Mammootty’s troubled Luke Antony in Rorschach is haunted by a masked man. But Luke is not interested in removing the mask, he wants to destroy his very roots. Such is the premise of Nissam Basheer’s second film after Kettyolaanu Ente Malakha. A psychological thriller with paranormal themes, Rorschach also stars Grace Antony, Jagadeesh, Sharafudheen, Kottayam Nazeer, Sanju Sivram, and Bindu Panicker. Rorschach Movie Review: Mammootty and Bindu Panicker are Fantastic in This Captivating Psychological Thriller That Messes With You!
The plot of Rorschach is about a mysterious stranger called Luke Antony who reports about his missing wife at a police station. After futile searches, the police gives up on the missing woman but not Luke, who persists in his stay there and gets to know some of the inhabitants in the village better. And, slowly we also know him better as well as his dark motives. And before we go further, let me warn you there are SPOILERS ahead!
Mammootty in Rorschach (Photo Credit: Rorschach Trailer)
So Luke basically is on a revenge mission to destroy the man who, during a home invasion, killed his wife in their house in Dubai. The problem is the man he wanted to take revenge against – Dileep (Asif Ali in a bloodied cloth mask) – is already dead, killed in an accident. So what does Luke do? Buy his under-construction house that Dileep must have pumped in all the money he robbed from others, destroy the latter’s reputation back at home, desecrate his grave and steal his skull to make an ashtray out of it, marry his widow and sleep with her , make his widow hate Dileep by letting her find truth about him and bring his wrongdoings in front of the villagers – basically burn down the very roots of his opponent.
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Does Luke manage to do that? Was he really seeing the ghost of Dileep and getting beaten by him? In this feature we will try to decode that complex finale of Rorschach to the best of our understanding. Of course, we can be wrong, so please feel to correct us in the comments section below.
Is Luke Really Seeing Ghosts?
While the movie wants you to think that Dileep’s ghost is real (helped by the fact that Shashankan claims about hearing the ghost at night), I believe the paranormal happenings shown in the film are nothing by Luke’s mind playing tricks on him. This is affirmed earlier in the film, when the ‘spirit’ of his dead wife tells him that she is nothing but an hallucination. However, Luke, who is so hell-bent on revenge, disregard what she says and wants to bring Dileep back from the dead so that he can exact his revenge. Remember he started ‘experiencing’ Dileep’s ghost after having that conversation with latter’s mother, about how deceased still live on as legacies and as good memories.
Mammootty in Rorschach (Photo Credit: Rorschach Trailer)
While watching the movie, it is not hard to guess that Luke is suffering from paranoid schizophrenia, possible caused by the distress from his wife’s murder and the ‘white room’ torture by the Dubai police. The ‘beatings’ he caused from the ‘ghost’ are probably self-caused, just like how in David Fincher’s fight club, Tyler Durden was beating the Narrator but in reality, the latter was beating himself. The movie could be playing the same trick with us – and there are plenty such examples in it – the same way Luke’s broken mind is doing to him. As for Shashankan’s ghostly sightings, that was merely him trying to dissuade Luke from buying the house so that he could have it for himself.
Grace Antony in Rorschach (Photo Credit: Rorschach Trailer)
The title of the film is a huge indicator of Luke’s broken mind. Rorschach derives its name from the Rorschach test – a psychological test using ink-blot painting to determine if a person is suffering from emotional disorder. This is based on the the kind of ‘images’ the person sees in those paintings, which here, is the bizarre visuals that Luke keeps coming up in his mind, with Dileep’s house being the ink-blot painting for him.
The Real Villain of the Story
By the third act, it is well-established that Dileep’s evilness and his younger brother Anil (Sanju Sivram)’s sociopathy come from their mother Seetha (Bindu Panicker). Her kids are her whole life and she can’t bear that anyone would speak ill of them, even after their deaths. She kills the policeman Ashraf (Jagadeesh) when the latter comes to her with incriminating evidence of Dileep’s wrongdoings. Even though her son is dead, Seetha doesn’t want anything to go out that would tarnish his son’s legacy and also harm the surviving son.
Bindu Panicker in Rorschach (Photo Credit: Rorschach Trailer)
It is also with the same intention that she goes to Luke and get him killed with the help of the goons, only that Luke turned out to be far more formidable foe than an unsuspecting Ashraf. However, before all her plans get foiled and Anil gets killed by Luke, Seetha confesses to Luke that she is aware of her son’s wrongdoings and she has been fine with that. Rorschach: Mammootty Drops Intense Stills of Him from Nisam Basheer’s Directorial Ahead of the Film’s Theatrical Release.
Seetha, of course, pay for her crimes when her only surviving son gets killed and her son-in-law betrays her and informs her murder of Ashraf to the police, thus getting arrested.
Why did Luke Return?
Knowing Luke’s nature, it is stupid to think he returned to surrender to the police after going under the radar for repentance. Also he only confessed to killing Dileep, though the police aren’t sure why he would do so when Dileep was killed in an accident. For Luke, he did ‘kill’ Dileep when the village finally realized the kind of monster Seetha’s elder son was, his factory already burnt by his widow and the rest of the memorials in his name destroyed by the locals.
Sanju Sivram in Rorschach (Photo Credit: Rorschach Trailer)
But I believe Luke didn’t think his work is over. Seetha had confessed to him that her sons are mere extensions of what she is, be it in what good they did or the evil they indulged in. The scene where Dileep’s ghost manifests next to her while she says so, in Luke’s mind, he realized that she is the root cause of his troubles, that Dileep won’t ‘die’ till she is destroyed. This is also reflected in the scene when Luke is about to kill Anil and he sees Seetha running out of the house. The sequence mirrors earlier scene on the night his wife was killed, when Luke gets hold of Dileep’s accomplishment and breaks his neck, and then sees Dileep run out of the place.
Jagadeesh in Rorschach (Photo Credit: Rorschach Trailer)
But isn’t Seetha arrested for killing Ashraf and hasn’t Dileep’s reputation been tarnished? True, Seetha is behind bars for murdering a policeman, but there is also a sympathy wave for her, supposedly paying for the crimes of her sons. People think she killed Ashraf not because of Dileep, but that he discovered Anil had killed his father. She became this pitiful mother of two wayward sons, and that is the image that Luke wanted to destroy now, which could explain his return.
So Who is the ‘Ghost’ Whom Luke Welcomes Back?
The final scene is an unseen spirit flying through the police station and settling in Luke’s cell (where the spirit of his dead wife is also there). Luke sees the spirit and says ‘Welcome Back’. At first thought, it could be seen as the return of Dileep’s ‘ghost’. However, before the spirit enters the cell, we see a policewoman rush to her seniors to inform them that Seetha had died by suicide by hanging in her cell. Therefore, I want to believe that who Luke is now seeing is the ‘ghost’ of Seetha, and that is his new target for revenge. Again, since this scene begins from a ‘white room’ – an implausible oddity in a local police station in Kerala – this could be just Luke’s mind bringing up another hallucination for him.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Oct 08, 2022 08:43 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).