Mumbai Police (2013) Malayalam Movie Review

Mumbai Police is a revelation. I cannot proclaim it to be the best thriller I have seen, but it has to be applauded for what it tries to accomplish. Roshan Andrews has gone a notch above the standard genre fare we have come to expect in Indian thrillers and gave us something which will, in turns, haunt and genuinely surprise. This is in no small part to the accomplished writing duo of Bobby-Sanjay and the brilliant Prithviraj.

ACP Anthony Moses (Prithvi) is just about to solve a crime and report it to his boss, Farhan (Rehman), when he is caught in a bad accident which leaves him without any memory of his past. Farhan tries to help him jog his memory and get the name of the culprit, but Anthony has no clue to his past or to his impending future. However, his reflexes and training from his previous life are still in tact and he realizes he would need to use these to piece both his life and the case together again. The crime is of a very personal nature to both the officers, as it involves the murder of their colleague and close friend, ACP Aryan John Jacob (Jayasurya) while he was receiving a gallantry award. Together, the trio had been known as the ‘Mumbai Police’ owing to their earlier presence in the Mumbai police department. As Anthony re-pieces together the jigsaw, he realizes everything is not as it would seem and the seemingly bizarre directions and conflicts the investigation takes as opposed to the initial attempts in the case alienates his team and further confuses his already addled mind. All this ultimately leads up to a climax which can only be termed as amazingly bold and genuinely shocking in its denouement.

Apart from the climactic reveal, the movie also must take plaudits for its mostly different approach to the standard police thriller. There are hardly any bombastic dialogs and mustache twirling here. The investigating officer is not exactly the epitome of all vices, as he himself realizes in the course of his second life. The introduction of alternative sexuality into Malayalam commercial cinema has to be hailed as a landmark in this generally conservative segment of viewers. Background music is pretty apt and gripping for the most part and there are no songs to break the flow.

The supporting characters all do a great job. Jayasurya, Rehman, Aparna Nair and Riyaz Khan (in a cameo) are all commendable. There is also a surprisingly strong performance from the veteran, Kunjan, as one of the officers on the team. However, this is Prithviraj’s show all the way. He has done tougher roles than this and will probably have bigger hits. But the conviction of a mainstream actor of his stature to take up a role which pushes the envelope in terms of what is ‘acceptable’ for commercial leading men in Indian cinema has to be thoroughly appreciated. I have been a fan of this guy for a while now, and he keeps giving reasons why, despite all the unfounded criticism against him, he will always be relevant. Take a bow, Prithvi, Roshan and Bobby-Sanjay, for hopefully bringing in a much needed wind of change in this industry.

Review by praveen77

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