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Merry Christmas Movie Review Unveils a Riveting Tale with a Climax That Leaves Audiences Yearning for More


Merry Christmas
Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas Movie Review: Unraveling a Tale of Mystery and Intrigue

Merry Christmas, the latest offering from the brilliant mind of writer-director Sriram Raghavan, introduces audiences to a suspenseful world where deception, death, and darkness converge. While it may not evoke an immediate ‘wow,’ this film, featuring the unusual pairing of Katrina Kaif and Vijay Sethupathi, weaves a captivating narrative that ventures into uncharted territories.

Sriram Raghavan, renowned for his work on the masterpiece Andhadhun, returns after five years to showcase yet another example of brilliant storytelling. Merry Christmas is not just a thriller; it’s a murder mystery, a suspense drama, and a twisted tale of love. The film’s strength lies in its deliberate pacing and intricate storytelling, setting it apart from the hurried and patchy narratives often found in contemporary cinema.

In contrast to today’s fast-paced films, Merry Christmas takes its time, drawing viewers into a slow burn of suspense. The gripping storyline ensures that even in moments of apparent stillness, the audience remains captivated. While there might be instances that seem less dynamic, the film is far from boring. It invites viewers to sit back, absorb, analyze, and immerse themselves in its depths.

Adapted from Frédéric Dard’s Le Monte-charge, Merry Christmas opts for a smooth and easygoing screenplay. The twists and turns unfold seamlessly, avoiding the over-the-top theatrics. Unlike Andhadhun, where each revelation left audiences in awe, Merry Christmas underplays the thrill factor. While it has its high points, they lack the exhilarating surprise element that Raghavan is known for. The climax, though nail-biting, ventures into experimental territory, leaving room for interpretation and discussion.

Set against the backdrop of a fateful Christmas Eve, the narrative follows Albert (Vijay Sethupathi), who, claiming to have returned from Dubai, discovers his mother’s demise. A chance encounter with Maria (Katrina Kaif) in a restaurant sets off a series of events, leading to Albert’s involvement in a crime scene in Maria’s apartment. The delirious romance within this murder mystery unfolds with delightful moments, including an impromptu dance sequence, masterfully performed by Vijay and Katrina.

Raghavan’s meticulous attention to detail shines through in Merry Christmas. From an impromptu dance under the Christmas Eve lights to the close-up shots of pivotal props, such as a mixer grinder, spectacles, origami, teddy bear, lift buttons, aquarium fish, and caged bird – each element plays a vital role in storytelling. The film seamlessly incorporates references to classic films and veterans, from a cinema ticket featuring Rajesh Khanna to a cutout of Amitabh Bachchan in his angry young man days. Nostalgia permeates the narrative, enhanced by the inclusion of the 1973 song “Jab Andhera Hota Hai Aadhi Raat Ke Baad” from the film Raja Rani.

Merry Christmas may not boast a grand ‘wow’ factor, but its subtlety and deliberate storytelling make it a compelling watch. As Raghavan crafts a world filled with suspense and unexpected twists, the film encourages viewers to embrace the nuances, sparking post-viewing discussions and interpretations. While the climax may tread into experimental territory, it leaves an indelible mark, inviting audiences to ponder its intricacies and eagerly engage in conversations with fellow viewers.

Merry Christmas leverages its visual and auditory elements to enhance the storytelling experience. Raghavan skillfully utilizes lighting and background score, composed by Daniel B George, to underscore critical moments and build tension. The impromptu dance sequence under the Christmas lights becomes a visual spectacle, capturing the essence of the festive season. The film’s reliance on these elements adds depth to the narrative and amplifies its emotional beats.

Merry Christmas
Merry Christmas

Beyond the leading and supporting cast, Raghavan turns everyday objects into pivotal characters in the storytelling process. Props like the mixer grinder, spectacles, origami, teddy bear, lift buttons, aquarium fish, and caged bird aren’t mere accessories; they play integral roles in advancing the plot. This meticulous attention to inanimate details showcases Raghavan’s storytelling prowess, elevating the film beyond its actors.

One of the film’s charming aspects is Raghavan’s homage to classic films and legendary actors. The inclusion of a cinema ticket featuring Rajesh Khanna, a cutout of Amitabh Bachchan in his iconic angry young man phase, and the background use of the 1973 song “Jab Andhera Hota Hai Aadhi Raat Ke Baad” from Raja Rani evoke a sense of nostalgia. It’s a delightful nod to the golden era of Indian cinema, seamlessly woven into the contemporary narrative.

Merry Christmas doesn’t conclude with a neatly tied bow; instead, it ventures into an experimental ending that leaves room for interpretation. The climax, though unconventional, sparks contemplation, inviting viewers to dissect its layers and arrive at their own conclusions. This open-ended approach adds an intellectual dimension to the film, ensuring that its impact lingers beyond the viewing experience.

Post-Viewing Discussions:

The true mark of Merry Christmas lies in its ability to provoke discussions. The film doesn’t provide all the answers, leaving gaps for viewers to fill with their insights and perspectives. This deliberate ambiguity serves as a catalyst for engaging conversations among viewers, each offering their unique take on the events that unfold. In an era where movies often spoon-feed audiences, Merry Christmas stands as a refreshing departure, challenging viewers to actively participate in the storytelling process.

As the film’s narrative mirrors the unpredictability of a Christmas Eve, where chance encounters lead to unforeseen consequences, the spirit of Merry Christmas is encapsulated in its ability to surprise, challenge, and resonate. While it may not follow the conventional trajectory of thrillers, its deliberate choices and nuanced storytelling make it a memorable cinematic experience.

Merry Christmas, with its blend of suspense, romance, and unconventional twists, emerges as a testament to Sriram Raghavan’s storytelling prowess. Beyond the star-studded cast, the film’s strength lies in its meticulous craftsmanship, evocative visuals, and a narrative that extends beyond the screen. It encourages viewers to savor the details, embrace ambiguity, and relish the art of interpretation – a true cinematic gem in the world of contemporary storytelling.

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