Drishyam 2 (2021) / Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (1927) – Capsule Reviews

Drishyam 2 (2021) movie review

Drishyam 2: Is Loaded With On Edge Moments

Drishyam movie is on the top 20 films of 2014; I thought when I heard sequel news. Why make a sequel to the script that is stunningly wrapped up. That too for a thriller/mystery genre. All my doubting vanished as I was watching the gripping movie Drishyam 2: The Resumption.

Sequel to the successful film Drishyam 2013. The story follows six years after Rani’s (Meena) unexpected crime, killing Varun (Roshan Basheer) when he tries to assault her daughter Anju (Ansiba) by blackmailing her with a video. George Kutty (Mohanlal), the husband of Rani, goes to extreme lengths to cover up the murder to save his family from the sentence. George is now a theatre owner, also producing his first film. Even though it has been six years since the incident, the episode still haunts the family. The rumors spread like wildfire in the neighborhood, tarnishing the family’s image. The investigation reopens by IG Thomas Bastin (Murali Gopy). This time the stakes are high. Can George protect his family this time?

At the end of Drishyam movie, George finally confesses to the Varun family that “I am not even dreamt of a world beyond my family, to that privacy came an uninvited guest, a guest who was able to shatter our family. He never gave ears to our pleads; in that situation, not knowing what to do, out of panic, a small mishap happened.” This line summarizes the movie and the characters brilliantly.

The structure of Drishyam 2 follows the same path as its predecessor. It opens with a typical family drama where George and Rani are arguing. Much of the first half centers on the family and new characters, which will be vital for the movie. Although there are no dull moments, I couldn’t invest emotionally with the characters as I did with Drishyam 2013 because of the unnecessary subplots and scenes. The subplots of Anu’s classmate investigation and Jose’s family subplot don’t serve anything to the movie. Discussion about the past events in the town and police department feels like it tugged to meet the running time of two and half hours. Editing several (I mean SEVERAL) redundant scenes in the first half would make the script crisper and tighter.

The second half, where the movie shines. It uses groundwork laid by the first half and transforms the subtle atmosphere into gripping. The minor problem I had with the ending is it packs the heavy exposition with voice-over. Although it brilliantly foreshadowed the many elements, explaining in detail simultaneously as the plot twist occurs just killed the momentum of the story, and lengthy exposition lowered the tension and disturbed the pacing.

Overall the last 50-60 minutes are loaded with on edge moments. I had a blast watching the second half. Besides the screenplay, the strong suit for the movie is Mohanlal’s performance. His exceptional natural and subtle performance is exciting and engaging to watch. But I couldn’t say that for other supporting actors, they are less convincing in their roles. Shot in the same locations as the predecessor, true-to-life sets capture the atmosphere of the film.

Conclusion: Drishyam 2 is a terrific sequel that satisfies the audience with its suspenseful gripping second half, but it misses the mark with the emotion and characterization in the first half. Mohanlal’s performance is stunning. My rating 7/10.

Director: Jeethu Joseph
Cast: Mohanlal, Meena, Ansiba
Genre: Drama, Thriller

Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (1927) – greatest romantic film of silent film.

Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (1927) movie review

Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (1927) is a love story of two nameless broken hearts, the man (George O’Brien) and his innocent wife (Janet Gaynor). Their love is fading as the light after the sunset. The man has an affair with the Woman from the City (Margaret Livingston). She wants him to sell his farm and join her in the city. But when he mentions his wife, she proposes to kill her by drowning. With the murder planned, the man asks the wife for a date, she happily responds. Will he drown his wife in order to be with the women, or the sun rises in their dark, sad love?

Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans is a symphony of emotions; it begins with a dark, sad, and moody atmosphere and jumps to warm, sweet after half of the movie. F.W. Murnau (probably better known for “Nosferatu”), one of the greatest German expressionist directors. In Sunrise, he mixes expressionism and realism to emotionally immerse the audience. In case you don’t know, expressionism is the use of visual distortion angles, distorted objects, and hyper-expressive performance to show inner turmoil, fears, and desires. From Akira Kurosawa to Stanley Kubrick, it was widely used. We will talk further about its history in “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920)” review (check: birth of editing).

Sadly, Sunrise was a failure at the box-office. Still, it was a huge success among critics and the audience, winning many awards, including Oscar for Best Unique and Artistic Picture in 1929 when the first Academy Awards were presented.

Sunrise is one of the first feature films with a synchronized musical score and sound effects soundtrack. The Jazz Singer (first talkie picture) was only released two weeks after Sunrise. Suppose you are familiar with 1920s films where the camera can’t move. In that case, you will be amazed by seeing the city’s tracking scenes, the sequence in the swamp with a beautiful moon overhead, In-camera effects, and many innovative film techniques in Sunrise.

It was praised for its stunning visuals and won Oscar for cinematography. After watching it the very first time, I was moved by the performance of the actors. George O’Brien layered acting, Janet Gaynor Melodramatic performance are effective and engaging. Janet Gaynor was the first-ever best actress Oscar winner; however, she won for multiple roles, Sunrise, 7th Heaven, and Street Angel.

Conclusion: The tender love story, universal characters, emotional performances, and artistic direction will draw the audience into the movie. Sunrise is possibly the most outstanding accomplishment of F.W.Murnau and the greatest romantic film of silent film. My rating 8/10.

Director: F.W. Murnau
Cast: George O’Brien, Janet Gaynor, Margaret Livingston
Genre: Drama, Romance 

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