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PUTHAN PANAM (Malayalam/2017) - Probably the earliest Indian film released on the subject of Demonetization. (Movie Notes by Bobby Sing)
16 Feb, 2021 | Movie Reviews / 2017 Releases / Just In

In the last four years, both mainstream and short format of cinema has witnessed various kinds of attempts on the controversial subject of Demonetization, made in different Indian languages. 
 
However, probably the very first mainstream film on the subject of Demonetization was made in Malayalam titled PUTHAN PANAM in the year 2017. And which importantly featured one of the biggest stars of Indian cinema, Mammootty playing the lead, fearlessly depicting the hours before and after the announcement through a chain of fictional events.

To surprise you further, the title PUTHAM PANAM literally means ‘New Money’ and the film got released on 12th April 2017 – which means the team wrote (or may be re-wrote), shot, did all post production, got it censored and released it in the theaters in just 5 months time, from the date of announcement of Demonetization on 8th November 2016. 

But that is not at all, as a bigger surprise is there in the film’s critical presentation of the sudden step taken by the authorities. To give you the indication, the film openly points towards many influential and politically linked people very well knowing about it in advance and planning their activities accordingly. 

It depicts it all through the lead character of a golden-hearted gangster and his nexus with goons, power-brokers, politicians and local police. Director Ranjith forming a team with Mammootty tries to conceive an entertaining commercial venture along wiht making a bold political statement but the film doesn’t turn out to be anything exceptional or highly engaging due to its derailing second half. 

To be honest, post an impressive start, as one begins expecting some shocking twists and turns around the demonetization days, the focus shifts to a kid finding a loaded gun and how he deals with it. Here no doubt the thought of showcasing school going kids wrongly using the deadly arms might be a significant one, but it sadly doesn’t work as any enhancing element of the script taking the focus away from the much more intriguing subject of demonetization. 

In short, PUTHAN PANAM could have been a lot better film making a strong social-political statement sticking to its core theme. Anyway, in the present form, it’s still a decently executed film with a larger than life hero exploding in its final moments, fulfilling the age old fixed requirement of our mainstream commercial cinema.

Rating : 2.5 + 0.5 / 5 (with the additional 0.5 for Mammootty proving to be a big saviour for the film)

(Note: The film presently can be seen at Hotstar in Malayalam with English Subtitles) 

Tags : PUTHAN PANAM (Malayalam) Review by Bobby Sing at bobbytalkscinema.com, New Malayalam Films Reviews by Bobby Sing, New Regional Movies Reviews by Bobby Sing , Mammootty Films on Social Subjects
16 Feb 2021 / Comment ( 0 )
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