Grrr review: Kunchacko-Suraj cannot save this lacklustre comedy

Grrr review: Kunchacko-Suraj cannot save this lacklustre comedy

The best moment in watching director Jay K’s ‘Grrr’ came before the movie began when the audience was handed paper masks bearing a lion’s face. But the title seems apt, considering it's a sound you'd make too, by the end of it all.
Grrr (Malayalam)(1.5 / 5)

The short version, if you are looking for it, is that the best moment in watching Grrr came before the movie began when the audience was handed paper masks bearing a lion’s face. That and perhaps a minute or two in the entire stretch of the film would pass for funny, but for the most part, Grrr seems like an endurance test – one that you’d very likely fail if you have a heart as faint as mine. Director Jay K’s movie, a comedy led by proven actors like Kunchacko Boban and Suraj Venjaramoodu, is, to put it as mildly as one can, not enjoyable.

You can imagine what drew the actors in – the premise which has a drunken man (Kunchacko) excited to find himself in a lion’s enclosure at a zoo, refusing to be rescued by a security officer (Suraj) who has absolutely no interest in being there. It reads funny and has potential. Unfortunately, the writing of Grrr is pulled down by half-baked attempts at creating some laughs, and nearly all of them fail, one after the other. 

In Jay K and S Praveen’s script, several interesting characters are scattered around: the partners of the two trapped men, the clueless friend (Rajesh Madhavan), and the tense superintendent of the zoo (a lovely Manju Pillai), among others. There are also frenzied mediapersons, an alcoholic shooter, some helpless policemen, and a fireman obsessed with a loudspeaker. The motleyness of the crowd reminds you of Priyadarshan movies, though this is a far cry from his slapstick comedies which had nevertheless brought laughs. The actors are not incapable, but when there is a script that lacks so much, their hands appear tied. 

Little thought is given to writing the character of Shruti Ramachandran, playing Suraj’s wife, who keeps grumbling about her missed opportunities in life. By making her seem like a nagger, the writers reduce the reality in many women’s lives who may have little or no choice in the matter. Anagha LK, playing Kunchacko’s partner, has a good part to perform, but is again pulled down by a limited script. Not that the plot does not thicken with a politician dad of the heroine thrown in, adding to cliche sequences of goons beating up men in an abandoned warehouse, but seriously, how do villains in Malayalam cinema always find these abandoned warehouses everywhere?

With not too many comedies – films made just for laughs – popping up in Malayalam cinema these days, you’d want to grab whatever little comes your way. Grrr does have some potentially exciting scenes showcasing Suraj and Kunchacko locked in a tussle, one keeping the unsteady other from gleefully rushing towards the lion’s den. There are also a few wisecracks (“it is not a little bird’s cage to go make petting noises, it is a lion’s den!”), the kind that always sounds funnier in a deathtrap. But none of it sadly saves the film from being more than an unenjoyable watch. Only the title seems apt, considering it's a sound you'd make too, by the end of it all.


Disclaimer: This review was not paid for or commissioned by anyone associated with the film. Neither TNM nor any of its reviewers have any sort of business relationship with the producers or any other members of its cast and crew.

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