Director: Avinaash Hariharan
Little girls in red frocks are playing hide and seek in an empty park. It’s finally Aishu’s (Baby Aaradhya) turn. Just when she’s ready to seek, she’s taken away by mysterious hands…
This isn’t just the first scene of the series, Kaanmoochi, streaming on Zee5, it’s the entire series discreetly summed up at the very beginning. And the great thing about this is that you’re still left guessing, as to what’s going to happen until the end of the five-episode season. The credit for this goes to the engaging and tightly-knit screenplay by Avinaash. I kept waiting for something unconventional but wasn’t too disappointed with the mainstream ending either.
Priya (Poorna) and her daughter Aishu originally from Bengaluru, shift to Chennai and stay at Skyline Apartments in Kelambakkam, along with a housekeeper Poongavanam (Saranya). One day, Aishu goes missing, in the midst of a religious procession. Befriending a food delivery personnel, Santhosh (Amzath Khan), Manju (Shwethaa) and her brother Balu (Smarab) who’s also mentally ill, Priya finds her abducted daughter.
Though I knew that the story was going to progress in a particular way, I never lost interest and was pretty glued to the screen. And Sundaramurthy KS’ background score majorly aided the narrative. It was perfectly along the lines of a thriller and never traversed to the horror side. Prasanna S Kumar’s camera and angles also help set the mood of the series.
On the downside, in Kannamoochi, things that could have been established without visuals were visually represented and things that needed proper corroboration were taken for granted. Santhosh’s backstory needn’t have been spoonfed to the audience while Priya’s purse dropping off and the tracing of her child demanded a little more explanation. In one instance she’s drowning, and in the very next she’s somehow on the right track inside a forest.
You’re on one path, the main one, dealing with child abduction and pedophilia but then you’re also introducing two other stories with no connection whatsoever. The random arrest of a man watching child porn and another episode of pedophilia, which was predictable at the very first instance… In the end, there was a random link between both episodes. How would a montage of both of them be sufficient to bring that story to an end? Or is it a cliffhanger for the second season? I hope it’s the latter. Except for two of the police station writers, the cops had nothing to do with the plot. Inspector Ravikumar (Sri Charan) although given a solid introduction, was rendered useless throughout.
Given the amount of controversy and debates around caste and religion now, I found it absolutely unnecessary for the script to have a prolonged Christian procession just for the child to go missing. I strongly believed there would be a reason for it somewhere later, only to find out that it was just to deceive the viewer.
If they hadn’t revealed the abductor way before the climax, it might’ve gone down well, emotionally. But once you knew, it only made the stretched out climax tiresome. And tasteless.
Throughout the show, you see Priya and not Poorna. She shoulders the series brilliantly and is spot-on in emotional sequences. She is a powerhouse of talent that the industry needs to make more space for. Saranya too was superb. Radhakrishnan, who plays a doctor was off-note.
Kannamoochi though dealing with a simple idea, keeps you guessing and engaged until the end. Despite the loopholes, I’m glad they didn’t seek to solve several ‘children’s issues’ and focussed on one to a great extent.
The Kannamoochi review is a Silverscreen India original article. It was not paid for or commissioned by anyone associated with the film. Silverscreen India and its writers do not have any commercial relationship with movies that are reviewed on the site.