Sunday, November 18, 2007

The veteran film maker Adoor Gopalakrishnan, five years after ‘Nizhalkuthu’ has presented the movie goers with a new gift- “Naalu Penungal”. Based on four short stories of the Malayalam veteran writer Thakazhy Sivasankara Pillai, the movie is divided into four parts. This kind of story narration is rare. The film rotates around the life of four women where in everyone has been portrayed with equal importance.
The first part of the film is sub-titled ‘Oru Niyamalankhanathinte Kadha’ which means ‘Story of breach of Law’. The woman in this part is Kunjipeenu (Padmapriya) who plays the role of a sex worker who later chooses to live by working as a road worker. It portrays how the society treats such women even of they have decided to live in good lines in one part of their life. It is about 20 minutes in duration.
The second part of the film is sub-titled ‘Kanyaka’ (Virgin/unmarried) which focuses on the life of Kumari( Geethu Mohandas), married to Narayanan(Nandu) who fails to look after her. She is a peasant and earns money for her family. Her dialogues are less, yet her character is strong enough to compensate with the dialogues.
The third part of the film named ‘Chinnu Amma’ is about the life of Chinnu (Manju Pillai) who does not have children in her life. She is a naïve lady yet strong enough to protect herself against a sin that should not be committed. Mukesh also does his part of the film well.
The final part of the film is named ‘Nithya Kanyaka’ (Never married/Spinster) is one which revolves around the life of three women. The title role is played by Nandita Das as Kamakshi. She is the eldest among the four children of the family. Kavya Madhavan who plays Subadra is the younger sister of Kamakshi. Remya Nambeeshan also plays sister role. This part tells how a lady can live alone without support from anyone in a society. It portrays a woman who was once dependant yet became strong in the end.
Watching Naalu Pennungal was like reading four short stories. Each story was well narrated and the viewers were not left confused. The Malayalam film industry which has given women important roles, have again done justice in this film. At the end of the film, every character remains engraved in our minds. K.P.A.C Lalita, Murali, Manoj K.Jayan, Ravi Vallathol, Asokan are some of the other characters in the film. The cinematograohy was by M.J Radhakrishnan and he has succeeded in bringing the raw realities of life on to screen. All the characters were given equal importance. Dialogues were less and crisp. The background score was also soothing to the ears.
This film was premiered in Toronto and has also been selected for the Indian panorama (International Film Festival Of India) and for the competition section of Int’l Film Festival of Kerala.
A serious film goer will surely not be disappointed watching this film. It also moves through four different phases of time and it is portrayed through the difference in the dialogues and the attitude of people.



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