Kathakali: Film Review – A Thrilling Murder Mystery

Verdict: An intelligent revenge saga!

Kathakali is touted to be based on a real life incident that happened with Pandiraj (Producer – Director) friend. Vishal and Pandiraj joined together to produce this whoddunit thriller, where one is a hero-producer and the other is a director-cum-producer. This shows the confidence these guys have in their script. Let’s see if the outcome is as great as they have visualized.

Movie starts with a fight between the gangs of the Kakinada fishermen and Vizag fishermen. All the antagonists are introduced in the opening titles amidst a terrific background score by Hiphop Tamizha. The leader of Kakinada fisherman gang, Sambasiva (Madhusudhan) is a ruthless crook who does anything to wrench power. He becomes a pioneer of illegal trade and in return becomes an enemy to many people across the state. Kamalakar (Vishal) returns from US to marry his lady love Malleswari (Catherine Teresa) after four years. With their marriage due in four days, Kamalakar goes to Vizag to invite his friends for marriage and meet his lady love. In the meanwhile, Samba is murdered in broad day-light in the streets of Kakinada which results in a curfew like situation. All fingers point towards Kamalakar family as the reason for Samba’s murder due to their previous enmity. Who killed Samba and what is the connection between Kamalakar family and Samba and did Kamalakar marry Malleswari forms the rest of the story.

Kathakali Telugu - BookMyShow

Vishal as a US return guy was apt in the role of Kamalakar. Catherin Teresa as Malleswari is cute and bubbly. The chemistry between the lead pair is awesome. Madhusudhan as Samba is outstanding in the role of an antagonist. One can easily relate him to the conniving nature and should be commendable in the way he portrayed his character. Sreejith Ravi as inspector is another surprising element in this movie who is someone to watch out for in future. Karunas as Vishal friend provided some good comedy.  All the other supporting cast are adequate.

Pandiraj has to be applauded for putting his heart and soul into the movie, and for coming up with an authentic thriller and Vishal needs to be commended for his guts for successfully attempting a thriller. Hiphop Thamizha’s background score and music is a treat to ears. Balasubramaniam’s photography is excellent. The visuals in night scenes and rain fights are praise worthy. Editing and screenplay is crisp, like any other good thriller movies. Production value is good, which one may have found difficult it is actually a dubbed movie. They have taken all care to show all the background hoardings in native Telugu language.

Why You Should Watch This Movie:

Audience have always been positive to whodunit thrillers and mystery movies, even if made by a smaller hero and production team. In this hot summer, this flick will send shivers down your spine. So chill and grab a ticket this weekend at a theater near you.

— By Ajay Mudunuri

Release Date: 18 Mar 2016
Language: Telugu
Director: Pandiraj
Genre: Crime, Drama, Thriller
Cast & Crew: Vishal Krishna Reddy, Catherine Tresa
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