8 May 2018 | TejasNair
Capsule Review: Rosapoo
Vinu Joseph's Rosapoo celebrates crass, both in theme and execution. On one hand he tries to celebrate the B-grade films of 90s and the madness that surrounded them and on the other takes inspiration from them to create this comic tribute. Whatever may have been his intentions, the fact that active activism led to the decline of such films (at least in the Malayalam film industry) cannot be disregarded, and Rosapoo as an instrument highlights it. How it does it is where the problem lies. Biju Menon plays a credulous businessman with hundreds of failed ideas and their case studies on his cap. So when an MBA friend ('Godha' director Basil Joseph in his acting debut) suggests that he go the art route and produce a filthy film (because of low investment and high ROI), he gears up and signs his close friend-director (Neeraj Madhav) to make one. Rosapoo goes downhil as this film inside the film starts rolling as it changes costumes from a quality mainstream Malayalam film to a B-grade one. Director Joseph highlights what happens when people who know nothing about films try to do the challenging and then get hit on the behind. According to IMDb's Trivia section for this movie, it is supposed to be based on Rosapoo's producer himself. But, that is all the fun and serious part. Why Rosapoo fails as a serious film is because of its crassiness. Anjali, who plays a B-grade actress, often crosses the line of overconfidence and overacting and makes other actors look like jokers. Joseph's inarticulate and inexperienced direction is why most of the scenes look like they belong in a B-grade film and not in Rosapoo, which also boasts of talented actors like Dileesh Pothan, Sudheer Karmana, and Soubin Shahir (who comically plays a negative role here). If you give some patience to Rosapoo and let it carry on, it will entertain you with its handful of jokes and a peripheral look at the decline of soft porn films in Malayalam. Maniyanpilla Raju produced "Pavada" in 2016 and chased a similar theme, but if I had to compare them, Rosapoo is far better because it speaks a lot and is at least honest. Had it been directed well and was devoid of elements such as shots tailored for the male gaze, ludicrous dialogues, and an inherent sense of pulp fiction in the writing, it would have been much better. As it is now, Rosapoo is just one or two notches above being called a B-grade film itself. TN.