The plot of a marriage celebration in a family with relatives coming in and the girl looking for her chance to elope with her boyfriend, has been there in quite a few films in the past. However, what writer-director Senna Hegde does with it, along with a fabulous cast and a competent technical team, is worth recommending as a well-made, enjoyable film.
Bringing in the much-required freshness to a predictable and familiar theme, Hegde focuses on the region’s traditional lifestyle, the people, the relationships, their food, the celebrations, the rituals, and local politics, too, in a less than two-hour presentation. Titled Thinkalazhcha Nishchayam, meaning ‘Monday is the engagement’, the film tells the story of a family with all flawed humans who get together before the engagement of a young girl.
The subject has a universal appeal, as every family of any region or religion has to deal with many similar issues on such occasions, with no exceptions. But what actually works for the film is its beautifully balanced narrative as a dramatic comedy that makes you smile and laugh at regular intervals, looking at the funny interaction between the family members and friends.
The engaging incidents are refreshing and relatable, with the camera doing wonders, even bringing forward the characters, not having any major dialogues in the sequences. It also gets noteworthy support from the background score and music department, making you feel related to the proceeding on screen. Particularly, I loved the sounds constantly running in the backdrop of a distant temple or social events in the locality.
The flow of events not only keeps you smiling but also makes you think about the way father behaves, representing the age-old mindset of our patriarchal society, more concerned about the ego and the so-called family reputation. Thankfully, he later understands that the times have changed, and it’s now a new world we are living in ruled by the young.
Coming to another achievement of the project, it’s an impressive Malayalam film with no popular faces in the key roles. Moving over the trending names, here we have lesser-known actors who are simply outstanding, complementing each other in their assigned roles. That said, the film doesn’t offer any emotionally moving impact towards the end, which may be because of its humour quotient being intact throughout. But the storytelling remains realistic, honest, and enjoyable, worth giving your time.
Title: Thinkalazhcha Nishchayam (Malayalam)
Cast: Sunil CK, Sajin Cherukayil, Suchithra Devi
Director: Senna Hegde
Rating: Three and a half stars
Streaming on SonyLIV