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Kali Review

Review by IndiaGlitz [ Thursday, March 31, 2016 • Malayalam ]
Kali Review
Hand Made Films
Dulquer SalmaanSai PallaviShabareesh Varma Chemban Vinod.
Sameer Thahir
Ashiq UsmanShyju KhalidSameer Thahir

An urbane relationship drama dealing with intense focus on the single theme of rage - is in essence what ‘Kali’ is. Told in a unique manner, ‘Kali’ has a tight narration and never deviates from its intended theme.  One could call ‘Kali’ a thematic movie. The narrative flow is very natural and one that engrosses the viewers. ‘Kali’ is not a fluffy romance or the usual run of the mill story. Such narratives are uncommon in Malayalam cinema and that experimental streak in ‘Kali’ is something to be lauded. Director Sameer Tahhir and scriptwriter Rajesh Gopinadhan has nailed it right. Dulquer and Sai Pallavi fill up the screen with their perfect acting and deserve a standing ovation.

‘Kali’ actually deals with a few hours in the wee hours of the night, in the life of a couple. The movie begins with a prelude that takes place in a small wayside eatery in some faraway outskirts. This prelude itself places the movie on track and moves the story forward in the second half. The story begins with an emotionally distraught Anjali (Sai Pallavi) moving out carrying her bags, in the dead of the night. Just as we think things will take a clichéd turn with the sinister looking man gazing at her by the secluded wayside, the narrative takes a refreshing turn with the two of them jumping in fright as they come parallel. This refreshing quality is there throughout the narrative and this dismantling of clichés naturally makes ‘Kali’ a class movie.

A frustrated and angry Siddarth (Dulquer) does come after her in his car and the long car journey becomes a perfect platform for the flashback that place the two lead characters in the story. Siddarth’s childhood, his adolescence, college life, marriage with Anjali and the events leading up to that fateful night is narrated in the span of the first half. Flashback is employed beautifully. There is another flashback in the movie and this happens towards the end. As the movie progresses, the narrative takes on a thriller mode as the car journey becomes a nightmare for the couple.

How Siddarth finds redemption from his excessive rage is dealt with in the movie. There are so many mundane elements that has been interwoven to script a watertight narration - like Anjali’s driving lessons,  influence of Siddarth’s father, the lorry named Chakkara,  their downstairs neighbor, feminine jealousy when Siddarth is gifted the perfume, - all these little elements add to the movie. Dulquer gives a controlled performance as Siddarth and nails the character perfectly. Sai Pallavi was a revelation as Anjali. She emotes with her eyes and body so beautifully that one would think of her as a seasoned pro at acting. The whimpering in the car as Chakkara bears in on her, the understanding in her eyes as Siddarth loses his temper, the playful eating of crispy chips, the unsure driving of car al are naturally done. Her dubbing was also flawless as she conveyed the emotions of each scene trough words.

Sameer Tahir has done a wonderful job taking up such a movie and delivering it successfully. The single thread is single mindedly dealt with and the direction is flawless. With such a plot, many would find it a thin spread stretched out, but such movies follow a pattern and the director has stuck to it. Kudos to the scriptwriter Rajesh Gopinadhan for conceiving such a plot. The thriller rolled into the life of an everyday couple in the city is natural. The flashbacks especially do not jar as with many other movies. The dialogues blend with the plot. Gopi Sunder’s background music stands out and the racy scores are interesting. Sounds play a pivotal part in the movie as often it is the sounds that jar on Siddarth’s nerves. The loud blare of the Tv, the mixie, the cash machine, the print machine, the band playing at the party and of course the cacophony of these sound reaching a crescendo that finally results in Siddarth losing his temper time and again. The slow build up to that burst and the beats that accompanies his temper is done well. Others in the cast like Soubin as the irritating colleague, Chempan Vinod as the leering man all stands out with their presence and delivery. Editing was passable and camera angles were quite good. The car chase shown aerially, the cat sequences in the prelude, the moon through the hole in the door all stand out.

‘Kali’ is definitely a different kind of movie and one needs an open perspective to accept the sensibility with which the movie is shown to enjoy it. The movie shows justice to life and the naturalness with which a thriller has been conceived is commendable. The ‘Kali’ team can take a bow for this gem of a movie.

Rating: 3.50 / 5.0

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