Moothon Review: a moving portrayal of human emotions
The title of the movie may give you a feeling that this movie is about or based on a single character. But the movie Moothon is actually a gripping depiction of a lot of people who had to conceal their actual reality to live in this society. Yes, there are imperfections in the pacing of the movie, but if you are willing to invest in the characters and their emotions, Moothon will work for you immensely as a moving portrayal of human emotions.
Mulla, a child from Lakshadweep is one of our main protagonists. He took a really dangerous path to reach Mumbai where he knows that his Moothon (elder brother) is staying. But Mumbai wasn’t easy for Mulla. The hardships Mulla had to face in Mumbai and the reality of her Moothon Akbar is the story of this Geethu Mohandas film.
The interval of Moothon has an extremely affecting scene. A macho Akbar is breaking down realizing how his life has made him an epitome of evil. Human sexuality is a topic that has got the limelight very rarely in Malayalam cinema. The feminine elements that were placed in the character of Bhai had this dual-tone of making him a masculine figure along with a hidden reality. The gangster world of Mumbai is the landscape where Geethu shows rough realities. To show the vulnerable side of her characters, she chose the islands. The portions of Akbar in the islands has a great significance in understanding the emotion of this movie. And the way it has got captured is also quite beautiful.
One can say without a doubt that Akbar aka Bhai is Nivin Pauly’s best work to date. Bhai is always rough and yet he has his own weak moments. Akbar is extremely sensitive. The difference Nivin manages to add in the depiction of these two phases of the character is a testament to the fact that he has evolved greatly as an actor. Sanjana Dipu uses her innocent face effectively to make us root for her character. Shobita Dhulipala and Shashank Arora have relatively less screen time, but both of them were pretty effective. Another standout performance in the movie was Roshan Mathew who excelled as the mute Ameer. Dileesh Pothan was really good. Sujith Shankar was extremely impressive as Latheef.
Geethu Mohandas is interested mainly in showing the inner complexities of her characters. Bhai talks about his own past in one scene and he considers that person as a dead useless man. There is anger in him against society for not letting him be himself. That anger is visible in many characters in that film. Be it Ameer, Akbar, Latif or Mulla everyone is living a dual life. If you can understand the frustration of these characters, then the unevenness of the movie at various points can be easily forgiven. Rajeev Ravi uses two different visual languages to depict the Mumbai and Lakshadweep sequences. The edits also had that sensibility to understand the emotional connect of the movie with the locations.
Some may tend to call Moothon a niche film. But I feel it is an injustice to call such a theme as a niche in a progressive society that has to reconsider its list of taboos. Zain’s smile at the end of Capernaum will haunt you. The very last smile of Mulla in Moothon has that similar quality. You are pained seeing her live that life and at the same time, you are happy that she is no longer hiding her reality.
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