‘Priyan Ottathilanu’ movie review: Manages to work, despite the overdose of feel-goodness

Sharafudheen and Nyla Usha in a still from 'Priyan Ottathilaanu'

Sharafudheen and Nyla Usha in a still from 'Priyan Ottathilaanu' | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

By the time Priyan Ottathilanu ends, one is left wondering about the contents of the many film scripts that Priyadharshan, the protagonist, has kept safely inside an old box. For here is a man, who is running around solving the problems of any person he comes across, that it would be a miracle if he gets the time to sit down and write even a page a day.

As if to explain this, there is a blink-and-miss scene of him attempting to write a script at night. In another scene, he tells someone that he derives inspiration to write from the many people and circumstances that he comes across daily. Unlike the character, the screenwriter duo of Abhayakumar and Anil Kurian must have had quite a reasonable amount of time to weave together a script which remains engaging, even when it does not have any major conflicts or out-of-the-box elements.

Their protagonist Priyan (Sharafudheen), a homeo doctor and an aspiring scriptwriter, comes across as the only problem solver in the entire locality. His hands are full round the clock, with everything from the flat's drainage problem to issues faced by random people he meets on the road landing up on his shoulder, so much so that he has hardly any time left for his family, or himself.

Priyan Ottathilanu
Director: Antony Sony
Cast: Sharafudheen, Nyla Usha, Aparna Das

In his sophomore effort after C/O Saira Banu, director Antony Sony banks on the tale of this man who takes selflessness to unbelievable limits. Although riddled with moments which seem to be written to milk the feel-good factor, the script still manages to hook the audience to get them to run along with Priyan, making his problems their own.

The film focuses mostly on the happenings of a single day, when he is required to handle quite a few of these problems together. The character of Priscilla (Nyla Usha), who is battling mental health issues, is introduced seemingly to add one more obstruction to his path. Although the character does not have a great backstory, the changing contours of her interactions with Priyan livens up the latter half.

But at no point does one get the impression that Priyan is facing an insurmountable task, as he proceeds from solving one issue to another; an impression which works against the film. Priyan’s cousin (Biju Sopanam), portrayed as a difficult character, at times comes across as the sanest of the lot, especially during a compromise talk presided over by a ‘spiritual guru’.

Sharafudheen, who has successfully broken out of his earlier mould of comedian, comes up with another memorable performance after Aarkkariyam. Despite the overdose of feel-goodness, Priyan Ottathilanu manages to keep the audience engaged.

Priyan Ottathilanu is currently running in theatres

Our code of editorial values

  1. Comments will be moderated by The Hindu editorial team.
  2. Comments that are abusive, personal, incendiary or irrelevant cannot be published.
  3. Please write complete sentences. Do not type comments in all capital letters, or in all lower case letters, or using abbreviated text. (example: u cannot substitute for you, d is not 'the', n is not 'and').
  4. We may remove hyperlinks within comments.
  5. Please use a genuine email ID and provide your name, to avoid rejection.

Printable version | Jun 24, 2022 6:39:36 pm |