A Blog on Cinema

Lessons from Passenger


It seems we have to pause our Malayalam Cinema Death Watch due to the new director Ranjith Shankar. At a time of Red Chillies, Sagar alias Jackie and Love in Singapore, this new director has managed to create a movie which has fascinated people. (Reviews: 1, 2, 3).

What’s more important to the survival of the industry are the lessons from Passenger, which are not difficult to emulate.

  1. fresh story
  2. there are no unnecessary sub-plots or comic relief
  3. the movie manages to keep you riveted to the screen and interest never lags
  4. fresh characters who are not in typecast roles
  5. more or less credible situations
  6. good editing
  7. a realistic budget that keeps in mind the territory it caters to
  8. fiery passion of its creator

While this might seem common sense, it seems most film makers have forgotten this. We hope they will use this as a checklist when they make movies.


  1. The Hindu article you linked to, gives two more lessons, the second of which concerning planning may be “difficult to emulate” :

    Producer S.C. Pillai gave him a free hand. “We tried to make a movie we wanted to see as audience,” he explains. This may well be what sets this film apart, and also the fact that it does not fall into any formula.


    “‘Passenger’ was made with Rs. 2 crore. The shooting schedule was 48 days but we made it in 38,” points out Ranjit, who is credited with the story, screenplay, dialogue and direction..

  2. ‘Passenger’ not only absorbs us into the screen, but also reminds us that values have not been wiped out from human beings completely.

    Talking about Malayalam Movie Death watch, this summer gave us a hope that the era of good entertainers happens more than once. After a lousy 2007 and 2008, movie lovers have already added 2HHN, Bhagyadevatha and Passenger to their favourites list. The last time we witnessed some hits in a row was in 2002, where 7 or 8 malayalam movies won a battle against other language movies and also put an end to Shakkeela era.

  3. Its clear that the filmmaker got the story first, and then put in a cast…that’s how all movies should be made…hopefully malayalam filmmakers will start to learn that a well made movie like Passenger could do better than a superhuman superstar movie, made to suit the image of superstars

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