|Nivin Pauly, Jayasurya, Mukesh, Remya Nambeesan|
As it is being seen so often these days, Malayali directors have found that the multi linear narrative style is really convenient and less strenuous to impress the viewers. Here, all you need is to find a way to connect some minor episodes from the lives of a few characters.
You don't have to come up with that super storyline that would keep the viewers engaged and for the makers, it could be convenient to get lesser number of dates from the stars. Then all you need to do is to churn it out it into a “feel good film with lot of masala” and the movie is ready. Like Shyamaprasad's latest offering, English, for instance.
Here the lives of a few London based Malayalis get intertwined in a rather not so surprising way. Saraswathi (Nadia Moidu) finds happiness in taking care of her husband Ram, a doctor (Murali Menon) and their two daughters. But deep inside she hates the western lifestyle and wants to go back home.
Joy (Mukesh) runs a small supermarket and is concerned about his ailing mother. His wife Sally (Sona Nair) is miffed about looking after her mother-in-law but the couple's other main headache is their daughter's hesitance to obey them.
Sankaran (Jayasurya) works in a small time restaurant and hopes to impress his fiancée Ammu and her dad, who are living in his village. Sibin (Nivin Pauly) is a Casanova, who has developed a crush on his friend's wife, Gauri (Remya Nambeesan).
The episodes from the lives of these characters, is painstakingly linked in the end. Now, it is evident that the film doesn't show London or even the areas where the story develops in detail, other than some passing shots or some already captured visuals. Shyamaprasad seems to have been a bit too casual here, while packaging the film, without much effort.
The script by Ajayan Venugopalan of the TV sitcom Akkarakkazhchakal fame is nothing to rave about, though there are certain nice moments in between. The visuals are just about fine and the music is pretty ordinary.
But the highlight of the film could be a superb performance by Mukesh. In fact, his portion of the saga stands apart from the rest in a big way. It is curious that the relative fresh faces in the film have performed much better than the “stars”, who are genuinely disappointing. Nadia Moidu's part seems to have been inspired from Sridevi's outstanding show in English Vinglish but here, it looks jaded for sure.
English is clichéd, surprisingly predictable and is a lazy attempt. It has some nice moments here and there, which could be fine if you are not strict about the contents. Now decide on your own!