Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Review of Ivide (ഇവിടെ)

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Cast: Nivin Pauly (Krish Hebber), Prithviraj (Varun Blake), Bhavana (Roshni Mathew), Jia Patel (Trisha), Prakash Bare (Mahesh Murthi), Dhanish Karthik (Sanjeev Menon), Deepti Nair (Akhila), Sathi Premji (Krish Hebbar’s mother), Haridev (Nagesh Rao), Sunil Veettil (Sathish Reddy), Shaun Xavier (Rohit Peter), Tim Naddy (Parker), Juan Alexander (Police officer), Kirstein Gilbert (Secretary)
Direction: Shyamaprasad
Produced by: Sr. S Saikumar, Krishnan Sethukumar
Written by: Ajayan Venugopalan
Music: Gopi Sunder
Cinematography: Eric Dickinson
Edited by: Manoj
Production Company: Dharmik Films, Rajmati Films
Distributed by: Central Pictures, Nanma International / USA Indian Movies
Release Date: 29th May, 2015
Duration: 162 minutes
Language: Malayalam

Ivide (ഇവിടെ) is a Malayalam film by National Award winning director Shyamaprasad. He has crafted the film so well. The movie which appears to be an investigation effort to solve the murder mystery, later explores the human relationships, inner conflicts leading to turbulence in life, manipulations for growth in the corporate world, self-centeredness etc. The threads are woven in such a manner that it also appeared to be drug paddler’s story or story of the ones who lost their jobs due to outsourcing. It also talks about racism, east-west culture difference. Shyamaprasad doesn’t attempt to rationalize the plots, rather he brilliantly tells the story of every character. The movie is very engaging. Every frame is vital which makes one glued to the screen. Shyamaprasad’s passion for filmmaking is evident.

The story is set in Atlanta (USA). An Indian by origin Nagesh Rao (Haridev) is going on a date with an American girl. But after that he is shown to be murdered and the investigating officer who has got the responsibility to solve the murder case is none other than Varun Blake (Prithviraj). Varun tries to find the connect between the last few murders happened in the city.

Krish Hebber (Nivin Pauly) is a top-notch corporate professional with Infotech, one of the most successful IT company in Atlanta. Krish is very confident that he is the reason of success of his organization, who worked hard to rise from a programmer to one of the top position of Infotech. Initially he is shown to be task as well as people-focused leader. He is shown as a traditional guy, who still believes in his roots to do Puja in the morning (clubbed with his work though), does his own cooking, skypes to family back home, takes care of employees, celebrates employees’ birthdays, assertively communicates regarding what he wants as far as the task is concerned. He is also shown as manipulator at times. One of the new recruit in his organization is Roshni Mathew (Bhavana). Roshni incidentally is the ex-wife of Varun, who left him because of his violent / insecure behaviour.

Varun was 6 year old orphan (in Kerala) when he was adopted by an American Couple. Though he is aware that his adoption gave him a very nice life, he is also facing lot of inner struggles due to bad experiences he had due to his dark skin and racism. And these reflect in his approach towards life, work and relationships. Varun’s inner conflict to compromise with his existing relationship is clear, when he gets up to attend to duty calls, writes a note to her, strikes ‘love you’ and then writes a fresh note without ‘love you.’ His vulnerabilities are also shown.

Till here, the movie which appeared to be a murder mystery, starts moving to explore the complexities of relationships, blooming of new relationships, strong ambition and drive to be successful etc.

Varun does visit and spend time with his daughter Trisha (Jia) as per his visitation rights. Varun and Roshni maintain the distance in relationship. As expected, Krish and Roshni grow closer.

How does the story shape up further? What happens to the relationship of Varun and his girl friend? What turns out to be the fate of Roshni’s relationship with Krish and Varun? How and when does Varun and Krish’s paths cross each other? Who was the serial killer? What was the intention behind murders? Towards the end, Prithviraj’s action is influenced by the quotation (by Buddha) which he read: “In the end, only three things matter: How much you loved, how gently you lived and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you.” Any guess on climax?

Regarding cast, Prithviraj is excellent. He has captured the American accent, diction so well. Nivin Pauly is also very good. Bhavna is good.

Certain scenes were dealt incompletely. It is not clear, why Krish was not happy to meet Roshni who was once his classmate. It gave an impression in the beginning that they might have had some liking / relationship with each other, whereas it was not at all mentioned in the movie. In spite of being uncomfortable with her joining the office, from the next meeting onwards, it is shown Krish comfortably dealing with Roshni. I did feel a disconnect here.

Another incident, where I felt that the screenplay left it as such, is video footage showing the suspect interacting with the victim just a few moments before murder. Suspect’s back was towards camera, and the back-side image seemed to be of Krish. This did not see closure in the movie, why Krish was there and what he was doing with the victim.   

Two things which made me wonder and question the intention behind the same is naming the organization as Infotech and one of the top boss as Mahesh Murthy. Watch out to notice this, is this a sheer coincidence?

But overall, I enjoyed watching this gripping film. You may not enjoy this movie, if you want fun element in this movie. But if you want to enjoy the story, screenplay, smooth transition from one subject to the other, suspense etc. Ivide is meant for you.

Ivide is another great movie from National Award winning director Shyamaprasad. The movie begins as a Crime Thriller, but later explores lot many deeper and pertinent issues.  

Rating: 3.5/5 (Good +)