Jallikattu has been creating waves through the TIFF circuit and is, in fact, one of the top-rated movies on Rotten Tomatoes.
One of the first things that I noticed about the Jellikettu teaser is that much like Ee Ma Yau, Lijo’s previous outing, it too seemed to be set mostly at night. And if Girish Gangadharan’s history with Lijo is anything to go by, he might do a better job than Shyju Khalid (my favourite cinematographer). I think I saw an instance where the camera was mounted on top of the beast! The beast seems to be bringing down trees, creating mayhem in the street. Men chase after it, some even dragged by it. While all this happens, you hear a letter read out by two middle-aged men, a memorandum addressed to the District Collector, about Mahisha (the Sanskrit word for buffalo) brought for sale at an illegal slaughterhouse.
Something else that I noticed was the actors – Anthony Varghese, Chemban Vinod, and Santhy Balachandran – all are absent in the teaser.
Jallikattu is loosely based on a story written by S Hareesh, the writer who had been mired in controversy earlier for a novel called Meesha which was serialised in a magazine.
The music of the film is by Prashant Pillai, who like Chemban Vinod, is in every one of Lijo’s movies.
Everything about this movie, right from it’s intriguing poster by Oldmonks to the exemplary stills by Arjun Kallingal has been a topic of discussion. The overwhelming appreciation from TIFF only increased that intrigue. Friday Film House will be distributing the movie and it’s set to get a Kerala release by October 2019.
In December last year, when Lijo’s movie Ee. Ma. Yau won two awards at the International Film Festival of India, the director said that he went for the festival, breaking the shooting schedule of his new film Jallikattu. All he could reveal then about the film was that it is a “man and animal” story.
Guess we have to wait till October to find out.