Summarizing a person’s life into a movie is indeed a challenge and every story may not be a suitable one for cinematic interpretations. Madhavikutty aka Kamala Das was a fascinating character because of her unapologetic approach in writing her thoughts on romance. Kamal’s Aami, a biopic on Madhavikutty is more like a visual summary of that person’s life.
Summarizing this film would be a very simple job. Aami tracks the entire life story of Madhavikutty from childhood to death in a back and forth manner. How that life was eventful because of her raw writing and unconventional decision making is what the movie Aami showing us.
The movie opens with the visual depiction of the first chapter in Ente Kadha. From there it sort of goes back and forth to show us the emotional journey. The only thing that I found cinematically exciting was the usage of the character Krishnan to show the perspective of our leading lady about love. The challenging thing about making a film on Madhavikutty is how to convey her concept of love in a convincing way and to an extent that has worked in favour of this film.
Manju Warrier as Madhavikutty is a casting that is hard to digest if you have an image of how the original Madhavikutty looked and talked. Even with the makeup support, it is really difficult to identify her as Madhavikutty. The dialogues that are dramatic by default get rendered in an okay way. Murali Gopi was convincing as her husband. Anoop Menon looks apt to play the character assigned to him while his portrayal was in the usual way. Tovino Thomas adds grace to Krishnan. The girls who played the younger versions of Madhavikutty were also fine.
Kamal is the writer and director of this film and much like his last biographical film Celluloid, here also he chooses to go for the full story of the central character. That makes it a 163 minutes long summary of the life of that person. From whatever little I know, I don’t think Kamal has skipped any phase deliberately, even though the names of certain crucial personalities were changed. The screenplay fumbles a bit too much because of melodrama in the second half. Madhu Neelakandan’s frames were good. The music was in sync with the treatment. The background score was also fine. A special mention to the sound design of the film too.
Watching Aami is more like watching the highlights of an exciting test match. If you have seen the full match (if you know most of the things about Madhavikutty) this highlights package will sort of help you relive those memories. On a cinematic level it’s neither a brilliant achievement, nor a bad film.
Watching Aami is more like watching the highlights of an exciting test match. If you have seen the full match this highlights package will sort of help you relive those memories.