Sep 27, 2022
Nirmal Baby Varghese
Nirmal Baby Varghese
Jeffin Joseph, Ashwathi Anil Kumar, Varun Raveendran
The Red font colour used for the title of the feature film has connotations of danger, warning, and mystery to get the audience hooked to its content and therefore increase the degree of audience engagement with the movie. The writer-director Nirmal Baby Varghese works on the modern twist while staying grounded in terms of the tradition and culture of South India and also discusses some important life lessons through the three protagonists Albin (Jeffin Joseph), Teena (Ashwathi Anil Kumar), Saran (Varun Raveendran).
The plot of the film revolves around the story of YouTube vloggers who decide to make a documentary film about a mystery land, where they confront perilous nightmarish situations.
In the opening sequence, the cinematographer Midhun Eravil uses an alarm and the signal problem to give a sense of urgency and uncertainty in the minds of the audience. The set design, lighting, location, colour palette, costume design, makeup, background music, and dialogues are kept natural so that the viewers get an opportunity to appreciate the realism the director Nirmal Baby Varghese has attempted to incorporate into the screenplay of the cinematic piece with the help of the found footage tactic of filmmaking. The long shots, mid shots, closeup shots followed by a series of tracking shots are utilized to provide the details of an idea of the journey to the mysterious area nearby , gorgeous travelogue footage to create an impressive starting point to complement all the four genres- thriller, horror, mystery and experimental.
In terms of performance, Jeffin Joseph plays Albin who wants to explore life experiences and share them with everybody through YouTube. Joseph portrays the young enthusiastic and adventurous Albin effectively and also switches to the more intense scenes with ease both emotional and physical.
Ashwathi Anil Kumar plays Teena (Albin’s girlfriend) who is the softer, innocent one out of the two. Kumar understands the nuances of her character and depicts all the emotional moments experienced during the trip beautifully.
Vazhye communicates the bad effects of social media on youngsters and also warns about all the dangers associated with it to the parents of teenagers as well. The creative piece talks about thinking of one’s safety first and not following others blindly. The thriller advises the audience to realise the importance of one’s privacy and act appropriately to protect the same to avoid circumstances that can make people lose their rights. The feature film addresses the issues of using too much social media like mental health and also how people are allowing social media to control their lives. The thrill and adventure are crucial to add flavour to our daily life but safeguarding the life given to us is also very significant.
I love that the director Varghese uses various filmmaking technics as per their need to work with the new filming restrictions in the times of the pandemic has given birth to new and fresh ideas in the world of cinema.
There are a few flaws that I noticed while watching the experimental feature film. A lot of things happening all at once make it hard for the audience to follow. The kidnapping and dance sequences are just included in the script without giving any sensible reason for the same. The subtitles are required to better understand it and also help the film reach a wider audience.