Kalyanam Kamaneeyam Movie Review: An insipid, under-written marriage story
Having the heart at the right place isn't enough to salvage this under-directed romance
Over the last few years, in the post-OTT era to be precise, one can notice an interesting shift in the way how Telugu films are incrementally opting for progressive themes and stories. Kalyanam Kamaneeyam is the new addition to this growing list, but there is a catch. We do have a well-intentioned idea of a stay-at-home husband, but it clearly isn't backed by good writing and execution.
Director: Anil kumar Aalla
Cast: Santosh Sobhan, Priya Bhavani Shankar, Devi Prasad, Pavitra Lokesh, Sapthagiri, Kedhar Shankar
Kalyanam Kamaneeyam is set around Shiva (Santosh Sobhan) and Shruti (Priya Bhavani Shankar), who get married right at the beginning of the film. Their love marriage comes with some apprehensions from Shiva’s dad (Kedar Shankar, providing some genuine laughter) who wants Shiva to get a job before tying the knot. However, they do end up getting married, on the insistence of Shruti’s father who wants his daughter to get married before his terminally ill wife passes away. Trouble comes their way in the form of Shiva’s prolonged spell of unemployment, Shruti's sleazy boss and two lies involving a money bag and a taxi. But the real trouble plaguing Kalyanam Kamaneeyam is the evident lack of effort in both the writing and execution.
Though the core of the film sticks to the tried-and-tested formula of lies intended to make the relationship, ending up breaking it and a final reconciliation after one of them fixes things, the treatment of the film is insipid. The predictable screenplay too does its part in amplifying our disinterest. The characters aren't well-defined and lack depth. Shruti, for instance, decides to stop talking to her husband after he fails to crack an interview, but it is hardly explored from her point of view. When Shraddha Srinath's Sarah undergoes a similar situation in Jersey we were able to empathize with her plight because of invested writing and this is what Kalyanam Kamaneeyam sheerly lacks.
The screenplay almost uses lies as a tool to take the story forward. Shruti lies to Shiva about getting harassed, he in turn lies to her about his job. Shruti’s parents also lie to her about her mother’s cancer. Though there is an effort to establish a recurring pattern, none of these lies is backed by solid logic or explanation. More often than not, I scratched my head in the theater wondering why some characters lied for the sake of it.
There is so much exposition on how Shiva is smart and a topper at studies, but we really don't get its utility. There is also a bag with a huge sum of money stolen and strangely no one in the story seems to care about it.
The uninspiring visuals and the shot divisions majorly restricted to mids and close-up eat away the viewing pleasure. The inclusion of repeated shots throughout the film by the editor also makes it look far from professional.
Films based on marriage and family provide ample space for adding the ingredients of entertaining cinema like drama, emotions, and humour. But Kalyanam Kamaneeyam sadly falls short on all counts.