Movie: Shylock (Malayalam)
Director: Ajai Vasudev
Cast: Mammootty, Raj Kiran, Shajohn, Siddique, Meena
Make up your mind for of dollops of energy, oodles of on screen valour with a pinch of suspense and drama spread evenly all over it. Done? You are ready for another Mammootty mass-action movie. Mammootty opens his 2020 innings with Shylock, a bi-lingual drama laced with whatever a diehard Mammukka fan could expect him of. Shylock hit the theatres in Tamil Nadu as Kuberan.
The ruthless moneylender, as the name signifies, does not fit the bill of men of his kind. With two all-weather cronies to walk by his side, Boss makes a dream-like entry to the accompaniment of close to a dozen Scorpio SUVs and a gang of rival men with bewildered eyes on a film set waiting to thrash him into pulp, only to be reciprocated.
Being a go-to man to meet desperate need for money, movie-makers bank on him, fully aware of what the future has in store, causing their worst nightmares at times. Viewers here get to see a unique moneylender who does not have a single shot of carrying any money. That’s ‘Boss’ for you.
Despite making countless dealings, as told in the narrative, he harbours some enmity towards Prathapa Varma (Shajohn) for a reason to unravel in the due course of the film.
The movie has an enriching first half, setting the right backdrop for the hero character to emerge into his actual self. An attempt to bring the comic self of Mammootty back after the blockbuster movie Rajamanikyam is remarkable. It offers some solace to those expecting a return of his comic avatar.
The script shifts from comedy to thriller to conclude the movie as a revenge drama. The flamboyance of the early half gives way to a flashback in the second half, to bring the inevitable past of Boss into full circle. Of course, Boss was very nice in the past, surrounded by his loved ones, until something disturbs this peaceful existence.
If the Baiju Santhosh-Hareesh Kanaran duo add some spice to the Mammootty show in the beginning, it is taken over by the Raj Kumar-Meena combo in the second half. Though Boss is called a ‘villain’, the roles of baddies are carried out by Siddique and Shajohn with perfection.
On the whole, mass movie lovers get everything that was promised in this two-hour-11 minutes high-octane entertainment.