Mumbai Taxi Malayalam Movie Review
'Mumbai Taxi' starts off with a terrorist (Merrina) landing in the metropolitan city of Mumbai, with plans of blowing it up on multiple locations. She hails a cab and sets out on her journey of no return, while the cabbie (Badusha) rattles on non-stop about how excited he is, at meeting a Malayali tourist.
With a script that goes limping right from the start, 'Mumbai Taxi' swerves this way and that until it bangs into a non-happening dead end. Entertainment remains zilch, the thrills are non-existent and the story quite humdrum. If it were not for some stunning frames by Nooruddeen Bava, the film would have been a colossal disaster of much depreciable standards.
A relatively long part of the film has been shot inside a police office, and the sequences here suffer from some severe misdirection. Often the characters on screen appear still and silent, as if unsure as to what is expected of them. And when they finally do make a movement, the whole thing appears so staged that the scene becomes a sheer embarrassment.
The characterization leaves a lot to be desired as well, and it becomes apparent when the script brings in characters like Damodar (Sunil Sukhada), a cop who is obsessed with the pigeons roosting at the office. There is also another officer who is brought in to provide some laughter, when a terrorist in custody hits him where it hurts most.
The climax is shot inside a den that reminds you of those films from Bollywood that would invariably end up on a stale lair as the one mentioned here. Two high sounding villains are brought in for the finale, one of which is well versed in almost all languages in the world, which includes Malayalam as well. Makes the job mush simpler, since his conversations wouldn't require subtitles at least.
The little bit of suspense that awaits you at the culmination cannot really be called a surprise, since any sensible viewer would have guessed what is in the offing, long back. So it ends up a dull affair, and the punches that are delivered at the very end, lack the thump that they should have ideally had.
Badusha does appear as confident as he was a couple of decades back, and is quite at ease playing the taxiwaala in the film. Merrina credibly looks her part, and there are also a few other seasoned actors as Sunil Sukhada and Sivaji Guruvayoor around, who make their presence felt in comparatively shorter and insignificant roles.
Badusha asserts twice in the course of the film, almost as an aside, that he has been away from Kerala for a while now, and that he is back with a definite intention in mind - to re-enter into the minds of those who had loved him once. He also wonders aloud if they would welcome him back with open arms.
I'm sure they would be more than happy to see him rock the screen yet again. After all there is unlikely to be a Malayali around who does not hold Appoos close to their hearts. But I do gravely doubt if 'Mumbai Taxi' is the film that they would like to watch a grownup Appoos make a comeback in.