The ironic part about the experience of watching Edakkad Battalion 06 was that the movie was only 110 minutes long and yet I found myself looking at the movie as one tiring experience. There are numerous unattended subplots and deviations in this movie and the editor seems to be clueless on how to stitch it all together. Edakkad Battalion 06 is what you get if you stretch one 15 minutes long short film into a 110 minutes long feature film.
Captain Shafeeq Muhammad is our central protagonist. He has come to his home town Edakkad for leave. During his routine visit to friends and family, he happened to lock horns with a group of young folks as he found them using drugs. Obviously the young lot didn’t like what Shafeeq did to them and the movie is basically about what this gang plans to do against Shafeeq and how it ends up.
A one-liner idea getting fleshed out into a proper script is a layering process and to my understanding, Edakkad Battalion 06 fails miserably in the layering. Director Swapnesh K Nair is lingering around cheesy moments that are too irrelevant for the movie. The idea here is to make this soldier an example of everything so that they can eventually put him up as a role model. But seeing the movie, I am not sure whether anyone will find Shafeeq that attractive as a character. And the reason for that is the hurried and superficial making.
Swapnesh is not so interested in the emotional aspect of the movie. It feels like the movie doesn’t know where to focus. There was a whole subplot featuring Malavika Nair that got abandoned abruptly. Making the hero a likable person in everyone’s eye is one aim and maintaining the anger in the gang against him is another track. The “life” in both these tracks are dull. P Balachandran is also struggling on a script level to smoothen the links between the scenes. The photoshop subplot, the whole bus accident, and many smaller comedy scenes are there that just doesn’t look like a necessity for the film and you have to understand that I am talking about unnecessary scenes in a movie that is under two hours long. The Cinematography by Sinu Sidharth, especially in that Kashmir sequence was good. Editing was really clumsy. The Nee Himamazhayayi song was good, both musically and visually. The visual effects guys seriously don’t have any idea how much heat a huge fire can create, the fire in that bus accident sequence was bizarre.
Tovino Thomas is again in that typical behavioral acting zone. All he has to do here is look fit with the attire of a military guy and he achieved that without any hiccups. Samyuktha Menon shares lovely chemistry with Tovino which makes their combination scenes look watchable on screen. P Balachandran as the father of the hero was a bit too overdramatic. Nirmal Palazhi was the comic relief, especially in that first half. The aimless drug addicts played by Dheeraj Denny, Jithin Puthanchery, Shalu Rahim etc failed to make an impression. Rekha’s dubbing was poor. Joy Mathew, Santhosh Keezhattur, Sarasa Balussery, Sudheesh etc are the other major actors in the cast.
Once the DVD of this movie releases, aspiring editors should try to make an impactful short film from the 110 minutes of footage they have. A guy in the theater called his friend during the interval of the film and said “So far it’s good. It is somewhat like a memories kind of thriller”. I am still trying to figure out from which angle this movie looks like memories.
Edakkad Battalion 06 is what you get if you stretch one 15 minutes long short film into a 110 minutes long feature film.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended