Rakkilipattu - Malayalam Movie
Mukesh R. Metha
While watching a Priyadarshan film after a few years in Malluwood, you realize what is missing in present day Malayalam cinema. Apart from a Notebook' released few months back, no other film in the recent times has etched out such brilliant colors in the frames. With his favorite art director Sabu Syril, and cinematographer Jeeva the film packs us with a two and a half hour iridescent entertainment all through the proceedings. Be it in capturing the spirit of a punky campus in the first half or the racy thrilling edge in the second half, the master film maker shows why he has grown in name compared with his companions of the times.
Rakkilipattu tells the story of a group of college girls, their florid life in the campus, their inharmonious relations with a few and self steered happenings which take an upper hand in their destiny. Josephine and Radhika Menon are the best of friends, enjoying lives in the campus in every ways. Their only rival is Geetha Damodaran, who is the rather arrogant daughter of a very rich father. Their constant abrasions often create many problems, but in all cases Geetha escapes wrath fee as the staff too favors Geetha being the prominent rich figure of the hostel. And in all related cases, things go mostly against Radhika and Josephine.
The arrival of Malati Menon, Radhika's aunt who had taken care of her after her parents' death, marks a turn in the events as she is destined to get Radhika married off immediately. Radhika and Josephine want to enjoy their friendship and decide only to get married around the same time. And for that they devise a plot and tell the aunt a cooked up story about Radhika being in love with one Ramesh Nair, a merchant Navy officer who is currently on duty abroad. Malati Menon who believes the story tells the girls that they could wait, till he is back on leave.
And then happens the real twist in the plot as Radhika begins getting calls and letters from an anonymous Ramesh Nair. The two friends bewildered find it hard to realize the logic behind the proceedings. And when they get to know that Ramesh is coming up to their city, they go to meet him at his hotel. But as the meeting doesn't materialize Ramesh is called to meet Radhika at Josephine's hostel room on a night when everyone else would be at the college auditorium attending the anniversary functions. Ramesh comes and is shot dead. Radhika and Josephine are later arrested as they possess a few weapons with them .The film's plot revolves around the anonymous dead man and the happenings attached with him and how the girls work out the matter in their favor. The film in the latter half turns out into a racy thriller with some well worked out elements of surprise and suspense.
Priyadharsan has managed to narrate the story in his usual pace and don't leave a scene to shift our interests .Jyothika as Josephine and Shrabani Mukherjee as Radhika excels in their roles. Ishitha Arun as Geetha and Tabu as Gayathri Varma, the daring Police Officer also give ample support to the happenings on screen. Mita Vashishta is also worth mentioning as Prema Narayanan, the Superintendent of Police.
The highlights of Rakkilipattu are the songs tuned by Vidyasagar which were the chart toppers. And in the case of visualizing the sequences, you very well know that there are no parallels in Indian cinema. The only thing that you miss is that Priyan brand of humor which cannot be expected when you attempt to tell a racy thriller.
Rakkilipattu is definitely a watchable film for its narrative styles and splendor, rarely seen in recent day Malluwood cinema which has to compromise a lot in making, frames and sequences due to its restricted budgets. At least an occasional outing like this will definitely refresh the regulars in cinema halls who are tied down into stories of family feuds, logic less humor and rows over ancestral properties.
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