Christian Brothers is the most awesomest movie we have ever seen this year. The primary goal of the script writers was not to tax the brain of Malayali viewer and provide VFM (Value for Money). It is filmed in exactly the same house as Twenty-Twenty, with most people of that movie playing exactly the same role. Usually in such movies, the villain is not revealed in the beginning. But here it is revealed in the beginning itself. This helps the brain. It also helps if you have Alzheimer’s.
Various factors add to the coolness of the movie. It has people who wear cooling glass inside the house. Then it uses sophisticated “computer” technology and prints “Tracking Signal” on top of Google Maps when Mohanlal’s henchmen try to track phone calls. It has a song with lyrics “moham kondal innu ethu pennum oru poochaye pole”. It has henchmen standing around the same swimming pool in which Prithviraj and Jayasurya swam in Robinhood discussing life-problems, like should we kill him ourselves or should we get pavanai? It has Babu Antony with a black towel tied around his head (hint: he is a commando).
The awesomeness comes in installments. Mohanlal plays a Christie, an underworld connected Malayali from Mumbai who has come to help Kerala Police and the Home Minister. If this does not bring goose bumps, we don’t know what will. Also, as we all know anyone who ends up in Mumbai becomes an underworld don. It is called Newton’s fourth law. One day you are simply walking along Juhu Beach and boom, you become a Don. Then police is after you and every unshaven youth calls you “Bhai”. It happened to Mohanlal two decades in Abhimanyu. It happened once again now. You would think he would have learned by now.
The next peak comes with the arrival of Suresh Gopi as goonda. It kind of breaks the rhythm. You are so used to seeing him police uniform, you suddenly feel as if the world has started spinning in the opposite direction. Before we sink into despair, the gooda turns out to be an IPS officer – you know the Mussorie kind. He also has a name like Antony Punnokadan or Joseph Vadakkan or something of that sort. Once he arrives, he confronts Mohanlal and they throw dialogue at each other like those arrows from Ramayana serial. Awesomeness oozes so much that we need some buckets to collect it.
Christie saves the home minister’s daughter (Kavya Madhavan) from the always destined to fail henchmen-rape, but he ends up in jail due to a family mess up. You know son innocent, father does not believe it, some bad apples in family theme. By 90 minutes, the number of people who want to kill or eliminate Christie looks like a Malayali queue in front of the liquor store – Sharath Kumar, Biju Menon, Joseph Vadakkan, Sai Kumar.
Once someone is in jail, there is a Newton’s law which immediately applies. As Newton wrote in Principia Mathematica, every jailed person shall be presented in court and every opposing force will try to prevent this from happening. This movies too has one such scene where all the alpha males get to show their alpha maleness. Imagine Sharath Kumar, Suresh Gopi, Mohanlal, Babu Antony all with guns. It is 20 minutes of pure testosterone. Then there is also the scene when the son is not invited to his sister’s marriage, but he shows up anyway fooling the entire police force. Finally, guess what, everything was based on a misunderstanding. These silly people.
Then Suresh Gopi gets to dump dialogue let and right. At men, women, ministers, and Salim Kumar. Only children are spared. But once his “Ammachi” calls, he becomes such a docile creature that if you pour some milk in a saucer he will stand on all fours and drunk it and wipe his lips with his tongue. He also blushes when his mom talks of marriage. Maybe it is because he is violating some marriage laws, but it is cho-chweet.
But we are not trashing the movie because it is a pure commercial film and we don’t get it. There is one classic scene where Mohanlal is holding Kavya Madhavan and Co as hostage. She wants to make a phone call to Dileep, but Mohanlal the hostage taker does not allow it. So she rants, saying he does not know what love is. This is a big mistake for if anyone knows what love is it has to be the Mumbai based underworld connected Malayali. Mohanlal switches to flashback and thinks of his love Laxmi Rai in saree drenched by the Kerala monsoon. At the end of this scene, he hands over the phone to Kavya Madhavan. So touching.
There is another scene where Mohanlal shows up with a gun during Kavya Madhavan’s engagement ceremony. The number of Malayali actors/sq ft is quite high in the scene and still he manages to get his way. The dialogue that got thrown around in that scene would have killed most people, but the alpha males survive for the climax scene. In the final climax, where everyone is beating up everyone else and furniture is being abused without mercy and bullets are flying around like mosquitoes in a typical evening, you really don’t care if Sharath Kumar is speaking Hebrew. All you want to know is only one thing. Will the three heroes shoot the villain together or will Christie alone shoot him with the two guns in either hand. We won’t tell you what happened. You should pay decent money and watch it yourself.
You may ask, other than classy lines like “Pakistanil kayari Bible vayikkaruthu” is there something worthwhile in this movie. It is a fun movie and it is fast paced. Before you start guessing which previous movie of Sibi K Thomas and Udaykrishna had this scene, the editor moves to the next scene. It repeats again. Then only a person of Joshiey’s calibre could have pulled this ensemble cast movie with sufficient dignity. Think how this movie would have been if Sandhya Mohan or Bhadran had directed this. Or think if Joshi had directed this instead of Joshiey. We also admire the talents of Mohanlal, Dileep and Suresh Gopi for who can make any scene look interesting. Yes, we have seen them do the same thing a zillion times, but still.