‘Mandharam’ has very little special in it, despite the individual charms of all its actors. Scratching not much deeper than the surface of its characters, it’s a film that fails to find its own voice, forget its fragrance.
‘Kalyanam’ makes a celebration of being lost in its formulaic twirls, and forces an unabashed repetition of household instances from a dozen romantic capers of yore. It’s a pretty tiresome marriage, as my fellow spectator insists, one of which, the jubilations are very unlikely to last long.
‘Pokkiri Simon’ is less of a tribute to a superstar, and beneath all the confetti, wolf whistles and blaring horns lurks a tale that’s all set to go on a detour. And when it does, it takes the entire film with it, toppling down like a pack of cards, and very soon losing its way among done-to-death plotways.
‘Parava’ is a charming coming-of-age tale with a liberal dose of backtales thrown in. It does gallantly buck time-honoured storytelling strategies with innovative modes of its own, and yet leaves you with that faint regret that despite all its artistry and ambition, it’s not that absolute, flawless piece of cinema that would have left you in a daze.