* Mild spoilers ahead*
“Self respect is kind of a poison. Once it gets to your head, you are done.”
Sachy takes the line from the climax of his previous movie ‘Driving License’ and expands it to yet another wonderful screenplay in Ayyappanum Koshyum. It’s the same template of two male leads caught in an ego clash. But it is to his credit that Sachy doesn’t let his viewers think much about it through its run-time. In Ayyappanum Koshyum , you get to see the conflict between Ayyapan and Koshy first, you know more about these two characters later. (The first 20-30 minutes of the movie is simply superb). This is great way of writing, because you have the attention of audience straight away.
There are situations which you think might finally lead to a solution. But then there is another twist in the way that would add fire and makes sure both are at each other’s necks again. It’s just smart writing and an execution which carries so much intensity, that it never lets you settle. The tension which is formed in the beginning is maintained till the very end because you never get to see the two leads actually in a physical combat until the climax. And the last action sequence is worth all the wait, supremely choreographed and well performed by it’s lead actors. At which point I have to say Ayyappanum Koshyum benefits from having two lead actors who have done their jobs equally well.
The characterization of Prithviraj’s Koshy is what makes the movie really interesting. In what is one of the most layered characters I have seen in recent times, Koshy is arrogant, egoistic and devious. But he is also confused and Prithviraj exhibits Koshy’s vulnerable side so effectively. In one scene, he just helplessly listens to all the scolding of Ayyapan’s wife without finding anything to counter it. In another scene, he shows signs of fear for the first time in a hilarious conversation with his driver. Most of the times, Koshy is pulled deeply into the issues because he is misguided by his father. Prithviraj continues his great form from Driving License to deliver perhaps his finest performance since Memories. This is great news as the actor gears up for Aadu jeevitham next.
Ayyapan is more assured, calm and confident compared to Koshy. And Biju Menon gets all of the movie’s mass scenes so right, making you wonder he could have made a great career in this genre if he had the right roles before. Watch for the whistleworthy scene where he finds the lodge gate has been locked and where he calmly gets on top of a jeep, jumps over the shade to the first floor and then beats up all the guys.
Jakes Bejoy’s music adds to the adrenaline rush in many scenes (watch out for how the BGM helps in a scene where the Police rush outside of the station to check for Prithviraj’s mobile in his vehicle). Ranjith’s character and his performance is one of the weakest links of this movie. Anil Nedumangad on the other side is going to benefit a lot from the movie as the superior police officer who is the most troubled because of the Ayyappan-Koshy issue.
Perhaps the most dependable writer in commercial entertainer genre today, Sachy also raises his stakes high as a director in Ayyappanum Koshyum. This is a terrific entertainer.
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