The warm-up takes time, but once it crosses the hurdle, Kondaan Koduthaan (U) sheds its tepidity. However, what beats you is the choice of subject. Women are the target audience for films that handle family drama, but these days you have a glut of sob sagas and family sentiment coming free at the click of a button through the day. So this viewer base has been almost completely hijacked by satellite channels. In such a scenario, writer, director and cinematographer G. Rajendran ventures into a much-trodden path of sibling love and rivalry that turns bloody. Some guts!

Veterans such as Ilavarasu make the essential difference to the plot that's otherwise predictable and pedestrian. Yet Rajendran's treatment is the saving grace. He maintains the momentum for the most part and though he does have a song sequence (‘Thillana …') that's unwarranted, the lyric and music — Kabilan and Deva — make it different. All the same, in content and narration, KK is anything but a film for 2012!

With the overused format of an opening song with a family of aunts, uncles, nephews and nieces, dancing with gay abandon (fathers singing, and mothers — Sulakshna is one of them — doing a jig along with them is a bit too much to take!) and philosophical strains in the background in the emotion-filled sequences that were in vogue in the films of the 1950s and 60s, the scenes are too obsolete.

Forcing or threatening a girl into marriage is still a reality in our towns and villages. But not many in the cities can relate to such incidents. And strangely, no solid reason is given for the deep-rooted villainy that causes havoc in the families. Thus the animus of Rajkapoor and his son is an enigma.

Marriage between cousins (children of a brother and sister) is the norm in Chelliah's (Ilavarasu) family. The ill-effects of consanguineous marriages don't seem to have reached their ears at all! The practice takes an unpleasant turn when hero Rasu's (Kadhir) sister Poonkodi (Sini) leaves the house on her wedding night, and the acrimony between the two families becomes irrevocable. Heroine Advaita made an impression in Azhagarasamiyin Kudhirai and continues in the same vein in KK. And Kadhir, who debuted with S. A. Chandrasekharan's Veluththu Kattu, fills the bill. While Ilavarasu once again shows his calibre as a performer, walking away with the acting honours is Meera Krishnan as his sister. It's probably the best role that has come her way so far, and the singer-turned-television newsreader-turned-actor proves her potential.

Logical questions arise because certain portions of KK are left dangling. For instance, when does the hero get to know about the past of his sister's groom and whatever happened to the man who actually married Poonkodi?

Toilet humour is gaining prominence in our films. How much of it does the viewer have to suffer? ‘Ganja' Karuppu's supposedly funny takes are unbearable and it's shocking that even an actor of Ilavarasu's stature is made to toe the line!

Content wise, KK makes a giant leap backwards in time. Would have worked well five decades ago!

Kondaan Koduthaan

Genre: Family drama

Director: G. Rajendran

Cast: Kadhir, Advaita, Ilavarasu, Meera Krishnan

Storyline: A forced marriage ends in a family feud that badly affects its members …

Bottomline: Caught in a time warp