Rani Padmini is one of the movies in the recent times that created a lot of noise even before its release. Directed by Aashiq Abu, it had two women in central characters. This was also the first time Rima Kallingal acted with Manju Warrier. It was supposed to be a road journey movie and it was shot in the beautiful part of Himachal and northern India. For all that noise it created and all the wonderful marketing tactics, the movie was not all that great. Yes, I loved the journey, I loved watching the beautifully captured Indian terrains, the songs were good, and even the narration was kind of okay. But what I did not like was the not so natural acting by both the leads. Even though the approach was to show two women who learn from each other as they travel together, the spectrum kind of stereotyped that those who look very typical, simple, and door-next door (not that Manju looked so much like that) are not as strong as the ones who look very tomboyish. Even as we fight for the equality of gender and fight for women to stand out and not be judged for what we wear and do, we as women tend to stereotype 'who' fits the role of being a strong woman.
Well, the movie had some good thoughts but somehow the stereotypical attitude and stiff expressions and acting just made it very bland. The good part as I mentioned was the lovely locations, and of course, Srinda. She didn't have much role to play but she was brilliant even in those couple of scenes as a friend of Padmini.
Overall, it was a movie that was watchable just once and I think Manju has still a long way to go before she becomes the same old Manju Warrier, we all miss and adore.