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FREEDOM FIGHT (Malayalam) - A brilliant, thought-provoking anthology on the ugly social inequalities. (Review By Bobby Sing) (Movies To See Before You Die - Drama)

10 Feb, 2022 | Indian Regional language Gems (Other Than Hindi) / Movies To See Before You Die / Drama / Movie Reviews / Just In / 2022 Releases

After the much-acclaimed The Great Indian Kitchen, writer-director Jeo Baby presents an anthology (directing one of its five segments), pointing towards the ugly social inequalities in our society. To clear the confusion over its title, the stories are not about the independence movement or any political revolution. They are actually about the independence of an individual, fighting with the surroundings, the family, and the visibly divisive society. 
The thought-provoking stories are important, told in a brilliant, effective manner, and they make you think hard about life and the significance of independence in it. The film begins with a story written and directed by Akhil Anilkumar, introducing a young girl and her decision about marriage, opposing the patriarchy. It raises a valid point that why society doesn’t expect a girl to withdraw post her engagement, realising it is not a good match?
Ration - written, edited, and directed by Francies Louis (editor of The Great Indian Kitchen) is about the drastic inequalities of income and living standards in our society. Also featuring Jeo Baby (in a cameo), it focuses on how the ugly income gap affects the life of the lower-middle-class section living in the awe of the rich.
Old Age Home - written and directed by Joe Baby, is the most silent segment of the film, pointing towards the last decades of the aging parents living alone in their house like an old age home. Their children settled in different cities talk to them through video calls but are not able to understand the pain of living a lonely life. It’s also about how fading memory and ailments seriously affect the final years of the old.
The above three segments beautifully convey the message. But what takes the anthology to another level are the two stories written and directed by Kunjila Mascillamani and Jithin Issac Thomas, capable of making you numb, with hundreds of thoughts in mind watching their end credit.
Lined up as the second story of the film, Kunjila’s segment strongly brings forward an issue, which even the government has not been able to provide a solution for, to date in this new millennium. Focusing on a group of working women in the shops of a local market, it’s about how they are facing the problem of no ladies-toilet in that region, with the employers bluntly telling them to deal with it. This is no issue for the men using a backyard wall for the purpose, but the women cannot do the same desperately searching for a place to get relieved. In one of its scenes, a wife annoyingly asks her husband that why the men don’t wash their hands with soap after urinating, taking it in so casual and unhygienic manner. I strongly feel, this relevant subject has never been dealt with such a realistic vision without any political motive ever before on the Indian screen.
While the above story prepares you well for the next, the final blow hits you hard, grabbing you from the collars, intelligently written and directed by Jithin Issac Thomas. Presented in Black and White, it is about a poor septic tank cleaner who becomes a victim while working in the sewer tank of a minister’s house. The execution of this exceptional story is simply outstanding and one feels like praising it a lot more, realising the reason behind its presentation avoiding the colours. The story serves as a jaw-dropping finish to the film revolving around an individual’s social freedom.
Superbly accompanied by a noteworthy background score and cinematography, Freedom Fight proves to be the perfect title of this anthology enacted by a talented cast ensemble. The names include Rajisha Vijayan, Srinda, Kabani, Rohini, Joju George, Unni Lalu, Sidhartha Siva, and more, along with Joe Baby. 
Among the drawbacks, it certainly would appeal more to the niche audience interested in watching bold, experimental cinema made on the burning social issues. Besides, the non-linear and docu-drama kind of format takes its time to establish an emotional connection with the viewers. However, once you get the flow, it becomes a winner all the way, raising many valid questions about our society and its caste and gender divisions.
In all, just like The Great Indian Kitchen, Freedom Fight is another path-breaking achievement presented by Jeo Baby bringing along four visionary writers and directors. It has shocking, novel subjects like rarely seen before and thus deserves to be seen at the earliest, making it a priority.
Rating : 4 / 5
(Streaming on Sony Liv) 
Bobby Sing

NOTE : The article was first published in THE FREE PRESS JOURNAL Newspaper (Mumbai Edition) on 5th February 2022.

Tags : FREEDOM FIGHT (Malayalam) Review by Bobby Sing at bobbytalkscinema.com, New Malalyalam Films Reviews by Bobby Sing, Must See Movies, Not To Be Missed Indian Regional Movies, Movies To See Before You Die list by Bobby Sing, Must Watch Indian Regional Gems
10 Feb 2022 / Comment ( 2 )
mohan dev saini

दैनिक मसलों पर बनायीं गयी बेहद साफ़ सुथरी , अति रोचक, गंभीर फिल्म.
सभी कुछ प्राकृतिक, Natural, No background music.
A Must Watch film.
A lot of thanks to the Makers of this film and BTC for recommending.

Bobby Sing

Thansk for watching and appreciating the sincere film Mohan Ji.
Keep Visiting and Writing in,

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