My Story movie cast: Parvathy, Prithviraj
My Story movie director: Roshni Dinaker
My Story movie rating: 2 stars
Ennu Ninte Moideen, starring Parvathy and Prithviraj Sukumaran in the lead roles, was based on real-life lovers B. P. Moideen and Kanchanamala. In 2007, the story of the star-crossed lovers first traveled out of Mukkam in Kozhikode district through filmmaker RS Vimal’s documentary Jalamkondu Murivettaval (Wounded by Water).
The too-good-to-be-true love story in the age of Tinder struck a chord when the same director made a 3-hour-long film on Moideen and Kanchanamala in 2015. The story set in the 1960s Mukkam followed the struggles of a Hindu girl and a Muslim boy, and their undying love for each other even when they were kept apart for over two decades.
The film was the favorite of the following awards season and it even bagged a National Award. Prithviraj and Parvathy took home several honors for their performances as Moideen and Kanchanamala, respectively.
The award-winning onscreen couple has returned to narrate a distressing love story, which sort of undoes all the good work they did together in their previous outing. Directed by costume designer-turned-filmmaker Roshni Dinaker, My Story is an undercooked vague tale of the rise of a movie star and the sins he committed in Portugal’s capital.
My Story unfolds in the picture-perfect landscape of European countries. Roshni had adopted a Christopher Nolan-esque nonlinear approach to tell the story of Jay (Prithviraj Sukumaran) and his great regret, which has something to do with what he did to Tara (Parvathy).
20 years, 200 films and a prestigious award later, something changes in Jay. He decides to push his other film commitments to the side and buy a ticket to Lisbon. He is on a personal mission, which is to seek the forgiveness of Tara. Tara is the lady luck who is the very reason for everything that he has today. She is also the woman who he betrayed for his personal benefit.
The film intercuts between Jay’s present and the past tracing his rags-to-riches story in an underwhelming way. No matter what the situation or challenges are, things serendipitously work in favour of Jay. He can simply walk straight up to a popular director, played by Manoj K. Jayan, at a bar and convince him to cast him in his next film in flat 60 seconds. No audition or portfolio required. All it takes is a promise from Jay that “I will do better than anyone else” and walk out with the film offer without breaking a sweat.
Jay doesn’t have to go searching for good things. All good things come looking for him. He is destiny’s favourite child. During the filming of a scene, he looks into the heroine’s eye and says a few romantic words, next thing you know the female superstar is plotting to elope with him, who is a novice.
Screenwriter Shanker Ramakrishnan has woven the vague narrative around the bunch of stock characters handpicked by Roshni.
A money-minded and selfish father that lives off his star daughter’s wealth. A powerful businessman who is obsessed with a diva. An orphan kid who grows up to be a superstar. And a leading female heroine, who can’t stand up for herself despite all the money and popularity.
Why are filmmakers hell bent on painting such a sorry picture of heroines? Tara is a damsel in distress, as usual, she looks up to Jay to deliver her from all her sufferings. But, she ends up marrying David (Ganesh Venkatraman) and gives birth to a daughter Hema (Parvathy, again). Parvathy’s roles are run-of-the-mill. One is that of a diva drowning in her own self-pity and the other a young woman with freewheeling spirit, Parvathy can play them in her sleep.
My Story is a tale of a man, who gets everything, including redemption, without any struggles. In the end, he is told something equivalent to this, “It’s okay. I can understand why you did what you did. You betrayed me because you had so many aspirations to achieve, while I had none. I totally get it.”
The filmmakers bend over backward to sugarcoat the repugnant personality of the smooth-talking protagonist, who took over 20 years to repent his actions. They try very hard to make us believe that Jay had carried the weight of guilt longer than he deserved and now it’s time to forgive him.
My Story struggles really hard to be something i.e a good story, which it is not.