The Great Indian Kitchen
In today’s times men and women are equal. Now if you have read this statement with a scorn then you exactly know that this is not entirely true even now. Even though over the years, women have been repeatedly been fed with this truth, the reality is that in a patriarchal society that we live in, this is far from the truth. The reality is explained in a simple line : ‘Men often work from sun to sun but women’s work is never done’. I’ll leave this discussion here, I have just finished watching the Malayalam film The Great Indian Kitchen on the newly launched ‘Nee Stream’ app. Is it worth your time, stay tuned.
Story & Screenplay
The Great Indian Kitchen follows the story of a newly wed woman who struggles to follow the customs of the family and be a submissive wife. You don’t need me to tell you that this may possibly be the story of most women you know, or many women typically in each household. And it is once again the Malayalam Industry that has yet again scored with a simple premise transforming it into an engaging watch. The screenplay is more of actions and less of talk. You find the main protagonist often in the kitchen by the day, cooking and cleaning up dishes(and listening to various demands) and lying quietly in her bed with her husband making love to her at night. This could easily have been a monologue of how women like her are reduced to mere servants brought home for free. Instead what you get are actual actions which make the drama way more effective. It almost seems the makers have placed cameras randomly in a household with the drama unfolding in it. That is how powerful the screenplay is culminating into a gut wrenching yet subtle climax! Simply Brilliant!
Dialogues, Music & Direction
The dialogues are minimalistic and to the point which helps in keeping the screenplay taut at just under 100 minutes. The music is pretty good with lovely use of silences or utensils as a background score. Director Jeo Baby has made the drama extremely realistic and he literally hits it out of the park with his direction.
Suraj Venjaramoodu as the husband is intimidating in many scenes. He is such a fine actor, you almost dislike him here for his actions in a character that represents most men in a household. Nimisha Sajayan is the star of the show. The pain and angst are effectively portrayed by her. She literally represents so many women across the globe and she is simply exceptional.
The Great Indian Kitchen is unapologetically true and accurately represents family, religion and patriarchy. Fun Fact : Netflix and Amazon did not acquire this film due to its controversial second half(you’ll know when you watch it). So their loss was Nee Stream’s gain. Another movie nailed down by the Malayalam Industry, this one is Highly Highly Recommended!