Chola Malayalam Movie ReviewFeature Film | Drama
Once again, the power and brilliance in the craft of director Sanal Kumar Sasidharan overcome the limitations of a minuscule tale. The filmmaker harnesses this temperament to its maximum potential in 'Chola', making it flow like an unpredictable river. The misty roads and wild beauty of forest add charm to this creation albeit they stir up a sense of mysterious feel as well. Pervading the simplicity in the setting, the director takes us to a poetic realm that gifts a disturbing reality. Indeed, its distinct craft brings out the signature of the filmmaker. Seldom you come across a film with an ordinary plot gives a fabulous experience. This film has screenplay co-written by the director and K.V. Manikandan.
Schoolgirl Janaki, played by Nimisha Sajayan, comes out of her house on the sly in a hazy morning clad in school uniform. Her lover, played by Akhil Viswanath, and his master (Joju George) are waiting for her in a jeep in that high range. Albeit reluctantly, Janaki travels with them to Kochi, and the plan was to spend a day in the city. But everything goes for a toss in that journey.
Sanal Kumar Sasidharan unfolds a familiar page from the text of love and lust. He gives his own dimension to that familiar tale by revealing a shocking reaction from Janaki, who has undergone an unfortunate incident in her life. The fable of a maiden is fabulously blended with the main plot to drive home the concept of the director. And it's thought-provoking as well as beautiful. Here, the "chola" (rivulet) is the silent witness to the fate of characters when they are caught in deep mental conflict.
Nimisha Sajayan elevates her performance to the best to date by giving vent to the supreme emotions of a vulnerable girl. Undoubtedly, a strong and sensitive performance from Nimisha lends a realistic milieu to 'Chola'. Janaki's dilemma pelts queries to our conscience; like an extended version of Sanal's film 'S Durga' in which he also dealt with a host of issues that are being faced by women in society. The director's statements appear here in the form of tropes also (the scenes on the beach, and lodge , etc.).
'Chola' showcases the irony a teenage girl encounters in love and relationships. The gullible girl's dilemma in defining love and lust is the soul of this film. It fascinates visually and stuns occasionally while keeping the wild poetic mood intact in the narration. The film has a wild and eerie tone to create the perfect mysterious premise for the simple plot that leaves you in a quandary like the female character.
Joju, who is a fine cast in 'Chola', with his grave appearance throughout sustains the mystery in the character. With mainly three characters in 'Chola', Akhil also has done full justice to his role. Ajith Acharya works brilliantly behind the camera as a cinematographer to depict the breath-taking visuals of the forest, high range, and cascade.
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