For all the lovers of the horror genre, here is the second review of the week in the genre. The first was Roohi which was neither a horror nor a comedy to be honest, I have just finished watching the Malayalam movie The Priest on Amazon Prime. This was is not a slated comedy horror but more in the traditional mystery horror space. Does it manage to impress, stay tuned.
Story & Screenplay
The Priest is the story of a priest that investigates mysterious suicides that are potential murders. However, this is just the beginning of something more sinister. The story is layered and has the potential to nail the horrir genre. And the screenplay is pretty well written too. The thing with movies down South is that they are willing to take risks. So, instead of getting to the point they begin with a subplot that takes most of its time in the first hour. Here, the ball is set rolling by some good atmospherics that create a sense of spook. With a major twist at the halfway mark, the things are well set for the second hour. The second hour introduces the supernatural element and here the screenplay stutters owing to the limitation of the genre. It is also a bit stretched. But the good news is, the screenplay is layered here too. The twists and turns will keep you invested, but here the twists aren’t really shocking. The climax is a bit lukewarm, but overall a pretty good attempt.
Dialogues, Music & Direction
The dialogues are decently well penned. The music is good, so is the BGM. Director Jofin Chacko in his debut outing has done a pretty good job with the thrills. One small bone of contention would be that the two subplots could have been tied together better, but still he seems to know his job well.
The performances are pretty good. Saniya Iyappan as Diya is first rate. Ameya Mathew as Annie impresses in a cameo. Manju Warrier as Susan is simply excellent. Venkitesh as Siddharth is good. Nikhila Vimal as Jessie really impresses in a great act, hope to see more of her in meaty roles. The little girl Monica as Ameya is a revelation. She nails each of her expressions and delivers a towering act. Mammootty as Father Carmen Benedict is a legend. He is wonderfully restrained in his act adding more layers than you would imagine.
The Priest is a pretty good watch within the confinements of the genre that more often than not flatters to deceive. Available on Amazon Prime.