Riding on the strength of the storyline Jacobinte Swargarajyam won't disappoint you. True to its title it's a paradise that marvels the gloss of overwhelming luxury spread all around and explores the travails of an ambitious businessman settled in Dubai with his family. Vineeth Sreenivasan with a handful of well received movies centred on youth before deals this time with a family that survives the tide of the times. And he gets the full credit to paint it convincingly.
The story revolves around Jacob Zachariah (Renji Panicker), an ambitious businessman ever striving to conquer heights and the unfortunate turn of events he faces. Jacob, his wife Shirly, their son Jerry Jacob (Nivin Pauly), Ebin (Sreenath Bhasi), Ammu (Aima Sebastian) and Chris (Stacen) make a closely-knit family. It deals with the pain which the family has to undergo in adverse circumstances and the struggles of Jerry to bail them out of the situation.
Renji Panicker does a marvellous job by playing the character of an arduous businessman who is at the same time closely attached to his family. Nivin Pauly proves that he is an actor who has outgrown the youth icon image. He is not someone who can only exploit the extremes of wrath and sobriety. In Jacobinte Swargarajyam he reacts to the situations perfectly well. He engages everyone in his struggle to get things back on track and proves that he has a wide range of acting arsenal in his repertoire.
All the same, it is Lakshmy Ramakrishnan as Shirly who steals the show as an articulate and strong woman who rises to the occasion. Reba Monica John as Chippy has very little to contribute to the whole. But Sreenath Bhasi, Aima, Stacen, Sai Kumar, T.G. Ravi and Dinesh Prabhakar make integral parts of the plot. Ashwin Kumar as Murali Menon makes a big impact with his impeccable piece of acting.
Being a story based on true incidents it could have been told in a more poignant manner. But Vineeth chose to play it safe by arranging the lighter and the turbid moments at regular intervals to make it an arresting narrative rather than delving deep into the heart of the issue. Besides, certain vital details were left to the imagination of the audience, mainly the details as to what exactly happens to Jacob when he is out of the scene for a long while. Yet, kudos to Vineeth for trying out a real life story and giving it a cinematic charm.
It is not simply a lifestyle statement, but a brilliant story with the warmth of human pain. There is nothing much to surprise us, but then it gives us a deep aesthetic satisfaction. Jomon T. John clads the frames with the hues of vibrant Dubai life. Shaan Rahman makes no mistake in ensuring that the background score as well as the songs are as soothing as they can be.
Jacobinte Swargarajyam could have been better, but none can deny it is a good story.