A still from the movie.
Cast: Asif Ali, Madonna Sebastian, Lal, Adhish Praveen, Siddique
Director: Rohith V.S.
There are not many films and directors in the movie industry that we can relate to the auteur theory. Wes Anderson, who is famous for films like The Grand Budapest Hotel and The Darjeeling Limited, is undoubtedly one of the modern auteurs of the 21st century. His use of colour is something out of this world. Malayalam cinema hardly has any movies that used the possibility of colour like that. Films like Amen and Charlie are two exceptions. But with some visually stunning frames and use of colours, director Rohith V.S. inducts his latest movie Iblis into that category.
Iblis is a fantasy-romantic-comedy. The fictional world evoked in the film by director Rohith has such a precise colouration – the very particular pastel-hues that paint the skies, drench the buildings and dress the characters, rendering his microcosms almost dream-like. Vaishakan (Asif Ali) is a simpleton who does everything to win over the love of his life, Fida (Madonna Sebastian). They live in a place that has no name. Let’s call it Ikkare (this side) as in the movie. This place, which is cursed by death, has a lot of specialities and many differences from the akkare (that side) world, which is on the other side of a river.
This is Asif’s second movie with Rohith and he has done justice to the role. This is not a usual romantic comedy and the chemistry between Asif and Madonna sets this film apart. The other cast members, including Lal, Adhish Praveen, Saiju Kurup and Siddique, have played their parts well. Each one of the characters has an aura of speciality and uniqueness to them. Apart from the direction, artwork and other technical aspects, the script is not that stunning but is very clear and to the point. One of the hurdles in making a fantasy film a hit is making the film believable. Though the story is somewhat straightforward, some might feel it is a bit vague at times.
The film has one of the best opening credit sequences in recent times with a catchy background score. Do not expect a fully convenient fantasy movie as the subject it deals with is not familiar to many such as death, afterlife and Iblis! We have already watched Ee. Ma. Yau., which also talked about death but in a more serious or ‘realistic’ way. Iblis, on the other hand, talks about what it feels like to be dead, in a comical way. But it has everything to make it a definite one-time watch.