Ellam Sheriyakum Review: 3/5
After three years of watching movies online, I sat in a comfy seat of the theatre watching Ellam Sheriyakum. Judge me all you want for choosing this movie over Kurup, but I had to give Asif Ali a chance. You must know that I watched the film without even watching the trailer or reading about it anywhere. A clean slate with no expectations made the film worth the watch.
Ellam Sheriyakum is a film by Jibu Jacob, starring Asif Ali, Rajisha Vijayan, Rajesh Sharma, Siddique, Kalabhavan Shajohn, Indrans, Johny Antony, and Balu Varghese. In simple words, it’s a political drama that talks about party politics and familial relationships.
There’s more to Ellam Sheriyakum’s plot that meets the eye. Vineeth (Asif Ali) and Ancy (Rajisha Vijayan) get married against the wishes of her father, Chacko. While Vineeth is an activist of the left-wing party LPF, Chacko is a well-known face of the opposing party, UPF. Not only does Chacko’s political career go haywire owing to his daughter’s elopement, but his son-in-law’s alliance with LPF irks him.
Ancy gets pregnant.
In the hope that her baby would make her father accept her husband and forgive her for eloping, she tries to connect with him. Will Vineeth succeed in winning Chacko’s heart? Will Chacko accept his daughter after what she’s done? What follows is the story of political rivalry coupled with family drama that gets muddled in between.
Connecting The Dots
Sharis Mohammed, the writer of the film, doesn’t delve into the background of each character. Rather, he has focused on the present and the closest past to spell out the storyline. I, personally, felt this made the film crisper to watch. The to-the-point way of storytelling doesn’t get the audience bored out of their wits. In fact, it makes them want to know the ‘truth’ and as quickly as possible. That said, some might find this quick movement in the script quite abrupt. But, that’s because character progression doesn’t take place through the movie. It’s just a film about how the past has gravely influenced the present.
Vineeth’s change in personality, pregnant Ancy’s need to find love from her father, and Chacko’s understanding of family and acceptance is what makes the film whole. At the crux of it, it’s about a father navigating his life through the politics that consumes him. But, the political rivalry adds to the masala. Like, big time.
Party Politics Portrayal in Ellam Sheriyakum
The film may not be a total deal-breaker, but hey, they did the political angle right. While the makers did show UPF and LPF equally, it was quite evident that the ‘chora veena mannil’ party was favoured more. There are many instances that show the patriotism of comrades, and that’s definitely going to make many feel proud of bleeding red.
The story is a straightforward good versus evil plot, but the makers have made sure that no party is torn down against its counterpart. Keeping it safe for the audience to take sides.
Rajisha’s character reminded me of her character in Love. Not the I-plan-to-kill-you vibe, but the strong woman who voices out her opinion vibe. She’s outspoken, snappy, and doesn’t back down from a fight.
Asif Ali, too, manages to pull off the comrade personality well. But, I feel the background score had a lot to do with amplifying his character’s actions. His transition of characterisation was quite apparent, which was needed to showcase the past and present.
The performance that stands out really well is that of bad-boy Siddique. We’ve all grown up watching him choose roles that portray him as the villain. Even today, he manages to strike a chord with his performance as the villain/evil father. It comes naturally to him. Indrans with no dialogues was able to deliver an unforgettable performance.
The Flaw in the Storyline
While the film was entertaining to watch, it had many loopholes. The main being, incomplete stories. We don’t understand why Vineeth and Ancy fell in love, for example. There’s no investment made in understanding their love, apart from inserting it in song sequences and flashbacks. Ancy’s role throughout the film could’ve been more, but the focus was more towards Vineeth’s and Chacko’s intense rivalry/bond.
There’s also a character called Ajitha, an LPF party leader, who didn’t really have any role to play other than being the face of a political issue involving sexual harassment and a rehabilitation problem. But that ends there. Here, in both cases, Vineeth becomes the man of the hour.
There are many incomplete stories within the film that ends on an abrupt note. But, as said earlier, the writer seems to have wanted to keep the film crisp.
Should you watch Ellam Sheriyakum?
It’s honestly really hard to pinpoint a particular genre to this movie. On one hand, there’s a play of politics, and on the other, a family drama that’s weaved into it. It’s one of the films you watch just for pure entertainment. There’s really no lesson you can take home. As the director, Jibu Jacob said, “Ours is not a star-driven movie.” So watch the movie with an open mind, and decide if you like it or not for yourself. Expect a lot of cliches, especially in terms of dialogue delivery, and slow-motion shots. If you don’t delve into it deeply, it’s a fun, light watch that will give you all the drama you need in life. Even so, it’s a film that has its moments with very generic emotions at play. Do watch it if you’re up for a simple political drama narrative.