Sunday, May 26, 2024

Love Today : Laugh, Think, Cry and above all Fun

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PNS | Hyderabad

Love as a concept is cherished by all of us, but what a relationship brings along with it, is what we dread. We have this overt propensity for trusting the person whom we really care for and love. In hindsight, the fear of being left out lurks around the corner. In a relationship, the one thing that takes time to build is trust; sadly, the same thing can be dismantled quickly. Exclusivity is one of the prime demands in the early stages of a relationship. The feeling of “I know everything about him/her is what makes a relationship special” or at least an illusion of it all compensates for one’s insecurity and anxiousness.

“I know you inside out, baby”, is the essence of Love Today written and directed by Pradeep Ranganathan. The film is an extended version of a short film titled Appa Lock directed by Pradeep Ranganathan himself in 2020. In the modern day, life without a mobile device is pointless for most of us. It is an understatement to say that we are not dependent on our phones. Be it work or leisure, we just need that little thing in our hands all the time. Our personality is stored within the locked folders of our smartphones. Starting from whom you’re texting to what you view for pleasure or which app you use the most is all recorded in that smart peculiar device that we are so addicted to.

Love Today, starring Pradeep Ranganathan as Uthaman Pradeep and Ivana as Nikitha in the titular roles is a wonderful take on the modern dating space. IT employees Uthaman Pradeep and Nikitha are madly in love and as mentioned earlier, they both are under the impression that they know each other inside out. However, thirty minutes into the film, when Sathyaraj who plays Nikitha’s poker faced father gets to know about the couple in a rather awkward yet hilarious manner, puts the cute couple to a test by asking them to exchange their phones for a day.

The reluctant couple eventually gives in to the pressure and exchanges their phones. What follows after that is sure to make you burst out so hard you’ll be gasping for air. The rosy tale turns into a colossal mess in just a few hours once the pair unlock each other’s phones. A person’s tendency to brush off all feelings of distrust under the garb of genuine love is tactfully put out in the open. As the story unfolds, Uthaman Pradeep and Nikitha find out things that blow their minds. The film has all the things that a millennial can relate to.

For instance, you’ve got Aajeedh Khalique as Revi, Nikitha’s best friend who constantly tries to woo her, but sees no results whatsoever. Remember it is not Ravi, it is Revi. You must keep this in mind, okay? No matter what Revi does to win her heart, Nikitha conveniently and politely puts him in the friend zone. A theme that a zillion guys can reckon with.

Pradeep Ranganath masterfully uses different techniques to keep the audience hooked to the seats. When the character finally decides to open Nikitha’s Instagram app and reads out all the chats, you will see the guy going into a surreal world. Out of the earth’s orbit to be precise. The split screen editing technique has been put to best use whenever there’s an intense conversation between the couple. The constant inclusion of the scene time and again where a little kid sows a seed in the soil and gets restless over time to see it not grow into a tree metaphorically plays out extremely well in the pre-climax.

Raadhika Sarathkumar as Pradeep’s nagging mother is a delight to watch. Raveena Ravi(here it is Ravi, not Revi) as Pradeep’s sister, who is all set to marry Dr. Yogi played by Yogi Babu serves as one of the driving factors of the movie. Comedian Yogi Babu as the would-be groom tickles the funny bone whenever he appears on the screen with his usual comedic quirks. There is no doubt that Yogi Babu is a great actor, but he transcends his limits as an actor towards the fag end of the movie in a dialogue where he reflects on his life.

As entertaining as the film is, it makes the viewer think about the concept of trust and companionship. The emotional scene where Uthaman Pradeep seeks refuge in his mother’s lap stands out. In this scene, Raadhika Sarathkumar comes up with power lines like this one, “No matter how hard a guy tries, if the girl isn’t into him, she will not even let him touch a strand of hair. If she really loves you, she won’t think for a second to sacrifice her life for you.” Filmy as it should rightly be, the line hits you hard.

The virtuoso that he is, Yuvan Shankar Raja does an outstanding job with the background score. Cinematographer Dinesh Purushothaman’s work is seamless throughout the film and the production values look flawless.

Love Today is the perfect amalgamation of drama and comedy with out-of-the-box performances from the cast. Special shout-out to Pradeep Ranganathan for excelling as a director, writer, and actor. Love Today makes you laugh, think and cry. Is it for you? Well! If you enjoy having fun, it is! Also, are you willing to exchange phones with your partner? (haha)

Rating: 3.75/5

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