society it touches upon, which were hardly tackled before by Malayalam cinema. The hospital owner played by Murali Gopy is unhappy with his life and makes life miserable for people around him. He has got a trophy wife (Tanushree Ghosh) who was an actress before their marriage and she is unhappy with the way he treats her emotionally and sexually. Then you have the real estate/blade mafia don played by Baiju, Yellow journalist (Jagathy), investigative journalist for a regional news channel (Lena), the commissioner of Police who got training from Scotland Yard (Anoop Menon) and finally the stereotypically poor man who has to commit a crime for greater food (Indrajith) for whom we are supposed to feel sympathy for. 

Film can be seen as the first one among what is now described as 'New Generation Films' in Malayalam cinema which are known for frank treatment of some previously ignored subject matters, real life like dialogs (I mean bad language) and morally ambiguous characters. But the thing is, most of these films still operate under the untold but prevalent moral restrictions imposed in Indian cinema. One feels like watching 40s and 50s Hollywood films where the genre noir itself has a predictable ending of crime doesn't pay. In this film also the characters for whom we are supposed to sympathize for don't end up doing 'morally' questionable actions, be it adultery in the case of Tanushree Ghosh's character or stealing in the case of Indrajith's character. Things happen by accident absolving them of outright blame. I just want these guys to truly push the boundaries where we as audience should be questioning ourselves for rooting for some unlikeable characters and their actions. Only then will I say that these guys are actually pushing boundaries. Take the case of Murali Gopy's character for whom they give an explanation for his behavior. They use it as a plot device but I wish they left it unexplained. They could have just left him as a financially successful man who doesn't know how to be happy and treat those around him with respect. Such a character would be quite common in modern Kerala society. 

The film is not perfect but it is great watch and its shortcomings can be forgiven because of the limited budget and inexperience of people (Director & Writer) behind it. 

Rating: 3.5/5