There are tales 'lived' by people in the past that need to be told time and again as they keep communicating with the present. And a good storyteller who comes across such an unbelievable saga retells it to himself several times until he is clear about how to portray it visually before a discernible audience. R.S. Vimal has done just that with his directorial venture, 'Ennu ninte Moideen'.
The film is a recreation of an incredible love story, unfolded in a village in Kozhikode in the 1970's and continues to live through the heroin, Kanchanamala. The clarity with which the director worked on it is remarkable. The plot, which could be summed up as simple as 'an unusual love story of a Muslim man and a Hindu woman,' is the backbone of the film.
Vimal seems to have been so fascinated with the 'brave lovers' -- Moideen and Kanchanamala -- that he first made it into a documentary and then to a full-length feature film. That the story is based on a true incident may have been the biggest challenge before the filmmaker as it could have ended up being another documentary. However, with a neatly penned script and supported by stupendous technical manoeuvrings the film yanks and transports the audience to a mystic yet realistic world.
Falling in love with each other was not a mountaineering task for Moideen, the versatile and Kanchanamala the genius. However, living together became a nearly impossible for them with the epochal hurdles of religion, social status and so on playing the spoilsport. And Moideen's words to Kanchana "Let's go to a place where 'mandirs' and 'masjids' won't separate human beings" sounds as appealing to the audience of the film as it did to their contemporaries. Despite all the backlashes, which were often cruel, violent and even bloody, Moideen and Kanchana loved each other leaving the audience to wonder whether it was really possible to love and live like that.
Apart from being an inquiry into the unknown realms of human emotions such as love, revenge and envy the film has a smooth narrative which offers a glimpse into the socio-political milieu of the time.
Both Prithviraj and Parvathy could be proud of translating themselves into one of the greatest romantic couples of real life into reels. Moideen, who could be easily dubbed as a perfect man -- he was everything, a socially committed and politically pragmatic figure, a sportsman, a journalist and an actor -- was safe in Prithvi's hands. Parvathy offers a convincing performance with the subtleties in presenting Kanchana, who believed love conquers everything.
Bala's Sethu and Tovino's Appu could be turning points in their career. Sai Kumar, Lena, Shashi Kumar and Sudheer Karamana made their roles perfect.
Cinematography by Jomon T John breathed life into the script with the beautiful frames. The sprawling farms, arecanut fields and the river, often clad in rains, and the dimly-lit interiors of Kanchana's house work out for perfect background for the scenes.
Music too deserves special mention. While the romantic song 'Kannodu chollanu' is already a hit, the musical version of a Changampuzha poem is likely to find a place in the hit chart soon. M. Jayachandran and Pandit Ramesh Narayan along with their singers deserve a share of the credit for conveying the feel of the film so brilliantly.