Director V.M. Vinu experiments with the thriller genre for the first time in Face To Face.
Director V.M. Vinu’s films have more often than not succeeded in bringing families to the cinemas. Balettan, Vesham, Bus Conductor, Yes, Your Honour, Makante Achan… were all aimed at family audiences.
Vinu says that he is confident that his audience will also enjoy his new film, Face To Face, which opens in cinemas today, even though it is a thriller – a genre that he has hitherto not tried in his long career. This Mammootty-starrer is a thriller about an honest cop who has to prove his innocence after being accused in a murder.
“Face To Face is about Balachandran, a circle inspector in the Kerala Police, who has to pay a heavy price for being sincere in his job. He fights against corruption within the department and has made himself an enemy of corrupt politicians. He has received more suspension orders than salary slips in his career,” says Vinu.
Face To Face focusses on how the system hampers the work of an honest official. “An exasperated Balachandran decides never to wear the uniform again. He then enters the real-estate business and he turns alcoholic when his family life crumbles. To make matters worse, he becomes a suspect in a murder case; his investigation into the case is the crux of Face To Face,” narrates Vinu.
This is Vinu’s fourth film with Mammootty. “I have always enjoyed working with him, right from our first film, Pallavoor Devanarayanan. After doing Vesham and Bus Conductor in quick succession, we didn’t do a film together for a long time; that was because I didn’t have a subject suitable for him. I think the audience will love to see Mammootty as a cop once again; after all, few actors in Malayalam cinema can play a policeman as well as he can – recall his superb performances in Yavanika, Avanazhi and Inspector Balram. Mammootty has come up with a fine performance in Face to Face and is well-supported by Siddique, Ragini Dwivedi, Roma, Vijayaraghavan and Kalabhavan Mani,” he says. After a string of flops, the superstar must also be banking on this movie to get his act together again.
Face To Face, says Vinu, also tackles some socially relevant issues such as parenting. “Often parenting is not given the importance it deserves. Many youngsters go astray because they do not get the attention they need from their parents. Another issue I have tried to tackle in the film is the abuse of young girls,” he elaborates.
Vinu says he has worked pretty hard on the technical aspects of Face To Face. “I was particular that the film should have a fast pace and look slick and I have done that. Scripted by Manoj, the movie was filmed by cinematographer Ajayan Vincent. It has been produced by M.K. Nassar,” ” he says.
Vinu admits he was disappointed when his last film, Pen Pattanam, didn’t do well at the box office. “I think the film didn't go down well with the audience because it revolved around a few unglamorous women characters and there was no star. All said and done the presence of a big star always helps to bring in the crowd, initially,” he says.