Saturday, September 25, 2010

Elsamma Enna Oru Aankutty - A Review of Lal Jose Movie

When my parents and I opted to watch Lal Jose's 'Elsamma Enna Aankutty,' we never expected that Padma theater in Ernakulam would be packed with college students, families and batches of girls. We just wanted to watch a movie that seemed to hint comedy and entertainment, with stars like Kunchako Boban and Indrajit. Of course, I must confess here that I've always liked Kunchako Boban's movies and I see them again whenever shown on TV.

This movie is beautifully shot in the hilly ranges of a village near Idukki. I am not a photography expert but the landscape's scenic beauty is truly breathtakingly remarkable.

The protagonist is a young girl called Elsamma (starring Ann Augustine), who dons various hats in her struggle to make an honest living to support her three sisters and helpless mother. She works as the village's newspaper girl and her close friend is Palunni (Kunchacko Boban), the milk delivery boy.

Right from the start, their conversations are typical of two young people who know and respect each other but nothing more is said to make us wonder deeper. The chemistry is good and it sets the tone of the movie.Both of them have a local godfather called Paapan (starring Nedumudi Venu) who is wealthy and lonely as his only son is settled in the US and rarely visits him. Besides walking around like a boy in a shapeless shirt and lungi, Elsamma is a responsible citizen. She takes on local politicians, works with the police to expose liquor baron and other illegal activities in the village. Without being too much of a tomboy, she does everything that with conviction and boldness, due to which she is called 'Elsamma enna aankutty.'

When Ebymon, the rich brat and grandson of Paapan appears in the village (starring Indrajit), the story takes a predictable turn. He flirts with her and her sisters, calls his city friends to solicit them and so on. He does every cheap trick in the book to impress the tough and sensible Elsamma, who see through it all with a stoic smile and witty lines but uses it to make Paalunni jealous.

The protagonist, Elsamma, reminds viewers of other strong protagonists we have seen in Malayalam movies like Samyukta Varma in "Veendum Chilla Veetukaryangal, Meera Jasmine in 'Kasthuriman' and Manju Warrier in 'Ee Puzhayum Kadannu'. However, the movie does not break the mould because it follows a predictable triangle plot.

When the film ended, the viewers were smiling and recollecting memorable moments from several scenes. Sure, this is a family entertainer and one that is going to draw in families and college students in big numbers. It comes with a strong social message about taking responsibility in life seriously at a young age.

When Abymon proposes to Elsamma, she tells him, sweetly, "What you feel for me is not love but something else. It is a disease that affects you and not me because I have lots of work to do in my life and you don't."

I really liked this message and the movie. What about you?

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