There is no stopping Vinay Fort in this entertainer twhich opens the career of Ashraf Hamza and has its heart in the right place
By Mythily Ramachandran
Remakes come with the burden of living upto the original. Comparisons are inevitable between the two and many a time, remakes fall short of expectations.
Malayalam film ‘Thamaasha’ wins hearts with its adaptation of Kannada film, ‘Ondu Motteya Kathe’ that was directed by Raj B Shetty.
Written and directed by debutant Ashraf Hamza, ‘Thamaasha’ surpasses the original with its seamless narration and lifted high by terrific acting. As curtains come down, jokes apart, ‘Thamaasha’ works its magic on the audience.
‘Thamaasha’ follows Srinivasan (Vinay Fort)- a Malayalam language professor- who at 31 years is still looking out for a bride but is rejected on account of his baldness. Quite frustrated with his family’s concern, he decides not to go the traditional way of matrimony alliances anymore. Instead he wants to try his luck by bonding with three women he meets - his colleague Babita (Divya Prabha); Safiya (Grace Antony) who comes into his life through a chance encounter and Chinnu, (Chinnu Chandini), a young woman very much comfortable in her Plus size.
|Grace Antony as Safiya|
Ashraf Hamza’s writing is too good. Creating every character with utmost care he makes them distinct and real. What I loved is his sketch of the three women-Babita, Safiya and Chinnu and giving enough space to each. They may have their human failings yet bring in an air of positivity to their scenes. Of course Chinnu who demonstrates her ability to take in her stride the body shaming ridicule she encounters makes viewers reflect on the lens through which society views and accepts us. It is Chinnu who nudges Sreenivasan to rethink.
|Divyaprabha's Babita teacher is a picture of poise|
Hamza’s narration is seamless unlike in ‘Ondu Motteya Kathe’ where the narration staggered with Rajkumar’s songs that were played in to reflect the protagonist Janardhan’s state of mind. Hindering the flow further were dialogues that denoted Janardhan’s loud thinking. It was a wise decision to do away with these two aspects in ‘Thamaasha.’
|Vinay Fort with Chinnu Chandini|
In ‘Ondu Motteya Kathe’ the characters appeared more cinematic but in ‘Thamaasha,’ every actor brought alive his character with an unmatched spontaneity. Vinay Fort clearly carries the film on his shoulders. As Sreenivasan, he is completely believable and his body language, bring out Sreenivasan’s insecurities perfectly. Raj B Shetty’s Janardhan was timid and unsure of himself unlike Sreenivasan, who is more spirited. Playing the perfect tango opposite Fort is Chinnu Chandini, while Divya Prabha and Grace Antony match steps very well.
‘Thamaasha’s other strength is the friendship between Sreenivasan and Rahim (Navas Vallikkunnu)-a sub-staff at his college. There is more depth to this friendship than in the Kannada story. Hamza has given Rahim more space and Vallikkunnu is spot on every time.
Anil Kurian who plays Sreenivasan’s younger brother cannot be forgotten either. While remaining in the background, his role is one to reckon with.
‘Thamaasha’ with its clean humour keeps you chuckling and will make you ponder too.