Monday, 20 June 2016

Ozhivu divasathe Kali: One of the most path breaking cinema from Kerala

I don't remember the exact numbers, but I do have a vague idea about them  numbers, I read from various articles.
In general conviction cases in India, more than 75% of people who suffer capital punishment are always Dalits or Muslims. And whenever the case have anything to do with terrorism, a staggering 93 or 94% those hanged are Dalits or Muslims. Some scholar clearly attributed the reason to the stunningly huge numbers of Brahmin judges. More than 70% of Indian judges are mostly Brahmins and the elite classes. One of the Chief Justice of Indian Supreme Court, not long ago, had infamously spoke about 60% of his (pan Indian) judges being corrupt. So add the routine class and caste issues to the corruption, and we can simply assume the honesty of Indian justice system.  (Recently, last week I think, judges were spotted, queuing up to touch the feet (of) and to take selfies with the Indian Prime Minister!!!)

5 friends, decide to go to a forest bungalow, during an election day, to enjoy the holiday with booze. When the booze stock is done with, they decide to play a game.

In the first few minutes of Ozhivu Divasathe Kaly, I felt - oh dear, this movie looks quite pretentious. Slowly, it takes its own time to get the viewer engaged, it changed in a pleasant manner and it ended as an incredibly brilliant and bold film. It even offerred a lot of laughs. It ends like a thriller, may I say, the last 10 minutes or so kept me scared,  guessing about the next moment and the climax would leave you awestruck. I would dare say that it is one of the most path breaking movie in the history of Malayalam cinema.

Casting, except for a female actress who is there only in the first half of the movie, each and every one looks like first timers, yet none of them looked like acting, they were living in front of the camera

The last 20 or 30 minutes, it was a single shot. And it was bloody brilliant.

This movie was made without a script and one needs to watch it to realise fully, how good it is. When I heard about it, I was thinking, wow, finally in Malayalam a director is inspired by Mike Leigh. But this is really different. ODK is a terribly dialogue driven cinema. And a lot of dialogues sounds like blabbering, deliberately though, with its sync sound. But the important dialogues are all quite clear. I can't help appreciating the boldness of this director in taking this decision - to not have a script and to do sync sound. Just a pity that, I felt the camera was a bit shy to get close to the characters.

In the first half, the movie clearly points to couple of issues with the Malayali pysche - looking down at dark skinned people, assuming every woman who do jobs like cleaning/cooking are 'available' etc.. But it ends up with a huge pointer to casteism and manuvaad issues of not just Kerala, but the whole country.

Main stream Keralites never agree that there are caste issues in Kerala. But, frankly, it does exist in a big way, may not be that visible as in rest of India. To some, the elites and upper castes, it doesn't exist at all. But to some it exist in a subtle way and to the ones on the receiving end it does exist in most aspects of their life!! My sincere most salutes and congratulations to the director and the crew behind this simple, but monster movie with balls the size of cabbages!! (am using a phrase used by Pep Guardiola). Their courage is priceless.

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