A Slice of Life?

A drunken cop haunted by memories of the past & the very tragic instances in his life.
A series of strange, yet identical murders of young men.
Some professional rivalry interspersed with support from a godfather within the department.
Nosy media. A concerned, caring mother. An optimist priest who is sure that God’s plans will finally prevail.
A perfect cauldron with ingredients to cook up a pot boiler.
Is there a connecting link betwixt the cruelly killed men? Can anyone nail the culprits?
The other cops are clueless. Not the protagonist.
The story of Memories, a Malayalam flick – a crime thriller – starts from there.


That there is a tight script and the fact that the story & its intrigue keeps the viewer glued to the silver screen is in itself a tremendous feat, a feather in the cap of the director, Jeethu Joseph, and that too in his debut. There is some fine histrionics by Prithviraj who dons the role of Sam Alex – even when he plays the utterly negative role as a cop addicted to alcohol.

Movies wield a powerful impact on the audience, especially on the impressionable young. And therefore one thing that kind of put me off is that the portrayal of the drunken cop has been carried too far. It is beyond belief that working places will tolerate drunkenness, whatever be the reason for it. So what is the message conveyed? That if you have inner struggles, it is okay to take refuge in alcohol? Isn’t that every drunkard’s testimony? “Am drinking to forget everything.” Alcohol consumption is psychedelic and self-prescribed.

Research on alcoholism clearly says that one of the short term effects is impaired judgement. The less said the better about long term effects.  However, our cop says it is ‘common sense’ to arrive at the brilliant conclusions – about the nature of the injuries, the codes & the language used and even drawing a connecting link between the dead men. It is worth highlighting that Kerala is India’s booziest state.  A 2011 report by one of India’s largest trade bodies similarly found that Kerala accounted for 16% of national alcohol sales. So the movie seems to convey the message that it is okay to get sozzled (only you must have real reasons for it!), despite “spirits” you will be given responsibilities (provided you have a ‘Godfather’). There are also scenes from the de-addiction centre where yoga and meditation is used to help one overcome chronic alcoholism. 

So, this can’t be a slice of life, can it???