Malayalam movies once again captures my curiosity and then further succeeds to garner my attention. This time with debutant director Joy Mathews’ Shutter. I went in for this movie having no idea either about the premise or about the cast, never even bothered to watch the preview as my colleagues ushered me into the theatre raving about how good it was. I expected it to be a cheap rip-off of the Thai/American horror flick of the same name. As usual I was skeptic and would only give in once I’d seen it and I admit I was pleased once I’d done watching it.
Without spoiling anything, Shutter tells the interestingly intertwining stories of Rasheed the Malayali expatriate, Manoharan the struggling director and Suran the rickshaw driver. Set in Calicut city the story unfolds over the course of 2 days, I’d thought its your usual FUCK UP movie, ala Risky Business. I was wrong yet again, Shutter as it seems is a movie with different layers pulled over pure satire at its very core. The director, his tongue firmly placed to his cheeks, takes a dig at Malayalis abroad, movies with songs and prostitution among other things. Plainly put, there’s so much that one wrong choice could lead to.
Lal, Sreenivasan and Vinay Forrt plays the leads, each of them giving an applaudable performance. While Lal’s exasperation and guilt felt genuine it was Vinay who stole the show making his character almost seem natural, blending the nuances of a Rickshaw driver as well as the hiccups of a common man in peril. Sreenivasan’s character felt a little under-written.
Shutter could be regarded as a marriage between brilliant direction and dark humor. It’s first act kept us thinking where the hell these were going while the second act, just in time, quells those doubts leading to a satisfying finale. For a paper-thin plot like this its indeed an achievement to keep things at a brisk pace, without boring and stretched to almost 120 minutes.