Padmini review: Senna Hegde’s latest outing makes you laugh and also think

The director conveys a layered story in a subtle way while focusing on the pressure faced by women in marriage.

ByArjun Ramachandran

Published:Aug 10, 2023

A laugh riot!

Padmini (Malayalam)

  • Cast: Kunchako Boban, Madonna Sebastian, Aparna Balamurali, Vincy Aloshious, and Ganapathi
  • Director: Senna Hegde
  • Music: Jakes Bejoy
  • Producer: Prasobh Krishna, and Suvin K Varkey
  • Runtime: 2 hours

Expectations ran high for Padmini when director Senna Hegde announced the movie.

The director earlier helmed critically-acclaimed films like Thinkalazhcha Nishchayam (2021) and 1744 White Alto (2022). This time, he came up with a movie that starred a bunch of young actors. Also, he came out of Kanhangad in Kasaragod where his movies are usually set.

Padmini is shot in Palakkad district and is Kunchacko Boban’s first solo-hero movie after his appearance in 2018 (2023) and Pakalum Pathiravum (2023).

Senna Hegde’s signature comedy is the highlight of the flick.


Padmini is directed by Senna Hegde

‘Padmini’ is directed by Senna Hegde. (Supplied)

Padmini starts with the marriage of Rameshan (Kunchacko Boban), a poet and college professor. On his first night, his wife Smrithi (Vincy Aloshious) elopes with her lover in the latter’s Premier Padmini car.

After that shocking incident, Rameshan is teased by the people of his village for his embarrassing situation.

Also, he is called “Padmini” Rameshan by his neighbours and villagers.

Interestingly, a new professor named Padmini (Madonna Sebastian) joins his college. Rameshan falls in love with her.

But he can’t legally marry her as his first marriage with Smirthi has been registered. so, he files for a divorce.

The subsequent events after he files for divorce keep the story moving forward.

At the same time, there is a love story between Sreedevi (Aparna Balamurali) and Jayan (Sajin Cherukayil). Sreedevi is an advocate in the family court and Rameshan hires her for his case.

As the story progresses, Sreedevi’s family also plays an important role in the story.

Meanwhile, Padmini faces many troubles from her family who isn’t happy with her decision to marry Rameshan who, in turn, is unable to get a divorce due to the court proceedings.

Also Read: Baba Black Sheep review: A film with two different halves

Interesting twists

Malayalam movie Padmini releasing on 14 July

Malayalam movie ‘Padmini’ releasing on 14 July. (Twitter)

The plot has many interesting twists — at the beginning, in the middle of the story when Rameshan feels love towards his neighbour but gets a shocker (which if revealed now would be a spoiler), and then in the climax part.

The relationship between Jayan and Sreedevi offers us some funny moments.

Jayan is an entrepreneur who is into the production of mattresses. He is portrayed as a man who likes to flaunt his money.

Sreedevi is quite aware that he is a male chauvinist and doesn’t like her working as an advocate, particularly after their marriage.

She initially doesn’t care about this but after a point, she takes her stand and concentrates on her profession deeply.

Fun elements

Aparna Balamurali in Padmini

Aparna Balamurali in ‘Padmini’. (Twitter)

Comedy is the major highlight of Padmini.

Senna Hegde tries to convey a layered story that narrates the feelings of a youngster who faces embarrassing statements from his neighbours after his wife elopes.

There are some refreshing elements like the advertisement of the mattress firm owned by Jayan that erupts huge laughter among the audience in the theatre.

The movie also highlights the pressure faced by women in marriage.

Interestingly, writer Deepu Pradeep discussed marriage and related fun in the hit comedy film Kunjiramayanam (2015).

Also, in Thinkalazhcha Nishchayam, Senna Hegde dealt with a similar theme of marriage and elopement. But Padmini works since it’s refreshing.

Also Read: ‘Bharateeyans’ makes a serious mockery of national issues

Subtle performances

Padmini songs were received well upon its release

‘Padmini’s’ songs were received well upon its release. (Supplied)

Padmini’s script gives importance to all the characters and the director gives equal space to every actor.

Kunchacko Boban is noteworthy as Rameshan. For a senior actor who has been in the industry for more than 25 years, Kunchacko delivers a subtle performance and wins our hearts.

Vincy Aloshious is fabulous and her comedy scenes are well-appreciated in the theatre.

Aparna Balamurali and Sajin Cherukayil are a fun to watch.

Both Aparna and Vincy Aloshious are a laugh riot on screen. While watching them, we can’t help but draw references to some of the senior actresses like Urvashi who excelled in comic roles.

Sajin Cherukayil as the male chauvinist is notable. He gets on our nerves with his foolishness on many occasions.

Madonna Sebastian is decent in the title role of Padmini.

Anand Manmadhan as Venu, the brother-in-law of Rameshan, is good in comedy sequences.

Ganapathi, as Rameshan’s younger brother, plays a meaningful role.

The songs composed by Jakes Bejoy are apt and elevate the story.

Also Read: I was struggling despite delivering hit films: Director Nanda Kishore

Final take

Padmini is a fun ride with a thought-provoking theme of marriage and elopement. It is a clean entertainer with a good dose of comedy and songs.

(Views expressed here are personal.)