What is fascinating about Elaveezhapoonchira is how it restructures a simplistic revenge drama into a compelling character-driven revenge thriller. The clever distractions from the plot and the brilliant use of the landscape make Elaveezhapoonchira from Shahi Kabir one engrossing cinema with a fabulously layered script. With Soubin Shahir delivering a performance that is easily one among his best, Elaveezhapoonchira surely deserves your time.
The story is set in the backdrop of this mountain peak called Elaveezhapoonchira. Police officers are assigned for duty there to monitor things as it has a key significance in wireless communication. Madhu, the central protagonist of this film, is one such police officer. The film shows the events in that outstation when a murder case gets linked with this location.
When you backtrack the whole story, this is a simple revenge formula. But writers Nidhish G and Shaji Maarad have restructured it so effectively to make us explore it as a suspense thriller. The first half an hour of the movie places the character and landscape in front of the audience. The eeriness and loneliness one can see in the character of Madhu, and the location sets the mood for the movie. Towards the end of the first half, we get the link with the murder that happened in another place. From the very first scene of the second half, Shahi Kabir and the team trick us into investing our empathy in a different direction. And that gives this movie the tone of a survival drama. Elaveezhapoonchira has twists in its narrative. But instead of being jarring, they try to be those emotionally unsettling ones.
Soubin Shahir, who has been getting major criticism over his character selections recently, bounces back with a terrific performance. He has underplayed the character brilliantly, and the shift in the graph is extremely gentle. When you backtrack the whole story, every gesture he showed made sense, and the performance will stay with us for all the good reasons. Sudhhy Kopa’s performance in the movie’s second half was really impressive. The believability in how Sudhhy gets petrified helps the film greatly in having that additional layer of a survival thriller.
In his debut as a director, Shahi Kabir opts for a treatment that justifies the mood of the script. He makes sure that the setting and its spookiness are communicated to the viewer subtly. We see an accident in the first half of the film, which shows what all the officers have to go through during duty. The many minor tracks they have incorporated leading to the police versus commoner conflict somewhere adds to character detailing. And even that seemingly insignificant humor track when a senior police official comes there gets a good backing at a later stage. The cinematography is not trying to be overly flashy with its philosophy. Kiran Das’s slow-paced edits build the much-needed intrigue. The film’s sound design is also fabulous, complemented perfectly by Anil Johnson’s score.
Elaveezhapoonchira is a brilliant blend of many cinematic elements. It has the shades of a thriller and a character-driven drama. The narrative is such that it uses the landscape to represent the emotional turmoil of its central character. With impressive craft in building the suspense element, Elaveezhapoonchira is 104 minutes of quality cinema.
With impressive craft in building the suspense element, Elaveezhapoonchira is 104 minutes of quality cinema.
Green: Recommended Content
Orange: The In-Between Ones
Red: Not Recommended