Director Shyamaprasad`s Arike (`So Close`) is one such film. The director has moulded a story as per his own convenience in a way that he wanted to, without caring about anyone else. Not the viewers and even more curiously, not even the actors.
The problem is that either you can relate to the film, feel that bliss of romance and the pain of separation. Or else, you may end up cringing in the seats without enjoying the proceedings much and feeling completely out of sync.
But then, the film has its nice moments as well and makes some bold statements in between. Unlike the usual tradition, the women in the film are not entirely flawless and mere pawns at the hands of the hero.
Inspired from a story by well-known Bengali writer Sunil Gangopadhyay, the film talks about the complicated love triangle that exists between Shanthanu (Dileep), Kalpana (Samvritha Sunil) and Anuradha (Mamta Mohandas). With settings, which look more Bengali than Malayali, the film can turn out to be pretentious and artificial.
The characters talk as if they are reading out lines from some books, with much effort. Dileep is visibly uncomfortable becoming the passionate lover that he is playing in the film. To add to the woes, he has been given a make-up that has always been earmarked for characters who need to look `serious`. Samvritha Sunil and Mamta Mohandas have done their roles pretty fine.
Arike is almost entirely focused on the three characters that are involved in a rather messy relationship. If you are going through the pangs of similar emotional trails, the story can be mostly engaging. Or else, the sluggish pace and the predictable storyline can really be boring. Now, decide on your own!