‘Thira’ Malayalam Film Review

thiraEverybody has eyes. But most are blind to things that don’t concern them;. These words spoken by Rohini (Shobana) in Thira echo one of the gravest concerns that our society faces today and jolt the viewers out of their comfort zone. Thira is a social thriller that probes the mindset of the society on various issues. The issue on which the movie rests is the exploitation of women and children. Though this is a subject that has been visualized in Malayalam cinema many times over, the freshness with which Vineeth Sreenivasan and crew deal with it is truly amazing. The applause that thundered in the theatre says it all.

With Thira, the director has really proved without an iota of doubt that direction and creativity is in his blood. The execution of a thriller, to be really hard-hitting, has to be done with utmost perfection and Vineeth does so flawlessly. The unique story-telling and execution along with his approach to such a volatile theme as sex racket and trafficking are mind-boggling.

Thira is set in Goa. Rohini Pranav(Shobana) is a cardiac surgeon with a deep sense of social commitment. She runs a shelter house for girls who have nowhere to go and is a staunch activist against trafficking and exploitation of children. She is a widow whose journalist husband was killed on false charges of running a sex racket. Rohini leads a full life with a plethora of assistants helping her in freeing girls caught in the racket, running the home and her career. The powerful woman in her engulfs the viewers with her sheer force of character and perceptions that define her.

A few girls from her home have been kidnapped by a group and Rohini is following certain clues and hints to find the missing girls. Meanwhile, Naveen (Dhyan Sreenivasan) is on his way to meet his sister who is staying away from home for her studies. Talking on the phone to her, he spots her coming towards him. But even as he stands watching, she is kidnapped by a man and is driven off. There begins the agonizing journey of Naveen as he tries to trace his missing sister.

Naveen and Rohini meet at a certain point as their clues and hints converge. They continue their thrilling search for the missing girls in a nail-biting climax when they find and free them from their captivity. The punch is fully delivered with a hint of a satiric humour too as the effect of a thrilling finish sinks in. As Thira ends, we see Rohini embarking on yet another thrilling journey- to find the culprits who killed her husband. The second movie in the trilogy already ups the expectations.

Throughout the narrative, a gentle finger is pointed at the society’s blindness towards these happenings around them. Prejudices, justice, those in the power, blind mindsets and extreme cruelty along with a hint of humour and message are woven into the narrative. The shot-making is brilliant as many of the sequences received standing ovations from the viewers. The sequence at the climax where the candle-light procession of the girls stalls the enemies and the image of the Virgin Mother are brilliant. So are sequences like the little girl giving her hand to Naveen at the railway station.

This and many other thought-provoking sequences fill the movie as it probes the collective consciousness of the society. The direction by Vineeth, script by Rakesh Mantodi and  acting by Dhyan have already made it a brilliant family effort that hits the right spots. Shobana stands out in this powerful role and Vineeth has fully utilized the potential of the actress. Though many movies have been touted as her comeback film, Thira depicts the brilliance of the early Shobana in full measure. Deepak Parambol in a negative role has done exceptionally well and Dhyan’s emoting doesn’t at all betray the fact that this is his first full length movie.

Music is befitting a thriller movie and the songs and the BG gel well for an enhanced feel. Technically too, Thira is a commendable work as cinematography, editing and the rest have been accorded great care and attention. Costume designing by Sameera Saneesh is apt for each of the characters. Thira is a must watch as it shakes up the sleeping consciousness of our society and makes us think about pertinent issues and do something about it. Moreover, the movie is a worthy addition to the thriller genre as it redefines and enhances the idea of a social thriller with its sheer innovation. Vineeth Sreenivasan strikes again!!

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