Yellow Board (2022) – Movie Review
When a reporter uncovers a human trafficking network, she is subsequently imprisoned. She discusses cab driver Kiran, his love story, and his unique role in the advancement of women’s safety and empowerment.
Director: Thrilok Reddy
Writers: Anoop Aryan, Thrilok Reddy
Stars: Pradeep Bogadi, Ahalya Suresh, Sadhu Kokila
The “Yellow Board” team has said that they want their film to have a wide appeal and be about a problem that is global. They’ve done this by filling the movie with different plot points featuring the various evils women experience. While it’s clear they’re trying, some of these messages get lost because of formulaic storytelling methods often seen in commercial films.
The film begins with two separate acts of violence against women. The first is of a young woman pursued by a mob of inebriated hooligans, and the second is a sequence of women being kidnapped by a trafficking ring. A journalist who stumbles upon and gets trapped with the ladies in the second scenario tells us how Kiran’s actions do not make her feel insecure. After that, there is an extended narrative being told.
The Yellow Board’s uniqueness stems from the casting, as most actors are new and only a few who have appeared in films before, such as Sadhu Kokila, are shown in newer hues. Newer faces are being introduced in supporting roles while people like Bhavani Prakash, who has been relegated to loud parts, have been presented in a fresh light. Pradeep gives an earnest performance as leader of the cast.
Although that is one of the positives, the film falls back on some well-worn commercial tropes. For a film that’s trying to move ahead in its innovative idea for tackling women’s issues, jokes about homophobia and dialogue loaded with sexual innuendo take the story backward instead of continuing its journey forward. If the filmmaker had chosen to tell a story without all of these extras and kept it moving with a fast narration, adding their message in at the end, the film would have been much more successful.
The Yellow Board has promise, and if one had only read the script on paper, one would understand why. This could have stood much taller if the transition from paper to screen was as smooth as it was on paper.