Review: As the film on India’s longest wanted fugitive hits screens, what one gets to see is a fictionalised account of his tale, grounded in real incidents. The movie, which starts off with a long disclaimer, is set over several years in the 60s and 70s, to the 2000s.
Gopi Krishna Kurup aka Sudhakara Kurup is one of those wayward rebels whose desires could never be satisfied by the ordinary. There is a flash of insane ambition in his eyes always, and a wish to achieve what he wants through the easy, riotous ways. The movie goes on to show how Kurup, a runaway army man, turns into a well-paid expatriate and later, a fugitive.
We see his story unfold through the eyes of many, from friends in the army to policemen who investigated his case. Just as the roadmap of this case, the story is a tough one to tell, but the makers keep you on the edge of the seat, even when the narration goes back and forth in time to chart Kurup’s rise, evil plans and mysterious misdeeds. Dulquer has given his best to look authentic as the conman, and the rest of the cast, including Sobhitha, Shine Tom and Indrajith, too have done their parts well. There are also a handful of cameos by well-known actors, to pep up the proceedings. The whole retro atmosphere of the decades through which the story evolves is also presented well in the story. The music department also deserves a special mention for some memorable tracks and scores. The movie has what it takes to get us morbidly drawn to the incomprehensible but true crimes, which, as onlookers, we feel compelled to understand.
One of the most discussed aspects before the film was released was how its trailers, teasers and the like seem to be glorifying a murderer. Though the team had screened the film for the surviving family and they felt the story isn’t glorifying Kurup, one can’t ‘unsee’ in many junctures how the narrative often ends up rooting for a criminal, be it through punch dialogues or pulsating BGMs that celebrate the age-old masculinity that defies the law. The film does try to show him as the bad man that he is, but its cumulative effect can come across as glorification, to viewers.
Regardless, the movie that delves into the messy world of Kurup, with his numerous disguises, escapes and shenanigans can be a compulsive watch, for it has enough to enthrall the audience who missed the vibrant cinema experience for long.