Rani Padmini

ranipadmini (1)

What is it about? :: Rani Padmini tells the story of the journey of two women. Padmini (Manju Warrier) is the wife of Giri (Jinu Joseph) who had settled in North India many years ago. Even though her mother-in-law (Sajitha Madathil) is adamant that she shouldn’t work, her husband tells her to follow her heart, just like he races in mountain rallies against the wishes of his mother. She starts working as a physiotherapist much to the dismay of her mother-in-law who brings up a divorce notice to teach her a lesson when Giri goes for racing. Padmini decides to run away from home and find her husband. Meanwhile, Rani (Rima Kalingal) is facing a financial problem and a gang of criminals is also after her after she revealed their hiding location to the police. She runs away from home with enough problems on her trail.

How it goes on :: Soon, Rani and Padmini will get their roads to converge, as they meet up in a bus, and decide to continue their journey together. Even though they have their differences, they manage to get along well. As her mother-in-law arranges for the police to bring her back, Giri gets into tough competition with a veteran racer who is determined to win it this time. The two ladies get through the problems on the road by using the best of their abilities and also by luck; sometimes being helped by people on the road including journalists, trekkers and even local men and women. With this one interesting journey, there will be the realization of some truths, not only for the two protagonists, but also for the people who are connected to them in one way or the other. A lot of things are sure to change in their lives.

The defence of Rani Padmini :: There is a wonderful working combination in Rani Padmini. It is not just related to the two leading ladies who take this experience to another level, but also about how this movie combines its feel-good factor, messages, funny side and beautiful sceneries together to bring some awesomeness on the screen. The advantage here is that it is applicable to not just a category of people, but for everyone. The humour in this movie is really good, and it makes the presence felt regularly. Unlike what the trailer seemed to suggest, the movie is light-hearted, and there is not much of a dark side to it. The visuals are nothing less than amazing, and it provides the viewer with the desire to travel to those locations far away. The background music adds to the positives, and the songs also have something for the heart and the soul. You will also love the way in which the message takes a path which asserts freedom rather than labels.

Claws of flaw :: Rani Padmini doesn’t bring a lot to the story as the focus is on the idea and what is brought to the viewers on the screen. There could have been many other ways through which this movie had the ability to progress better. Some people might feel slight drag, but it is more dependent on how you see and how you think, that much freedom is provided by Rani Padmini to the viewers. It is also not the usual entertainer, even though it entertains with its moments. The idea could have also been better brought to the audience. It seems that due to the negative opinions from critics and the audience alike for his previous movie that Aashiq Abu decided not to publicize this one like Gangster which almost everyone considers as his worst movie ever. The initial rush might be less for this movie due to the same reason, but it will pick up and is here to stay in the theatres.

Performers of the soul :: The movie is completely dependent on the lady characters who lead the way. The two leading ladies have done an amazing job here, absorbing the soul of the characters into themselves. They are very good together, and makes a perfect team. We have seen Rima Kallingal only once since 2013, with the spoof movie, Chirakodinja Kinavukal this year. This flick is a perfect example of why she needs to be there on screen more. She provides a highly memorable performance as the rebellious young lady who wishes to prove herself to her mother. She excels in the comic side like never before, and got some of the funniest moments in the movie. People can talk about having other actresses in the same role, but not like this, and not in the way Rima has done; for this is special.

Further performers of the soul :: Manju Warrier’s second run is only two movies old, with How Old Are You in 2014 and Ennum Eppozhum in 2015. But here, she has her best performance in her second innings, and this is also the best movie in her second entry. The family audience will love her a lot in this avatar, and others will also love this performance as she has a balanced character providing different levels of experience. She handles both the emotional and comic scenes with fine skill. You should look out for the story which she tells her friend and her interest in a flower and a soap. While Rima excels in showing her anger and frustration in a funny way, she scores with the humour in nostalgia, concerns and affection. Jinu Joseph does a good job even with smaller screen presence, and Sajitha Madathil remains solid as usual.

How it finishes :: Here is a movie which keeps saying that Aashiq Abu is back. He has taken the risk once again, and remembering how the audience reacted to Gangster, this one surely needed the confidence – he scores due to the same, big time. Rani Padmini‘s advantage over other movies is that it doesn’t preach, and what the two leading women characters in the movie manage is to finally become the individuals whom they are and those personalities whom they wish to be. It is a case of embracing the truth and one’s abilities, as they make the others around understand the same. You can ask if Rani Padmini is How Old Are You or Queen, and I will reply that it is better than them both. I actually consider this one Aashiq Abu’s best work ever, the first one which goes directly into the soul rather than towards the brain or the heart.

Release date: 23rd October 2015
Running time: 142 minutes
Directed by: Aashiq Abu
Starring: Manju Warrier, Rima Kallingal, Jinu Joseph, Praveen Jain, Sajitha Madathil, Sreenath Bhasi, Sana Althaf, Srinda Ashab, Soubin Shahir, Kunchan, Ambika Mohan, Dileesh Pothan, Binu Pappu, Rajitha Madhu, Hareesh Khanna


@ Cemetery Watch
✠ The Vampire Bat.


79 thoughts on “Rani Padmini

  1. Wow… looks good. I think this will not release here but I am sure they will play it on the tv in a year.

    Btw, do you remember the name Lalita Padmini Ragini. They were the trio sisters in Malayalam many years ago I believe. Just remembered them seeing this title.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Well… this made me smile… you have no idea how many times women feel weaker than what they are and sometimes stronger than what they are … though everyone should know it, even women have a adventures side, a risky side, a fun loving side, a ambitous hard working urge and a lot of things…and it is unfair if others tell them not to explore their other side just because it is unsafe for them or they are not capable to handle things etc etc …someday every women will have to do some thing dangerous and better she is prepared to do it earlier only… damn with all the crimes around, news and troubles no one’s still so cool on women doing things… but in the end almost every women gives up many things to be a good mother, wife and daughter in law … I think women should too go on adventurous like this… there are good and different people out there who will aid them in it … it will be fun… I think this movie is a must watch because many people got to understand the need that even women have some aspects they need to explore to be their best selves so that at the end you get a happy, cool Mom, not just a confined or restricted Mom with lot of potential, a friend to husband or who ever than just a care taken and mate and a daughter, friend to momther and mom-in-law, who have a smoother relationship rather than this strange giving up, listen to me or adjust to me relationship (: …anyway blabbering.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You have written a nice detailed collection of points. Every person is different, and even though some women choose to be the same as the other, the rest – the different ones should have the opportunity to be what they want to be, and it is what the leading characters of the movie are about – they are so different from each other, yet discover themselves in the journey together complimenting the other. Each person should be different as an individual, and they lose in the attempt to follow the traditions and restrictions set by the society.


    • Rani Padmini is a Malayalam movie which is running in the theatres right now πŸ™‚ It might not be in the theatres outside Kerala as of now, but as there is positive opinion, it should be there to cities like Chennai an Bangalore soon enough.


      • That’s ok, one thing I learned in life is… you got to have patience and give time…and things you want to do you will do it even if late, I think since I most provably going to life quite a long time I can afford to wait for this cd to come out(: …. I watched few glimpes of Malayalam movies but not a full movie…so it wil be a interesting experience for me… I been quite a snob myself prefering english to tamil and other movies but as you live in India and explore things you tend to like to embrace other things as well just for learning something new… movie is good so worth watching it…would prefer something without the subtitles but with it things would get easier to follow if you can’t understand something):… I know subtitles don’t give good translation… it’s fake at times

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, subtitles can be wrong and end up giving the idea which is not intended.
        True; movies provide endless possibilities in India – it gives an idea about what we haven’t had much knowledge about, and it is also a reflection of different corners of the country, and about all the creativity from the area…


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    • Thanks πŸ™‚ Yes, and the movie takes a special route which will make it likable for all audience; still it says all that it needs to say!
      I hope you will get the movie with subtitles some day πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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  11. Your review makes me want to watch the film again.. for all what you said.. I like your review better than the film and the hype it has created. I really hope Manju Warrier gets some meatier roles similar to what she had during her first run back in the 90s.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well, it had the least number of screens for an Aashiq Abu movie, I think. There was no wide release, and that makes me wonder how much anything has worked in favour of the movie. It had quite a short stay.


      • The screen I went to, had stopped screening the film on the Monday after its weekend release, so we had to like gather 7 -10 people to watch it and convince the manager. But very disappointing, pinne we were a good audience, we did not walk out!

        Liked by 1 person

    • I felt this ultimate hype related to Ennu Ninte Moideen. It was as if that was the greatest love story in the world, but when I watched it, there was just a good movie, that’s all – no flawless thing there. The fans keep saying the same thing about movies without telling us why they like it, and we often fall for it. Unless we know the reason, we can’t be sure.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I wholeheartedly agree. I would say, both RP and ENM were hyped,if it was one’s making process, the other was in its continuous interviews all over the net with its two leading women. Between the two, I enjoyed watching Moideen though.. there was something in the rain and the story that stirred some things somewhere.. relate-able.. and true, most of the audience and fan, and movie goers never say why they liked it or did not .. it is a test of which review my thinking or movie tuning is close to.. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      • What I felt good about RP was that it was not fan-hyped; there were no thousands of fans waiting to eat you alive if you don’t agree that it was the greatest love story πŸ˜€
        They were on tv? I don’t watch much of tv, good for me and my version of RP πŸ™‚
        I couldn’t relate to Moideen though, I rarely get to relate to the romance genre, but for inspirational movies, I find one reason or the other πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      • hahahaa .. oh! conversations can be left open.. they needn’t close.. I have a close group of friends who discuss films, I guess we are a crazy over films bunch… we watch, re-watch.. cut, analyse.. like the process of making and being part of the ambiance.. so I enjoy such conversations

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, but the fans are usually not satisfied until we arrive at something. They will keep asking πŸ˜€
        My friends are all settled outside Kerala/India as of now, and so such conversations no longer occur. I even watch movies alone these days, and write what comes to the mind immediately πŸ™‚


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  16. I watched it yesterday !! It was a good movie!! I felt the movie looses some pace in the second half !! Rima / Rimi was superb!! Her odd ways anger and all !! Manju too was good !! Women would feel LIBERATED after watching the movie !!

    But I am not sure if the movie passes the BECHDEL TEST!! Not sure !!
    Great visuals!! Urges one to travel too !!
    Nice Review !!
    Missed the SOUL EXPLORATION part !!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks πŸ™‚ I doubt if it will pass the same too. There was a long discussion related to Indian movies when it became a topic when learning Virginia Woolf at college.
      I asked a number of people if they watched this movie, but none did – I feel that this movie was not marketed well enough.


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