Finally the month long election process has concluded & Narendra Modi has been conferred as the PM by the citizens of our great nation by an overwhelming majority. Even our Malayalam industry saw it's President, Innocent being elevated to adorn the post of MP. So it was all about politics till Friday which meant films were far & few until Manju Warrier's much anticipated comeback film "How Old Are You" graced the screens from yesterday. So can Manju script a thumping come back pretty much like how Modi thumped his detractors???
Nirupama Rajeev (Manju Warrier) is a middle class woman working in a bureaucratic establishment whose tale was pretty much similar to scores of other women. For Nirupama, it was all about taking care of her household & in the process, she even forgot that she had an individuality of her own. Both her husband, Rajeev (Chackochan) & daughter, Lakshmi (Amritha Anil); fails to realize the sacrifices that she had made & considers her more as an embarrassment for them. Life seemed to take a turn for the better when she is provided with an delightful opportunity, only for fate to mess it up. So will Nirupama ever able to discover her inner self & take stock of her family before it's too late???
DIRECTION & SCRIPT:
After the fantastic "Mumbai Police", Rosshan Andrews is back with his latest venture with Manju Warrier, who is undoubtedly one of the best actresses that our industry had seen. Since this was her comeback film, the hype and anticipation was quite palpable & understandable; but Roshan ensured that he didn't wilt under pressure by delivering the goods.There is a limit to how much a brilliant performer can enact unless he/she is ably supported by a strong script & impressive screenplay and that's where Bobby Sanjay draw aces. They have once again proved as to why they are considered as one of the best script writers in the industry.
Gopi Sundar deserves a pat on the back for his BGM & Shreya Ghoshal rocked with her rendition of "Vijanathayil". Diwakar & Mahesh Narayanan have done their jobs well be it with the editing or the visuals, however Ranjith Ambady ought to have done a better job with the make up of Manju in some of the sequences.
It's been about 15 years since Manju had donned the grease paint for a film, but the way she had portrayed Nirupama made us feel that she had never left as she seemed completely at ease facing the camera. I just hope that this isnt just a flash in the pan & she keeps getting meaty roles. Chackochan was fantastic in the role of Rajeev, which had a whiff of male chauvinism about him & held his own even when it was evident that Manju was going to be the highlight. All the co-stars have done an impressive job be it Muthumani, Kalaranjini, Vinay Fort to name a few but Sethulekshmi deserves a special mention as she outscores Manju in one of the emotionally charged scenes.
Verdict: Though Lalettan's "Mr.Fraud" will prove a tough competitor in grabbing the initial, there is no doubt that Manju's film will have a sizable crowd of its own considering the hype & talent on offer. It does not belong to the genre of thriller or suspense, but the film has something about it which make us totally involved in the film and makes us empathize with the protagonist. In short, dont miss it!!!