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Times of India
Mamachen is an unmarried, wily politician who misuses the power of khadi for his own advantage. He seems disinterested after being selected as a candidate for upcoming elections, but his opponents work for his victory eyeing benefits. Meanwhile, Mamachen is busy wooing a girl, who is much younger to him.
With his debut film, it seems Jibu Jacob has come up with a fresh comedy, soaked in thrills, to draw family crowds as well as the new generation audience. Malayalis too have witnessed the various threads running through this story many times - politics, spitefulness, love and friendship - in box office hits and duds.
What makes Vellimoonga unique is that the film effortlessly makes the audience a part of its innocent village crowd, their conversations and dilemmas. While it feels like a film from the nineties, the movie also makes sure that its comedy is not dated. The first half builds the story, its setting, characters and their equations quite well - the likeable political underling (Aju Varghese), the reproachful-yet-loving mother (KPAC Lalitha), Mamachen's political opponents (Tini Tom and Shajon), the smart priest (Sunil Sugadha) and Mamachen's love interest (Nikki Galrani). The leading lady doesn't have much to do, but she holds her place in the film.
Biju Menon convinces his viewers that comedy is not just a genre he tries for a change. The way he carries himself as the all-white clad
of his village and the reactions to comic scenes are inspired from his own previous films. For instance - poking fun at his protruding belly through a song from his film
and his comic sequences with Aju Varghese are two instances. As for music, Bijibal's melodious compositions gel well with the narrative.
The execution of scenes, timing of situational comedies and even the performance of relatively new actors - who trigger laughter through natural acting - are worth mentioning. Just when the viewer expects a re-run of past comedy scenes, the filmmaker gives a gentle twist to make it a tad different.
An example is the funeral sequence where a publicity-craving politician walks in to grab attention and the neighbour's comments after watching the family's dramatic reaction before the funeral. If you're looking for a light-hearted film, do watch Vellimoonga. - Deepa Soman