Remember the movies of Mohanlal and Priyadarshan, like "Akkare Akkare Akkare", "Boeing Boeing", "Kilukkam", "Thenmavin Kombath", and "Vandanam," that still make us laugh with their non-stop comedy? The actor-director duo has this time taken up another genre, but come out just as successful. Their latest Malayalam movie, "Oppam," enthrals the audience with its thrilling moments.
In "Oppam," Mohanlal plays a blind man Jayaramam, who is an expert in martial arts and music. With his good sense of smell, sound and touch, he unravels the mystery behind the death of former Supreme Court judge Krishnamoorthy (Nedumudi Venu), who lives at the apartment Jayaramam works at in Kochi.
"Oppam" can be called the comeback movie of Priyadarshan and Mohanlal, whose previous outing together failed to make a mark. The movie offers some edge-of-the-seat moments with an engaging narrative. Even though the culprit is revealed in the first half of the thriller, the movie doesn't let you get bored.
Mohanlal looks convincing as an intelligent visually-impaired person, who is the only "witness" of a crime. The thriller is a one-man show of the superstar, and the investigators are seen failing miserably to solve the mystery behind the crimes. It is a Mohanlal-show all the way, and fans of the actor are likely to get goosebumps seeing him hitch up his lungi and attack the police officers in the second half of the film.
The National Film Award-winning actor, Samuthirakani, proves he is the best choice of Priyadarshan for playing the role of Vasudevan in "Oppam." The villainous role done by the actor needs a special mention. Baby Meenakshi, who received positive response for her performance in Nadhirshah's "Amar Akbar Anthony," gets more screen space in "Oppam" as Nandini, and she is sure to have a good future in the entertainment industry.
Despite being a serious thriller, the film has its share of light moments, with Mammukoya as Kunjika and Harish as a security person entertaining the audience with their one-liners, along with Chemban Vinod, who plays the role of a police officer. Kalabhavan Shajon, who played the negative role in Jeethu Joseph's "Drishyam," got another chance to torture Mohanlal in "Oppam." Anusree, Nedumudi Venu, Kaviyoor Ponnamma, Innocent, Anjali Upasana, Bineesh Kodiyeri, Vimala Raman, Manikuttan, Renji Panicker and Aju Varghese have also done their parts well.
Direction and script
Like any Priyadarshan movie, "Oppam" also includes family sentiments and the director has done a brilliant job in making it an engaging thriller. The impressive direction and screenplay by the veteran filmmaker make "Oppam" the winner of the Onam season.
"Oppam" has four songs, among which "Minungum Minnaminuge," sung by MG Sreekumar and Shreya Jayadeep, and Sreekumar's "Chinnama Adi," have already become the favourites of music lovers. Sreekumar has sung all the songs for Mohanlal in the film, which is a treat to the audience, since they take them back to the good old days. The party song, "Pala Naalayi," is colourful, with good choreography and visuals.
The cinematography by NK Ekambaram is a visual treat, and the beautiful locales of Kochi and Ooty have been captured well in aerial shots during the song sequences. The crisp editing by Aiyappan Nair makes the movie engaging.
"Oppam" has a predictable plot, and might leave you confused with a few questions. But the many positive aspects of the movie make the negatives fade away.
"Oppam" is definitely the comeback movie of Priyadarshan and Mohanlal, who have delivered many superhits in Malayalam. The movie is worth a watch for the amazing performances of the actors, especially for the convincing act by the superstar as a blind person. The plot is predictable, but the way it has been narrated entertains you with thrilling moments. It is certainly a must-watch film.