Yet another blog about a movie that pissed me off – that would be an apt description for this blog. The movie in focus today is the Suraj Venjarammoodu-Tovino Thomas-Aishwarya Lekshmi starrer Kaanekkaane. It had pretty decent reviews, both from critics and from the audience. And since the story was by the duo Bobby-Sanjay who are supposed to be good, I thought it wouldn’t be wrong to give it a shot. I must say here that I started the movie with the idea that it must be a sort of amateurish investigation-based thriller, but it ended up being more of a drama. So that was a letdown, which I wouldn’t blame the makers for. However, the drama that they did bring out in the name of dark shades of human beings, learning to forgive and let go in relationships and all that crap was unbelievably WTF for me. What was even more WTF was the predominantly positive reviews that this movie has got from critics and audience alike despite its absurd quick-fix ending. And as I delve in to the why, there would undoubtedly be spoilers, including the so-called “Big Reveal.” So, this is where you decide whether to read on or close this tab.

Let’s summarize the key points of the movie as briefly (can’t promise that though) as possible, shall we?

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– Paul Mathai’s (Suraj) daughter, Sherin (Shruti Ramachandran) passed away in a hit and run a few years ago.

– Sherin’s husband, Allen (Tovino) is married to Sneha (Aishwarya) who is pregnant with their child. Allen is shown to be a perpetually nervous person and a borderline alcoholic.

– Sherin and Allen’s son, who was much younger when his mother died, sees Sneha as his mother and shares a great relationship with her.

– There are no memories of Sherin preserved anywhere in the house, and the son is hardly ever reminded of his dead mother. The pathetic state that Sherin’s tombstone is left in is yet another indication of how she is actively kept out of their memories and their lives.

– Paul is fighting a lone legal battle to deliver justice to his daughter by not letting the guy accused in the hit and run off the hook, with no support whatsoever from the dead woman’s husband, Allen. The warm camaraderie that the two used to share is a thing of the past now.

– Paul discovers that Allen and Sneha were already having an affair when Sherin was alive from a romantic picture of theirs which was taken on a New Year’s when he was still married to Sherin. This piece of information is a “Why on earth?” moment in the movie as we are shown a lovey-dovey flashback of Sherin and Allen’s marital bliss, and absolutely no indication of any issues in their marriage.

– Paul starts to have some suspicions on Sherin’s death and goes about sleuthing around, to find that Allen’s statement regarding the night of her death seems false.

– After some back-and-forth probing, Paul gets Allen to confess that he had seen Sherin lying on the roadside, bleeding. But overwhelmed by the persistent efforts from a hysteric Sneha to get him to leave his marriage, he chose to drive off without helping his dying wife. Although he felt guilty and drove back to the spot of the accident in a little while, it was too late by then.

– Paul wants his grandson to live with him, and not with the person responsible for his mother’s death. But Allen is not ready to give up his son. Paul keeps threatening Allen with a voice recording of Allen’s confession.

– A brief moment of residual camaraderie comes up when Paul is sick and Allen helps him and leaves without destroying the voice recording on Paul’s phone.

– Paul goes to Allen’s house and finds Sneha in a pool of blood. After a moment of conflict on whether to save her or leave her to die, he takes her to the hospital where he acts as her guardian as she delivers a baby girl through a difficult procedure.

– Paul watches happily as Allen and his grandson celebrate the birth of the baby, and has a tender moment with Sneha and her family later, before he leaves them as a happy family to go back home.

– As Allen leaves Paul at the bus stand, he cries saying, “I really had gone back Papa.” Paul gives a pat on his face affectionately and says “I know.” He boards the bus where he deletes the voice recording of Allen’s confession. The movie ends with him picking up Sneha’s call and addressing her lovingly as “Mole” (daughter).

– THE END!

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Now let’s rephrase this “forgive and forget” journey to see what it should have ideally meant for a father.

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– His darling daughter is dead and gone. He no longer has any real connect or relationship with his son-in-law (who was once a friend) and his little grandson, the only real reminder of his daughter.

– His son-in-law has wronged his daughter in more ways than one:

> cheating on her with some woman whom he met on a business trip, while this poor woman waited for him back home

> calling her shamelessly as if all was fine and taking her own father’s help in convincing her to not be mad at him for being away from her for New Year’s, when he was, in fact, celebrating with his new lady love

> not having the basic decency to tell her the truth, even when he was constantly being pressurized by his affair partner to leave his wife and be with her

> being the most despicable form of scumbag with not even the tiniest bit of humanity in choosing to drive off when his wife, the mother of his son, lay on the roadside, dying, because… it was a convenient option! Just let her die and he wouldn’t have to be the bad guy who cheated on his wife, right?

> lying to the grieving father about how he had got a wedding proposal and how he wanted his blessings and approval to go ahead with it. In effect, having the poor father give the green signal for the wedding of two people who betrayed his daughter so callously

> ensuring that no one remembered the dead woman, not even her own son

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And this mountainous pile of crimes and wrongs towards his dead daughter is what this dear father chooses to let go – because you know, forgiving wrongs, mending relationships and shit. “So, what if you cheated on my daughter? Your partner was a broken person in need of love and you gave her that! Bravo!” “So, what if you left my daughter to die on the road? It was a momentary lapse of judgement. No biggie!” “So, what if these stupid writers have equated me thinking for a moment of leaving your dying wife to you actually leaving your dying wife? Isn’t that the same, although I chose to save her life instead, immediately? Although my (wrong, agreed) moment of conflict had a perfectly reasonable cause?” “So, what if you erased my daughter’s memory from everywhere, even from her son’s mind? You have a happy family now. That’s what matters.” “So, what if my dead daughter’s soul never rests in peace, thanks to the countless wrongs done towards her? She’s dead and gone. Let’s keep the living happy.”

I tell you, if I was the dead woman, there would be some serious haunting in order for all these dirtballs, starting with daddy dearest! Seriously! There should be a sequel to this stupidity in the horror genre. And that should have the dead woman’s spirit killing all three of these jerks.


Also published on Medium.