Tuesday, May 24, 2022

#Home: Comedic clash of generations

 High ratings got my attention, plus I have found Malayalam films mostly to live up to their ratings.  Tracked it down to Prime.  My new top movie of 2022.  It sneaks up on you, but is very pleasant while you are waiting for you don't know what.

The main character, Oliver Twist lives with his father, wife and two sons.  He got his name from his father who used to translate English books to Malayalam and was struck by the name "Oliver Twist."  He named a daughter Mary Poppins.  Oliver Twist named his sons, Antony Oliver Twist and Charles Oliver Twist.  The father still likes to quote from the Charles Dickens book.  Oliver is retired, seems to be fairly well off (very nice house with large fish tank), but as one son said has not done anything extraordinary and has not kept up with the times.

  One of the sons really is just visiting while he tries to finish a film script in peace.  Both of Oliver's sons are very adept with social media.  The father feels left out and buys a smart phone, but needs a lot of help to use it.  Unfortunately by accident  (really covering up his inability to turn off one program)  he unintentionally starts a live video broadcasts of his eldest son Antony criticizing a co-worker that has a negative impact on his film ambitions.

The Oliver Twist family has a social relationship with Antony's in-laws.  In fact his father in law, Joseph is having a book published that they are all looking forward to.  The whole family gets along with son's in-laws.

Oliver talks to a psychologist , Dr. Franklin who thinks he is the son's father in law (or friend).  Oliver admits to a sleeplessness allowing for some physical comedy to follow.  Tai chi routine is clumsily joined.   Oliver is soon being taught smart phone and learning new uses.  He also develops smoother Tai chi.

Antony is frustrated trying to write a note to a producer and decides his father's penmanship would make a better impression.  Apparently the use of modern electronics supplants traditional ways of communicating.  Oliver finally recalls an event to his son from 48 years ago.  Antony is amused, but apparently not very impressed.

Antony upset his wife by phone at birthday celebration.   The psychologist explains that smart phone is stealing time from Antony's wife, Priya and compares to a cigarette addiction.

Antony had quit a job to go full into film, but running into finance problems.  His in-laws visit during rain storm and in the end Oliver and his wife feel belittled.

Near the end there is a celebration about Antony's father in law and the biographical book about him.  Antony bragged his father in law was a man of accomplishments, unlike his own father.  Very subtly there is a twist in the plot.  The end credits show most of the family taking part in Tai Chi and a few other activites.

At the end Antony claims "I'm always imperfect at my home. "  The sentiment was captured in a song that I bought.

Rojin Thomas, wrote and directed.  This is only his third feature, previously he wrote and directed two child oriented movies, the first of which was very successful, but the second not so much.  This film gives a writer's perspective of the agony of getting filmed.  Along the way we get a young perspective of an older generation that has not kept up, but nonetheless have merit. 

Vijay Babu, producer  and played psychologist Dr.Franklin.  He produced and won award for "Philip and the Monkey Pen" (2013), Rojin's first film and also produced "June" (2019)

The background music was by Rahul Subrahmanian who also wrote the music for Rojin Thomas's first two films.

Neil  D'Cuncha handled the cinematography.  One shot that may startle you is of a big fish in a big tank

Editing was handled by Prejish Prakash.  He had edited for "Khatta Meetha" (2010), "Philips and the Monkey Pen" (2013) and "Kilometers and Kilometers" (2020).

Indrans who plays Oliver Twist started as a tailor and did costume designs for films.  Since then he has performed in over 300 films, mostly comical and supportive.  A slim, gangly body build and an accent lends itself to comedy  The two of his I have seen were not comedies.  One, "Aalorukkam" (2018) has a very big surprise for him when he tracks down his estranged son after 17 years, but afterwards I was surprised to learn that the Malayalam culture is much more socially progressive than I assumed.  The other film was "Virus" (2019).

Sreenath Bhasi played the film writer and eldest son, Antony Oliver Twist.  He has been in numerous Malayalam films such as "Ustad Hotel" (2012), "Parava" (2017), "Kumbalangi Nights" (2019) and "Virus" (2019), 

Johny Anthony played Suryan, Oliver's friend from childhood.    He has appeared in "Varane Avashyamund" (2020), "Love" (2020) and "Hridayam" (2022).   

Deepa Thomas, played Priya, wife of Antony.  She also appeared in "Virus" (2019).

Much like my previous top film, the ending is beautiful makes the whole film seem worth the high rating and the characters hold your attention throughout. 

I discovered or really stumbled about Malayalam films and am enjoying.  Here is a bit about my breakthrough and includes some of the bolded movies:  http://www.therealjohndavidson.com/2021/03/how-i-discovered-malayalam-cinema-and.html

Another good film that demonstrates the writing process for someone wanting to produce a film.   http://www.therealjohndavidson.com/2022/06/ee-nagaraniki-emaindhi.html

As usual films I have seen are bolded at first mention.

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