As the credits roll at the end of Martin Prakkat's movie Nayattu, the viewer may feel dryness in the throat for the film stands too political and speaks of high sounding idealism. What one experiences by watching the movie is the realities in society.
Though the open-ended climax may raise further questions, the Kunchacko Boban, Joju George and Nimisha Sajayan-starrer has its moments throughout and that's what makes it worth a watch.
The film can be described as intense, gritty, real, brave and most of all, honest. It depicts the degradation of politics by people in power and tries to analyse who is hunted in society - justifying the tagline ‘the hunt.'
It all begins with a tug of war between two teams, each trying to drag the other across a centre line, perhaps, implying a game between the weak and the strong.
A conversation between the organizing committees introduces us to Praveen Michel (Kunchacko Boban). In spite of being a member of the police force, Praveen plays against the cop team and his team wins. Taking care of an ailing mother, Praveen has his own share of family responsibilities.
Similar is the case with two other cops Maniyan and Sunitha played by Joju George and Nimisha Sajayan. Maniyan's wife, who complaints that he would turn out a better person if, and only if, he would leave the police job. Sunitha with her mother is building a house and her relatives seem to be giving her headaches. Despite the troubles in their family, all are content with serving in the police force.
Things take a toll as the trio gets involved in an accident case and the course of life is altered.
The movie opens with a tribute to late director Sachy and actor Anil Nedumangad and one can't help but sense a touch of their last outing Ayyappanum Koshiyum. Ego over a silly matter creating a mess and taking an ugly turn in the movie looks similar to the one in Nayattu.
By the first half, the mood perfectly shifts to a survival game as the three get framed in a murder case.
Martin Prakkat smoothly sets the tone of a survival thriller but Shahir Kabir's honest writing brings forth harsh realities depicting the political scenario. He has given us an idea about each character through the script which is quite strong. The script carries a good rhythm but half way through it loses the survival strain and takes the route of what can be labelled as a serious film. Shyju Khalid's visuals and Vishnu Vijay's scores add a more intense feel to the movie.
A script that never plummets and the power-packed performances of the leading cast are the big takeaways of Nayattu.
Every actor is top-notch regardless of the screen time they get. Kunchacko Boban as the simple and naive police officer does score a few more brownie points. He doesn't mind washing the clothes of his mother and caring for a helpless colleague. He gets the most sensible and composed lines in the film which he portrays to perfection. Joju George brings out well his character’s tenderness and at the same time projects a disposition of anguish. The future he dreams for his daughter and the present that he experiences are neatly etched out by him. Nimisha Sajayan has limited dialogues but they have depth and substance and she manages to evoke a sense of empathy the character demands. There are many other characters who do manage to leave an impression.
The movie begins with a disclaimer that says the film is non-judgemental, but it would be hard to take it as it is, for it passively picturises the events we see in the media. The hard-hitting scene delivered with the election scenario at the end makes us wonder on our judgements. Nayattu, to sum up, is a realistic thriller that openly discusses a lot of politics. It may force the viewer ponder over the law and order system in the country and raise several questions.