Welcome to Kumbalangi, a family of four men welcomes you into their broken world. Their house has no doors, no boundaries, unfinished walls, but always space for one more. Kumbalangi Nights is a celebration of masculinity with various shades of it, where men cry, women are not damsels in distress and a ‘real’ man isn’t a ‘hero’. On this Koimoi Recommendation Friday, we recommend you Debutant director Madhu. C. Narayanan’s Kumbalangi Nights starring Fahadh Faasil, Shreenath Chasi, Soubin Shahir and more.
Director: Madhu. C. Narayanan
Available on: Amazon Prime videos.
The ratio is 1:4. Shammy (Fahadh Faasil) takes pride in his thick bushy moustache. We meet him trimming his moustache, looking into the mirror and declaring himself as ‘The Real Man’. If it was Shammy’s film, he would have been a hero he says, but he is not. No one is a hero in Kumbalangi Nights.
Take two, we meet four brothers, all carrying baggage and marinating themselves in different degrees of self regret. There are no women in their universe since their mother left them until they find their special ones. They are shades, shades of men. Eldest Saji (Soubin Shahir) tries to be the mother. Heads the family, cooks meals and runs the house.
Bobby (Shane Nigam) is the third in line and Saji’s man Friday. He is the charmer, known for his dimples and curls. He finds peace in doing nothing and is almost jobless.
Then comes Rony (Shreenath Bhasi). Rony finds peace in staying away from his brothers and tries to maintain distance. Rony is mute but a dancer and the most caring of all.
Now the youngest Frankie, who calls his house the worst in the neighbourhood and compares it to hell. His solace is into trying to make the puzzle of his family complete and he turns out to be the cleverest of all.
When Bobby falls in love with Shammi’s sister in law and the 1:4 begins, you know something drastic is about to happen.
Kumbalangi Nights is not just a tale around a love story, there is more to it. In a scene when Bobby and Saji are explaining their family tree in different frames, Saji chooses to cry out loud, so loud and bowling that he wets his psychiatrist’s shirt. On the other hand, Bobby’s way of crying is to shed a tear and not letting anyone notice it.
That is the beauty of the film. It does not tell you a stereotype code to be man, but it gives a variety of them and tells you that they do exist.
Debutant director Madhu. C. Narayanan, writer Syam Pushkaran and DOP Sayju Khalid don’t treat this story as a dark tale, rather they make it brighter. Khalid’s lens and Sushin Shyam’s music introduces to the God’s own country Kerala in the most beautiful and melancholic way. The heavenly day frames and the soothing nights add much more to the movie-watching experience.
Watch Kumbalangi Nights for the soul the movie has, the unique bonds that it explores and the underlined thought that it conveys. Watch it for an Arjun Reddy easter egg and let us know if you crack it.
Do watch Kumbalangi Nights and let us know what are your views on the film in the comments section below.