With Lijo Jose Pellisserry one always expects something off the beaten track. This time, in a very low key manner, he has delivered beautifully. 'Angamali Diaries' is a raw and moving creation that challenges realistic rendition. It is interesting to see how the director has brought out an altogether different brand of realism on screen. The group of new comers (reportedly 86 of them!) whom he roped in too have delivered big time. And Chemban Vinod shines in his new avatar as a script writer.
There is a freshness to 'Angamali Diaries' that we feel right at the outset itself. The raw feel is a welcome break. The frames are real and the people in it are real. Without over the top melodrama or a documentary type feel, Lijo has given us a well crafted tale which is engrossing to watch. The treatment is reminiscent of some of those Tamil movies we have seen in the past. While nobody in our industry has quite managed to reconstruct that feel, Lijo has been successful.
The movie opens with a gang life and wide eyed admiration of gangs by the movie's lead hero Vincent Pepe (Anthony) The plot centers around his encounter with them as well as having his own gang of friends. He is a college dropout who hopes to settle abroad with his girlfriend who is a nurse in Germany. But things take a turn as he gets embroiled in a crime scene. The alleys through which life takes him in the dust and grime of Angamaly is dealt with in the movie. Angamaly with its dusty small town habit is noisy and colourful and is a character in itself. The life of grime and crime is interesting to watch. After 'Kammatipaadam' one gets to see another of those thug life.
The movie has striking moments as with Lichie's proposal, the struggle for existence, the pork business, a ghetto life, real emotions and price tag on life. So is the technical side of it with camera by Gireesh Gangadharan on real time and angles that are true to life caught beautifully. The single shot climax has come good too. Songs by Prasanth Pillai are great and they stay with you. Editing by Shameer Muhammed is crisp and the edginess is brought out well without compromising on the realistic sensibility. And great acting by all the actors. Notable are Anthony, Sarath and Reshma.
'Angamali Diaries' is sure to entertain perspective film viewers with its novel treatment, characterization and great direction.