'Padmini' review: Senna Hegde delivers yet another light-hearted, innovative film

Senna's works, including the 2022 film '1744 White Alto', have a quirkiness that is quite amusing. Movie poster | Imdb

Senna Hegde, the director of 'Thinkalazhcha Nishchayam', has again delivered a film that is nearly as smooth and innovative as his critically-acclaimed work. 'Padmini' starring Kunchacko Boban, Aparna Balamurali and Madonna Sebastian in the lead, is a fun-filled tale of Rameshan who is jilted by his bride Smrithi on their first night together. Since Smrithi's lover arrives in a Premier Padmini car to elope with her, Rameshan earns the nickname Padmini in his village The taunts subsequently lead to a deep aversion to that name. However, things turn amusing when a teacher named Padmini (played by Madonna) arrives at the same school where he works.

Senna's works, including the 2022 film '1744 White Alto', have a quirkiness that is quite amusing. It's interesting to see how he weaves a narrative from an ordinary setting, which is centered on typical human behaviour and feelings. If elopement amid a wedding function was the theme of 'Thinkalazhcha Nishchayam', '1744 White Alto' had yet another interesting premise, that of a cat-and-mouse investigation involving a man and a car.

'Padmini' too appears as an ordinary feel-good movie, set in a village with the protagonist Rameshan hoping to settle down with a girl who understands him. However, scriptwriter Deepu Pradeep, whose initial work was 'Kunjiramayanam', does a wonderful job exploiting this situation, especially since Rameshan finds it hard to find a bride as it is his second marriage.

The humour initially seems a little silly, especially when Sajin Cherukayil's character Jayan, an entrepreneur who sells mattresses for a living, comes in. However, it soon turns entertaining with each scene complementing the other. Some might wish the climax ended differently, but given that it is an out-and-out entertainer, the quirky ending is fine.

It is also interesting to see how Senna brought in the two elements – a marriage and a car – that were part of his first and second film in 'Padmini'.

Aparna Balamurali steals the show in this movie. Movie still | Trailer

The performances of all the actors are quite good, but it is Aparna who steals the show. Her character Sreedevi is a lawyer who deals with divorce cases. Her expressions of disbelief, anger and cuteness are spot on. It's good to see her handle comedy, which was missing from her recent characters. Kunchacko, retains that charm he always exhibits when he plays a romantic guy. Madonna looks refreshing onscreen, adding charm to the whole movie. Though Vincy Aloshious has very little screen-space, she does justice to her role.

Some of the frames by Sreeraj Raveendran are breathtaking, capturing the beauty of the lush paddy fields and surrounding hills the film is set in. The music by Jakes Bejoy goes along with the mood of the film.

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