Director Lal Jose has come out with an interesting film this Onam. "Classmates"
is about a group of students coming together on their college campus after
15 years to commemorate the wishes of a deceased friend.
We are first introduced to P. Sukumaran (Prithviraj), a haggard-looking
diamond merchant from Mumbai with an overgrown beard, then comes Pious
(Indrajith), a suave, goatee-sporting gentleman who has come down from
the Gulf with his family for the reunion.
Tara Menon (Kavya Madhavan), a popular dancer, joins in. MLA Satheesan
(Jayasurya), a wily and ambitious politician with his personal assistant
Vasu (Vijeesh), who is also a student of the same batch, makes an entry.
The last to make an appearance is the quiet girl Rasiya (Radhika).
These are the main players in the story. They have gathered here for
the inauguration of an auditorium dedicated to the memory of their friend
Murali (Narain), a talented singer - and the son of faculty members
of the college played by Balachandra Menon and Sobha Mohan - who had
died in the college hostel.
On the night of the get together, Sukumaran is found strangled by Murali's
guitar strings. Has he tried to commit suicide or was it an attempted
then moves back and forth in flashbacks to show us differences between
the lead players. This device works well in parts as it is unevenly
The film depicts the upheavals in the campus affecting the lives of
lead players and playing havoc with their destinies.
But somewhere along the way, debutant writer James Albert shifts gears
and takes the suspense-thriller route that culminates in a solution
to the mystery behind Murali's death.
Maybe it is a trick played to flummox the audience, but somehow the
effort fails to excite.
Another jarring note is struck by the turnaround in the relationship
of Sukumaran and Tara.
Jose, who is known for his flourishing style and technical finesse,
does a good job. Though he has shot almost the entire film on a single
location, we do not feel the monotony because of Rajeev Ravi's competent
"Classmates" tells a campus story with a difference, and
it is a well-narrated tale.