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Times of India
Short stories written by M T Vasudevan Nair, Madhavikutty and Vaikom Muhammed Basheer are woven into a narrative about a man who is confused about marriage.
The emotional disconnect, which usually surfaces in narratives, that welds together different tales does not happen in Kathaveedu. This is one of the reasons why this film works to good effect. Sohanlal ensures progression with a script that is essentially a man-woman tale.
He picks three different stories from Malayalam, all woven on the same thread of love or the lack of love that binds and breaks relationships. There is a character, Raj Kartha, a filmmaker who treads along these stories, deeply identifying himself with each of them and holds the pieces together. Kunchako Boban unearths a reserve, very measured and balanced, while playing Raj Kartha who deciphers the tenderness of love, the bitterness of loss and the pangs of betrayal.
Relationship is a riddle for Kartha and he hunts for answers in the characters whom he moulds for his film. His live-in partner Jeena (Bhama) is keen on marriage and the very thought unsettles him. His inner rebellion however is less intense and more oriented, enabling him to talk calmly on the devastating effects of marriage. Boban maintains a calm that completely masks the torment of a doubtful soul, which in fact enhances the stature of his character.
While working out a flow for his narrative, Sohanlal slightly errs by shaking his viewers off the screen at unexpected junctures. The rest of the characters appear as part of the film which Kartha works on and Sohanlal imposes forced cuts on certain beautiful scenes marking a sudden transition to reality.
For instance, the silence that lingers around an emotionally crushed character is suddenly marred by a loud unpleasant voice of the director who says 'cut'. He gently draws the viewers to watch his characters at close quarters for quite some time and suddenly hurls them back to where they belong, an act that almost ruins his good work.
Biju Menon continues to demonstrate why he is the apt person when it comes to portraying the middleclass man and his travails. He plays Balachandran, a man who is left to deal with the sudden death of his wife, serving the food to his kids which their mother cooked just before her death and fumbling for answers when the kids ask him about her.
is a slow-paced but effective compilation of some of the most stirring tales ever written in Malayalam literature.