Kalisunte belongs to that unfortunate stable of movies that abdicate their membership to the easy-hit club by adopting an unconventional theme, and pay for it with largely empty halls. It's a million dollar question as to what it would take to make such a movie a blockbuster.
Kalisunte does have plenty of offbeat allure - unobtrusive humor, clear characterizations and a handful of catchy songs. Yet it remains the ditch-dweller, caught in between jazzy masala flicks, and whacky plots like Ghajini
Kalisunte begins with Adi Narayana (Prakash Raj), a goonda with scruples and a manic adopted son Kutty (Arya). Sathya (Navdeep), a young engineering student, gets caught between Kutty's scuffles with rival gangs a couple of times. He keeps shuffling off terrified from the site of the fights, until one fine day his lady crush Sandhya (Samiksha) gets shot in her leg in the middle of one of these.
That gives him enough courage to report to the police and offer to identify Kutty. While Adi Narayana is still pondering how best to fix the young bloke, he discovers that Sathya is his own son from his deceased wife Lakshmi.
Then begins the tender courtship of Sathya by Adi Narayana and his son. From nightly excursions to his house, where they spend time just gazing upon his features, to forced kidnappings to bring him home, just to show him a golden molathraadu
Adi and Lakshmi had brought for him before he was born.
Sathya is constantly scurrying away from them, shit-scared of their entire genus. The father and son try everything - coaxing, cajoling, tempting, threatening - but that only pushes Sathya away further. With marble eyes and short stature, Navdeep looks his part as a trembling little squirt. Arya as his rowdy elder brother also makes a convincing Kutty with the brawn and the sensibilities of a great ape.
Prakash Raj's histrionics sometimes shoot out of the graph, but his character is so unique, that it's not easy to point out flaws in its portrayal. Sathya's ambiguity between the life and morals he has known so far, and the sudden new demands on him, is the most piquing part of the movie. Navdeep, like someone who is shoved flat into an ice-cold pool, thrashes around and gasps for clarity to resolve his dilemma.
How he finally does that thankfully doesn't include too many theatrics. To the extent that the story frays away in the end, the resolution is mild, serendipitous and the work of an instant.
Even if Kalisunte isn't the best movie to watch this weekend, if you find yourself in the theater accidentally, you won't feel too tortured. And Samiksha is a pretty face to look at although she doesn't have too much of a role. With all the attitude she oozes, she does seem like someone to watch out for.