'Shikkar' (Malayalam, Revenge, 2010)
Cast: Mohanlal, Ananya, Samuthirakkani, Lakshmi Gopalaswamy, Jagathy
Nature plays a pivotal role in some of the outstanding revenge sagas that have been told in Mollywood in the past.
For instance, in Bharathan’s evergreen 'Thaazhvaram', it is the scenic beauty of Attappady hills that plays a major cameo. When it comes to director Padmakumar’s latest venture 'Shikkar', it is the rustling of the reeds that sets the backdrop to unfold the story of the ‘hunted’ Balaraman.
Unfortunately, the director has not tried his best to make use of the scenic beauty, especially in the first half, which would have been a perfect foil for the story line.
This leaves the first hour of 'Shikkar' a usual affair sans much thrill and excitement. However, the film slowly gathers pace and life in the second half.
Though it is a bit too late, the word “Go” comes at the beginning of the flashback scene in the latter half, from where the movie races to an exciting finish.
Thanks to the camera of Manoj Pillai, who has done a memorable job, and has captured the scenic beauty and wilderness of Kodaikkanal, that too without the slightest eyesore.
The story of 'Shikkar' is as old as the history of revenge sagas. However, scriptwriter Sureshbabu has done a commendable job compared with his earlier scripts like Thaandavam, and has tried to inject oodles of energy into the movie.
Restricting Mohanlal’s protagonist Balaraman to the level of an ordinary human being with emotions rather than making him a demi-god, as some of his predecessors had done, has definitely paid well for the scriptwriter.
The story unfolds in an imaginary village, Chittazha, where Balaraman, an ex-cop, is hiding with his daughter Ganga (Ananya). What is the man afraid of? Is he waiting for the destiny to pay for some of his past deeds? How will Balaraman react when the past catches up with him? This makes the cream of the movie.
Mohanlal has played the role of Balaraman with elan and so is Ananya as Ganga. The real surprise is Tamil actor-director Samuthirakkani, who dons the role of Abdullah.Kudos to the actor for making the short cameo a memorable one.
The rest of the cast, including Lalu Alex, Kalabhavan Mani, Sneha, Lakshmi Gopalaswamy and Mythili, have not much to offer. What if you add some comedy scenes just for the sake of comedy? The same thing happens to the banter of Suraj Venjaramoodu and Jagathy that fail to tickle one's laugh bones.
Though 'Shikkar' fails to enter the league of memorable thrillers that the Mollywood has produced; still it is a watchable affair owing to the Lal factor and the candid camera.