The movie Kinavalli directed by Sugeeth opens with a voice-over by Biju Menon in which he urges us to not look at the logic aspect of this movie as it is a ghost story. I can completely understand that argument because ghosts are not a scientifically proven thing to have a logical debate. But what the makers should have thought about more than the logic issue was the stereotypes in making. The only bit of freshness for Kinavalli is the climax explanation which is somewhat acceptable because of the emotional angle. Other than that this movie is just a template horror movie.

Vivek and Ann got married against the wishes of their parents and Vivek’s close friend circle also got detached from him after the incident. On their wedding anniversary day, Ann decides to invite all those close friends to their house in the middle of an estate. Kinavalli basically shows us how this reunion becomes a terrifying experience for the gang and how things end up eventually.

For an argument, they can say that they have presented the concept of ghost in a new light (too many lights if you look at the way DOP has shot this film). But that doesn’t really hold as they are holding on to the clichéd concept of ghost for the whole time. And after a point, the ghost vs guests’ drama reminded me of the recent film Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety. No! I am not accusing it of plagiarism here. In SKTKS a guy was trying to tell his best friend that the girl with whom he is in a relationship with wasn’t a good person and here similar thing is happening but instead of the girl it was a ghost. The characters in the movie are challenging the ghosts as if she has no superpowers. This cat and mouse game was a nonsensical breaking of cliché.

Surabhi Santhosh plays the role of Ann and rather than looking pretty and switching expression from one extreme to another, there isn’t much there for her to do in this pivotal role. Ajmal Zayn, Krrish, Sowmya Menon, Vijay Johny and Sujith Raj are the newcomers here who play the characters in the gang and them all needs to work on their craft to be more natural. Vijay Johny was perhaps the only one who managed to create some kind of an impression. Even though that character changed nothing in the equation, Hareesh Kanaran as Appu was a big relief in this otherwise predictable horror thriller.

Sugeeth has his style which hasn’t changed from Ordinary. His way of treating drama is still stuck in the 90’s and his main tricks in the toolkit were humor and visuals. Unlike the other Sugeeth films, the cinematography this time is done by Vivek Menon instead of Faizal Ali. Well, the only difference I could sense was in the number of lights used. Vivek has used double the number of lights to set up shots and its eyesore instead of being eye candy. Coming to the content, the basic questions we have about the character behavior in horror movies remain in the case of Kinavalli as well. Characters always want to find the truth single-handedly. The way the characters behave and talk has no realness and this “da da” friendship doesn’t feel like a heartening one.  Music wasn’t making an impact in helping the narrative.

If you feel that getting scared at regular intervals of time is the requirement of a horror movie, then Kinavalli has the ingredients you are looking for. But if you are looking for freshness in the narrative and unique elements in the script, you will be disappointed.

Rating: 2/5

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for freshness in the narrative and unique elements in the script, you will be disappointed.


Green: Recommended Content

Orange: The In-Between Ones

Red: Not Recommended


By Aswin Bharadwaj

Founder and editor of Lensmen Reviews.

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