Drishyam

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Drishyam
Drishyam.jpg
Theatrical poster
Directed byJeethu Joseph
Produced byAntony Perumbavoor
Written byJeethu Joseph
StarringMohanlal
Meena
Ansiba Hassan
Baby Esther
Kalabhavan Shajon
Asha Sarath
Siddique
Roshan Basheer
Neeraj Madhav
Music byAnil Johnson
Vinu Thomas
CinematographySujith Vaassudev
Edited byAyoob Khan
Production
company
Distributed byMaxlab Entertainments
Release dates
  • 19 December 2013 (2013-12-19) (Kerala)
  • 20 December 2013 (2013-12-20) (Tamil Nadu & Karnataka)
  • 27 December 2013 (2013-12-27) (Rest of India)
  • 2 January 2014 (2014-01-02) (Overseas)
Running time
164 minutes
CountryIndia
LanguageMalayalam
BudgetINR4.5 crore (US$710,000)[1]
Box officeINR60 crore (US$9.4 million)[2][3]
 
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Drishyam
Drishyam.jpg
Theatrical poster
Directed byJeethu Joseph
Produced byAntony Perumbavoor
Written byJeethu Joseph
StarringMohanlal
Meena
Ansiba Hassan
Baby Esther
Kalabhavan Shajon
Asha Sarath
Siddique
Roshan Basheer
Neeraj Madhav
Music byAnil Johnson
Vinu Thomas
CinematographySujith Vaassudev
Edited byAyoob Khan
Production
company
Distributed byMaxlab Entertainments
Release dates
  • 19 December 2013 (2013-12-19) (Kerala)
  • 20 December 2013 (2013-12-20) (Tamil Nadu & Karnataka)
  • 27 December 2013 (2013-12-27) (Rest of India)
  • 2 January 2014 (2014-01-02) (Overseas)
Running time
164 minutes
CountryIndia
LanguageMalayalam
BudgetINR4.5 crore (US$710,000)[1]
Box officeINR60 crore (US$9.4 million)[2][3]

Drishyam (English translation: Visual/The Sight) is a 2013 Indian Malayalam dramathriller film written and directed by Jeethu Joseph and starring Mohanlal and Meena in the lead roles.[4] It also stars Ansiba Hassan, Baby Esther, Kalabhavan Shajon, Asha Sarath, Siddique, Roshan Basheer and Neeraj Madhav in other pivotal roles. The film was produced by Antony Perumbavoor under the banner Aashirvad Cinemas. The film was shot in Thodupuzha and nearby locations.[5]

The film made a record after completing 10,000 shows within 26 days and became the highest grossing film in the history of Malayalam cinema with collections from India and overseas within 31 days.[6] Drishyam is the first Malayalam film to collect INR50 crore (US$7.9 million) from its theatrical box office collections, remake rights, satellite and television rights within two months.[7][8] The film went on to complete more than 20,000 shows in Kerala, running over 100 days.[9][10] The film ran more than 150 days in theatres.[11][12] It won numerous accolades including the Kerala State Film Award for Best Popular Film and the Filmfare Award for Best Film – Malayalam. It was selected in the Indian Panorama at the 45th International Film Festival of India.[13]

Plot

Georgekutty (Mohanlal) is an orphan who had dropped out of school after the fourth grade. He has come up in life by tilling his land. Now he is a businessman running a cable TV service in a rural area. He is married to Rani (Meena) and they have two daughters, Anju (Ansiba), a Plus Two student, and Anu (Esther), a student of class sixth.[clarification needed] Georgekutty is stingy and does not like to spend money on anything beyond the basic necessities. His only interest apart from his family is watching films. He spends most of his time in front of the TV in his small office. He is so obsessed with movies that he makes every major decision in life by subconsciously taking an example from some film he has seen.

Toward the middle of the film, Georgekutty's teenaged daughter gets photographed in the bathroom at a nature camp by a hidden cell phone. The culprit, Varun (Roshan Basheer) is the son of police inspector general Geetha Prabhakar (Asha Sarath). Varun is accidentally killed by Rani and her daughter when he comes to blackmail them. They hide his body in a compost pit, which is witnessed by Anu. Rani tells Georgekutty about the incident and he devises a way to save his family from the law. He removes the broken cell phone and disposes of Varun's car, which is seen by Constable Sahadevan (Kalabhavan Shajon), who has a grudge against Georgekutty. Georgekutty takes them out on a trip to Thodupuzha to pray in a church, watch a movie and eat at a restaurant. Geetha, realising that her son has gone missing starts an investigation.

After a preliminary investigation, Geetha calls Georgekutty and family for questioning. Georgekutty had predicted that this would happen and taught his family how to change their alibi at the time of murder. When questioned individually, they replied the same thing and they had also shown the bill of the restaurant,the movie ticket and the bus journeys' tickets as proof of their alibi. Geetha questions the owners of the establishments they have been to and their statements prove Georgekutty's alibi. Geetha realises that on the day of the incident, Georgekutty had taken the tickets and the bill, made acquaintance with the owners and had gone for the trip with his family the next day, thus proving his alibi and making the owners unwittingly tell the lie.

Geetha arrests Georgekutty and family and Sahadevan uses brute force to beat the truth out of them. Eventually, Anu gives in and reveals the place where the body is buried. After digging the compost pit,they find the carcass of a calf, indicating that Georgekutty had moved the body. Anu reports to the media and complains against Sahadevan. The constable is suspended and Geetha resigns from her post. Geetha and her husband meet Georgekutty to ask forgiveness for their rude and violent behavior. But Georgekutty indirectly tells them that he had got rid of 'the uninvited guest'. Georgekutty, now in remand, signs a register at the newly constructed local police station. As he leaves, a flashback shows him leaving the incomplete police station with a shovel in hand, indicating that he has hidden Varun's body in the foundations of the police station itself.

Cast

Themes

Genre

The film has kicked off a new genre in Malayalam – family thriller, a genre which combines the elements of a family drama and thriller.[14] The film takes off as a typical family drama. The first half of the film is intentionally slow-paced and shows to the audience the lighter moments in the family of Georgekutty.[15] This half combines the elements of drama and comedy genres. The audience gets completely absorbed in the twist of events that begin to unfold from the end of the first half. The second half is more like a thriller and is about how the family, despite the vengeful villainy of a corrupt cop, stands its ground even as the law takes its course.[15] When asked whether this change in narrative style post-interval was intentional, Jeethu Joseph replied: "I really don't understand when people say the first half lacked pace. A story or a film has its own way of progression and it does travel in a zig-zag away, capturing all the ups and downs of our lives. Right from the start if you accelerate the pace, soooner or later, the story-telling will lose its steam."[14] The film uses some 'sexist dialogues' in the first half which were playing to a certain 'new generation' audience. The director says: "I firmly believe such conversations are part of our lives. I don't want to elaborate, but it also throws an insight into each character featured in the sequences. Yes, frankly, I was a bit worried how the family audience would react to those scenes. But then I read out that part of the script to a select group of women and they nodded their heads in approval. So..."[14]

However, the director calls the film a 'family drama'. "We usually brand a film as a thriller, simply because there is some mystery in the narrative or the story unfolds through an investigation. But I don't subscribe to this. Although there are some twists in the tale and some suspense as well, Drishyam is essentially the story of a family," says Jeethu.[16]

Production

Writing

Jeethu while planning to take up the project, approached Mammootty to do the same but he was unable to commit and asked Jeethu to proceed with the film with another actor.[17] A thread similar to that of Drishyam has been with the director since the early nineties. When the director overheard a conversation about the plight of two families involved in a legal battle, the idea got a boost.[14] Jeethu had penned the story of Drishyam even before Memories.[18] He says, "I started working on the subject some two years back. But I wanted to stick to the planned order and hence postponed the project till I finished Memories".[19] The script was initially planned to be filmed by another director but since that director could not find a producer, Jeethu took back the script and decided to direct it himself.[20] Drishyam is completely different from the director's previous films. He says, "Different films require different treatment. I toiled hard while filming Memories as the film was full of twists and turns and the handling of the subject mattered a lot. But Drishyam is a complete script-oriented film that does not require any special effort. We shot the film sticking completely to the script, and the shooting was completed effortlessly."[21]

Casting and filming

Drishyam is the first movie since the 2005 release of Chandrolsavam to feature both Meena and Mohanlal.[21] Jeethu had earlier planned Simran to enact Rani's role but the actress was busy with her TV show. It was reported that Jeethu had also approached many actresses, including Priyamani, but none of them showed interest to play the role.[22] According to the director, actor Mammootty was instrumental in roping in actress Meena (she was on the sets of his film Balyakala Sakhi) for Drishyam.[14] After the release of the film, Oneindia.in reported that the director had earlier approached Mammootty to play the lead in Drishyam but when Mammootty had date clashes, he opted for Mohanlal. The report cited the director as saying that no changes were made in the script when Mohanlal agreed.[23] However, the director, in an interview with The New Indian Express, stated that he wrote the screenplay with Mohanlal in mind and the character was tailor-made for Mohanlal.[21] However, in another interview with the The New Indian Express published in September 2013, the director said: "It was always my dream to do a film with the amazing actor Mohanlal. Actor Kalabhavan Shajon, who was previously been in the industry as a comedian and the sidekick of the lead actors, was chosen for the main antagonistic role. The director says, "I had two-three actors in mind, but at last decided to pick Shajon.[14] I was very clear that I did not want anyone who has played negative characters so far to do the role. Shajon was a total revelation." Roshan Basheer, who debuted through Plus Two a couple of years before, was chosen after conducting a screen test.[24] Actor Prithviraj was rumoured to play a cameo role in Drishyam but eventually this did not happen.[25]

Drishyam commenced production in the first week of October 2013.[26] The film was shot exclusively at Thodupuzha in Kerala.[5] Drishyam was initially planned to be filmed in 52 days but the principal production got completed in 44 days.[14][27]

Sathish Paul had filed a copyright infringement suit against the makers of the film, saying that it had similarities to his script titled Oru Mazhakkalathu, written in 2009. The court passed an order saying that the movie had prima facie similarities to Sathish' script.[28] However, the court has allowed the making of the Tamil version, titled Papanasam and directed by Jeethu himself, to proceed, on condition that the makers of Drishyam produce a `10 lakh bank guarantee before the court to ensure the compensation.[29][30]

Reception

Critical response

Sify.com's reviewer gave the verdict "Excellent" and stated, "It is not often that you sit in a theatre with bated breath, never wanting to miss a moment of the film on screen. Writer director Jeethu Joseph's Drishyam is one such film, a gripping tale that leaves you spellbound with its skillful craft."[31] Veeyen of Nowrunning.com rated the film 3/5 and commented, "In Drishyam Jeethu attempts a stunning mix of the real with the imaginary, and the result is an unpredictable cinematic artichoke that takes you by surprise at every turn."[32] Rating the film 3.5/5, Paresh C Palicha of Rediff.com said, "Drishyam can be credited for bringing Mohanlal back to form and pushing director Jeethu Joseph into the big league as he has made a cracker of a thriller."[33] Jabir Mushthari of The Hindu wrote: "It takes craft, intelligence, and the superior acumen of a genuine storyteller to pull off a film in such an engaging manner." He also noted that the film's "thread and treatment are new to Malayalam cinema in many ways" and its "principles go against the set rules film goers here are familiar with".[15] Shibu B S of The New Indian Express wrote : "For his latest outing 'Drishyam', Jeethu attempts a splendid mix of emotions, relationships, suspense and thrill. End result: a spectacular cinematic experience."[34] Dalton L of Deccan Chronicle gave the film a 3-star rating, writing, "The limelight belongs entirely to Mohanlal. Like the versatile greats of Hollywood, this actor possesses such a vast repertoire that he isn't required to always attempt the radically new to stamp his towering persona."[35] Mythily Ramachandran wrote in her review for Gulf News: "Drishyam is an unforgettable picture, shorn of irrational fight sequences and mindless dance numbers."[36] Aswin J Kumar of The Times of India said, "Drishyam is an elegantly crafted piece of film which Lal and Joseph can proudly hold close to their hearts."[37] Unni R. Nair wrote in his review for Kerala9.com: "The care with which the script is done, the finesse with which the direction part is executed and the characterization and performance plus the thoughtful placing of the songs makes 'Drishyam' worth real appreciation. That the film has almost zero-'filmy' humour is also worth noting. It's the logical manner in which the story unfolds and the very convincing manner in which the characters behave makes it impressive." The critic rated the film three in a scale of five.[38] Indiaglitz.com's reviewer rated the film 8/10 and stated: "Drishyam is undoubtedly cladded with exceptional story telling combined with bravura performances. An undoubtedly exceptional film as far the content is concerned, the movie is a must watch for all the audiences of family and thriller movies."[39]

Gautaman Bhaskaran wrote in Hindustan Times: "Scripted more or less in a convincing manner and mounted with finesse, writer-director Joseph fleshes out his characters. However, Drishyam often seems like a radio play, long dialogues mar its cinematic qualities, and like many other helmers, Joseph too does not know where to end his film. Cinema need not be so explanatory; certainly this is not how contemporary movies are made.[40]

Box office

The film grossed INR 6.7 crore in its first eight days[41][42] and had earned over INR35 crore (US$5.5 million) after 50 days of its release.[43][44] Drishyam is the first Malayalam film to cross INR1 crore mark in the US and UK.[45] Drishyam became the second film to complete 100 days in the UAE after Titanic (1997).[46]

In less than one month following its release, Drishyam became the highest grossing film in the history of Malayalam cinema.[47][48][49][50] The film's satellite rights were bought by Asianet for a record amount of INR6.5 crore (US$1.0 million).[51] In an interview with Malayala Manorama on June 27, 2014 director told news about INR6.5 crore (US$1.0 million) satellite right is rumors and wrong.[52] The record was previously held by Kadal Kadannu Oru Maathukutty which was bought for INR5.75 crore (US$900,000) by the same channel.[53] The film's Hindi, Tamil and Telugu rights were sold for INR1.55 crore (US$240,000).[40]

Drishyam completed 100 days in 60 theatres in Kerala and rest of India. The domestic gross of the film was around INR40.1 crore from Kerala alone. Further, the film grossed around INR10 crore from rest of India. The collection from the overseas markets amounts to more than INR4 crore.[54] It went onto complete 100 days in Tamil Nadu[55] and became the first Malayalam film to complete 30 days in Mumbai, later running 100 days there as well.[56] Similarly, Drishyam had a successful run in multiplexes in Bengaluru, Ahmedabad and Hyderabad.[57] Drishyam being the biggest ever commercial hit in Malayalam film history, the film ran more than 150 days in theatres.[58][59]

The film collected more than INR60 crore in its theatrical run. This is excluding other stream of revenues.[2]

Accolades

Kerala Film Critics Association Awards[60]
Kerala State Film Awards[61]
Vanitha Film Awards[62]
Vayalar Film Awards[63]
Idea Filmfare Awards South[64]
3rd South Indian International Movie Awards[65]
Asianet Film Awards[66][67]

Asiavision Awards[68]

Jaihind TV Film Awards[69]

Home media

Drishyam was released on Blu-ray Disc, DVD and VCD on May 9, 2014. The film created a new record in the DVD and VCD sales on the first day of release itself.[70]

Soundtrack

Drishyam
Official theatrical poster and Cover art
Soundtrack album Drishyam by Anil Johnson, Vinu Thomas
Released1 December 2013
Recorded2013
GenreFilm soundtrack
Length16:19
LanguageMalayalam
LabelMathrubhumi Music
ProducerAntony Perumbavoor
Anil Johnson, Vinu Thomas chronology
Memories
(2013)
Drishyam
(2013)
Onnum Mindathe
(2014)

The film features a soundtrack composed by Anil Johnson and Vinu Thomas with lyrics penned by Santhosh Varma. The background score was composed by Anil Johnson.

TrackSongArtist(s)ComposerDuration
1"Maarivil"Najim ArshadVinu Thomas4.09
2"Nizhale" (Broadcast version)Vijay YesudasAnil Johnson6.05
3"Nizhale" (Film version)Anoop G KrishnanAnil Johnson6.05

Remakes

Drishyam is being remade into several Indian languages.[71]

Drishyam
Malayalam (2013)
Drishya
Kannada (2014)
Drushyam
Telugu (2014)
Papanasam
Tamil (2015)
Mohanlal
(Georgekutty)
V. Ravichandran
(Rajendra Ponnappa)
Venkatesh
(Rambabu)
Kamal Haasan
Meena
(Rani)
Navya Nair
(Seetha)
Meena
(Jyothi)
Gautami
Kalabhavan Shajon
(Sahadevan)
Achyuth Kumar
Ravi Kale
(Veerabhadram)
Kalabhavan Mani
Asha Sarath
(Geetha Prabhakar)
Asha Sarath
(Roopa Chandrashekhar)
Nadhiya
(Geetha)
Asha Sarath
Siddique
(Prabhakar)
Prabhu
(Chandrashekhar)
Naresh
(Prabhakar)
Anant Mahadevan

Contravention

Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) Senkumar, who had previously expressed concern that Drishyam might provoke crime, claimed that two people accused of murdering a woman from Nilambur, Kerala in February 2014, admitted that their methods for disposing of the victim's body and mobile phone SIM card were influenced by Drishyam.[72][73] The murder of a young girl in Irinjalakkuda by her father and his mistress was also influenced by Drishyam.[74]

References

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  74. ^ http://www.mathrubhumi.com/story.php?id=494159

External links