Crime thrillers are supposed to be nail-biting with clinical perfection in detailing along with something that makes the movie qualify for being called as a unique one. The plot of Oppam which has a blind man in search of a murderer indeed is an exciting one. But with plot elements and the whole screenplay having not much of an intrigue to its credit, this Priyadarshan movie is just an average fair that has an impressive performance by the complete actor.
Jayaraman is this blind person who has expertise in things like Kalari, Music etc. His family is in debt and he is kind of struggling to find the money for his sister’s wedding. At the midst of this he has to take a trip with a retired chief justice. The Chief Justice lives in the same flat complex where Jayaraman is working as a lift operator. This journey burdens Jayaraman’s shoulders with some heavy secrets and some murders that happened following this journey puts him in a very difficult position. How Jayaraman finds the killer of all those murders is what Oppam dealing with.
In that recent interview, Priyadarshan did say confidently that there is no sort of plagiarism in this movie. Yes. He hasn’t copied much from any movie, but the film is mostly a general predictable formula. The typical Priyadarshan elements are also there in this film. Like the family attachments and the money lending faithful friendship etc. are things we have seen in most of the films made by Priyadarshan. In the case of Oppam these elements aren’t really significant for the development of the plot and mainly work only as a run time extender. The main focus of the film is in the peculiar mental tussle between antagonist and protagonist. But the clouded intellectual feel takes away that intensity one would expect in such a thriller.
Priyadarshan himself has defended the online criticism that Mohanlal looking into the eyes of Meenakshi isn’t an error in observation. So if that is supposed to be true, I can confidently say that Mohanlal has done an impressive job in portraying Jayaraman. The way he senses surroundings and reacts to things has that genuineness. Interrogation scene was a good example of his fine performance. Rest of the cast is a bit difficult to prioritize on the basis of significance. Like the way Veeran says in the film, Vimala Raman not at all looks like a home maid. Nedumudi Venu was convincing. Anusree gets a good enough character. The little girl Meenakshi was good. The comedy is mainly on the shoulders of Chemban Vinod Jose, Mamukkoya and Hareesh and they were quite convincing in their roles. The post interval scene that had the typical Priyadarshan confusion comedy was portrayed hilariously by these three. There are countless other actors in this film in very minimal roles. The actor who did the role of the antagonist (let me not break the suspense) was also pretty impressive.
In terms of visualizing the movie, Priyadarshan definitely shows his maturity. Decision to use sync sound was also a good one which gave the movie a real tone. Cinematography was also good with frames creating the sort of alarm visuals required. Editing on the other hand was average as it occasionally lost space continuity. Like I Said, the script has very few intriguing moments. The post interval comedy scene and the one were Jayaraman shows off his Kalari skills are probably the only moments were you get excited in this movie. Music and the background score suited the film.
To sum it up, Oppam is an unexciting thriller. It can’t really move away from the predictions of the viewers. It’s a watchable thriller with discrete moments of excitement.
Rating : 2.5/5
Oppam can't really move away from the predictions of the viewers. It's a watchable thriller with discrete moments of excitement.
Green: Recommended Film
Orange: Okay, Watchable, Experimental Films
Red: Not Recommended