Its a well known fact that the movies being churned out nowadays are so abysmal that we actually tend to wonder as to what has become to those days when everyone used to look to our films for impressive scripts. Thankfully, this year began with one such venture "Traffic", which was both critically acclaimed & commercially viable. To add to this list, comes the latest offering "City of God", directed by Lijo Jose Pellissery whose debut effort in "Nayakan" was highly commendable. With an impressive star cast & catchy promos, the movie has been the talk of the town for some time. So will it actually live upto its promise???
Just as in the case of Mani Ratnam's "Yuva", Rajesh Pillai's "Traffic" or Hollywood movies like "Crash"; the film tracks the life of the various protagonists who are linked together by an accident happening in the beginning. Jyothilal (Prithvi) is a close friend of Sony (Rajeev Pillai), a wealthy businessman for whom he is willing to risk his life. Swarnavel (Indrajith) is a Tamil labourer in love with Marathakam (Parwathy) who fled from a failed marriage. Viji Ponnoose (Shweta Menon) is a wealthy divorcee while Sooryaprabha (Rima Kallingal) is a rising starlet who had to suffer the brutalities of her husband. So were these characters linked together just by destiny or is all this part of a master plan???
Just as in "Nayakan", the execution here also is top notch & full credit to Lijo Jose for framing the sequences so brilliantly. At times, the audience is left in awe as to how he is able to shoot the same scene from various points of view. There are many such sequences in the movie such that after a point of time, you are at a loss of words. Now, for creating such sequences requires an impressive script & Babu Janardhanan deserves a pat on the back for that. However, there is no denying the fact that certain sequences lacked the punch & tempo to match the events due to which it feels dragging at times. Also, the handy cam sort of picturisation though imparting a realistic feel; causes headache as its too shaky. The music by Prashanth Pillai wasnt exactly chart busting type but it did have a different feel, while the editing by Manoj was top notch.
Almost all the performers have done total justice to their characters starting from Prithvi who was at complete ease as Jyothilal. Though not as celebrated as Prithvi, Indrajith is one damn good actor & you have to give it to him for his excellent depiction as the Tamilian. Parvathy was outstanding in her part, Shweta as always dazzled the screen as the confident female while Rima Kallingal seems more promising with time.However, the person who blew me away with her performance was Rohini. She was just superlative in all facets be it diction, expressions or body language.
Verdict: Certainly one of the best movies in recent times which promises to raise hopes that there is still talents budding in our industry. Though it does have drawbacks as specified earlier, that doesnt add to much if we weigh the positives. However, I doubt if it would be able to command the box office owing to its off beat nature which might not be palatable to many. In short, I would suggest that you guys definitely try this out as its something different & interesting!!!