How I relished tearing Mammuka’s latest ‘Kasaba’ to bits

Kasaba the misogynistic marvel is a sad excuse for a movie
Features Talking movies Sunday, July 10, 2016 - 12:34

I went to watch Mammootty’s latest cop outing in Mollywood -Kasaba- on Saturday to try and figure out the mixed reviews it seems to be eliciting. On the one hand, it was described as a movie that rose above the usual cop cliché, while on the other, it was ripped apart for its blatant misogyny.

Released this Friday, the movie has apparently broken son Dulquer’s initial collection record for ‘Kali’ -another recent Malayalam hit. The plot or the lack of it, revolves around circle inspector Rajan Zechariah, who gets himself posted to Kalipuram on the Kerala-Karnataka border to avenge the mysterious deaths of a couple of youngsters who were dear to him.

Out churns a lame tale of nauseous masochism coupled with pathetic misogyny, all in the name of justifying that heart of gold buried deep inside the cop outlaw nattily portrayed -must admit- by Mammootty.

Peel back the superfluity, and you realize that ‘Kasaba’ was simply tailor-made for the thespian, and not because director Nithin Renji Panicker actually had a great script in place to get his debut picture going. I failed to fathom the contorted workings of such feeble creativity.

What is worse is the casual misogyny you get to see through out the movie, especially in how the hero is fleshed out. Earlier on in the movie, Zechariah is seen grabbing an IPS cop by the belt, and mouthing a trashy dialogue about how easily he could make her miss her menstrual cycle. So we have a double whammy delivered that constitutes sexual harassment which could easily be construed as sexual assault.

Blurring womanhood into some sort of a male-glorifying machine seems to be whole point of this celluloid trash. The “I wield a virile stick in muh male groin…so better watch out” kind of dialogues lasciviously dot the entire movie.

Women are depicted as someone yearning for the male touch - be it that of a lover, husband or father. It’s as if the absence of a man in their lives would simply negate their very reason for existence on earth.

There is Kamala - played by Varalaxmi Sarathkumar - the brothel owner who is shown negotiating with the hero to kill her lover and our villain Parameswaran Nambiar, essayed by Sampath Raj. Sexual favours in exchange for murdering her lover is the reward dangling at the end of the 'deal' pole.

Nambiar proves the proverbial cad by his unwillingness to bestow on Kamala the status of a wife, which would supposedly restore her societal standing. Couple this with his legally-wedded wives...there seems to be two of them who worship his patriarchal legacy with adoring downcast eyes.

Then there's Neha Saxena who plays Susan -the weepy sex worker- who sobs her way into the hero’s heart…ouch! There should be some kind of law banning such idiocy in portraying the so-called weaker sex onscreen.

Mammootty as Zechariah is indeed snazzy in the role, but what does one do with stylish theatrics in the midst of celluloid ‘bleh’ness. An utter waste of ‘kola mass’ indeed! Or is it ‘marana mass’ in this case…. with special emphasis on the ‘marana’ part …it does leave you with a death wish, to say the least!

*Warning*

Please do not subject children to such distorted visuals.

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