A lot can go wrong when parents try to realise their failed dreams through their children.

Malayalam director Nadir Shah’s film, Kattappanayile Rithwik Roshan is all about that.

Shah on his second outing, (his debut was the multi-starrer, Amar, Akbar, Antony), succeeds with a film that entertains besides driving home a few messages.

Surendran (Siddique), an ordinary labourer in Kattappan, is a crazy fan of yesteryears Malayalam actor, Jayan. He aspires to become an actor but his failed dreams are transferred onto the shoulders of his son, Kichu (Vishnu Unnikrishnan).

Kichu’s dark complexion goes against him, to begin with. Besides, the boy is just not interested in acting. But who is listening? Clearly not his father who even lands him with an injury while training him to ride a bicycle in the hope of getting a role.

Kichu becomes the butt of jokes in the neighbourhood, until one day, an unexpected stroke of luck brings him that very chance to work in a film, when a director visits his school. Kichu plays a thief and his perfectly executed role makes him a celebrity of sorts in Kattappana.

Subsequently Kichu is offered only this one role in every film that comes his way. Kichu, however aspires to become a star like Bollywood’s Hrithik Roshan.

Shah takes a dig at the typecasting of actors in the industry. He points fingers at our obsession for looking good and judging people on the basis of one’s looks and fair complexion.

When the beautiful and glamorous Ann Mariya (Pragya Martin) moves into the neighbourhood, she is every young man’s heart-throb, including Kichu, who misinterprets her hand of friendship for love.

Is suicide the answer for unrequited love?

Not when there are several others in our lives, who truly care for us. Sadly many fail to acknowledge them like Kichu who does not see Kani’s love (his neighbour’s daughter) for him.

The first half of the story is fun, peppered with several comic lines and delivered by Salim Kumar and Dharmajan Bolgatty. I particularly loved Kumar’s conversations with his hearing-impaired wife. The actress was wonderful in the brief space she occupied. Bolgatty as Kichu’s friend kept the chuckles coming.

Siddique is great as a fanboy. The emotional moments as Kichu’s father dreaming big for his son have a touch of finesse.

Pragya Martin and Lijomol Jose lend good support with their portrayal of Ann Mariya and Kani.

Walking away with honours is Vishnu Unnikrishnan, a scriptwriter making his debut as an actor with this film. Unnikrishnan’s Kichu wins hearts with his simplicity and earnest dreams, even as he battles with an inferiority complex and the onus of his father’s dreams.

Go for Kattappanayile Rithwik Roshan.

It will be an evening well enjoyed.


Don’t miss it

Kattappanayile Rithwik Roshan is out in UAE theatres on November 24.