Reviews film

Keni movie review: Jaya Prada and R Parthiban cannot help this chaotic film – Hindustan Times

Keni tamil movie review

kenidirector: ma nishadcast: jaya prada, revathy, anu haasan, r parthiban, nasser, rekhastar rating: 1 .5/ 5

keni is apparently about water scarcity. A small town, Puliyanmalai, in the Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu is in the grip of a man-made drought. As the corrupt ministers try to take advantage of the situation by relocating the villagers and starting an industrial development project in the area, the people’s only hope is Jaya Prada’s Indira. she owns a piece of land that has a well. the only problem: the well is on the kerala side of the border. how indira manages to help the villagers is presented in three different narratives, each from the perspective of three different journalists who had a lead on her or her husband.

In short, in a single paragraph, it seems like a simple narrative. the movie is just the opposite.

The film begins by focusing on corruption and Indira’s husband, Hariharan. a geologist who holds the position of director in a government office in alapuzha, refuses to turn a blind eye to corruption and is implicated in a false case of sexual harassment. just as he is dealing with this, his friend aravindan is investigated for being a maoist and is also implicated in the case. during the investigation, he dies leaving the land to his wife.

cut to riaz and his wife rasina. The life of the loving couple is turned upside down when Riaz is arrested under the UEPA for terrorism. both cases are taken on by the same lawyer who decides to introduce the wives of the defendants against each other. we are almost approaching the interval of the movie and we still haven’t realized that the movie is about indira and water scarcity.

if ever a movie suffered an identity crisis, it has to be keni. for the first hour, the director doesn’t know what his movie is about. is it terrorism? is it about corruption? Is it about water scarcity? the film jumps from one narrative to another, and the links between them are tenuous at best.

the concept of three journalists investigating the life of a woman and presenting different facets is a great idea. the writing, however, does not support the idea.

Secondly, there are so many characters that chaos is the obvious result. we jumped from hariharan and indira to hariharan and aravindan to indira and riaz and his wife rasina from him. then there is the lawyer and a corrupt cop. characters are introduced with due importance at the beginning only to lose relevance soon after.

case in point is rasina. she has no relevance in the larger scheme of things, but is introduced, it seems, to complicate the plot.

once we reach puliyanmalai, we meet shaktivel (r parthiban), sugandi (anu haasan), his son and the officer of ias aruna (revathy) who narrates part of the story. we also meet the villains and the three journalists.

even the narrative style is different as indira travels from alapuzha to puliyanmalai. the stark contrast in style is a distraction and a hindrance. for example, wouldn’t it have been better if the police narrated the life of indira in alapuzha and focused more on the protest launched by indira?

the part set in alapuzha is too wide. for example, an entire song is filmed on a bus and the mood is contemplative. indira and rasina remember their respective husbands and, while it’s a good shot, it doesn’t fit into the larger scheme of the film.

The commentary on current affairs, especially this part about the aadhaar card being necessary if one needs to admit people to the hospital, is timely but fits the movie.

towards the end, we see nasser as the sathyamurthi lawyer defending indira, and rekha as the judge hearing indira’s case against the state. the case is simple and treated as such by the lawyer and the intelligent judge. the climax is not a tense argument, but rather a speech about unity that is unapologetically preachy.

author tweets @priyanka_s_mccfollow @htshowbiz for more information

Related Articles

Back to top button