Critic's Rating: 17/5
Friday 11 October 2002
Dileep, Navya Nair, Manya
Dileep has also fallen into the superstar syndrome as proved by his latest film Kunjikoonan. He uses the age-old method of being there in every frame of the film by doing a double role. If the central character is an ugly handicap, the other is a handsome hunk to satisfy the superstar ego. Even though the film is marketed as a comedy, it is actually the tale of a desolate and helpless handicap.
Kunjan (Dileep) is a handicap with bucktooth and hunch back. He owns an STD booth and though he is positively ugly he dreams about marrying a beautiful girl. Thoma (Cochin Haneefa) owns a light&sound shop near Kunjan?s shop and Chandran (Salim Kumar) is the ?sound engineer? there. Chembakam (Navya Nair) is a blind girl in a circus troupe that comes to the village. When her father dies in an accident Kunjan helps her by giving her a job in the STD booth and slowly he falls in love with her. He lies to Chembakam that he is very handsome, but fears a day when she gets back her sight and rejects him. One of the regular customers in Kunjan?s booth is Prasad (Dileep) who is a basketball coach and he is in love with Lakshmi (Manya) who is the daughter of a police officer. As the father does not approve the marriage Prasad and Lakshmi plans to elope, but on that day a local thug Achu intervenes and Lakshmi is killed. Kunjan is the witness to this murder and soon Achu is arrested. Lakshmi?s eyes are donated to Chembakam and she gets her sight. She sees Prasad and mistakes him for Kunjan and hugs him. On seeing this Kunjan is heartbroken and he leaves the village. But Chembakam waits for him till one day she finds him begging in front of a temple!
The highlight of the film is Dileep in the title role and he is extraordinary. Here is one of his most lovable performances as the handicap, though as the handsome Prasad he just passes muster. Navya Nair is a revelation and she is definitely the next Manju Warrier in the making. Director Sasi Sankar has taken a leaf out of Vinayan?s diary and leaves the audience exasperated.