Quick Review : Comali

By Rinku Gupta
Comali is the debut direction of the young Pradeep Ranganathan. Vels International Films has produced the Jayam Ravi - Kajal Agarwal starrer with Samyukta Hegde from Karnataka making her debut in Tamil.

The story is about a teenage boy ( Jayam Ravi) who goes into a coma for 16 years due to an accident. He wakes up after 16 years, in 2016, and finds the world has changed drastically. This gives rise to funny situations, since he is now having to get used to the Internet era, but through the mind of a 16 year old. His best friend ( Yogi Babu) stands by him all through like a rock.
In the midst of all this, the director throws in bad guys, an ancient idol, a heist and unsrupulous politicians, all with a ' local' touch, deviating from the main coma and its interesting aftermath story, adding action and romance and some bits of preaching to the audience. Jayam Ravi fits into the 16 year old's role with absolute ease and transforms effortlessly into the post coma patient as well. His naturally innocent yet naughty look and expressions lend credibility to the character and story. Yogi Babu gets a lengthy role ( and a new hairstyle ) with emotions and humor thrown into the mix.

But its a bit disturbing to see a mentally fragile patient treated with anger by his own sister in one scene where he is told to go and search for work , just after a 16 year long coma, even though the doctor had advised he be treated with loving care and concern. One wishes the director had shown more sensitivity in such scenes. The antics of the doctor, in the name of humor, don't go down well either. The long drawm out scenes scenes with KS Ravikumar ( and later other characters) ogling the midriff of the lady making bajjis, is hardly worthy of a film that is aimed at kids and families.

Where the film strikes a chord are the scenes with Ravi listing what all we have lost out on in the pursuit of a modern life, with technology distancing humans from each other instead of bringing them closer. The nostalgia for the 90s is well portrayed, via well picturised songs and situations. The flood scene is well executed.

But the humor in most places doesn't elicit as many laughs as expected from a young director aided by a stellar cast. The constant loud yelling ( the doctor scenes and the gangster / politician scenes) makes for tiresome viewing in the name of humor. Kajal Agarwal had pretty much nothing to do. Samyukta Hegde as the teen love and later doctor's wife seems to have a more pivotal role which she lives up to.

 But overall, the film is a good one time watch, keeping in mind the unusual storyline, and attempt to give a much needed message in an entertaining manner. 

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