Review of Varayan’s film: a slow drama

History: After the assassination of the priest, Father Aby Capucin takes over in the problematic village of Kalippakkara. Will it introduce positive change?

Kalippakkara, a small village on the backwaters, is not as idyllic as it seems. Here, even to get the best meat, people literally have to fight, and the place doesn’t allow any foreigners except tourists. Even the police can’t really intervene here.

On Sundays the women go to church and the men go to the market to buy beef at Thresea chechi (Bindu Panicker) and the local priest (Joy Mathew) wants to clean up the village’s bad reputation. It is the kaikaaran church, Isthak (Manianpilla Raju) which directs the illegal activities in the village. One night, the priest is murdered and the church sends Father Aby Capuchin (Siju Wilson) to take over. A loving and handsome artist, the priest comes to troubled Kalippakkara with his assistant, Keppa (Davinchi Santosh). The incidents, after their arrival in the village, swarm the rest of the film.

It’s refreshing to see a father who plays football with children, sings and captures the beauty of the region on canvas. Isthak’s daughter (Leona Lishoy) even has a crush on Father Aby. He also drinks hot toddy and plays cards, and Siju with her pretty smile and manner, gets away with it and is the saving grace of the film. Manianpilla Raju, Leona Lishoy and Bindu Panicker are also doing a good job.

The main downside of the film, directed by debutant Jijo Joseph and written by a priest Danny Capuchin, is that things are portrayed in an incredible way. And while the first half is passable, after the interval boredom sets in, with us eagerly awaiting an important turn of events. Prakash Alex’s music is average, though Rajeesh Raman’s cinematography captures the village beautifully.

If you’re a Siju Wilson fan, you can watch this light-hearted film, with a willful suspension of disbelief.
V Vinod Nair

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