Video Watch Reviews

‘His Father’s Voice’: A story of life, love and the arts

Asense of awe swept over the audience gathered at the Tagore Film Centre, Chennai for the Indian premiere of ‘His Father’s Voice’, the debut film of director Kaarthikeyan Kirubhakaran. It is also the first for most of the cast. The film is a slow-paced journey through love, separation and nostalgia, set against the timeless beauty of the performing arts.

An American family, Jon, Clara, and their son Kris, live with Parvathi, Nagarajan and their daughter Valli, inside a Music and Dance School in Tamilnadu. Jon (Jeremy Roske), a musician, is deeply inspired by Indian Classical music. He composes songs based on different ragas with a western twist.

Clara (Julia Koch) is jealous of Parvathi’s influence over Jon and Kris. She begins to distance herself, eventually parting ways with Jon and leaving home with Kris. A heart-broken Jon finds solace in his music.

Twelve years later, Kris (Christopher Gurusamy) returns as a young dancer, and desires to reconnect with his father. Valli (Sudharma Vaithiyanathan), his childhood friend, is now a beautiful and gifted dancer. Though resentful of Parvathi (Ashwini Pratap Pawar) and Nagarajan (P.T. Narendran), who he thinks are responsible for his parents’ separation, in Valli’s company he understands what true love is.

“The film tells you how honest relationships matter the most in life,” says Kirubhakaran. Featuring young and senior dancers, including C.K. Balagopalan and Bragha Bessell, the film captures the power of art as a connecting factor. “The inclusion of professional dancers lends authenticity,” adds the director.

‘His Father’s Voice’: A story of life, love and the arts

In the film, Christopher and Sudharma perform a piece on the fight between Chandraketu, the son of Lakshmana, and Lava, the son of Rama. The piece stands out for its choreography, dancing skills and picturisation.

There are other pieces too, such as C.K. Balagopalan depicting a heartbroken Janaka and Bragha Bessell showing how Kausalya weeps for her daughter-in-law Sita.

The film features musical gems like the Santana Thillana, a musical medley of the Jayadeva composition ‘Nijaga Dasa’, an original Marathi baby shower song and ‘Fire and Ice,’ arranged by Vedanth Bharadwaj. One who deserves special mention is Bindhu Malini, her melodious singing lends an edge to the scenes.

The storyline drags, while acting and dialogue delivery lack punch in some scenes. But the ethnic costumes are impressive.

‘His Father’s Voice’, with its stunning visual aesthetics and Ashwini Pratap Pawar’s memorable performance, is a movie that powers itself with the cast’s artistic abilities and admirable cinematography. Well-known critic and historian V.A.K. Ranga Rao, who was among the special invitees, remarked that it is “the most fulfilling musical film he has seen over the years that unravels like a beautiful padavarnam.”

Available in the U.S., Canada, Australia and the U.K., ‘His Father’s Voice’ will soon release on Amazon Prime Video for Indian audiences.

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Printable version | Nov 25, 2021 9:49:05 PM |

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