When I saw the promotional interview of the movie Ladoo, there was a very visible effort from everyone in the cast and crew to reduce the expectations by frequently saying this is a movie that is supposed to just make you laugh and feel relaxed. And when I saw the movie, I could sense the intention of the makers to do something like a Soodhu Kavvum which is quirky and eccentric. Ladoo isn’t entirely a quirky film like the Vijay Sethupathi starrer and the genre mix makes it a half-baked experiment which isn’t boring.
So SK and Rahul are two young men who aren’t big achievers in life. SK is always after girls and Rahul also tries whatever he can to woo girls. One day SK meets a friend Vinu at a bar who studied with him in college. Vinu was facing a crisis at that point as he wanted to register marry a girl he loved. And he had to do it the very next day. SK promises to help him in this endeavor and how the last minutes’ plans of this gang go is what Ladoo depicting.
The director of this movie Arungeorge K David was a co-writer in the movie Masala Republic which was experimental. When it comes to Ladoo, the problem is when the movie shifts from genres and that is usually a problem with these kinds of eccentric toned comedy movies. If they had stayed true to the style of comedy we get to see in the first half, it would have made sense that it is supposed to be taken as a light-hearted spoofy comedy. But in the second half, there is a clumsy phase in the script that doesn’t go in sync with the movie. It becomes sentimental and emotional taking away the kind of tone it managed to build till that point. And suddenly when it shifts back to the loudness, the totality of this movie becomes compromised.
Shabareesh Varma plays the role of SK, a character who is a wannabe problem solver and a charmer. SK talks pretty much in the same tempo with which Shabareesh sang Avalu Vendra in Premam. The goofiness of that character was likable in the beginning but gradually became a little irritating especially in the second half. Balu Varghese, on the other hand, managed to find an acceptable level of loudness which he sort of maintained throughout. Vinay Forrt as the naïve Vinu was good, especially in the emotional sequences. New face Gayathri Ashok has got a character that mostly has this angry emotion. Hope she will prove her mettle in the future. Bobby Simha is there as a spoof version of a deadly police officer. Even though the character length was small, the role played by Dileesh Pothan was memorable and I think the conviction with which he performs gives us an idea of why his movies are always special.
Arungeorge K David has this idea of making that quirky comedy and he succeeds up to an extent. But there are moments where he is forced to do certain stuff that totally sticks out like the interval Omni set piece and the very first green screen song. The script by Sagar Sathyan has issues when he tries to blend all the flavors into one plot. As an isolated scene, the one scene featuring Dileesh Pothan where he says about why he is doing all these things makes sense, but a scene like that happening in the middle of a slightly caricature toned comedy is a difficult thing to digest. There is one sequence where the movie talks about the legacy of Vinu and such scenes happening after a series of partially emotional sequences makes the script look clumsy. Visuals were good and the cuts were also fine. Rajesh Murugesan has managed to give energy to the movie through his background score whereas the songs weren’t that catchy.
Ladoo is a 121 minutes long movie and for that runtime, this entertainer is never a boring one. I have a friend who once asked me to recommend similar movies when he saw the Malayalam movie Beware of Dogs. I will definitely recommend this movie to him as this one is also that watchable, laughable and forgettable comedy.
Ladoo isn’t entirely a quirky film like a Soodhu Kavvum and the genre mix makes it a half-baked experiment which isn’t boring.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended