Saturday, March 24, 2007


After seeing Paayumpuli, you will find yourself exclaiming: "It's high time a talented actor like Kalabhavan Mani stopped doing such nonsensical stereotyped stuff again and again." Director Mohan Kupleri, who had cast Kalabhavan Mani in the lead role in Paayumpuli, has failed miserably in providing us something worthwhile. Seeing Paayumpuli is a sheer waste of our time and money.

The story begins in a place called Malacca Colony, where Saravanan, our hero, lives. Saravanan is a henchman and works for Moosa Bhai, once a dreaded mafia-man of Kochi. As his friend and aide Saravanan has Thankappan, an auto-rickshaw driver. Someone comes to Malacca Colony and appeals to Moosa Bhai to let Saravanan come to Kochi to help the Ninan Group of Companies recover from a crisis created by some enemies.

At the behest of Moosa Bhai, Saravanan and Thankappan land in Kochi. An old acquaintance Mujeeb Rahman arranges accommodation for the duo. They are brought to a big, old house named Gokulam Veedu. The occupants of the house are the aged Mr. Warrier, his wife and two young granddaughters Mallika and Maya. Mallika and Maya have a step-brother named Ravishankar, who has decided to sell off Gokulam Veedu to Jose, a real-estate dealer. He has also accepted a huge amount as advance for selling the house and now plans to evict Mallika's family from there, by hook or by crook.

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Critics Rating: (1.5/5)
Director: Prasad Yadav
Producer: Dinesh Harsha
Cast: Saiju Kurup, Sindhu Menon, Jagathy Sreekumar, Salim Kumar, Vijayaraghavan, Rajan P. Dev, Vijayakumar, TG Ravi, Sreejith Ravi, Shobha Mohan, Santhakumari and others.
Music: Prakaash Ullyery
Lyrics: : Rajeev Alumkal
Debutante director Prasad Yadav's Sketch is a film that is different to some extent from films released recently in Malayalam. But Sketch fails to impress you and leaves you feeling all spent up.

Sivahari Iyer is the son of Parthasarathy Iyer, a leading and honest advocate, and is studying for LLB. Parthasarathy Iyer gets murdered under mysterious circumstances. Siva frequents the police station to make inquiries about the investigation and then, when he hints that he has some inkling about who is behind the murder, he is falsely implicated in a sex-scam by the Sub-Inspector. Even Siva's mother turns against him and he is forced to leave his home and take refuge in a slum.

In the slum he meets the aged Koya, who gives him refuge and even takes him to a businessman whom he knows. Siva gets a job, but before he can take it up something happens and Siva lands in police custody. There he meets Basheer, who also belongs to the same slum and who has links to the underworld. Basheer begins to like Siva for several reasons and they become good friends.

Once he is out on bail, Basheer talks to his mentor and godfather Alexander Nambadan about Siva. Nambadan brings Siva out using his money and influence. Nambadan is actually someone who controls criminal activities in the city and at the same time has his sway in the political circle. This politician-cum-criminal gets Siva to work for him as a hit man along with Basheer. Siva's life takes a twist from there on.

Chandrashekhara Shetty is the sworn enemy of Nambadan. Siva and Basheer play a crucial role in Nambadan's battle against Shetty and his gang. Meanwhile a daring young police officer, Viswanath, takes charge as the new Superintendent of Police and swears to rid the city of crime and criminals. What follows forms the plot of Sketch.

Saiju Kurup, who had made his debut as hero with Mayookham, looks better and more comfortable as Siva than he did in his debut film. His performance has improved but still is not up to the mark. Sreejith Ravi as Basheer is good, but at times louder than he should have been. T.G. Ravi as Koya is good. Vijayaraghavan as Alexander Nambadan is also good, but doesn't impress us as we have seen him umpteen times in such roles. His character seems to lack life and soul. Same is the case with Rajan P. Dev's Shetty.

Vijayakumar as Viswanath is OK, but someone more dynamic could have handled the character better. Sindhu Menon as Siva's sweetheart Lekshmi cuts a sorry figure and falters in the scenes that should have been highly emotion-charged. The blame for this however, falls squarely on the director and scenarist. Of the many actors in Sketch, it is Jagathy Sreekumar who alone impresses us, but his presence as Parthasarathy is there in just a couple of scenes and his character is of secondary importance.

Technical features are just about OK. The director has gone in for a different treatment and tries his best to make a good gang-world thriller. Some of the elements he has put in and the approach and treatment he has chosen are good. But he should have sat with the scenarist and worked harder on the script. The commentary in English about Kochi and its underworld activities is an absolute bore and could have been handled better. He could also have tried to bring out more from the actors at his disposal.

Sketch, though rather unimpressive, could be seen as a film that brings in a new director who could give us different and better films in future. The way Prasad Yadav has ended the film deserves special mention, as it has the mark of a dispassionate observer