Saturday, October 11, 2014

വീട്ടിലേക്കുള്ള വഴി (Veettilekkulla Vazhi) (2011)

Director: Dr. Biju
Writer:    Dr. Biju
Cast:       Prithviraj, Master Govardhan, Indrajith
Languages: Malayalam, Hindi, Tamil

A doctor with a haunted past is left with the difficult task of uniting a five year old boy with his father, who is the head of a terrorist organization. What follows is a road trip in search for the father touching Kerala, Rajasthan and Ladakh.

You don't need to be a rocket scientist to figure out the entire story from the first five minutes of the film itself. But I think it is intentionally done so that we may concentrate on the trip rather than be bothered by what is going to happen, and it works.  As the saying goes: it is the journey that matters, not the destination. The success of the film depends a lot on the principal two characters and Prithviraj portrays his role with tremendous restraint, which really plays into his strength. The kid is also very good in an affable meekish way and is a refreshing change from the usual staple served up by Malayalam films off late. It is filmed with commendable authenticity on great locations that convey beauty, despair and danger all at the same time. It doesn't try to justify one side over the other on the terrorism debate and is done in a matter of fact way. Soundtrack is sparsely used and when done, it is not for manipulating our emotions. At around 90 minutes it is certainly aimed at a sophisticated audience.

I don't know whether the channels think that we are allergic to subtitles or is it simply  a case of taking for granted that Malayalees understand both Hindi and Tamil. The character played by Indrajith speaks Tamil and I couldn't figure out half of what he was saying. The film was screened at various film festivals where it got good reception. It won the national award for best film from Malayalam in 2010, the same year that 'Adaminte Makan Abu' won the national award outright. I haven't seen that film to really compare the two. I don't think it got much of a theatrical run if at all it was released. It is a great watch.

Rating: 4/5