Enthada Saji: Only real divine intervention could’ve saved this 

The film also has a satirical tone as it takes a few jibes at the church, clergy, and the wealthy NRI achayans.
Image used for representative purposes only.
Image used for representative purposes only.

Debutant Godfy Xavier Babu’s Enthada Saji is a film that’s deeply rooted in Christianity. So it’s ideal that the makers chose to release the film on the final day of Holy Week, between Good Friday and Easter Sunday. But if it took three days for Jesus Christ to resurrect, it would take more time for an ordinary human to recover from the scars of watching this film.  

In the past, Malayalam cinema has seen some lovely, heartwarming stories of divine interventions. Nandanam, Pranchiyettan & the Saint, and Amen are some fine examples. Though Enthada Saji has thematic similarities, it hardly has any quality of the aforementioned films. The story revolves around Sajimol (Nivetha Thomas), who strikes an unlikely bond with Rocky Punyalan (Kunchacko Boban). Saint Rocky (Saint Roch) has traditionally been honoured as a patron saint of unmarried men. In this film though, he is the guiding light of the unmarried Sajimol, who is the laughing stock of villagers after her wedding gets called off. The narrative is woven mostly around Sajimol’s interactions with the Punyalan, before stumbling through an insipid romantic track and a silly robbery angle.

Sajimol, the eponymous protagonist, is a shoddily written character with no depth whatsoever. It seems like her conversations with the Punyalan were intended to be fun and jovial, but none of them make an impact. The weakly-written character is further undermined by Nivetha Thomas’ pretentious performance. An otherwise solid performer, Nivetha tries too hard to be the chirpy Sajimol and it reflects badly on screen. While Kunchacko Boban radiates the required grace and divinity, Jayasurya, in an extended cameo role, has pretty much nothing to offer. It is quite unfortunate that these talented actors are brought together for such a weak script.

Watching Enthada Saji feels like attending a prayer session as the makers indulge in plenty of preachiness, told mostly through Bible verses. The film also has a satirical tone as it takes a few jibes at the church, clergy, and the wealthy NRI achayans. While the first half has the mood of a feel-good fantasy entertainer, the second half strangely becomes a mystery thriller and that’s where the plot is lost completely. After a point, it becomes a tiring exercise. If only there was a real divine intervention to save the film from sinking.

Film: Enthada Saji
Cast: Nivetha Thomas, Kunchacko Boban, Jayasurya
Direction: Godfy Xavier Babu
Rating: 1/5

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