Pick This Flick 16:Bhramaram  

Posted by Praveen in ,


After a long wait, I was lucky to catch the malayalam movie 'Bhramaram' Yesterday. I should say, it was worth the wait, but a wait of a different kind. The wait for the Mohanlal of yore to resurface. The Mohanlal whom we were familiar with in the 90s, the common man whom we could empathize with rather than sympathise. The Mohanlal whom we lost in the new millennium amidst movies that focussed on his moustache for one third of the time. For the last many years, all we got to see from him where flashes of brilliances here and there which were lost amidst the cacophony of crap roles. And it needed the brilliant writer in Blessy to bring out what we were all waiting for. Lal was a volcano waiting to erupt. Its not a matter of surprise that the last time it fully erupted was also due to Blessy, in 'Thanmaathra'. In the last many movies, he didn't have to act. He just had to pose and mouth some long winding dialogues. Blessy was also out of form with duds like 'Calcutta news'.

In Bhramaram, Lal plays the role of a mystery man who arrives at the doorstep of Unni, claiming to be his classmate in school. From that scene on, its a total one man show. There's him in every line of the script. The hallmark of Lal's character in this movie is its unpredictability. You see him smiling one minute and shouting with all vengeance in the next. It can be interpreted as psychotic or a common man's response to uncommon circumstances. Whatever it is, there are few actors in India other than Lal who could do this role so convincingly. We are left confused on whether to love or hate him. Infact, the movie itself shows this behaviour. It gives a sense of 'something big is round the corner' every other minute. The taut screenplay adds to the tension.

Marketed as a road movie, you won't see much of the roads in the first half. Then, in the second half the texture changes and we are made to travel with the characters to some breathtaking locations in the high ranges of Kerala around Idukki. The long shots of the hill ranges had the audience gasping, 'Where the bloody hell is this place?" Terming the journey 'eventful' would be an understatement. Lal's unpredictability is explored even further as he jumps more on to the wilder side. There are shades of the character's mysterious psychosis displayed in between. I am stopping myself from revealing anything more on the movie as a single statement can sometimes reveal the whole purpose of the movie. Although I did almost guess the climax once the roadtrip started, I was on the edge of the seat till the end. So tight was the writing that you would be left wanting for more.

The female leads were more of props than anything else. Suresh Menon who played Unni and the doctor provided ample support for this one man show. After a very long time, I was left happy after a Mohanlal movie. More than half of the thanks for that should go to Blessy. He proved that writer brings out the best in an actor. The actor needs to be challenged with words to get out of his comfort zone. Lal's been held captive in that zone by some lousy writers for a pretty long time. Now that he's freed, lets hope that he runs free and takes up more such meaningful roles. We are coming to the theatres not to see the action of your moustache. We would rather you did the acting, just as in the old days. Thanks to Blessy and Lal for this gem..

PS- There's a Michael Jackson tribute concert happening in Bangalore on Saturday. Venue-Mother Tekla Auditorium, Casa Birgitta, 10, Brunton Road. Artists-Lounge Piranha, Slain, Public Issue, Rusty Moe, E-Flat.
The RSJ Pub Rock fest is also happening at various pubs around the country. Skinny Alley is playing @ couch in Bangalore this saturday.

your crusader Praveen

This entry was posted on Friday, August 28, 2009 at Friday, August 28, 2009 and is filed under , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

8 comments

yes man, its only writers like Blessy who can bring out the actor in Mohanlal now-a-days. And you've the apt term for the other breed of writers: lousy.

7:12 PM

i wanna see tooooo :((

10:26 PM

Watched it a month ago. After I left the theatre, I was numb for sometime. But then after reaching home, I had a feeling that I have experienced such a situation before and thats when Bharathans Thaazvaaram came into my mind. Dont you think so? It loosely is based on Thaazhvaram and what a movie that was !

1:06 AM

mohanlal is great actor
thanks for story line.

3:04 AM

Heard it was a good one... not so good though... will check it out one of these days... :)

12:52 AM

Bhramaram was an awesome movie! One of the best performances by mohanlal, indeed! None, but him, could play all those fine nuances with finesse! :D

But, didn't you feel that the movie was made solely for him, just to show his acting prowess? My dad was muttering that all the time! :|

Yet, I loved the movie. Lalettan is the best, period! :)

P.S. Used to be a silent reader of your blog. Now I'm opening my account! :)

5:18 PM

Truly honest review.
May be it is my fault. Since Blessy is the disciple of the great Padmarajan I tend to expect a lot from him. The portrayal of characters- even the ones in fringes was the strong hold of Padmarajan. Blessy failed miserably in character portrayal. It seems that he worked only in sketching the character of Lal to give it a depth. Rest of them looks shallow and mere props. But Lal lived up to the expectation and came out with a stellar performance. It seems he got a good movie after a long time.
My favorite part was Director’s summarization on the film. ‘It showed the act of revenge which rises with strength of Ocean goes out as a soft breeze’. Lal acted that part brilliantly towards the climax. I don’t think any one alive today could have done that.

11:04 PM

@scorpiogenius
wish we had more of his ilk..

@kartoos
u r in tvm...and u r telling me this...too bad!!!

@vimmuuu
yeah..maybe partly inspired..but still I felt this was original in its own right

@sm
I havent mentioned the storyline man..just where it all starts..go watch it n enjoy!

@issam
hey..dont miss it

@Hari
first of all..a warm welcome mr.silent :D
well, yes though it was an one man show, the movie did have its own that it cud stand on its own..but it wud've been a lot paler without Lal's brilliance

@Jon
yes..the other characters were like just skimmed at the surface..was not developed much...
But I feel that was not needed when this man was there to show what acting was all about..

1:19 AM

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