Entertainment Movie Reviews 22 Dec 2018 Kanaa movie review: ...

Kanaa movie review: A feel good movie with a bunch of important messages

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | ANUPAMA SUBRAMANIAN
Published Dec 22, 2018, 12:40 pm IST
Updated Jun 7, 2019, 12:57 am IST
A still from the film.
 A still from the film.
Rating:

Director: Arunraja Kamaraj

Cast: Aishwarya Rajesh, Sathyaraj, Sivakarthikeyan, Ilavarasu.

Kanaa is a mixed movie that involves an underdog story combined with the bigger issue of farmers in Tamil Nadu. Directed by debutant Arunraja Kamaraj, the movie begins with gender issues in sports when Kousalya aka Kousi (Aishwarya Rajesh) dreams of making it to the Indian cricket team.

Kousi is inspired by her dad Murugesan (Sathyaraj) a farmer who is an ardent cricket fan. He follows the Indian team patriotically, and this makes her want to play for the country some day. Her mom (Rama) is stuck in her old ways and refuses to believe that her daughter can amount to anything playing a sport with a bunch of boys. She’s teased, bullied, and is cast as a typical underdog with only her dad to back her up. Meanwhile, he himself takes out a loan but the harvest is terrible and he struggles to pay back aggressive creditors. With themes of feminism on one side and the plight of farmers on the other, will the situation of this struggling family improve against all odds? Well, the director (who also wrote the screenplay) tries to balance both, but could have just gone with the story of a cricketer girl who makes it big in the boy’s club.

The film moves along briskly in the first half before coming to a halt. Director Arunraja does a great job with his dialogues, and his characters have strong personalities. Then there’s this one-sided romantic track, involving actor Dharshan. It does get a bit moralistic, but that’s unavoidable given the number of issues at hand. The movie does pick up again with the entrance of one-eyed retired cricketer (and now coach) Nelson Dhilipkumar (Sivakarthikeyan), who inspires Kousi to reach great heights.

Aishwarya Rajesh is energetic and unrefined (in a good way.) She always makes you want to support her. Although a bit too comfortable in some scenes, her adamant nature in the face of adversary is executed really well. Sathyaraj’s support for his daughter is commendable, and his performance in general is excellent. Sivakarthikeyan, although in a cameo, is given a grand entrance and exit. He gives a fiery motivational speech that seals the fate of the film. Rama as Kausi’s mom is convincing in her unchanging ways.

Cinematographer Dinesh Krishnan has done a fantastic job in capturing the ebb and flow of the film, especially during the climax cricket match. Music by Dhibu Ninan Thomas is adequate and is a savior of sorts in the otherwise slow second half. All things considered, Kanaa is cheesy and par for the course. It’s a feel good movie with a bunch of important messages thrown at you. As long as you can handle the moral tones in good spirit, this is worth a watch during the upcoming holidays.

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