Kanne Kalaimaane movie cast: Udhayanidhi Stalin, Tamannaah Bhatia, Vadivukkarasi, Vasundhara Kashyap
Kanne Kalaimaane movie director: Seenu Ramasamy
Kanne Kalaimaane movie rating: 2.5 stars
There is a lot to like in Kanne Kalaimaane, albeit in bits and pieces. There is this betrothal scene where Bharathi (Tamannaah) sits on the bench and says, “Enaku keezha ukkandhu pazhakkam illa.” (I don’t have the habit of sitting down on the floor). This comes as a refreshing change in Tamil films that traditionally show brides sitting on the floor with folded legs. Sometimes, even with feet tucked under the knees or thighs. That’s how it is. That’s how a bride is supposed to be.
Also, in a long time, I haven’t seen a Tamil film where a couple prefers to sleep on their first night without the cliched romance. Kamalakannan (Udhayanidhi Stalin), an organic farmer, steps into the bedroom and looks at Bharathi, who is sleeping because she is tired. He smiles, switches off the light and doesn’t disturb her.
Bharathi isn’t the usual ‘loosu ponnu’ shown in Tamil cinema. She is fiery, independent, career-oriented and works as a manager in a government rural bank. Even on the day of her marriage, she doesn’t wear make-up. As Azhagammal aka Appaththaa (Vadivukkarasi) often says, “Bharathi-naa nermai, Bharathi naa dhairiyam,” — she lives up to her name — (Subramanya) Bharathi kanda pudhumaipenn. In Appaththaa’s words again, Bharathi is like “Indira Gandhi who walks with a straight back.” Tamannaah shines in her role, and this is easily one of the best performances in her career after Dharmadurai. It is nice to see her dignified in crisp handloom cotton saris with high-necked blouses.
Until the first half, I was under the impression that Kanne Kalaimaane is a modern-girl-meets-a-village-guy story. But it is not. Seenu Ramasamy discusses NEET, farmer suicides, reduced availability of loans for farmers, besides other pressing political issues, and it feels a bit generic. In the midst of all this, the story loses its way. Of course, cinema can be used as a medium to address ‘social’ issues, but, you can’t choose dialogues as the only means to convey ‘messages’. The director compensates by throwing in little surprises like how Kamalakannan and Bharathi bond.
The problem with Kanne Kalaimaane is everyone is too good. Seenu Ramasamy’s characters aren’t flawed. They look perfect. Kamalakannan is a dutiful son and a doting husband. He is too nice for his own good. He is extremely understanding and loving. He doesn’t rebel when Appaththaa and his father ask him not to talk to Bharathi. Instead, he goes on a subtle hunger strike and makes them realise his intentions towards Bharathi are serious. Even, Appaththaa, who is portrayed somewhat like villi, in the beginning, is humanised towards the end. As a result, there is no conflict and the story falls flat. When you get into the groove and expect what’s going to happen next, the film ends unexpectedly.
Though Kanne Kalaimaane tries to be an ambitious film, despite much potential for drama, it lacks a strong script that most Seenu Ramasamy films have.