Aadhi (U) 158 mins
Cast: Pranav Mohanlal, Siddique, Lena, Aditi Ravi, Sharafudeen, Anusree
Director: Jeethu Joseph
Aaditya Mohan, alias Aadhi (Pranav) is a happy, carefree youngster who is all bothered about the dream of a lifetime — to make a name for himself as a musician. No harsh tone of dissent comes from his parents — Mohan (Siddique) and Rosy (Lena) towards his pursuit of music. But like any, they wish their son pursue something else that secures him for a lifetime. Hoping a change of mind, the son is sent to Mohan’s close friend in Bengaluru in the guise of another purpose. In the script, Aadhi ceases to be a musician one may feel he would emerge before the climax. Instead, he gets entrapped in a crime scene, his life gone for a toss.
Thumbs up: A high-octane, action-packed drama keeps audience, irrespective of ages, engaged. Nowhere, before or after the making of the film, had Mohanlal’s cameo in the first half been used to create hype. Pranav deserves one extra pat on the back for proving himself as a seasoned stuntman in his first movie outing.
That he did all of it, sans a body-double, was much discussed a topic on social media right when the shooting of Aadhi was in progress. You watch it and understand there is little overstatement in what was said. The addendum, a making video shown alongside the final credit scroll, says it all. It has Pranav risking himself to do all the action stuff single-handedly underscoring his dedication and devotion to the job he had at hand. Let’s hope he keeps raising the bar for good, as Aadhi says “I always have a backup plan.” The department of music did a commendable job by going along well with the mood of the film.
The director of cinematography had a testing time, to capture the not-everyday-type stunts and action Malayalam cinema often misses out or gives very less regard to.
Thumbs down: The first half drags a bit. Things turn a bit personal in this part, as song and scenes, which do no constructive good to the overall performance of the film. There is an effort to acknowledge many a hand that went behind the making. Pranav, the child actor in Onnaman, has grown to be a hero, yet we feel he has plenty of room to learn to emote. More than the thriller, adventure, action aspects, something concrete went missing, perhaps why the whole stuff appears to be loose-bound as it edges close to a conclusion.