Creating a short film is a difficult task. Within a short frame of time, a story has to unfurl that needs to capture the audience’s imagination in lightening speed. Thus the story has to be such that it can create an immediate impact. If you see ‘Chutney’ (2016) or for that matter, ‘Ahalya’ (2015), these stories open in a leisurely manner but then the sequences move so fast that the audience remains glued to the screen, waiting with bated breath for the conclusion. Director Vineeth Radhakrishanan’s new short film ‘Theerpu’ belongs to this genre. Within eleven minutes of runtime, it runs in a breakneck speed and ends on a bone-chilling climax that shakes the audience from the core.

‘Theerpu’ in Malayalam, loosely translates to Judgement. The film talks about the judgement that the almighty God decides for everyone. The story starts on a lazy morning, in a quaint house in the village. We see a man, walking down the road with a bag in his hands, walking down to this home. Patting his pet dog, he starts performing his daily household chores, i.e. making breakfast, feeding the pet dog, taking care of a sick bedridden member of the house. He even attends phone calls from his office, assuring that he would be in the office after his work’s done at home. Towards the end of his work, he sits down, with a glass of liquor in his hands and starts writing a letter. And then the story takes a dark turn. Divulging anything more than this will spoil the suspense, so watch the rest of the movie to explore further.

The screenplay is the strongest suit of any story. The narrative here is told completely from the standpoint of the protagonist. Hence when the climax hits the audience, it comes as a shock, because at that very moment, the entire narrative changes into something else. The backstory of the protagonist is in voiceovers, yet it completely justifies the events that unfurl on screen. Editing is crisp at eleven minutes of runtime. The turn of the events, where the suspense is finally revealed has been fantastically shot. Credit must go to the director Vineeth Radhakrishnan, who also helms the responsibility of the cinematography and editing. The story and screenplay are written by Harirajan Ambattumyalil, who ensures that the suspense stays on until the end frame. 

‘Theerpu’ is an amazing watch. It really has the potential to become a good movie. We wish all the very best to the director and the writer duo for future endeavours.

Watch the movie here –

The Cinemawala Rating: 3/5

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