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Aug 5, 2011

Traffic - Malayalam Movie Review

Is this the first multi-narrative movie in Malayalam? I do not remember watching any other good one. (Good being the operative word – I am thinking of The Metro which was released a month before Traffic and was a letdown on all fronts.) It is an easy formula for success, provided you have a fast-paced story to back it up. Alejandro Inarritu's Death Trilogy - Amores Perros, 21 Grams and Babel employ this narrative style to keep audience at the edge of their seats while raking in awards and box office bucks. Even the Hollywood namesake of this movie, Traffic(2000) is also a multi-narrative movie. It looks like Malayalam Traffic also fared predictably as its illustrious predecessors and gave back the producer - Listin Stephen, his dues and more.

Bobby and Sanjay, the writers of Traffic get the credit of bringing a new wave of stories and narration to Malayalam cinema. Remember Notebook, a boarding school drama with a touch of seriousness, just like a Malayali would like to have his movie with his parippu vada and chaya and a topical issue with some gravitas – a teen pregnancy in Notebook. Unlike Notebook, Traffic does not really allow the viewer to relax before introducing a somber twist. Traffic is intense in the story department with a frantic build up within a fixed time frame which is a pre-requisite for multi-narrative story lines.

One of the benefits of having intertwining plots is the variety of acting talent viewers will get to see representing equally important characters. Traffic has Vineeth Sreenivasan, Asif Ali, Rehman, Sreenivasan, Sai Kumar, Kunchako Boban, Sandhya, Lena, Anoop Menon and others sharing screen time. Except for the Namitha Prasad, the actress who played Rehman’s 13 year old daughter, who looks too old for 13(and we know the movie is not about 13 going on 30) everyone fits well into their roles.

Traffic is interesting because it is the first successful movie of its kind in Malayalam. The inevitable fate of this kind of success is a deluge of movies made in the same mold for a foreseeable future. In such a case, Bobby, Sanjay and director Rajesh Pillai can be held responsible, in the mean time - enjoy the movie while the theme is still fresh.



wat a coincidence....I purchased Traffic cd on friday and was planning to watch it and now u have written a review on it....:)