Director: Altas Ali
Producer: Jimmy Mathew
Music Director: Deepak Dev
Cast: Anoop Menon, Rahman, Elham Mirza, Nishan, Govind Padmasurya, Aju Varghese, Thalaivasal Vijay, Kalpana
Altas Ali’s ‘Lavender’ has been in the making for quite a while, but the story that it tells is one that has stood the tests of time. It also proves to be its undoing, since ‘Lavender’ narrates a plot that you are familiar with, and has few eye-openers in store.
Rahman in ‘Lavender’ plays a man with a horrid past, who is busy trying to brush it up under the carpet and start life afresh. He comes across a painter Isha (Elham Mirza) and immediately realizes that the world around has assumed a fragrance of the lavender. His joy however is short lived, and his dreadful catches up with him in no time.
The inspiration from the Korean film ‘Daisy’ (Andrew Lau, 2006) is quite obvious, though a few efforts have been made to make the inspiration as oblivious as possible. But the basic thematic tone of the film remains pretty much the same, and while one has been named ‘Daisy’, the other has been named ‘Lavender’!
‘Lavender’ is not a scene by scene adaptation of the Korean film perhaps, but the attempt to relocate it on to a more familiar cultural milieu might not have been that successful. It transfers itself to a foreign land hence, hoping perhaps that the locales will add to the narrative, camouflaging any probable discrepancies in it.
The film is never able to retain its charm for a considerably long time, and it picks up once in a while and droops even faster. The writing is disappointing, which makes ‘Lavender’ a dumpster fire with very few smoulders in it. There is not much dramatic to be recounted in it, which is why ‘Lavender’ appears to be a movie that’s all bones and less flesh and heart.
‘Lavender’ might have had the potential to be an interesting film, despite its core idea having been inspired. But its mismatched parts play the spoilsport, and by the end there are plenty of lose nuts and bolts lying around. It plainly looks overstuffed and it becomes obvious that similar ideas and plot lines have been made into better features.
There is nothing much earth shattering when it comes to the performances in ‘Lavender’ either. But it remains that Rahman does manage to carry the film on his shoulders and looks dapper, while Nishan just about manages to make do with what he has been offered. Elham Mirza looks pretty as a picture, and Anoop Menon is around as well.
When it comes to the technicalities ‘Lavender’ does make an impression. Binendra Menon, Khalid Mohtaseb and Jonathan Bregel come up with spectacular frames for the film, and it also has a lilting musical score by Deepak Dev.
‘Lavender’ aspires to be quite a lot of things at once, and sets its eyes on being a thriller, a musical and even an action caper at times. It successfully ends up being none of these, and could at best be considered a tremendously lethargic flick that quite leisurely takes its time for letting things fall into place.
2 out of 5 (Okay)