‘Luca’ review: Intriguing love-story entwined in a murder mystery

The film is a gradual, subdued journey marked with excellent lead performances

June 28, 2019 06:55 pm | Updated June 29, 2019 01:52 pm IST

A still from 'Luca'.

A still from 'Luca'.

Luca is all textured visuals and effortless chemistry, every single element and embellishment in place to make it a true-blue romance. But the love story comes entwined in a murder mystery, drawing you to multiple narratives as the chain of events unfold. At the same time, Luca is not the wild, pulse-racing roller-coaster ride that keeps surprising you in every ten minutes. The intrigue it offers is more of a soft and subdued type, proceeding towards a not-so-earth-shattering climax before signing off with a dreamy sequence.

Luca is the story of an artist who revels in his quirks and lives in a quaint home-cum-studio where creates beauty out of paper and scrap. The film is all about how a young girl enters his eccentric world and finds home in the man. And running parallel is the story of Akbar, a cop caught in marital discord, a man who is unable to forgo the past and make peace with the present. The narrative unravels through his investigation as the viewers are introduced to the inner turmoil of Luca and his beloved.

Arun Bose, who has co-written and directed the film concocts the right atmospherics for both the narratives, but the focus is mostly on the Luca-Niharika track. There is this thick curtain of rain that provides a steady backdrop in one track and then colours and sunshine start filling the frames as we move on to the next. The tonal demarcation is very evident but the pace is almost similar for both, the tempo never hitting any frenzied crescendo. When it comes to the whodunit there is no zig-zag storyline, no fascinating chaos. Though the director manages to engage the audience to a great extent, the thriller part is definitely in need of more build up and surprise. Also, the editor could have gone for a more thorough job, trimming more flab out of the 130-minute film.

Tovino Thomas and Ahaana Krishna easily bring out on screen that casual camaraderie sparkling with love and friendship. While Tovino is effortless as the playful, troubled and confused Luca, Ahaana excels in many scenes with her impromptu expressions. Also, the film has beautifully orchestrated frames as Nimish Ravi's cinematography is one major strength of Luca.

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