A suspense story that also tugs at heartstrings

Story: The story revolves around an IT professional and his family affairs, hectic work schedule and romance. And then, a murder takes place

Review: While thrillers seem to be the go-to genre for the Malayalam industry nowadays, Michael’s Coffee House tries to do more by including some intense family drama.

Vincent (Dheeraj Denny) and Jasmine (Margret Antony) are good friends, and she also wishes to take the relationship further and marry him, but it is not something he seems willing to do. Added to which, he seems too busy with work, which upsets Jasmine.

Michael’s Coffee Shop is a favourite hangout in the city for youth and not-so-youth, and the couple are regulars here. This is where Vincent meets Sam uncle (Mohan Sharma), a jovial and lively personality, whose children are abroad. One day Sam is found dead in his bedroom. While the police feel it is a natural death, the thriller unfolds when Vincent requests his advocate father (Renji Panicker), to file a public interest litigation to get to the bottom of the case. And he conducts an investigation parallel to the police’s.

Jisso Jose’s powerful script keeps the audience keen about the suspense, which is nicely knitted in with family ties and the emotions, including with Vincent’s parents, who stay separate, but are not divorced. There is a lag in some places, but overall the script is engaging. Sharat Shaji’s camera work is good, especially in the Ninchile Chillayil song sequence. Nikhil Venu’s editing is sharp, particularly with the sudden moves in camera work, which fits the suspense elements.

Debut director Anil Philip has done justice, as have the actors, particularly Renji Panicker and Seetha as Vincent’s mother. Dheeraj Denny looks like a good, young talent; his acting is effortless and he has a boy next door charm, and dimpled good looks. Margaret has also handled her emotional role nicely. Jins Bhaskar as a cop doing the investigation is impressive and holds his own. The smaller characters, played by Mohan Sharma, Rony David, Sphadikam George and Pradeep Kottayam have also done their parts well.

Songs are hummable and fit the situation. Ninjile Chillayil, sung by KS Harishankar and Nithya Mammen, is soothing. Action scenes directed by Ashraf Gurukkal were thrilling and Dheeraj fits with the action scenes well with his height and physique – not a six pack but lean body.

The film makes for a watchable family entertainer with some thrilling elements.
– V Vinod Nair

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