‘Veyil’ movie review: Throwing light on some dark facets

Certain elements of ‘Veyil’ are well-executed, but a dullness creeps in in between

Updated - March 02, 2022 01:06 pm IST

Published - February 25, 2022 06:43 pm IST

A still from the movie ‘Veyil’

A still from the movie ‘Veyil’

Veyil can be quite a strange title for a film when there is hardly a ray of light in the life of its protagonist. But then, it could also be a reference to the harsh rays that drain the life out of plants, leaving them dry, and the earth parched. That's how life has been for Siddharth (Shane Nigam), who has hardly ever had an extended period of happiness.

Out of the few years of his life that the audience gets to follow, there are only a handful of moments when he truly smiles from heart, as he does during the short-lived love affair with Shruthi (Sona Olickal), when they are Plus Two students. The script, written by director Sarath himself, traces back his sorrow, anger and frustration to his home, where he is taken for granted and not treated on par with his elder brother Karthik (Saed Imran), a medical student.

Many elements

Sarath uses the material in multiple ways, to look at the internal friction within the family, especially between Siddharth and his mother (Sreerekha), and his slow descent into criminality. The latter is one of the things that the film gets right. Just like Siddharth, the audience too might find it hard to identify the exact point where he takes the turn to the dark side, although finding the reasons for the same can be easier. It also goes with the nature of the script, which is vague in parts, leaving quite a few things unsaid and labouring needlessly over the things that are somewhat clear.

As the minion in a gang of politically connected thugs, Siddharth at times unleashes horrific behaviour that cannot be justified even by his circumstances. Other than that, it is a role that might have similarities to Shane's previous characters, which have all been in the mould of this disinterested, aimless, and frustrated youth. The script, even while focussing on Siddharth, gives almost equal importance and character to those around, be it his constantly struggling mother, his closest friend Merin (Merin Jose Pottackal), his good-at-heart brother, who is perplexed by Siddharth’s behaviour, not realising it has something to do with him too.

The bright spots

One of the downers for the film is a certain dullness to the proceedings, which cannot be explained away just by the kind of theme it is dealing with. Ironically, some of the darkest events in the film, especially the key event involving Siddharth’s brother and a mentally challenged relative of theirs, appear as the brightest spots, due to their execution.

Veyil has some well-written, well-executed passages, one cannot but wish for some level of trimming and a bit more of coherence.

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