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Movie Review: Kannamma (2005) Back to Movie
Rate movie A movie review by Balaji Balasubramaniam
Fans Rating: 51%%51%% 51% (7 votes)
Movie Still Karunanidhi has scripted both socials like Parasakthi and historicals like Manohara but what is common among them is that they are known for their sharp scripts. He is definitely a master at Tamil and the power of his pen has been evident in many movies. That said, I cannot see any reason for him choosing a movie like Kannammaa for returning to script-writing after a long break. It is neither a political satire nor, inspite of having the heroine's name as its title, a socially relevant film. His dialogs do shine at some places but for the most part, are made irrelevannt by the horrid screenplay and bad character development.

Anand(Premkumar), who is studying to be a doctor in Chennai, owes everything to his childhood friend Madan(Bose Venkat), who has financed his education. Anand and Kannamma(Meena) fall in love while back in the village Madan's uncle's daughter(Vindhya) is in love with Madan. The two couples get married after some confusion. In the midst of the Kargil war, Anand joins a an army medical camp and soon after, news of his death is received. Madan then takes it upon himself to take care of the distraught Kannammaa.

The movie throws up an interesting situation initially with Meena falling in love with Premkumar, unaware that her marriage is being fixed up with Venkat. That is resolved rather quickly and cleanly but the presence of characters like Vindhya and the driver who lusts after Meena leads us to expect more such interesting issues. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Vindhya's behavior makes it clear how the movie is going to proceed after Premkumar's death and though that does happen, the movie unravels completely. As an old lady on the bus suddenly takes Meena back to her house after feeling sorry for her and new characters like Vadivukkarasi are introduced simply to earn even more sympathy for Meena, it is clear the director has no clear idea of how to proceed.

Right from the first scene, this is one of those movies that makes one wonder if the director is aware of how people behave and talk in the real world. The lines the two kids speak, whether to each other or to others(like the old man who asks them about their ambition in life) are so mature and adult that they immediately come off as fake and cinematic. And this kind of unnaturalness exists throughout the movie. And one particular scene, where Bose excitedly yells "Success" after being able to successfully connect to his friend on his cellphone, is indicative of the lack of subtlety and cinematic tone prevalent in the entire movie.

The USP of the movie is name behind the script - 'Kalaignar' Karunanidhi. Admittedly, the script does make us enjoy its sharpness at several places(like the clever play on Iyal as a suffix). The jabs at some of the social issues and the shots at the current administration(ofcourse hidden in double-meaning dialogs) are also enjoyable. At the same time, the dialogs do also contribute to the artificiality of the movie. It is very unnatural when people utter the clever lines during normal conversations.

Meena performs competently especially towards the end. But contradictions in her characterization don't let her much sympathy. Bose Venkat, from the small screen (apparently the 'Bose' in his name is actually the name of his character in the megaserial Metti Oli) and Premkumar are good while Vindhya overacts whenever she is in accusing mode. Other artistes like Kuyili, Vadivukkarasi and Chandrasekhar are adequate.

Rate movie A movie review by Balaji Balasubramaniam