Diwanjimoola Grand Prix: Has a lot going for it
Anil Radhakrishnan Menon's film blends sports, emotions and humour through realistic situations and characters
Director Anil Radhakrishnan Menon's latest outing, Diwanjimoola Grand Prix, like his previous films, has a quirky name and an interesting plot. It blends sports, emotions and humour through realistic situations and characters.
The film is set in Thrissur, which has remained a favourite place for many filmmakers. This time too, the peculiar culture and diversity of the place are described through a local colony called Diwanjimoola. The film initially focuses on a bike race at the Diwanjimoola race track, which is taking place after three decades. The story also talks about Diwanjimoola's past, its problems and the life of Jithendran (played by Siddique). The latter is a popular bike racer in his younger days but all that changes following an unforeseen incident.
Director: Anil Radhakrishnan Menon
Cast: Kunchacko Boban, Nyla Usha, Nedumudi Venu, Siddique
The film does not follow a typical hero-heroine track. Each character, played by popular as well as upcoming actors has its own distinctions making the film very relatable. Kunchacko Boban looks perfect as bureaucrat Sajan Joseph IAS who takes charge as the new District Collector. He is a people's man and becomes curious to know about Diwanjimoola, which is continuously in the news for its infamous activities. The collector's decision to revive the traditional bike racing sport pushes the film onto a major and interesting track.
Nyla Usha brilliantly essays the role of Effymol, a ward member and daughter of Jithendran. This could be her career-best performance. Siddique also delivers a commendable performance as a quadriplegic patient. The rest of the cast, including Ketaki Narayan (of Veeram fame), Ashokan, Sudheer Karamana, and Rajeev Pillai, have done justice to their roles. Acclaimed actor Vinayakan's catchy and interesting role as Vareedh, a racing trainer and preacher stands out as a memorable one.
The bike racing scenes have been excellently captured by cinematographer Alex J Pullickal and give us a feeling of experiencing it live, supported by Gopi Sundar's pulsating music. Newbie Rahul has played the lead bike racer to near perfection. The film has a lot of innocent and subtle moments which are a treat to watch. The enmity between rival sports teams, the bringing back of the old mechanic, played by Nedumudi Venu for the new race, the selfless friendships and the portrayal of a beautiful daughter-father relationship are worth remembering. The film, which is co-scripted by Menon and former Kozhikode Collector Prashant M Nair, fondly known as Collector Bro has situation humour that looks natural. Diwanjimoola has the right focus, a steady flow and when the film ends, it feels complete and fills us with positivity.