Action Hero: Reloaded

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Not for a long time did we see an action movie that makes you think. Because they all have set templates. Good old hero gnashing his teeth while confronting his nemesis and his minions. There is an issue/conflict at large that has a closure at climax. But it is rare to find a movie that says everyday life and the common man’s brush against the law.

Be it a complaint against eve-teasing or a domestic dispute, we all dread to step into a police station. From this thought came Janamythri Police Stations or people friendly police station. Kudos to the people who came up with this idea. And it is interesting what goes on in these police stations. They way police interact with the public and the criminals among the public is a different story altogether.

Abrid Shine attempts to tell this story. Action Hero Biju is like a surveillance camera that captures the life at a police station and the transactions at a sub inspector’s desk in particular. Kerala is a state with high literacy and hence there is a higher reporting of crime than any other states considering the density of population.

What we see in the movie is a paradigm shift in the way the police have been portrayed in the movies. The hero is neither a hero nor a coward who toe the line of politicians or the rich. He is just a common man who tries to do the things he can in his capacity but also knows enough to give it back to the lawless and the influential.

It’s beautiful the way the movie shows the protagonist’s private life, which is almost nil. In a less preach way, we are all reminded that we all have a good night’s sleep because of these people who spend sleepless nights guarding dead bodies, risking lives to catch criminals and solving domestic disputes both with tact and sometimes the fist.

Action Hero Biju is a rather ironic title for a movie in which the hero is as human as we all are. Only that he has a uniform with a couple of rules that gives him the power. And while doing his job, he uses that power and sometimes brute force to enforce the law of the land. It is as if he resorts to the fist and other means when push comes to shove – when he runs out of options. The movie also conveys the idea that the educated can do a lot in the public realm.

SI Biju does no major heroic deeds in the movies. It is the mundane cases that the director makes interesting with humor and sometimes they are heartbreaking. All in all, it is a fascinating study of keepers of the law, who are after all people like you and me at the end of the day.

We do not usually give these men and women the credit they really deserve, and that’s what Abrid Shine so beautifully captures.

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