Aavesham Movie Review: Fahadh Faasil at his most electrifying and animated in a laugh fest

Jithu Madhavan
Aavesham should be great fun for those who prefer action comedies that deliver the highs in all the right places
Aavesham Movie Review

Aavesham Movie Cast & Crew

Production : Fahadh Faasil and Friends,Anwar Rasheed Entertainments
Director : Jithu Madhavan
Music Director : Sushin Shyam

So, long back when Aavesham was first announced, there was this rumour floating around that it was a spin-off of Romancham and that Fahadh Faasil was playing the younger self of Chemban Vinod's character from that film. Having seen the film, I can confirm that it's not true. The only similarity it has with Romancham is the Bengaluru setting, and, of course, it revolves around a bunch of Malayali youngsters living there. This time, though, writer-director Jithu Madhavan trains his lens on three college kids who have to seek the help of a local gangster named Ranga, played by Fahadh, to protect themselves from their rowdy seniors. And boy, what a kickass character Ranga is!

Here's what's most interesting about the film: For someone who grew up on a lot of mass entertainers starring Mohanlal or Mammootty, like Spadikam or Kottayam Kunjachan or Rajamanikyam, you would expect your hero to be a very active participant whenever a serious event happens, but Fahadh's Ranga is involved in a manner that he is being a participant and not at the same time. I don't want to give anything away, but the film does something very unique when it comes to building up this character, which is done through the testimonials of his gang members, and the way he is presented, especially towards the film's closing moments. 


Yes, we can call Aavesham an action-comedy, but I think we can also call it a mystery because much of the film has to do with these three boys -- played by Pranav Raj, Mithun Jai Shankar, and Roshan Shahnavaz -- trying to figure out if Ranga is everything people say he is or if he is just a paper tiger -- or a lion if you will.

But until it gives us an answer on whether Ranga is capable of all the crazy things that he has been known to do, the film unleashes Fahadh in a way we have not seen before. Of course, we get to see some of the usual Fahadhisms, but I would like to describe Ranga as a blend of Shammi (from Kumbalangi Nights) and some of Mammootty's most popular mass characters like Kottayam Kunjachan, Rajamanikyam or Mallaya. I even suspect that the Kannada-accented Mallaya may have inspired Ranga and his costume in this film. 


Let me be clear that this is not a case of one actor imitating another. Ranga is very much a character that Fahadh makes it his own. And since I mentioned Rajamanikyam, director Anwar Rasheed is one of the producers of Aavesham, and at one point in the film, the characters play a guessing game where two Anwar Rasheed films are mentioned.

But let's get back to Fahadh's performance, which is the most electrifying thing he has done in ages. This is, I think, the most unhinged and animated character he has done so far. It's Fahadh's presence that saves the film at points when there is a slight energy dip. Interestingly, for an action-comedy, the central conflict arises from the need of a gangster who would rather be loved than feared. And Fahadh plays Ranga as this very complex man who might be regretting the path that he has chosen, despite the amount of fun he gets to have with this status.

Aavesham is also a terrific showcase for actor Sajin Gopu, who plays Ranga's most loyal thug. He scores highly when it comes to the humour and fight sequences. The actor, who also caught our attention with his standout roles in Romancham, Churuli and Jan-e-Man, proves, once again, that he is a great asset to the Malayalam film industry. 


Aavesham should be great fun for those who prefer action comedies that deliver the highs in all the right places. This is, of course, not a perfect film, but whatever minor shortcomings it has in the second half, particularly with regard to the pacing, are compensated by a cracker of a finale. And, of course, there's Sushin Shyam's festive, rousing soundtrack that complements the atmosphere of Aavesham so well.

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