Virus Review & Rating|
Virus Review: Ashiq Abu's Intriguing Retelling of Real-Life Happenings
It has already happened again. But this time we know what it is. Rather than fighting an unknown enemy, here we’re facing an enemy whom we thought of as being contained in the not too distant past. Yes, it is about the virus called Nipah and the way Kerala fought it off a year ago. Ashish Abu comes up with a stellar cast, not to parade them, and a gripping narration.
As giving a taste of the human drama, and emphasising the film is about human beings first, we get a glimpse of the life of a couple of government medical college students. The boy has to balance between his duty at the hospital and his life and the heartbreak caused by loss of love. And the girl who was his girlfriend and had a rift with him is now in the process of marrying another person. They have to attend various cases nonstop in their respective shifts.
Then the scene shifts to the thread of a nurse who is asking to keep her in an incubator and wants to communicate with her husband. She, Akhila, has an immediate problem. She’s a breastfeeding mother. She served a few persons recently who have contacted a deadly virus whose diagnosis is a mystery. And then there are the government officials who are fighting neck and foot to find from
Where the virus has spread and how to contain it.
The medical team which is pouring its heart and soul to find the route cause and to get a solution to the problem where there is no known vaccine. There is a family eaten up with guilt because one of their own infected others and caused their death. It speaks of the stigma a mother experienced with the death of her child. And then there are the medical personnel who work to help the people (patients) who are suffering despite knowing well that they themselves are prone to a highly hazardous medical risk.
All these subplots and the paranoia experienced throughout the state where a person found coughing is literally kept out of the vicinity because they may get the same health issue. Or even death.
Writing and direction
The writing of the film is powerful. The visuals are whimsically impactful. Sharfu, Suhas, and Ashis Abu have come up with semi fictional and semi realistic drama of human emotions like fear, pain, guilt, suffering, paranoia (again), passive cruelty, and finally that of the satisfaction that comes through a collective triumph. The dialogues are up to the point and the multiple subplots are dealt with in an expert manner without going beyond what is needed.
The direction of the film is too-notch. Abu has deftly handles a huge ensemble cast and spread out storylines without any confusion and created a film which talks more at cerebral level. There are no unnecessary explanations. No moments to reflect unnecessarily on. He also ensured the film has a smooth flow.
As for the performances we cannot say who did well and who did better as all of the actors became the characters. Revathi as the health minister, Tovino Thomas as Kozhikode District Collector, and Poornima as the director of the health service excelled. Rima Kallingal as the heroic nurse Akhila is pitch perfect in the few moments where she is disintegrating.
Parvathy, Rahman, Sreenath Basi, Indrajith and Unni Maya exuded authenticity as medical people. Asif Ali, Soubin, Dharshana and Madonna Sebastian nailed the roles of the unfortunate. Kunchacko Boban is natural as usual in a role which he is always typecast with. While the film takes us through the kind of difficulties that the government and health officials had to overcome to contain the spread of the virus, these actors keep us connected to the humane angle.
The music of the film has an okayish quality as a whole. It’s so good on the surface but didn’t gel well with the narration. The editing is cacophonically good. The cinematography is atmospheric and carried a gloomy brooding feel. And of course, an inherent optimistic feel in the end. The production design is superb. The movie is technically brilliant for the most part. And it’s well made is an understatement.
Ashish Abu has taken up a challenging task of recreating a story that had happened before our eyes and it is to his great credit, he didn’t make this a weep-fest for sympathy. His direction is objective and observed the reality with a neutral eye. With a cast that excelled as expected, Virus is a winner. But it releases at a time when the deadly virus snuck up again. But brothers and sisters! Panick not! You’ll be safe I’m not too long of a time.
- Technically brilliant
- Excellent writing
- Deft directing
- Stellar performance by a superb cast
- Human element
- None to discuss now
Pycker Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Tailpiece: Highly recommended
Virus Critic Reviews
Virus User Reviews
Be the first to review this movie.
Virus is one of the most anticipated films of the year. The film which depicts the event test happened during the period when Nipah virus attack happened. How the Kerala Minister and a team of officials and doctors braved the odds and contained the problem and the service of a nurse named Lini Puthussery served people and laid her life down despite the risks also gets attention. The film is eagerly awaited by a section of audience and it opened to positive response.
But there are a few comments which say that the movie takes its own sweet time to get into the point and when it comes, it loses intensity expected of such a survival thriller. The first half of the film is very good and the technical values are superb. The best thing about this film js the human and emotional touch rather than just telling how the epidemic is contained.
Keep watching for more Virus public talk and live updates
What is Virus About?
The horrific scene of all comes at the tail end of the trailer. A middle-aged man who is coughing and spitting tries to board an auto-rickshaw. But the auto driver denies him entry. The man even questions the auto driver why he’s wearing a khaki jacket when he’s not serving. The man slowly comes out of the auto and labours forward a few steps and asks a biker who’s passing by to give him lift. The auto driver utters the terrible word. Nipah, the biker speeds away.
Nipah! The most deadly virus in recent memory has terrorised Kerala and tested the endurance of the people of God’s own country. As per the statistics given in the trailer of the film, nearly 75% of those who contacted the virus died.
With no treatment protocol and no vaccine, it has curbed the lives of many and resulted in one of the biggest tragedies of the 21st century. But the state fought it off and one nurse, Lini Puthussery stood like a hero and gave her life serving the people. It is this tale that form the basis of the Aashiq Abu directorial. Acclaimed actress Rima Kallingal plays Nurse Lini.
Highlights of the film
Rima Kallingal in a role commemorating the heroic nurse
In a world which is characterised by paranoia, helplessness, kindness, and guilt Lini Puthussery stands as an example of humanity at its best. Despite the unknown territory of the problem, she served the people in her vicinity. The virus, which can be transmitted from animals to humans, is hard to diagnose. Symptoms of infection include fever, vomiting and headaches. It has a mortality rate of 70% and there is no vaccine.
She served a family of three a whole night which turns out to be the fatal turning point in her life. She got herself admitted in the hospital and requested the personnel to put her in quarantine. Rima Kallingal plays her role and knowing about the actress, we can safely assume that she will be up to the challenge. But this is not just her.
The highly rated ensemble cast
Senior actress Revathy plays the role which is similar in lines to the Kerala health minister K. K. Shailaja whose efforts in containing the outbreak with the help of Additional Chief Secretary Rajeev Sadanandan whose efforts were lauded by all quarters.
The film also stars Tovino Thomas, Indrajith Sukumaran, Asif Ali, Poornima Indrajith, Sreenath Bhasi, Rima Kallingal, Remya Nambeesan, Joju George, Dileesh Pothan, Senthil Krishna, Rahman, Revathy, Asha Kelunni, Parvathy Thiruvothu, Indrans and Madonna Sebastian in several prominent roles. Soubin Shahir plays the role of the man about whom we discussed earlier.
Ashiq Abu and his team
Making a film on a subject like this is a tough job and needs a lot if research and empathy to make it a human drama. Filmmaker Aashiqui Abu has touched upon paranoia, helplessness, kindness, and guilt. We can easily chastise the auto driver who denied to serve a patient. But aren’t his fears justified. After all he might have a family. But is it right if him to scoot away a person who could potentially give lift to the man suffering from... well!
Mushin Parari (Sudan’s from Nigeria), Sharfu, and Suhas have written the film. Sushin Shyam composes the musical score while Rajeev Ravi handled the cinematography for this OPM Cinemas production.
Keep watching for Virus review, rating, and analysis. Be right back!