Dakini (2018) Malayalam Movie Review – Veeyen


‘Dakini’ has none of the inventiveness that its trailer so blatantly suggested the film might have. At best it merely strikes you as a collection of cardboard caricatures that flit around on stage, with plenty of empty talk and emptier circumstances that leave you tremendously worn out at the end of the day.


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John Madden’s ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ (2012), is a film that I have watched time and again, and the elderly, endearing protagonists in it refuse to fade from memory. Rahul Riji Nair’s ‘Dakini’ has a comparable setting, with four women who are well past their prime, sharing an accommodation. The likeness between the two films though, ends there, and while Madden’s film continues to move you on multiple levels every time you think of it, ‘Dakini’ is a disposable film that vanishes without a trace from your mind, in no time.

The women in ‘Dakini’, Saroja, Molykutty, Vilasini and Rosemary (Sarasa Balussery, Pouly Wilson, Sethulekshmi and Savithri Sreedharan) seem to be having the time of their lives, and Molykutty  even rediscovers love when an old flame Kuttan Pillai (Alencier Lay Lopez) makes a reappearance in her life.  However, when the man is kidnapped, the four women are left with no choice, and along with their supporter Kuttappi (Aju Varghese), make a dash for the villain’s lair, where the baddie Mayan (Chemban Vinod Jose) sits in wait.

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Quite a remarkable premise, but the creativity in borrowing the character names from the enormously accepted Balarama comic series Mayavi, does not find any further might as the movie rambles on. Neither do the chief story propellers in ‘Dakini’ have the amiability and agreeableness that had made the characters in the comic series so popular.

It is a Barbie doll setting that the film maker crafts for ‘Dakini’ and the frames are all well placed and even cautiously coloured. But when it comes to the writing, ‘Dakini’ offers little but discontent. One only has to take a look at the two romantic tracks in the film, and one gets wind as to how shaky the entire writing is.

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The women decide to take on Mayan straightaway and set out in their car to seek help from an infamous goon (Saiju Kurup), one of Kuttappi’s friends. They are out on a mission, to save a dear friend from the clutches of a ruthless don and from probable death, but from their looks and the dialogues that ceaselessly seem to flow by, they seem anything but troubled. Cracking jokes and flashing their sunglasses, they might as well be going for a one day jaunt up the hill, and you wouldn’t be the least suspicious.

Molykutty plants herself as  a mole in Mayan’s  den, while the rest of them make a go for it when Mayan finds himself at his vulnerable worst. There is even a revolver to boot, and the women even get to shoot a bullet or two before the curtains are pulled down. But of course, why should men have all the fun?

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The performances are all up to the mark in ‘Dakini’ and yet remarkable performers as Sarasa Balussery and Savithri Sreedharan are tremendously limited by the inanities in the script. State award winners Pouly Wilson and Sethulekshmi find themselves in a tight spot as well, while the rest of them just about manage to pass muster.

‘Dakini’ has none of the inventiveness that its trailer so blatantly suggested the film might have. At best it merely strikes you as a collection of cardboard caricatures that flit around on stage, with plenty of empty talk and emptier circumstances that leave you tremendously worn out at the end of the day.


Verdict: Laborious Watch


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