In ‘Kammatipaadam’, Rajeev Ravi took an issue and wove a “story” around it. Now, in ‘Kuttavum Shikshayum’ and ‘Thuramukham’, the issues *are* the story. He’s weaving tapestries of a particular place, a particular time.
Stylistically speaking, Rajeev Ravi’s Thuramukham can be seen as a companion piece to his earlier film, Kuttavum Shikshayum. The latter was a police drama – an interstate cops-and-robbers story – that ditched easy thrills for rock-solid procedural detail. It was not a glamorous script about supercops. We got to see, step by incremental step, what an investigation is really like. In Thuramukham, we get to see what the building of a workers’ movement is really like. Again, Rajeev (with his writer, Gopan Chidambaran) resists simple glamorisation. This is not about the making of a hero who single-handedly made the movement. The film is about solidarity (“all of us will be equal”) and thus, everyone is a hero. You don’t get the full grasp of this incremental design until you see that the rousing speech at the end is given not by the characters played by Nivin Pauly or Arjun Ashokan or Indrajith Sukumaran, but by someone else, someone who registered, earlier, as a minor player. It’s like how a tail-ender might end up saving a match after the star batsmen have fallen.
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