Malayalam cinema has seen its fair share of sports-based inspirational stories, and the 2018 film Diwanjimoola Grand Prix is director Anil Radhakrishna Menon's take on it. The film tells many stories whilst telling the story of Diwanjimoola, a small colony in Trichur city. Menon has co-written the screenplay with the former Calicut collector Prasanth M Nair, commonly known as 'Collector Bro'.
The plot of the movie revolves around Diwanjimoola, a place which was famous for its bike race tournament. Jithendran is a racer who began his career from Diwanjimoola and went on to become a famous racer. Unfortunately, he is paralyzed when he meets with an accident on the race track. Years after this dreadful incident, the newly-appointed District Collector decides to relaunch the mud racing tournament of Diwanjimoola. Jithendran finds a racer inside a local goon, to represent him and defeat his long-term rival Christo's racer.
Even though the movie has nothing new to offer, it has a screenplay that moves on smoothly without much lag. However, it is not the big leap one would normally expect from a director of Anil Radhakrishna Menon's caliber. At times, the movie seems to be firing shots in the dark. Some characters lack purpose and do not gel well to become an inevitable part of the movie. The inclusion of famous Trichur-based characters from other Malayalam films in the screenplay is a fresh thought, but the predictability and the usage of overused plots, stand out as the biggest flaws of the movie.
Actor Siddique's superb performance as the paralyzed Jithendran is the best thing in the movie. The seasoned actor once again proves and cements the fact that great actors do not need their whole body to convey the right emotions. Vinayakan entertains with his portrayal of the eccentric 'Brother Vareedh'. At times, Nyla Usha walks the thin line between natural acting and overacting, but on the whole, delivers a decent performance. Kunchacko Boban's District Collector act has nothing much to do, but the charismatic actor has a good influence on the movie. Making his debut, actor/model Rahul Nair has performed neatly as Jithendran's racer.
The background score and the music have the typical Gopi Sunder touch and is just the right amount required to superimpose itself onto the pulse of the movie. The cinematography is decent in sequences other than those shot in the race track. The racing in the climax lacks the fire that it should have had in its genes. Editing also is decent at the beginning but hits a low towards the end as the climax portions are a tad confusing and unconvincing.
Performances by Siddique, Vinayakan
Things could have been better
Lack of atypical elements