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Times of India
The film is based on a novelette by Ananthapadmanabhan. It places a woman and a set of men in the backdrop of a chess board to narrate the varying nature of their relationship
There is something flatteringly unassuming about
. A film that captures the true mercurial shades of the feminine psyche, simplicity meets subtlety. It's about a married woman; a mother of two children a woman whose heart is full of romance, passion and a sense of longing;subdued but persistent.
Rima gives a compelling performance as Savithri. In a finely drawn character; she constantly probes for a dramatic force that makes Savithri a gem in her glowing career. Savithri is a gifted chess player who is almost invincible and she writes poems swathed in love and recites them passionately. Murali Gopy as her husband Nanda Gopan is quote adorable and the title refers to a club where she is a star member.
Her desires are not wild, carnal longings but rather a perennial wish for closeness which she fathoms in her husband's soft caresses and mild chidings. Even when her mind is swayed, she rises above the rest with a dignity she refuses to give away. This film owes immensely to a beautifully crafted script by Ananthapadmanabhan. The fluctuating motives of the characters gel with the changing moves on the chess board.
A woman, who symbolises poise and calm, starts fumbling when she confronts a charming opponent Sishir (Praveen). Her poise is rattled, her smile fades but defeats do not taste bitter for she loves them. She always quotes Emily Dickinson and the very choice of her verse lends a charming subtlety to the character of Savithri. K B Venu builds deft sequences that whip up moments that are forceful, lovable and sometimes tense. He leaves certain motifs in the middle of narrative and later moulds them into powerful metaphors like Sishir's love for knight on the chess board. August Club has its share of moments where one would have wished it to have some propelling dynamism. However it never fails to engage for it has a warmth which is good to feel and share.