There are some movies that make you laugh, cry and sympathise with the onscreen characters but there are very few movies that make you look yourself in the caharcters. You might even like to do in life certain things the characters had done onscreen. And at the end you might feel good about youselves... Charlie (malayalam 2015) is definitely among such movies. Directed by Martin Parakkat, this movie had Parvathy and Dulqer Salman as lead protagonists supported by Aparna Gopinath, Nedumudi Venu and Shoubin Sahir.
Earlier we had felt that the movie should have been titled based on the female protagonists - Raja / Beta / Paa even though they had been titled on the male protagonists. Charlie too should have been named as 'Tessa' played superbly by Parvathy and manages to overshadow everyone else in the movie. Infact she has more footage than Dulqer Salman and both of them share the screen space for just 10 minutes in the end.
The movie starts with a marriage proposal for Tessa (Parvathy), a nomadic hearted and unrestricted by conventions and to escape from this alliance, she runs away from her authoritative mother (Seetha) and stays in a shady lodge. The room she occupies has a collection of wierd yet attractive things and she learns that they belong to the early occupant - Charlie (Dulqer Salman). Tessa starts visualing graphically about that young man and out of curiousity she starts searching him. They keep missing each other's meeting through out. Whether they met or not finally is the climax.
This movie gets everything perfect - right from the casting to unconventional set properties to delectable visually sumptous cinematography and no wonder it swept off the malayalam audience across. The second part gets little over sweet reminding of Lage Raho Munnabhai and some feel good Hindi movies and thankfully the movie ends before they go overboard.
Charlie taps the feel good part of us and reminds the positive things of our life. It subtely teaches us to celebrate life, being a change in other's lives and above all what love for life can bring beauty to this world.
Parvathy lends a dignity / credibility to the curious Tessa which otherwise could have turned a dumb girl role and the physical transformation she had done for the movie sets her apart from the contemporaries. Dulquer Salman has a charming smile, comical streak but above all he has the backup of a strong author backed character, hence he deserved the second mention after Parvathy even though the movie is named after his character. Aparna Gopinath is adequate and the veterans Nedumudi Venu, Kalpana, KPAC Lalitha sparkle as usual. Shoubin Shahir as small time thief scores big. This is the actor's second popular performance after his "Premam" PT Master enact. Nasser in a 2 minutes appearance proves that veterans need no longer footage to impress.
This movie is visually delectable.. I had strolled in the Mattancherry's street where all the Parvathy's portions were shot but when you see them on screen they look magical. The other principal locations Munnar and Bhuj (Gujarat) looks pristine. Jomon T John, the Director of Photography makes his presence in every frame of the movie. Costumes by Sameera Saneesh adds crispness to the quirky side of Tessa that makes Parvathy look differently beautiful. The printed shirts of Dulquer and the line diagrams on the walls, scooter would have definitely been a trend in Kerala now. The art direction by Jayashree Lakshmi Narayanan commands your attention throughout.
At the end of the movie, the nomadic person inside me woke up and for a while I was just thinking of the possibility of having a long bike trip to Goa / Ladakh once my current project is over. I visualised myself wearing those cotton kurtas, cotton bandhanas with dark coolers and riding the Royal Enfield bike on a long drive and having food on the roadside eateries. I just wish it should happen and whomever reads this pray for it to come true. Thanks!