I have no clue why director Siddique compared this film with Bharathan’s Malootty. Maalgudy Days is a movie that has a very petty script that fails to engage you. The based on a true story part has little to do with the movie’s content (As they clearly stated it at the end). With child actors being forced to do stuff that aren’t sensible and Anoop Menon delivering a performance similar to that of Mullassery Madhavankutty, Maalgudy Days directed by debutante brother trio Visakh, Vivek and Vinod is a very disappointing movie.
The movie focuses mainly on the lives of two kids Athena and Milan. Athena is new to the school and she gradually becomes friends with Melvin who is a menace. The two kids happened to meet a strange man in the nearby forest. At one point due to certain unfortunate reasons, both kids got stuck inside their hostel. The school was shut and there was no one to help them. How the kids managed to escape and what is the intention and history of that stranger is what this movie talking about.
In the hands of a good director and an established screen writer, Maalgudy days would have been a haunting tale. But with the amateurish treatment of the director trio, the film looks too silly. At many areas in the movie you will sort of question the possibility of such things. At one point the little boy is shouting at the birds as if he is the Pi Patel of Life of Pi. The girl wakes up when she sees her dead dad in her dream screaming “wake up”. All these melodramas and the too silly Maoist back story of Menon’s character gives the movie an attire of a mediocre film and it never really manages to get out of that zone of quality.
The making lacks grace. As a one liner it can be compared to those classic 80’s movies which were developed over tragic real emotions. But Maalgudi Days is too shallow. Things are happening in an indigestible premise with drama and humor that fails to work. With a better character buildup the movie would have achieved that required depth. The screenplay pacing and narration pattern is flawed. Dialogues are too heavy for the kids. Music and background score were unimpressive. After Life of Josutty, you can see a cinematographer investing too much time in helicam cinematography in Maalgudy Days.
As I said, Anoop Menon’s acting at those heavily emotional areas reminded me of his performance in Mullassery Madhavankutty Nemam PO (You might giggle). The kids are cute but they can’t handle all those dramatic mature dialogs. Bhama also wasn’t that great. Priyanka, Noby, Saiju Kurup and a few more are there who doesn’t have much to do.
On the whole Maalgudy Days spoils a possible heart wrenching tragedy with its heavy melodrama and amateurish film making. Innocence and pain are what they are trying to cater, but the movie fails miserably in doing that.
Maalgudy Days spoils a possible heart wrenching tragedy with its heavy melodrama and amateurish film making.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended