Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Simplistic and yet a fresh take on love: Thattathin Marayathu


Vineeth Sreenivasan tries his hand at wielding the megaphone once again and this time, he’s struck gold. With this simple, endearing love story that has managed to get the youngsters mooning and starting to believe back in blissful olden days style college romance sans Facebook-SMS-Skype hype. Vineeth has set the cash registers ringing with this romantic movie, Thattathin Marayathu. 

It’s fresh, maybe it’s a little dated and yet this laid back old school feel is what makes this romance count. Not to mention a mind-blowing performance by Niven Pauly playing the love-struck nair boy who is hopelessly in love with his “ummachi kutty” (local slang for muslim girl) and some fantastic cinematography that has captured the serenic beauty of local areas in and around the Malabar region, including the thalassery beach. And how can I forget, a brilliant soundtrack by Shaan Rahman that is the toast of the singing population in Kerala these days. Mesmerizing, absolutely bewitching tunes that underscores the feel of the movie. Soft, undulating like lazy waves lapping against the sandy beaches, the music effortlessly woos you in and soon has you humming. Of course, when it has Vineeth as the director, you would expect the music to play a large role. Like it did in his first movie. But this time, it’s flawless. One of the best features of the movie. 

Coming down to the movie plot itself, Vineeth keeps it simple. Nair Boy meets muslim girl, falls hopelessly in love, woos her, wins her – enter complications in the name of family, religion – soon sorted out, rather simplistically – all’s well that ends well. Can it get simpler? I believe the appeal of the movie is that it cuts through the clutter of a lot of wannabe movies resorting to talk about global issues, or “try” to be “intelligent” enough to appeal to youngsters and adults alike – and keeps things linear. Even though there are vague attempts to bring in social themes of secularism – what with religion being the centre of the conflict in this movie, it had to be – but it’s soon brushed aside, love prevailing above all else being Vineeth’s short cut to all solutions. Maybe he should have thought about making the conflicts a little more complex, but I ain’t complaining.. the songs and the love-story made up for it. And the heroine deserves a mention. Even though she has nothing more to do than sit around look pretty, Isha Talwar am sure has a few million fans all over the small state of Kerala and even India. A relative newcomer in Malayalam cinema, Isha Talwar who plays the beautiful Ayesha, she of the twinkling doe eyes and an uncanny resemblance to Katrina Kaif – maybe an earthy, innocent version of Katrina who somehow looks a lot more accessible inspite of all her purdahs.

Set in the beautiful Malabar region of Thalassery, this movie has some breathtaking cinematography too, the songs background having captured the rustic beauty of the places. Since my mom hails from the same place, I can vouch for it. The movie has all the moments you would expect of a romantic movie – walking in the rain, standing in a college verandah with your beloved and talking a gazillion things with your eyes while keeping mum, stealing glances at your beloved while she walks like an ethereal beauty, head tucked within a scarf and that one long mischievous strand of hair escapes confine to play hide and seek with the wind, the goofy sidekick who has quirky solutions to all your problems. 

You’ve seen it a hundred times before, but you will love it to see it all again. A no-holds barred true blue romance that goes all out and makes you feel young again. Go fall in love all over again. I bet you will come out humming songs and feeling like on top of the world. Thattathin Marayathu is a winner, making sure you got your heart in the right place.