When the beautiful and serene Kuttanad (famous for its enormous paddy fields and ofcourse the boat race in the Punnamada backwaters) is battling day by day to regain its lost glory to bring back the life of its people to normalcy, a movie entirely picturized around this place gets its theatrical release. Obviously the reference here is to Mammootty’s Oru Kuttanadan Blog which marks the directorial debut of writer Sethu (of the Sachi-Sethu duo).
I wouldn’t say the film is a copy or an exact replica of some other Malayalam films but the characters are totally familiar while the siituations and passage of the screenplay resemble moments which have flown through our eyes in the form of various films. So a freshness in story or treatment is totally lacking here. Compounding to the misery is the tacky presentation that gave the film a bad outlook. An outdated film that tests the patience level, Oru Kuttanadaan Blog is a dry film that never becomes engaging.
Krishnapuram, a calm village at Kuttanad is where the story unfolds. The story is narrated from a non-resident blogger’s perspective and the focus of his blog is Hari whom the youngsters fondly call Hariyettan. He is an inspiration,a role model and a sort of icon for the youth and whenever there is an issue affecting the people who are close to the protagonist our Hariyettan jumps into action to bring relief to them. Can this love and affection that Hari is receiving is something that he can expect forever is the next question. The events that unfold in the village that creates an impact on the relationship between Hari and the people of Krishnapuram is what the film tries to portray.
Tried and tested formula where the hero who has a clean image and is respected by one and all, one who is always willing to help others was synonymous with the movies of the nineties. We can easily predict at some stage the same old people will turn against the same man within no time. Then how the protagonist comes out of all the mess is told numerous times in Mollywood.
I am not naming any films but Oru Kuttanadan Blog follow the pattern of films that we are so much familiar. Such plots have no takers these days. Devoid of anything fresh to tell and without giving too much importance on the presentation aspect, this film is a tiring watch right from the start. A dull and ordinary screenplay is what Sethu has written and in my opinion even the best of directors cannot do much to save this film from sinking.
Till the halfway stage, the pace is sluggish. But the latter half do picks up momentum though the narration doesn’t get any sort of change as far as freshness in content or story telling goes. The story and the situations were highly predictive. Sethu has tried to include Panchayat President, a group of local people around him, the tea shop everyone gather to convey humour etc etc but nothing worked.
Mammootty as an actor was literally wasted. He didn’t have a single scene that could challenge his capability as an actor and sadly even he couldn’t do anything to save the film from becoming a washout. Nedumudi Venu, Lalu Alex, Sunny Wayne, Thesni Khan, Jacob Gregory, Jude Anthony, Sohan Seenulal, Sanju Sreeram are also part of the supporting casts but none could make an impact.
We have three leading ladies in the film. Rai Lakshmi, Anu Sithara and Shamna Kasim are the chosen ones. While Shamna’s serious police officer role looked too comical, Anu Sithara wasn’t given a share in the screenplay that could add some value to the film. Looked like Rai Lakshmi was casted just to add some glamour quotient. Songs were okay if we watch them with the visuals while Bijibal’s background score was below average. Cinematography was good and with the beauty of Kuttanad in front of the camera at full disposal, the camera team completely utilized that.
Oru Kuttanadan Blog is reminiscent of the films from the nineties and similar to malayalam tele-serials of the present era as far the content and presentation goes. A disappointing film with a dullish script and an outdated style of making, this is one screenplay that Mammootty should have declined outrightly.