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Kennedy Club Review

Review by IndiaGlitz [ Friday, August 23, 2019 • Tamil ]
Kennedy Club Review
Nallusamy Pictures
Sasikumar, Bharathirajaa, Samuthirakani, Gayathrie and Soori
D. N. Thai Saravanan
D Imman

Kennedy Club - A shoutout for Women's Kabbadi

Director Suseethiram rose to fame by directing 'Vennila Kabadi Kuzhu' a pioneering effort glorifying India's own sport Kabbadi with also an emotional drama in the backdrop.  Now, exactly ten years later he has tried to recreate the same magic with women's Kabbadi at the core.  Will the audience welcome this one with the same enthusiasm remains to be seen.

Bharathiraja plays an ex-military man who coaches a local woman's Kabbadi team in the rural town of Ottanchathiram.  A heart attack forces him to bring his old student Sasikumar to coach the young girls and the rest of the screenplay deals with how the Kennedy Club team faces and overcomes pressures at home, politics at all the levels and win a national event.

Kudos to Sasikumar for giving up his usual heroism to play the subdued coach and he gives it his best shot.  There is also a fight scene to satisfy his loyal fans though romance has been completely done away with.  Bharathiraja as the old school coach is somewhat consigned to the background due to an underwritten role but shines in the climax when tries to convey the pain of Kabbadi players who are denied a chance to move up the ladder to the politician.  The real heroes of the film are of course the nine girls including Kerala state-level players and twins Vrinda and Vidya who shine throughout.  The girl playing Bharathiraja's daughter and the final substitute are noticeable.  Soori makes a cameo appearance as his 'Vennila Kabbadi Kuzhu' character and brings a few laughs while the actor playing Kalaiarasi's husband brings the house down with his poems when he lets go off his wife to play the sport on his first night.  Murali Sharma is the caricature sports administration villain who has not been given a chance to rise above it.

What works best in Kennedy Club are the Kabbadi scenes especially in the second half in which each match is filmed authentically.  The director deserves praise for focussing on the problems women face at home and outside when pursuing a sport passionately.   The climax also has enough buildups to rock the audience out of their slumber.

On the downside, the subject and the way it's handled is reminiscent of several such films in the past.  Most of the sequences follow a dull cliched formula which is taxing to the viewers and the lack of major twists and turns is another deterrent.

D.Imman's background score is a major plus for 'Kennedy Club' and among the songs "Kabbadi Kabbadi" echoes in the ears even after exiting the theatre.  R.B. Gurudev's cinematography and Antony's editing shine in the Kabbadi scenes.  Nallusamy Pictures has bankrolled the project providing high productions values.  Suseenthiran staying true to his recent style of taking up interesting plots and just skimming the surface with no depth in storytelling has done the same here too.  Its high time the celebrated director gets back in touch with his 'VKK', 'NMA' and 'Paandiya Naadu' self.

Verdict: Go for this sports drama which deals with the problems played by women in sports and the well-shot Kabbadi scenes.

Rating: 2.5 / 5.0

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