I will say something possibly bold--that T.V.Chandran gives the film of his career. In fact, this review might not even be that coherent- it's one of those movies that blow you away so that you are left absolutely helpless. Danny obviously arises serious questions on life and history.
Its about Daniel Thomson (Mammootty), who lives in the backyards of history. Chandran says, Danny is not a fictional character but he is not famous. In fact it's about millions of common people who live out side the conventional frames of so called 'history'. There are major incidents happening in Danny's life too, when the world is really shook by turning incidents.But those happen in Danny's life go unnoticed by anyone, even Danny himself. All these changes Danny's life, but those incidents are not recorded in any history.
Danny is notable for its nonlinear narrative style and inclination towards left politics. The movie draws constant parallels between social history and Danny's life. The constant presence of voice over narration is an intrusion of the director's historical perceptions to our own perceptions of history.
Some parallels go like this. Danny is born on the day when Quit India movement started. Danny's father dies on the Independence Day Danny's first wife leaves him when the fist communist government is dissolved. Danny gets married with Clara, when emergency is declared. Danny's wife Clara is molested by a colleague on the day when Indira Gandhi was assassinated Danny is taken by force into a sanatorium for senile people amidst the death of the first communist chief minister of Kerala and crowning of the Hindu fundamentalists in Delhi.
Life experiences teach Danny to look at life rather like a play...and all his existential worries are poured onto our hearts too. This film is a best example for how the camera, location and characters obey a director. Danny like all other films by T.V.Chandran is a haunting political film.
At times Chandran makes use of the concept of alienation introduced by Brecht in drama to take emotion out of the production and persuade the audience to distance themselves from the make believe. Chandran invites his audience to identify with the issues faced by the characters and not the characters themselves. Mammootty in the beginning appears to introduce him as Mammootty himself and later on in the sequence depicting Danny's first love affair, (two scenes in a single shot) we see the same alienation. This encourages the actor to disassociate himself from their roles; all of this would make the political truth easier to comprehend.
Obviously Danny will leave you with some serious questions on life and existence...
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