The preface that sets things rolling in 'Manikya Thampurattiyum Christmas Carolum' is BY ONV Kurup, which is by far, the best thing about the film itself. As always it's a pleasure listening to the much loved poet, though the film that follows falls way below expectations (if any).
'Manikya Thampurattiyum Christmas Carolum' tells two stories, distinctly different from one another, and the two stories , we are told are aimed at kids. The first tale is titled ''Manikya Thampuratti' and has a young princess of Udaygiri sentenced to be offered as a sacrifice by a scheming stepmother (Sukanya), while her dad, the ruling king (Devan) is away.
The second film has been titled 'Christmas Carol' and is a lose adaptation of Charles Dickens' novella by the same name. We have the much familiar Ebenezer Scrooge being replaced by Pathrose (Madhu), a miserly money lender who is spiritually transformed by visits from the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Yet to Come.
While the intention to make a children's film with fine morals sounds all right, the time and the year when a film as this is being made has to be kept in mind. It is 2013, and while the theme of the stories still hold strong, their adaptation to the screen leaves a lot to be desired.
The intended audience for a film as this is the children of course, and it would be extremely difficult to lure them into the cinema halls to watch a film as 'Manikya Thampurattiyum Christmas Carolum'. We cannot really undermine their aesthetics and they are very unlikely to be impressed by what they see on screen.
To a fresh generation that is fed on the latest technical gizmo, 'Manikya Thampurattiyum Christmas Carolum' would appear quite odd. Technically, the film maintains very mediocre standards, and the song picturisation in 'Manikya Thampuratti' bears testimony to the fact. It could have been acceptable probably a decade back, but today it looks way out of place.
The film does have some seasoned actors like Madhu, Devan, Sukanya, Thalaivasal Vijay and Sona Nair appearing in key roles. There are several fresh faces as well, some of whom do pretty good jobs, and some others who struggle around a bit.
The spark that should make a film as this entertaining is missing. The bright colors, noises and jokes that should have made it appealing to the kinds aren't there either. In fact, the second tale is way too philosophical that it's likely to escape most kids.
'Manikya Thampurattiyum Christmas Carolum' demonstrates beyond doubt, that good intention does not make a fine film. The mild messages are there and so is the good naturedness, but I'm not really sure if audiences of any age would fall in love with it.
(1 / 5) : Poor