Abrahaminte Santhathikal: A bumbling train wreck that insults your intelligence
The film feels like watching four different movies stitched together
It's a real challenge to review a movie that promised to be something in its trailers, and then betrays you by turning into something else entirely in the full version. What else can you feel other than anger when a film hooks you for the first 20 minutes and then goes off in four (or five or six) directions? I wanted to really like this film -- I had even posted the stills and posters on my Facebook page saying how great they look -- but I was infuriated after seeing the torturous final product.
Abrahaminte Santhathikal is a bumbling train wreck of a film that could've been more respectful of Mammootty's stature as an actor. Instead, it completely insults both the actor and the audience. Maybe the actor doesn't feel that way because he always seems to be at ease in any role he does, regardless of the quality of the film. The film begins with a brutal massacre of a family of three. The killer is a Charles Manson-type psychopath who moves stealthily during dark, rainy nights and murders anyone who is an atheist. That might sound funny on paper but the Dhuruvanghal 16-style mood established in the first 20 minutes made things look very promising.
Direction: Shaji Padoor
Cast: Mammootty, Anson Paul, Kanika, Tarushi, Renji Panicker
Words related to Christianity and biblical passages are thrown around and Mammootty goes into Sethurama Iyer mode. Sounds exciting, right? These portions were handled quite well and I was eagerly waiting for what was about to come next. Imagine my disappointment when this track is abruptly dropped, and, without any logical explanation, we are taken to the next. I felt cheated because the rest of the film exhibits the same behavior. This film takes great delight in insulting your intelligence. You're distracted by random plot developments that have no connection to what came before. I was constantly asking myself, "Wait? Now, where did this come from? So what happened to that?"
The abrupt changes in tone are so jarring. It's like watching four different movies stitched together. Is this an investigation thriller? Is this a revenge thriller? Is this an emotional story about brotherhood? And then comes another murder, another investigation, some arrests, few suicides and two kidnappings, and you stop caring after a certain point. When the final twist(s) arrived, I felt like throwing something at the screen because they were so jaw-droppingly ridiculous! So you mean to tell me that everything you've been doing so far is to show that Mammootty's character is a badass, and that logic doesn't matter?
The twists just happen and don't bother figuring out the logic behind them, because there is none. There is a moment towards the end where characters explain stuff that the audience already knows. It's a big WTF moment. I saw a few Mammootty fans applaud at some of the climax portions and I asked myself, "Are they for real? What's so applaud-worthy about it?" Perhaps that's enough for these hardcore Mammootty fans but not for me. If this was supposed to be a "megastar mass movie" film, then maybe the makers shouldn't have marketed it as a dark investigation thriller; they could've done something more straightforward, and I would've appreciated the attempt.