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Truth can be a mere illusion unless revealed along with hard evidence. How ethical is it to commit a grave sin if it’s required to protect your family’s honour?

A powerful thriller, Drishyam (meaning illusion) gives voice to a persecuted common man when he is required to do wrong to right a wrong. The film tackles these and many other issues with a strong storyline, tight script and slick editing that keeps the audience glued to their seats until the end.

Jeethu Joseph’s original story, inspired by the Japanese author Keigo Higashino’s Devotion of Suspect X, has proved beyond a doubt that storytelling is at the core of a good film. The crisp script written by Upendra Sidhaye matches the knockout power of the story.

I was glad that I had not seen the original film in Malayalam as the impact of the story would have been lost on me. But director Nishikant Pathak has been faithful to the original and has delivered a masterpiece. Ajay Devgn as Vijay Salgaonkar and Tabu as inspector-general Meera Deshmukh give power-packed performances.

Vijay, a school dropout and orphan, is a film buff who has imbibed his education of life from the films he sees — and he sees many as the owner of a modest cable television business in Goa. A self-made man with a heart of gold, he dotes on his family — his wife and two daughters — and when circumstances put them through the toughest trial of life, he draws upon the scripts and dramas of thousands of movies of the crime and thriller genre that he had watched all this life, keeping a step ahead of the police and protecting his shell-shocked family.

The picturesque cinematography with idyllic scenes of Goa serves as an effective foil to the internal turmoil of the protagonist.

There are no loose ends in the plot; every character, every situation is well planned and visualised to perfection. The background score is evocative though a song that served to highlight the trauma of the characters seemed eminently forgettable.

Shriya Saran as Salgaonkar’s wife and Ishita Dutta and Mrinal Jadhav as the two daughters of the family have delivered sterling performances. A special mention needs to be made of Kamlesh Sawant who as Inspector Gaitonde personifies the corruption and malice that has made deep inroads into the Indian police force. A must-watch film that ticks all the boxes of entertainment.

Don’t miss it


Director: Nishikant Pathak

Cast: Ajay Devgn, Tabu, Shriya Saran, Ishita Dutta and Mrinal Jadhav

Rating: 4.5 out of 5