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    1. #1
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      Aravind Krishnan's Avatar
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      Default Freedom Fight: Lacks the punch

      Venue: SonyLiv

      When it comes to 30-min or so anthology segments, I believe the beginning and the end should be memorable for these segments to make an impact. Also, time matters. You literally have minutes to pull the audience in to the world of the film and to its characters. Watched 4 segments in this film.

      Geethu Unchained

      A watchable short focused on the pressures faced by a woman by society and the workplace to behave, dress in a certain manner, Akhil Anilkumar's segment tries to pack in too much in its limited runtime especially an unnecessary 'English' subplot. The odd climax also brings it down further. Only Rajisha Vijayan's spirited performance makes us invested in the proceedings.

      Ration

      A 20 minute short which conveys the important premise of food wastage and keeping a brave face amongst your neighbours, Ration nonetheless is poorly edited with a lot of pointless scenes and flat performances. Watching paint dry would be better than investing time in this boring short.

      Old Age Home

      This felt like a spin-off of Aarkkariyam. A slow burner which can be said to contain two stories in one, Old Age Home's theme of unhappy marriages post-old age is highly relevant. Yet it is Rohini's maid caught in between the two characters who moved me the most. Joju George is a fine actor, but he needs to start selecting his scripts more carefully. His performance was too one-note. Jeo Baby still hasn't mastered the art of concluding his films clearly (Great Indian Kitchen had a similar issue). You keep thinking something at the end is going to happen but nothing does. Also, the two principal characters are too distantly written for us to actually care. It's more like 'Oh that must be a sad reality for both of them to feel trapped' than getting really moved by their plight.

      Asanghadithar

      This is the one short that had a sense of purpose and power to it, and mixed the right balance of entertainment and message delivery. About a group of women fighting for the most basic right to use the toilet at their workplace, the short really made me as a man think and feel ashamed at various points. Srinda is terrific in her talkative character full of ideas yet with her own biases and the group conversations really feel natural. It felt a lot more organic and well developed than the other shorts. But a bit slow nonetheless. The addition of P Viji as the real life activist added a real touch to the whole story. Must watch.

      Overall

      Freedom Fight boasts of distinct shorts that have their own identity, with solid performances for the most part. However, the question I had at the end of 3 of the 4 shorts was, what was the relation between the events played out and the term 'Freedom Fight'? For instance you sympathise with Rajisha's circumstances in Geethu Unchained but her decisions seem questionable. Similarly in Old Age Home, it seemed like the characters were more accepting of their fates than fighting for an alternate reality. There didn't seem at any point a feeling that there needed to be a change. Showing the reality is great and all, but a good movie also becomes even more powerful when the characters fight for change and alter their present realities. Imagine Rang De Basanti as a movie where the characters didn't decide to kill the minister? They accepted their fates and just kept on living. Would it have become such a cult film?

      When we talk about 'Freedom' the concept is really such a broad term that can mean a lot of things. NPCB was about the freedom to travel, explore and be yourself. Hridayam's Selva segment (which would have fit into this anthology better!) felt about the freedom of students to learn, study and play in a safe environment no matter what their background or social status. Rani Padmini was about the freedom for women to breathe against society's judgement and being yourself no matter what others think of you. In this regard, Freedom Fight felt for me, a wasted opportunity.

      At a pacing and structural level, this anthology is a patience tester. I felt like I had watched a part of 3 full-length features but the content was just not strong enough to make it engaging or worthwhile, with the honourable exception of 'Asanghadithar'. The climax of 2 of the 4 segments were drawn out. Asanghadithar also felt long and after a point it was a case of watching the clock tick down. Whereas in Geethu Unchained, the director did not let the characters and situations breathe. It felt like an abrupt ending just when things were getting interesting. The makers seemed unable to keep the right balance.

      I believe that it's not just about the message. It's about how well you communicate that message in an entertaining and gripping manner in a short span of 30 minutes or so. My favourite shorts in recent times were 'Project Agni' in Navarasa or 'Loners' in Putham Pudhu Kalaai: Vidiyadhaa. Those characters felt more full of life and real honestly than the ones in this particular anthology.

      Rating: 2.75/5
      Last edited by Aravind Krishnan; 13th February 2022 at 12:15 PM.

    2. #2
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      Quote Originally Posted by Aravind Krishnan View Post
      Venue: SonyLiv

      Joju George is a fine actor, but he needs to start selecting his scripts more carefully. His performance was too one-note.
      [/B]
      Pulli almost ella padathilum ore abhinayam aanu.. dhanushinte tamil padathil aanel lalettan imitation aayirunnu..

    3. #3
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      Thanks for the review

    4. #4
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      Default

      Quote Originally Posted by Aravind Krishnan View Post
      Venue: SonyLiv

      When it comes to 30-min or so anthology segments, I believe the beginning and the end should be memorable for these segments to make an impact. Also, time matters. You literally have minutes to pull the audience in to the world of the film and to its characters. Watched 4 segments in this film.

      Geethu Unchained

      A watchable short focused on the pressures faced by a woman by society and the workplace to behave, dress in a certain manner, Akhil Anilkumar's segment tries to pack in too much in its limited runtime especially an unnecessary 'English' subplot. The odd climax also brings it down further. Only Rajisha Vijayan's spirited performance makes us invested in the proceedings.

      Ration

      A 20 minute short which conveys the important premise of food wastage and keeping a brave face amongst your neighbours, Ration nonetheless is poorly edited with a lot of pointless scenes and flat performances. Watching paint dry would be better than investing time in this boring short.

      Old Age Home

      This felt like a spin-off of Aarkkariyam. A slow burner which can be said to contain two stories in one, Old Age Home's theme of unhappy marriages post-old age is highly relevant. Yet it is Rohini's maid caught in between the two characters who moved me the most. Joju George is a fine actor, but he needs to start selecting his scripts more carefully. His performance was too one-note. Jeo Baby still hasn't mastered the art of concluding his films clearly (Great Indian Kitchen had a similar issue). You keep thinking something at the end is going to happen but nothing does. Also, the two principal characters are too distantly written for us to actually care. It's more like 'Oh that must be a sad reality for both of them to feel trapped' than getting really moved by their plight.

      Asanghadithar

      This is the one short that had a sense of purpose and power to it, and mixed the right balance of entertainment and message delivery. About a group of women fighting for the most basic right to use the toilet at their workplace, the short really made me as a man think and feel ashamed at various points. Srinda is terrific in her talkative character full of ideas yet with her own biases and the group conversations really feel natural. It felt a lot more organic and well developed than the other shorts. But a bit slow nonetheless. The addition of P Viji as the real life activist added a real touch to the whole story. Must watch.

      Overall

      Freedom Fight boasts of distinct shorts that have their own identity, with solid performances for the most part. However, the question I had at the end of 3 of the 4 shorts was, what was the relation between the events played out and the term 'Freedom Fight'? For instance you sympathise with Rajisha's circumstances in Geethu Unchained but her decisions seem questionable. Similarly in Old Age Home, it seemed like the characters were more accepting of their fates than fighting for an alternate reality. There didn't seem at any point a feeling that there needed to be a change. Showing the reality is great and all, but a good movie also becomes even more powerful when the characters fight for change and alter their present realities. Imagine Rang De Basanti as a movie where the characters didn't decide to kill the minister? They accepted their fates and just kept on living. Would it have become such a cult film?

      When we talk about 'Freedom' the concept is really such a broad term that can mean a lot of things. NPCB was about the freedom to travel, explore and be yourself. Hridayam's Selva segment (which would have fit into this anthology better!) felt about the freedom of students to learn, study and play in a safe environment no matter what their background or social status. Rani Padmini was about the freedom for women to breathe against society's judgement and being yourself no matter what others think of you. In this regard, Freedom Fight felt for me, a wasted opportunity.

      At a pacing and structural level, this anthology is a patience tester. I felt like I had watched a part of 3 full-length features but the content was just not strong enough to make it engaging or worthwhile, with the honourable exception of 'Asanghadithar'. The climax of 2 of the 4 segments were drawn out. Asanghadithar also felt long and after a point it was a case of watching the clock tick down. Whereas in Geethu Unchained, the director did not let the characters and situations breathe. It felt like an abrupt ending just when things were getting interesting. The makers seemed unable to keep the right balance.

      I believe that it's not just about the message. It's about how well you communicate that message in an entertaining and gripping manner in a short span of 30 minutes or so. My favourite shorts in recent times were 'Project Agni' in Navarasa or 'Loners' in Putham Pudhu Kalaai: Vidiyadhaa. Those characters felt more full of life and real honestly than the ones in this particular anthology.

      Rating: 2.75/5
      You didnt mention about the last segment?

    5. #5
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      Thanks AK

    6. #6
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      Quote Originally Posted by Thorappan Bastin View Post
      You didnt mention about the last segment?
      pulli kandu kaanum..manapoorvam review idathathaa..
      വാ...


    7. #7
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      thanks aravind...asanghadithar was ...ini rendennam koodi enikku kaanan undu ..rejisha's segment also i liked ..ration enikkum similar views ..felt sorry for that lady though ..

    8. #8
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      Quote Originally Posted by Thorappan Bastin View Post
      You didnt mention about the last segment?
      Sorry I should have made it clearer in the review...4 out of 5 segments, not watched 5th segment yet (and I wont watch it any time soon honestly).

    9. #9
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      Quote Originally Posted by pulijose View Post
      Thanks AK
      Thank you Pulijose

    10. #10
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      Quote Originally Posted by Sree View Post
      thanks aravind...asanghadithar was ...ini rendennam koodi enikku kaanan undu ..rejisha's segment also i liked ..ration enikkum similar views ..felt sorry for that lady though ..
      Thanks Sree. I think you will like Old Age Home. It's a relevant topic.

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