Saturday, May 20, 2017

ഗോദ (Godha) (2017)

Director: Basil Joseph
Writer: Rakesh Mantodi
DOP: Vishnu Sarma
Cast: Wamiqa Gabbi, Tovino Thomas, Renji Panicker, Aju Varghese
Language: Malayalam

The film is set in a fictional Kerala village (Looks more like TN though) where the old generation and new generation are at loggerheads with each other over the usage of a play-ground. The old dudes want it to be used as a wrestling arena and is led by their captain (Renji Panicker) who is also a strict father to Anjaneya Das (Tovino Thomas) who is in the latter camp which wants the ground to be used for playing cricket. Captain forces his son to leave for Punjab to join an M-Tech course and there the son meets a wannabe wrestler (Wamiqa Gabbi) who is forced by her family to stop pursuing it.

Am not a fan of Basil Joseph's debut hit 'Kunjiramayanam' and I couldn't get past forty minutes of it. I found the humour in it to be too spoon-fed and the pacing not right at all. What made me watch Godha first day itself was the presence of very promising Tovino Thomas and the involvement of E4E, a very dependable production banner in Malayalam. Godha didn't disappoint at all. The humour in it works very well and it should be seen as a fun comedy film with Wrestling as the background rather than a hardcore sports drama film. It does go the clichéd sports drama route in its last act which is the weakest part of the film. A weak last act is becoming a pattern for E4E films with both Guppy and Ezra guilty of it.

The star of the film is undoubtedly Wamiqa Gabbi who plays the role of the Punjabi lass. Film is quite feministic in its take and doesn't compromise the female lead character for some cheap applause for its male lead. Renji Panicker is playing against type which is a relief as his Mr Cool new-gen father roles have become quite clichéd. Performances from all concerned are excellent with Aju Varghese also playing a prominent role among the friend circle. There is a sequence in Punjab which trolls the beef politics of our current times but it looks a bit tacked on as I don't think Sikhs are that passionate about Gau-matas. There is also the clichéd introduction to Punjab using a Punjabi wedding, which to be fair is gorgeously shot. The conversation portion during the wedding party is one of film's high points.

E4E films are guaranteed to be technically marvelous and Godha is no different. Shaan Rahman's music and background score adds so much to the film and please do try to catch it in the best possible screen with Dolby Atmos as it demands it to be seen that way.  At 2 hours, it is cut to right length even though interval point is quite lopsided with first half being significantly shorter. Overall, it is a very good watch with a weak last act stopping it from being great.

Rating: 3.5/5