Write & Watch

Salesh Dipak Fernando



Godha is a glorious surprise.  I knew the film would be good but it turned out to be a wonderful lesson on smart film making. It is yet another sports film but what stood out was the simple narration. The film is just 2 hours but it has traces of Woman Empowerment. Inclusion, Individual Aspirations, and Collective Strength. Godha addresses all of these topics yet it never tires the audience.

The Joie d verve touches you at the beginning of the film remains intact till the very end. And for once there is no gender bias when it comes to empowerment.  The yearning for an equal space finds a lovely voice in the film.

The film doesn’t scream to make a statement. Godha isn’t in your face either. It is smart, funny and subtle with pearls at the right places to drive home the messages scattered across the two hours. The warmth that embraces you when the end credits roll stays with you for a very long time.  

Another major plus is the way the creators amplify the locality to draw the audience into the narrative. Malayalam cinema has been fairly consistent in this aspect over the years. Almost every story has a local flavor to it which is very distinct and helps in establishing the characters as well.

Godha pairs up two unconventional fresh protagonists and both Tovino Thomas and Wamiqa Gabbi play to their strengths and perform well. Tovino Thomas might just be the next big thing in Malayalam Cinema. Wamiqa Gabbi is the surprise package in the film. She was splendid in Malai Nerathu Mayakkkam and with Godha she scores once again. Music by Shaan Rahman and cinematography by Vishnu Sarma blend well with the mood of the film.

And then there’s the small detail of Renji Panikar once again coming up with a top-notch performance. Kudos to Basil Joseph and team for a well-made film. What baffles me time and again is why other industries aren’t able to replicate the simple storytelling pattern of Malayalam Cinema. The scale isn’t big yet they consistently deliver in terms of content and a big fat salute for the same. I know most of you wouldn’t have watched this in theatres. But do catch it on DVD. A must watch,

Godha – Punches above it’s weight.



Kodi – What a relief it was. I almost gave up on the Diwali releases but Kodi surprised me. It is a very clever film. Durai Senthilkumar doesn’t tinker too much with the conventions of commercial cinema. But he deviates it just enough to make us applaud in unison.

 The core plot sets off from the first frame as the groundwork for Kodi’s political aspirations are laid through a father who yearns for the stage. From there it sets off as Dhanush takes over with the now familiar Rajini mannerisms.  Santosh Narayanan aids him with his signature tones.

But it isn’t kodi whom we are rooting for. He’s pitted against an antagonist who consistently surprises him and us. Very few Tamil films make us root for the antagonist. But kodi makes us switch sides with each passing minute.

There are no big plot twists but the smaller surprises keeps us on our toes. Kodi starts off with a game of betrayal and ends on the same note. Dhanush , Saranya and Anupama Parameshwaran are an extension of the cliché we have seen time and  again. The deviations happen with Trisha who makes us go wow with the best role of her career. Her thin frame fits very well as she transforms into a wily fox every now and then. It is a very bold move for we almost take her for granted before she makes the film her own.

I wonder what made her wait for 17 years to take that gamble. The gamble pays off as we shamelessly take her side though she could be morally wrong. Durai Senthilkumar – A job well done. Kodi comes agonizingly close to being a great film and falls short. Dhanush please avoid the Rajini mannerisms and arrest us with your inherent abilities. We are more than willing to surrender to your skills.

My Rating 3/5.

The best among the Diwali releases in all languages.

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