Aami review: An engaging watch
An enjoyable trip watching a woman who lived her life, mostly by her own terms
Saturday 10 February 2018
Manju Warrier, Tovino Thomas, Murali Gopy, Anoop Menon
Director Kamal’s Aami is a biopic on the life of acclaimed writer Kamala Das aka Madhavikutty, or ‘Aami’ as she was called by her close family members.
Madhavikutty was known for her honest and bold writing style, besides the real life controversy when she decided to accept Muslim faith, changing her name to Kamala Suraiya, at the age of 65.
The movie has been in the news ever since it was announced and also, when the original choice to play the title role, Bollywood actor Vidya Balan, walked out of the project. It is to the credit of the makers of the film that her replacement, Manju Warrier, has a striking resemblance to the genius writer that she plays on screen.
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The storyline mixes some fantasy and shows Madhavikutty’s fascination for Lord Krishna, which somewhat explains her decisions and her way of writing.
The life of Madhavikutty is chronicled from her childhood days, when she was a bubbly young girl who loved her ‘Nalappattu tharavadu’ in Punnayoorkulam much more than Calcutta, where she grew up with her parents. She got married at the age of 15 to Madhava Das (Murali Gopy), who was 20 years older to her. The couple had three children and though there were issues between them at times, she always loved her husband a lot.
Madhavikutty’s conversion to Islam has always been a sensitive episode and Kamal doesn’t shy away from showing certain aspects, which has mostly remained as “known secrets”. More on this area could be revealing too much about the storyline.
In a way the movie looks pretty superficial and even melodramatic at times, if you have followed Madhavikutty’s life and writings. Evidently, the attempt here is not to offer something new. We can say it’s more of a documentation of some of the known facts about the writer, than a great cinematic version about the life of an incredible woman.
Though her trademark dialogue delivery and excessive makeup at times can be included as the minuses, it’s an earnest performance from Manju Warrier as she becomes Madhavikutty.
Murali Gopy shines as Madhava Das and Anoop Menon plays his character, quite convincingly. It is Tovino Thomas, who packs a real surprise here, though we won’t reveal much about his character and play spoilsports.
Aami perhaps give a feeling that it is a bit too long and the ending is rather hastily done. It’s an enjoyable trip watching a woman who lived her life, mostly by her own terms.
Aami review:- Verdict: An engaging watch
Reactions from Social Media:
Did people actually like #Aami or are they pretending? It was just a disaster to me. Didn't even enjoy atleast one bit of it.
Mahima Nandakumar @memahima
Each film has its own pace, some of them are meant to be slow and so was #AamiIt is a person's life&all of us know how stretched out are lives.Kamal sir's screenplay has captured Aami's life in the suitable pace.The film's duration/pace wont bother d audience who read Kamala Das
Martin N Joseph @mnj993
#Aami - Brilliant biopic with a wonderful performance from @themanjuwarrier. Slow screenplay and 2 hours 50 minutes length is a little let down. Overall a good experience. Loved it.
siju mathew @sijumathew94
Kamal sir take a bow, watching #Aami, bloody brilliant and well made, with the overall casting and directing! Interval! Eagerly waiting for the other half
U. R. NANDAKUMAR @NandakumarUR
#Aami could portray Her well and enough. Congrats to team. Especially to @themanjuwarrier without her it was not at all thinkable.