THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: He is a loner whose small world revolves around the wild and billowing Gayathrippuzha. Lost in his deep dark world, Shivan earns a living running errands for others, but never seeks more than what is paid.
People around him barely know him but consider him insane. A few thought him to be a totally harmless man who was oblivious to the world.
But, Shivan hid his true facet, that of a bereaved father who mourns the loss of his beloved son Murugan, who while disappearing into the depths of Gayathrippuzha took with him Shivan’s happiness and peace of mind too. Shivan is an unlucky father who wants to join his dead son as a fish and explore the unfathomable depths of Gayathrippuzha.
Capturing the pain and sorrow of Shivan is ‘Murugan’, the short film directed by Shanoob, a graduate from Vancover Film School. Shanoob’s ‘Murugan’ is an ode to the faceless people who lead a life unnoticed by others while bearing inside them a melange of experiences.
He agrees that unlike as in many short films today, ‘Murugan’ is engulfed in a dark and broody tone. “I wanted to do something that is not city-centric, something that smells of rawness and exudes the rustic feel. That is when the character of Shivan whom I had known before came into my head. I decided to give it a very touching story as a prop for the character. Thus was born ‘Murugan’,” says Shanoob who worked as the assistant of Tamil director Venkat Prabhu.
He says he has used a different approach in ‘Murugan’. “I wanted to tell the story first through the eyes of those who are around Shivan, their views, perspective and contrasting opinion about the ‘hapless soul’ that he is. Later, I wanted the viewer to see Shivan through his eyes,” he says.
When Shanoob approached actor and RJ Shaan to play Shivan, all he had was a rough skeleton of the plot.
“The location helped us give the film a final touch as it turns into an integral part of the story. ‘Murugan’ was shot at three locations -Paniyeli Poru, Paramada at Kakkanad and Kadamakkudy at Varapuzha. The locations gave ‘Murugan’ the life,” says Shanoob. The music is by Aby Tom and Cyrillic.
The strength of the short film produced by Deepthi Sylaja lies in its actor RJ Shaan who has put up a restricted and remarkable performance as Shivan who struggles with words to express his emotions.
Says Shaan: “’Murugan’ was definitely a challenge as an actor. He is an eccentric character whose finds it hard to utter words and most of the time his body does the speaking. Portraying someone like him without overdoing is a big challenge,” says Shaan.
Another noteworthy point of the venture is its Palakkadan slang that gives Shivan an earthy feel but without dramatisation of the character. “The character speaks the rustic mix of Tamil and Malayalam spoken in regions bordering Palakkad. However, we have taken care to capture its essence without losing the message in its process,” says Shaan.