Cast: Tovino Thomas, Sharnanya, Chemban Vinod, Leona Lishoy, Jins Bhaskar
Director: Vishnu Narayan
In short, we can call Maradona a game of transformation. The movie has nothing to do with football. It depicts how the life of a thug named Maradona, who is stony-hearted and objectifies women, changes once he gets trapped in his distant relative’s apartment in Bengaluru and learns life lessons from the ‘balcony friends’ he meets there. The basic thread of Maradona is not new. We have seen the idea of transformation before, but the way it is executed — through subtle actions, whistles and dialogues — makes it interesting. You won’t hear loud music banging on the background when his mind changes.
Though Maradona is a mix of action, friendship, romance, and suspense, it is more of a talky film as a major chunk of it unfolds in the apartment. That is the beautiful and interesting part of it. The adorable beagle puppy Rambo, who gives Maradona company, the dove that visits the balcony, the pleasant old man and Asha (Sharanya), his love interest, whom all play a part in his transformation would linger in our mind. But the movie drags a bit in the second half, especially in the climax part. It is also preachy in the end.
Tovino has shined as Maradona. He is a delight to watch and has beautifully enlivened both the dark and bright sides of the character. However, the character’s whole journey and the mood of the frames would remind us of Tovino’s Mathan in Mayaanadhi. But in terms of characteristics, Maradona and Mathan are poles apart. As a debutante, Sharanya has delivered a decent performance. A strong character, she has tried her best to pull it off. Tito, who appears as Tovino’s friend, Leona and Jins as his relatives, too deserve mention. Chemban’s Martin is a repetition of his previous portrayals. The movie has good songs that blend into the entire mood. The background score is not so harsh. And, the movie pleases us with a few beautiful frames here and there.