Kali- The Anger Festival!

Being a first-timer watching a Malayalam film in the theatre, it was indeed a historical moment for me. So, did Kali leave up to my expectation and made that historical moment, a memorable one?


Story, Characters, Writer and Director

The film travels on a very simple plot that it might have been a usual romantic film without much thrills and excitement if it had been dealt with, carelessly. However, the film rides on moments that are filled with action and terror, giving audience a completely new edge-of-the-seat experience. Hats off to director sameer’s brilliance , writer rajesh’s magic, music director gopi’s thundering background score and cinematographer gireesh’s virtuosity!

Kali’, meaning ‘rage’, explores one of human’s most dangerous emotions and its subsequent variants. The first half of the movie darns together incidents that divulge the growth of Dulquer’s anger from his childhood to the present times where he works as a bank employee. The movie without wasting time for usual cheesy love sequences shifts swiftly into the post marriage life of Dulquer and Sai Pallavi, providing some enthralling insights into their co-existence amidst emotional outbursts.

Even if you are a calm person, there are certain issues shown in the film that you can easily relate to in your day to day life.  Always being on the mode called “Anger on the tip of the nose”, I was able to associate with Dulquer’s character instantly whenever he had to deal with both petty and pressing issues at workplace. Kudos to director to have highlighted that in the film, which many face in their career.

Indian cinema usually has its own stereotypical way of depicting anger on celluloid. Anger is usually depicted on the screen as a ‘nerve-wrecking’ shot. Literally.  Graphics is used to show the travel of the nerves from the wrist to the neck, like what happened to Naga Arjuna in Ratchagan. Or anger is usually blood-shot eyes, tight-close ups of hero’s eyes. However, in Kali, director chose not to have any of those dramatic and cinematic close-up shots to portray anger. Providing ample opportunities for Dulquer to express hysterical shades of anger, throughout the movie, the director has once again shown the best of Dulquer’s acting.

Like many cliché movies, "Kali" doesn't show the transformation of a violent person to a good saint, but the movie narrates how a person's anger can result in many unwanted problems. Lurking dangers and the helplessness brought on by wrath offer a gripping second half.


A huge deserving appreciative hug is what I would give the cinematographer, if I were to meet him in person. Each of his frames is simmering with a burning intensity. He has captured the winding, isolated and dimly-lit roads to Masinagudi in the most intimidatingly poetic way.

Dark, destructive and chaotic- 2nd half is awaiting to bring you on the most unforgettable road journey of your life. 

Sai Pallavi and Dulquer

The director has selected the perfect cast for this film. He doesn’t even need to establish the couple’s characters explicitly on the screen. When we see them, they give us the feel that we have known this couple as friends for a very long time. And for sure, we know the enchantingly oozing onscreen chemistry that the two share is nothing short of electric. They push themselves to extremes in 'Kali', complimenting each other all the time, and the impeccable results are there for all to see. 

Sai Pallavi is a born- actress. Brilliance is an understatement. In an interview, she mentioned that she has rejected that many film offers before choosing this film because she was unable to relate with the characters. Ah! Brilliance off-screen too!

Either be it a loving and forgiving wife who calms her husband whenever he unleashes his fury at the slightest of provocations or be it a timid, petite helpless lady who doesn’t know how to handle the unruly behaviour of the villans, she scores in every scene!

Orbicularis oculi, the round muscle around the eyes and Orbicularis oris, the round muscles around the mouth- move according to what Dulquer says. That is how controlled, his acting is.

Venomous outburst, brewing anger, raging sea of anger- this lad has flawlessly added flavor to his character.

Ironically, he himself provides a hint of humor in the same situations he gets angry. Dulquer executes with aplomb, both the emotions in tandem.


Maniratnam has once said that a song in a film should move the story from Point A to Point B. Seamlessly, the 2 songs in this film have done that, assisting the audience to move forward to the next phase of the story.

What made me amazed, was the background score of this movie. The chenda melam is one of the instruments used in this film. The sound of the chenda melam opens up furiously to give us an essence of the Kali environment. Later, the percussion drum emanates an eerie flavor to Dulquer’s brooding shots. The same menacing sound, played in the last scene, is something to look out for!

So, did Kali leave up to my expectation and made that historical moment, a memorable one?
A perfect way to end a weekend. A movie not to be missed. I loved the ending of the film! 

Indeed a memorable one because for the price of one ticket, I managed to watch one Dulquer on screen, and many other Dulquers watching the screen.

*Giant winks*

Kali- A definite must-watch film!