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Aug 26, 2009

Minnaminnikkoottam

Minnaminnikkoottam is director Kamal's 2008 offering to Malayalam cinema. Having seen a few of his previous works like Goal, Perumazhakkaalam, Gramaphone, Nammal, Niram etc I don't expect cinematic gems from Kamal but bearable movies that click well at the box-office. Most of his movies have a young theme, which means struggling youngsters(struggling against the titans of Malluwood - Mohanlal and Mammootty, who thanks to their physical and 'political' clout wouldn't budge an inch) will get some much needed screen time.

Whenever Kamal strayed from the 'new-blood' subject, he invariably landed with Mammootty or Mohanlal like all the other Malayalam directors. Karuthapakshikal and Ayal Katha Aezhuthukayaanu comes to mind. What impresses me about Minnaminnikkoottam is that Malayalam finally seems to have gotten a grasp of modernity and stylistic sophistication, that Tamil movies display with effortless ease. The film opens in Singapore, with the lead actress Meera Jasmine playing the role of Charulatha, a software employee ruminating about her past friendships. Meera's Singapore wardrobe and the picturization of the scenes are elegant.

 I am totally bowled over by the browser Charulatha uses - Firefox! Agreed the subjects of the film are some 'just-arrived-in-the-scenes' IT workers - hot, hep and in tune with the times. But even in situations like these since the movies are produced and directed by people twice the age of their subjects and therefore totally out of tune with the current times, there is always some pretty serious botch-ups. Not with this one. They use Firefox, IMs, order take-out fastfood and live in stylistically furnished apartments in Cochin - which thankfully are not furnished with polychromatic curtains whisked away from a Priyadarshan set. Set, art direction and costumes of Minnaminnikkoottam justify the money spent on this film.

The story and the actors are not path breakers in any sense, but I can live with that for it is not over the top chocolatey like Lollipop (West Side Story gone bad.) It is filled with young faces to my heart's content - Indrajith, Samvruta Sunil, Jayasurya, Roma, Meera Jasmine, Naren, Radhika and Anoop, in addition to tried and tested old-timers like Sai Kumar, T.G.Ravi, Mammukkoya, Janardhanan etc. Review - ***/5

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