Critic’s Rating : 3.0 / 5
Makal Movie Review : A delicate daddy-daughter drama
Review: Yes, our movies often like to portray the father-daughter connection as a ‘special bond,’ but in real life, it can be challenging, during the teenage years. Especially with rebellious traits setting inside the girl’s mind and the dad growing disturbed, worrying for her safety, sensibility, ‘a good future’ and more. Sathyan Anthikad’s film Makal presents a father and daughter who share a strained relationship after staying apart for long from each other.
Nandan (Jayaram) moves back to Kerala from Dubai to be with his teenage daughter Aparna aka Appu (Devika) and wife Juliet (Meera Jasmine), who haven’t spent much time with him for years. His moving in brings a lot of changes into their warm, cozy and ‘free’ life, especially when Nandan has to turn Mr Mom at a certain juncture, and he tries to be a disciplinarian. Makal shows how Appu and Nandan explore the nuances of the dynamic, ‘without adding extra sugar into the sugarcane juice,’ if a metaphor from the film can be borrowed.
The film can be a relatable story for many about the hurdles in connecting or reconnecting with a parent after the ties are severed for whatever reason. The fondness of the parents for their daughter, a handful of visceral, loaded moments that wade through the common emotional baggage and miscommunication wrapped in sentiments, the stress-stained vibe and frictions between different generations are all portrayed interestingly in the film. Things spiral out of control on and off and the characters struggle to understand each other, especially when the girls go through their monthly emotional zig zags and it’s good that the film touches upon these aspects.
All the lead actors have done their parts well but one person who lights up the screen with his mere presence, every single time, is Naslen, who plays a young Romeo. His minutest of expressions, lines and more are quite entertaining that his presence overshadows the others on the screen, at times. The youngster has a long way to go and yes, many people comment that his performances can be repetitive, regardless, they continue to be entertaining at this point. The song Kanmaniye, is also a beautiful addition to the narrative.
The dramatic and sudden twist brought into the narrative for a new character’s entry adds some fun mystery halfway through in the second half, but the proceedings turn a bit melodramatic in some time. Moreover, the story moves into an ‘Utopian’ turf towards the end where the mere presence or a few lines from someone dramatically set things right between two people. Forcing the story to go through such a development makes it slightly dull.
Those who feel they might enjoy the story of a father and daughter paddling through a strained relationship to fix things can give Makal a try. And the emotional ones among you can keep a tissue or two handy too, for certain scenes that might squeeze a tear out of your eyes.