Malik review – Engrossing gangster drama

Title: Malik
Rating: 3.25/5
Reviewed By: Sai Nikhil
Cast: Fahadh Faasil, Nimisha Sajayan, Vinay Forrt, Dileesh Pothan, Joju George
Director: Mahesh Narayanan
Streaming on: Amazon Prime
Language: Malayalam

Story: Ali Sulaiman (Fahadh Faasil) turns from an ordinary youngster to a gangster and finally the Godfather of a coastal village near Thiruvananthapuram. The entire film is all about the various problems, challenges and surprises that life threw at him and how he tried to tackle them to save himself and his village.

Performances: Fahadh Faasil needs no introduction. He has set such high benchmarks with his previous films that it will be hard for himself to beat them. Yet, he has delivered one of his best performances in this film which is set in different time periods. Nimisha Sajayan gets a powerful role and not a typical female lead and she has delivered an excellent performance. Vinay Forrt and Dileesh Pothan were terrific in their roles. Joju George and all other supporting actors made an impact in given space.

Technicalities: Camerawork is outstanding and all the long single shots have come out extremely well. Music is good and supported the film when needed. Editing is another major plus as the film has a non-linear screenplay with more than one narrators. The editing neatly connected all the perspectives. Production design deserves a special mention for creating the vast setup and crowded frames.

Analysis: The storyline, some characters and scenes are very similar to Maniratnam’s masterpiece Nayakan and Fahadh has also mentioned this in interviews. Also, movies like The Godfather and Vadachennai also flash in our minds during some particular moments. Though the story is nothing new and despite the predictability factor, excellent writing from Mahesh Narayanan kept this film alive. The movie begins with a brilliantly executed long single shot over 10 minutes. The first half has a few slow portions but is constantly engaging. The second half is where the drama intensifies and the entire second half upto the climax is highly engaging with lot of gripping drama. The climax is another portion which is executed brilliantly though it is guessable for those who have watched Nayakan. Lot of themes like power, revenge, betrayal, love, communalism are touched upon in this sociopolitical gangster drama.

On a whole: Brilliant performances, neat writing, excellent technical values and intense drama make Malik a must watch for fans of the genre and a good watch for the rest.

Rating: 3.25/5

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