Summary of the post
The following summary includes the list of the topics we are going to cover in our post realted to “Malik.”And, trust us, there are a lot of good things to learn.
- The Story
- Review, Analysis and Insights
- The exquisite cinematography of the first 15 minutes;
- The challening job for the director and actors;
- The government’s absence makes heroes;
- The similarity with Mafia’s birth;
- The authentic role of Sulaiman;
- The inspiring society with one religion
- The Machiavellian Prince, Malik Sulaiman
- The hope for the future, the new generation
- Pros and Cons and Final Rating
- Where you can watch the movie
The Indian’s movies industry is delivering authentic masterpieces this year. A few weeks ago, we reviewed Joji, which was an original piece of extraordinary cinematography. But also the touching story in Mimi; and we can’t forget about the powerful movie Jai Bhim. However, today we want to review Malik and, please, continue your reading because this film is an authentic masterpiece.
Fahadh Faasil is the protagonist of both movies and, without any doubt, he deserves our congratulations because he delivered an interpretation truly inspiring for anyone who loves acting and cinema. We will explain why in the following sections of the post.
Malik lasts for 2 hours and 42 minutes, and we always felt engaged in the story. It’s an Indian’s production and, we think, this is the best Malayalam movie of the year, perhaps even more if we look in the recent past.
Malik – The Story
The police incident that happened in 2009 in Beemapally inspires the film. Police officers started shooting at people to stop a local rebellion set up by the police itself. It already sounds crazy and weird, but you will find out much more by watching the movie and reading our analysis. The police killed six fishers and injured twenty-seven others. Malik is a work of fiction, by the way, just inspired by those real and sad events.
The years between 1965 and 2018 are the protagonists of the narratives. Thus, we will discover the three phases of Sulaiman’s life and why people will remember his existence for many years.
Ahammadali Sulaiman, a.k.a Ali Ikka, is kind of the Godfather to Ramadapally. The difference is that Sulaiman deeply loved his country and people; he loved Justice and tried to help the poor one with whole his heart and energies, putting the needs of his citizens before himself and his family. An authentic hero, but with some dirty baggage on his past.
Sulaiman first enemy is the government and the police. A corrupted system that can’t handle anything good for the poor people.
The government conspires and takes action against Sulaiman; they need to remove him because the institutions can’t control what happens in Ramadapally, Ali Ikka’s village. But it’s not an easy task because the local people love Sulaiman, and they will stand with their lives for him. But, unfortunately, not everyone wants to protect him, and the government plays this card to get closer to Ali.
- Will the government be able to gain control of the village?
- What will be Sulaiman destiny?
- And who will win these internal conflicts?
Malik – Review, Analysis and Insights
(This section contains SPOILERS, we suggested to watch the movie first and then enjoy it)
The director, Mahesh Narayanan, did an almost excellent job. The cast is very talented, with important names such as the mentioned Fahad Faasil (Sulaiman), Nimisha Sajayan (Roseline) and Vinay Forrt (David).
1. The exquisite cinematography of the first 15 minutes
The director Mahesh Narayanan introduces us to our characters and story with almost 15 minutes of single-shot camera movement. It’s incredibly challenging because of the many people on the scene and the several walls around the house, plus an external location. We want to start with this note because this is what makes movies a piece of art: the excellent way to tell a story. And the director let us walk with our characters, listen to them, explore their reality, with the feeling to be side by side.
Is there another better way to hook the viewer to the screen and the story?
2. The challenging job for the director and actors
The production of Malik lasted for eight months. However, the shooting happened in less than 100 days. The real challenge was to provide time to the actors to lose and gain weight, according to the scenes they need to record. In addition, the troupe needed to change their locations several times. It’s like they shooted three movies in one, each for each moment of Sulaiman life.
We want to highlight this aspect because it makes understand us the phenomenal talent of these artists. It’s a lifetime opportunity for an actor to play his character for almost the entire life of it. It’s complex, challenging and the skillset must be high. Fahadh and the rest of the team deserve credits for their job
3. The government’s absence makes heroes
During the film, we discover Sulaiman life from his 21 to 58 years old. During this time, the government didn’t help any of the citizens of Ramadapally. Whoever needed help could find only silence and poverty from the government. So the people of Ramadapally embrace everything Sulaiman does to bring jobs, food and dignity to them.
Ali Ikka challenged the system. He tried to stand up instead of accepting a terrible destiny. So Sulaiman found a way to bring food and hopes to his people. Although sometimes breaking the law, there was no other possibility to achieve his goals legitimately.
Sulaiman became the government for the people of Ramadapally. He was their answer to any of their needs. He opened a school to allow children to get an education and build a better future for the community. And Ali Ikka achieved it, moving towards thousands of daily challenges.
And he was sure that no one in his village will ever touch or kill him because the people loved him, but unfortunately, he was almost right.
The similarity with Mafia’s birth
A similar situation, where the government damaged the poor people instead of helping them, led to Mafia’s birth in Sicily. Wherever governments fail their duties, there will always be the need to stand up to protect people’s rights.
Both Mafia and Ramadapally had their “military” and weapons to protect their citizens and interests. Both of them used it, in the beginning, only in the most challenging situations, to keep control of the events.
May sounds weird to you, but Mafia started as movement to protect the poor people losing everything due to the new legislations both from the governement of the North. As well as Sulaimain’s people, who wanted to protect their citizens from the corruption and abuses of the governement.
The authentic role of Sulaiman
Sulaiman inspires us with this life, which becomes a model for us to do our part in our community. Malik means Master, and this is the best way to describe this incredible character.
4. The inspiring society with one religion
Christians and Muslims populate the area of Ramadapally. Sulaiman had the power to unite his community. Of course, they had differences, but they learned how to live together in the name of peace and prosperity. Everyone needs to feel safe and considered, and Ali does a great job of keeping the right balance.
The only riots and conflicts are coming from the government initiatives when they need instability to infiltrate more police to get closer to Sulaiman and take control of the village.
Also, when David baptises Anthony, later named Ameer, without consulting his father Ali, we experience a form of violence. Sulaiman shows us that religion is a choice, and he asked his wife if he can raise his children as a Muslim. The dialogue is the important secret to live a religion peacefully. David’s action was almost causing a conflict, but Sulaiman wise approach avoiding the wrong end to this episode.
When they finally built the school, the government wanted to keep only for one part of the village. But the people insisted and named the school in the name of Ali’s father buried on that ground.
And this topic is, unfortunately, actual, and we can feel it in the reality of our days. Especially when governments create and financially support terrorists to use them when they need it for their interests.
5. The Machiavellian Prince, Malik Sulaiman
Most parts of critics find a particular connection between the Godfather and Ali Ikka. However, after reviewing Sulaiman’s history, we feel that Malik seems to collect most of the values suitable for a Prince, according to Niccolò Machiavelli’s vision. So let us explain and guide you through this exciting theory.
Machiavelli is an Italian writer who wrote “The Prince” in the 16th century. He tried to list the essential qualities a true Prince should have to rule his country and people rightly. It’s not an ordinary political book; there is much more to learn. When we talk about politics and governments, Machiavelli says that we can’t think about idealistic society but examine practical reality instead.
“There is such a gap between how one lives and how one should live that he who neglects what is being done for what should be done will learn his destruction rather than his preservation.”Niccolò Machiavelli, The Prince
Sulaiman, The Malik, which means the Master, takes a practical approach to rule for his citizens. People can’t eat, there isn’t work, no education for the youngest. The Mosquee smells of fish, and people can’t attend the ceremony. Sulaiman needs to act to improve their condition without thinking about the ethical way to do so.
Conquest by virtues
Machiavelli mentions that Princes who rise because of their skills have a hard time reaching the top. But when they do it, they secure a strong position because they earn respect from their opponents and people.
Sulaiman seems the perfect portrait for the above description. The movie shows the entire life of Ali and all the struggles he had to face before becoming the most appreciated citizen of Ramadapally.
He went to prison several times, and he constantly challenged the authorities to gain something for himself and his people. The result is that people loved him, seeing him as the natural ruler of the village. And this is part of chapter nine of Machiavelli’s book.
Cruelty vs Mercy
Machiavelli describes how a Prince shouldn’t be scared to use cruelty to maintain order, leading to achieving his goals. He mentions Cesare Borgia, whose cruelty protected his reign from the rebellions.
Sulaiman used cruelty only in the desperate moments when he had to kill and injured opponents to keep the peace in his community craving revenge. He could kill David after discovering his betrayal, but he doesn’t because that would lead to an internal war in his village.
Generosity vs parsimony
According to Machiavelli, if a Prince is overly generous, he risks not being appreciated by his people because he will cause greed for more.
Sulaiman never tried to buy his people with donations or other lucrative operations. Instead, he wanted to feed his people of food, education and religion. And for this reason, his people loved him.
Machiavelli explains that flatterers are dangerous for a Prince because those can lead to rash decisions and actions instead of wise counsels.
Sulaiman was a humble figure who never looked for flatterers. Instead, his focus was the good conditions of his people, before his family and himself.
Justify the use of immoral means to achieve noble goals
This sentence collects the meaning of Machiavelli’s advice. In a practical world, a Prince needs to deal with real situations. Guarantee his noble goals is the main reason why he is in charge of the ruling.
Sulaiman’s dream was to build what the government didn’t for his people, basically a state. So people have the right to eat, pray and be educated. Ali’s mission was precisely this one. Ali tries to work with the institutions; for example, he tried to cooperate with Anwar.
And it was a partial success because the government helped clean the area and then support building a school for the community. Anwar is the only one who understood the goodwill behind Ali Ikka’s actions. Still, he had essential duties as the collector and, sadly, he needed to follow the indications coming from his bosses who betrayed Anwar.
Therefore, he tries to convince David to betray Ali, ending the conflict between the authorities and Radamapally. The ending of the movie reveals that it wasn’t his best choice. Every character pays for their mistakes; there is no mercy from destiny.
6. The hope for the future, the new generation
No one in the government and the police wanted to kill Sulaiman. On the contrary, they all feared revenge against them by Ali’s people. Therefore, they want to use Freddy, David’s son, to kill Sulaiman.
It’s a sad story, but fortunately, Freddy has the opportunity to know his uncle Ali Ikka. And he found out a different person than the one his family told him.
He tries to kill him, but he failed. Freddy redeems himself when he hits with a stone Aboobacker who was inciting communal violence in the name of the death of Ali Ikka as an act of revenge. He reminds us that people don’t learn from their leaders because this is not what Sulaiman wanted for his people.
David’s son sacrifices himself and redeems his character. It’s a positive character, totally distant from his weak and unwise father, David, even if we want to assign the best villain’s award to Aboobaker. The most corrupted and opportunistic character on the scene.
Malik – Pros and Cons
The movie shows us excellent cinematography, engaging music and multiple aspects of the corrupted political system.
And it also offers breathtaking scenes, like the murder of Chandran directed very well; Or the reaction of Ali when his people try to hit with stones his mother, guilty of testifying against her son.
But we can include the tsunami episode, the runaway of David when the people found out about his betrayal. As we mentioned above, the fifteen-minute single shot at the movie’s beginning is pure cinema’s art.
A particular mention goes to the shower scene when Dr Shermin cleans herself from her terrible sins and actions. It’s a powerful metaphor used by the director.
And lastly, when Ali and his Roselyne found out about the death of their son Ameer. We can deeply appreciate the incredible skills of both Fahadh Faasil and Nimisha Sajayan.
After everything we described above, it’s challenging to find a defect to a movie which, we are sure, will be remembered for a long time in the Malayalam culture and not only.
However, we would like to highlight that we had the feeling to never connect with any character during the whole movie.
The movie tells us the story without letting us developing unique feelings for our characters. We think we missed the emotions even on seeing Ali dying.
It’s like the movie is missing that special glue to keep all the emotions together. Instead, it overwhelms you with disappointment for what the humans can do to each other.
It’s the best Malayalam movie released this year, no doubts and it’s a must watch for generations.