The disclaimer from the makers says it's a fake story, and you are well aware of it sans their confession. Still, "Kinavalli" accomplishes in keeping you engaged in a fresh horror-fantasy tale. Director Sugeeth ignores conventional spooky tropes in the narration that is simply riveting and gripping. It's also powered by the notable performances from a bunch of talented newcomers.
Sugeeth uses modest settings unlike cliched horror flicks to create the impact of spooky moments. Towards the climax too, it's the simplicity in the treatment that drives our interest in the film. The usual series of thuds from an eerie spirit give way to perfectly conceived subtle frightening moments here. So they create the feel of originality and fresh treatment.
"Kinavalli" begins with the reunion of five friends after a long time in a hilltop bungalow. Four friends of Vivek, played by Ajmal Zayn, reaches the bungalow to give him a surprise on the occasion his wedding anniversary. Vivek's wife Ann (Surabhi Santosh) invites them to their bungalow without informing Vivek.
Sudheesh (Vijay Johny), Ajith (Krrish Menon), Gopan (Sujith Raj) and Swaty (Soumya Menon) happily enjoy their stay with Vivek and Ann. Once, Sudheesh starts to see bizarre things at the house. Soon the scare gradually spreads to others.
Co-written by Syam Seethal and Vishnu Ramachandran, "Kinavalli" has a well-trimmed and brilliantly conceived script. There are no attempts or usual fripperies to evoke fear instead it's the suspense that keeps one on the guessing mode.
Amidst the mist and interesting colour tone settings, Vivek Menon creates superb visuals that enhance the milieu of the story. Surabhi is the pick of the debutants and her notable performance keeps the grace intact while considering the fantasy theme.
If "Kinavalli" can grab your full attention with a horror fantasy tale, it's purely due to its perfect package and fresh treatment. Sans any banal horror elements, this film is engaging and gripping. The remarkable performances of newcomers also strengthens the narration.
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