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Palunku Review

Review by IndiaGlitz [ Wednesday, December 27, 2006 • മലയാളം ]
Palunku Review
Mammootty, Lakshmi Sharma, Nasreen, Baby Nive
Kaithappram, Mohan sithaara

We live in a world of cynicism. But even in such times, sometimes a person or a film comes along and shows you a tiny crack in the fully lighted wall behind which you live, suddenly you get shocked on your late acknowledgement. One such film that makes you laugh, cry, and also makes you feel like a good human being is 'Palunku', the new film from Blessy. It gives a slice of contemporary life for people of all ages. With a narrative and theme, which are timeless and universal in appeal, it aims straight for the inherent hope and goodness in all of us. It shows things we have chosen to ignore in the run for greener pastures of life and makes you feel good about what you have. Told in an uncomplicated, sensible manner minus melodrama, cliches and glamour overkill, it is amusing enough to keep you in splits throughout, as the complex but simplified tale of life in two very diverse worlds collides.

Palunku meaning 'Crystal' tells the story of Monichan, a hardworking farmer with a sharp acumen. His family consists of his wife Susamma and his two smart daughters Geethu aged 11 and Neethu aged 6, whom he lovingly calls 'Ponnu' and 'Kilunthu' respectively. Monichan leads a happy life as a farmer and loves his family, his profession, nature's beauteous bounty and the people around him. At a point in time in his life, he makes an acquaintance with the town, simply because the school in his village cannot accommodate his elder daughter, who is in fifth standard, as the division fall has forced the management to cut the grade. On the expert opinion of the school manager, Geethu and Neethu join an English medium convent in the town which is twelve kilometers away. Monichan, the devoted father, brings the children to school every morning and hangs around in the town till evening to take them back.

In the course of this routine, Monichan gets close to Soman Pillai, a dexterous lottery agent, who knows all short-cuts to earn easy money. Their first affair together results in Monichan winning a lottery price of Rs 500. Soman Pillai who gradually becomes an advisor to Monichan, who is an acolyte in town, recommends him to buy a bicycle and the father and the daughters now travel to town and back on the bicycle. In the meantime Monichan joins a class conducted for elders and starts learning to read and write Malayalam as well as English. He is a quick learner and after a freak accident for which he gets a good compensation and a few days bed ridden in a star hospital in the town, Monichan and his family get to know the pleasures and experiences of town life. And what follows is that in no time, they move to a rented house in the city, keeping with the advice and support of Pillai.

Once in town, Monichan finds himself entrapped in a vicious circle. Soman Pillai, who thinks that Monichan has a lucky streak, makes him a partner in all his illegal activities. They begin to tread on the wrong path, money lending, and circulating counterfeit notes among others. Slowly the naive farmer is sucked by the trappings of city life as his wife too becomes materialistic as she demands new ornaments, television, refrigerator, gas stove and washing machine. She spends her time watching soaps on TV and dreaming about modern household amenities. But fate has something else in store for the family, and it makes them realize their mistakes.

Blessy has, in a very subtle yet striking manner, unleashed an average Malayalee's craving for the adhesives to 'modernity' and how city life changes the perspective and priorities of even a villager with values is told with refinement.

Mammootty gives a stellar performance as Monichan and he proves that he is the supremo when such roles are in question. Be it the school scenes when he walks without making sound, his expression after he speaks his first word in English or the last scene when he has to co

Rating: 0 / 5.0

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