‘Tholvi F. C.’ movie review: A feel-good outing about a dysfunctional family that has its moments

‘Tholvi F. C.’ movie review: A feel-good outing about a dysfunctional family that has its moments

A still from ‘Tholvi F.C’

Tholvi FC, the story of a dysfunctional family’s attempt to get its act together, has its moments. Several threads, all with the best intentions, touch upon gender equations in the family and society, sportsmanship, intrusion of mobile phones, individualism etc. However, the fabric of the narrative does not live up to expectations.

Light-hearted takes on dysfunctional families are quite the current rage in Malayalam cinema, and Tholvi FC falls into that category. Although the writing and the narration provide a certain amount of laughs here and there, the wafer-thin storyline and the extremely simplistic and uni-dimensional character sketches fail to score at crucial junctures. However, the crisp, pithy one-liners and some goofy acting save it from becoming a bore. The result is a tepid movie that might be alright for a rainy day or a one-time watch.

The family drama helmed by Thirike director George Kora, also the co-writer of Njandukalude Nattil Oridavela, has the feel of a 120-minute sitcom.

Tholvi FC

Director: George Kora

Cast: Johny Antony, Sharafudheen, George Kora, Asha Madathil, Meenakshi Ravindran, Althaf Salim

Storyline: The members of a dysfunctional family attempt to get their act together, with varying results

The Kuruvilla family comprises Kuruvila (Johny Antony), Sosha (Asha Madathil), Oommen (Sharafudheen) and Thambi (George Kora). Kuruvila loses money in a financial deal; Sosha’s dreams of turning a novelist remain just that; Oommen, an engineer-turned-entrepreneur, fails to attract customers to his tea shop; Thambi, the younger son, also stumbles in his efforts to become a football coach.

Then there are customers who come to the cafe, Thambi’s students’ parents, Mariayam, an old friend of Thambi’s, Mariyam’s sister’s family… too many characters upset the equilibrium of the script with the story being pulled in different directions. Moreover, some of the characters seem to have been added in as an afterthought.

Johny Antony comes good as Kuruvila, but the same cannot be said about Sosha. Her character seems to have been hastily sketched to give the movie a feel-food finish.

A serious issue involving a child gets resolved and then the scene shifts to some comic scenes. There are no nuances and no scene is likely to linger long in the viewer’s mind. The director and editor are also determined to ensure that the movie’s feel-good ration is not disturbed.

Meanwhile, Oomen’s problems with his outlet and Thampi’s football coaching never really fit in with the big picture of the movie. The matches, the coaching scenes and the practice sessions lack the fervour associated with football. Meenakshi Ravindran’s Mariyam has to bear the burden of being the role model in the script. Her effortless acting breathes life into Mariyam, but one wishes the director had not piled on all his ‘woke-isms’ on her. Ultimately, all the quick-fix solutions to all the problems of the characters make it a happy movie, if not a memorable one.

Tholvi F.C is currently running in theatres

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