Cast: Aparna Nair, Vishnu Unnikrishnan, Anoop Ramesh, Sumith Samudra
Director: Sohan Seenulal
This is not a story of revenge, neither is it a story about succumbing to the grim realities of life. In a society where rape is the only crime in which the victim is blamed, Sohan Seenulal’s second directorial venture Vanyam boldly presents this theme with a realistic touch. The film revolves around the reckless life of three youngsters who maliciously plan to rape a nun and the aftermath of their act.
Again, it is the story of survival, and also an exploration of the frailties of humans, based on their circumstances. Aparna Nair’s portrayal of a compliant nun, Sister Anita, victimised by the society and the faction she belonged to, is subtle and aptly understated. Her character doesn’t speak much during the first half and probably it is her piety that speaks more. The Catholic faction’s moral stance is also called into question after the nun’s rejection of their advice to go for an abortion, which is considered a sin. The evil trio, played by Vishnu Unnikrishnan, Anoop Ramesh, Sumith Samudra, are convincing as wolves on the prowl. Sohan has managed to capture well the intricacies of reckless and irresponsible youth who are left with absolutely no morals in their life.
The visuals give a comforting distraction to the intensity of the theme, especially the picturesque landscapes of Athirapalli, where the story is set. The use of flute as the sole background music score is not that effective in the scenes where the diabolic plot is hatched, calling for a more sombre sound. It is impeccable that the director has got the best out of every supporting actor who do not fall prey to exaggeration. Even as the movie shifts in focus from the trio in the first half to Anita’s predicament in the second, one of the perpetrators is plagued by guilt, paving the way for a twist. As curtains are drawn, audience is sure to crave for good to prevail over evil but the filmmaker leaves it open ended without any clear cut answers.