‘Vivekanandan Viralaanu’: Kamal’s Shine Tom Chacko-starrer is intriguing, bold, yet misses the mark | Review | Review


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Like most other Kamal films, his Shine Tom Chacko-starrer ‘Vivekanadan Viralaanu’ begins on a lighter note, with the protagonist’s bus journey to his hometown in Idukki. The trip, though short, is quite a revelation of who Vivekanandan, the protagonist of the film and a KSWTD officer, is and will be.

Kamal films are known for their intriguing characters. In his 2018 movie, ‘Aami’, the biopic of celebrated poet Madhavikutty starring Manju Warrier, Kamal tried to reimagine a woman whose openness to embrace her sexuality was both praised and denounced. His 2011 movie, Khaddama starring Kavya Madhavan, too is yet another example of Kamal’s brilliance in bringing interesting characters to life on screen. In this regard, Vivekanandan falls short.

However, the subject Kamal discusses is equally fascinating and bold. Very rarely do Malayalam cinema explore family and men/woman relationships beyond the living room and here, ‘Vivekanandan Viralaanu’ breaks ground. Shine Tom Chacko’s character is a person with a hypersexual disorder and the story discusses how it casts a shadow on his relationships.

Bondage sex and fetish also form a part of the narrative, which is a bold attempt in Mollywood. What ails the film, is its treatment. While the filmmaker, who also wrote the screenplay, manages to keep us hooked to the storyline in the first half, the movie loses steam and descends to chaos in the second half. Kamal tried to convey a social message in the movie, but it felt forced and theatrical, almost making it look like Kamal included it to make the movie seem more relevant.

The female characters in ‘Vivekanandan Viralaanu’ portray a sense of vulnerability and boldness. Mareena as a YouTuber is bold and essays a self-assuredness that is missing from both Swasika and Grace Antony’s characters in the movie. But, after some persuading, they decide to take control of their lives. Swasika, Mareena and Grace Antony delivered impressive performances in the movie. Shine Tom Chacko is the perfect casting to play Vivekanandan, who is extremely unpredictable. The music by Bijibal lifts the emotions in crucial scenes and is soothing to the ear.

The movie is a weekend watch for an open audience who won’t be uncomfortable when the cinema discusses uneasy situations on screen.

‘Vivekanandan Viralaanu’: Kamal’s Shine Tom Chacko-starrer is intriguing, bold, yet misses the mark | Review | Review

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