Nellikka Malayalam Movie Review
'Nellikka' does not keep up its promise of turning sweet after a brief spate of bitterness. For the most part, it remains a tale that retains a languid taste in your mouth, which you hope against hope till the very end, will change for the better.
Balu (Deepak Parambol) is back home, and though jobless is welcomed heartily by his sister Nandu (Parveen Sullthana) and his father (Sasikumar). He strikes up an instant rapport with his soon would-be brother-in-law Satheesh (Atul Kulkarni), who offers a strike contrast to the listless young man in terms of demeanour, polish and last, but certainly not the least, success.
Balu soon joins a music band that he had long ago set up with his friends, and revives a long lost love (Sija Rose) as well. A chance encounter with a drug pin, brings up a few appalling facts about Satheesh, and Balu realizes that his (by now) brother-in-law isn't the man that he tries hard to project himself as.
'Nellikka' moves ahead at a leisurely pace initially, and sprinkled with a few light moments here and there seems all set to make an easy watch. However, when the pace altering shocker finally comes in view, it abruptly changes gears and alters itself into a different movie altogether that strives to be prudent.
Post-interval, 'Nellikka' gets busy strategising, and works out an easy way of liberating a man who has been caught in the clutches of crime. Balu sets himself to the task, and Satheesh obliges, as if in meek compliance to the fact that the hero eventually needs to have the upper hand. Lesser follies are perhaps forgotten in a hurry, which includes Balu having found Satheesh all cosy with his secretary in a Bangalore hotel room.
The adulation for Baburaj finds expression in the music troupe that Balu's dad maintains along with his friends. They lament that a statue of the much adored musician hasn't been put up in Kozhikode, and comment on the way music has evolved over the years.
Deepak Parambol is remarkably confident, and with his incredibly good looks, asserts that he makes hero material.
Though cast in a relatively short role, Sija Rose makes do with whatever she has been offered and does a good job of it, emphasizing that she is an actor who deserves better roles. The antagonist is safe in the hands of Atul Kulkarni who has proven time and again that he is a seasoned performer who could be banked on.
'Nellikka' could very well boast of some remarkably charming frames by Kunjunni S Kumar, and the film preserves a visual brightness throughout. However it's a tad too long, and the one hundred and forty four minutes long film looks like it could have done very well with some serious trimming.
Sometimes no questions are asked, especially in scenarios as these, but 'Nellikka' does not have that unusual vigour that keeps you all keyed up. It does not have the pre-requisite kicks or the edge-of-the-seat moments that could have elevated it on to the status of a bittersweet thriller.