Fans of “The Kandasamys’ franchise have been eagerly awaiting the third instalment ever since news broke of the film being in production in Chatsworth, Durban.
With SA currently in the third wave of the coronavirus pandemic, “Trippin’ with the Kandasamy”’ has been made more accessible to fans by releasing on Netflix.
In the film, Rory Booth and Jayan Moodley flip the script.
This genius move obviated the family comedy drama from becoming a predictable bore.
Just to provide some context, the first film centred on the long-standing feud between former BFFs Jennifer Kandasamy (Jailoshini Naidoo) and Shanti Naidoo (Maeshni Naicker), who also happen to be neighbours.
The hostility between the two heightened when Prishen (Shanti’s son played by Madhushan Singh) and Jodi (Jennifer’s daughter played by the stunning Mishqah Parthiephal) began dating.
At the end, the overprotective mothers, who have chalk and cheese personalities, buried the hatchet for the sake of their kids happiness.
“Kandasamys: The Wedding” centred on Prishen and Jodi’s big day.
As usual, Jennifer’s posh plans were derailed by Shanti’s tacky traditional ones.
They were, unsurprisingly, at odds over everything.
In ‘Trippin’ with the Kandasamys’, Aya (Mariam Bassa), who is Jennifer’s mother-in-law, steals the show.
She’s also used in the film’s intro and outro, saying, “I often think marriage is like the ocean.
At its best, it’s the most glorious thing in the world: deep with desire, majestic yet gentle.
Just pure magic. But,why I must lie? Marriage is hectic. Like one lucky packet,it is. You don’t know what you're gonna get…”
The opening scene is of a baby shower - but don’t go jumping to conclusions. There’s a twist but it is one that will make you smile.
Jennifer and Shanti are gatvol of being taken for granted and make it known. Shanti, who is married to Preggy (Ugan Naidoo), vents: “I don’t know if he’s calling ‘Shanti’ or ‘I want tea’.”
Jennifer feels their upcoming “couples getaway” to celebrate Shanti’s 50th milestone will help put the spark back in both their relationships.
However, Elvis (Koobeshan Naidoo) and Preggy have a surprise in store for them - they’ve turned the break into a family affair.
And they brought an unexpected guest from China - Baby aka Dhanasagree (Uraysha Ramracheya), who is Shanti’s sister-in-law.
Still oblivious to their wives discontent, often chopping their snide comments down to menopause, the husbands have a blast, planning their own “break” with a fishing trip among others.
Meanwhile, newlyweds Prishen and Jodi find themselves ensnared in the unfolding family saga - more so, with Elvis and Preggy pandering to Baby’s every whim.
As such, Jennifer and Shanti team up to get rid of their common enemy and they enlist the help of Aya, who doesn’t mind usingher “trusting face” to be a double-agent provided she gets something in return, too.
Jayan proves her Midas touch as a director. The build-up in the comedy and dramatic scenes are handled with aplomb.
The scenarios are relatable. Similar to the previous films, this one is laden with universally appealing cultural nuances.
Jailoshini and Maeshni are absolutely magnificent as partners in crime. In fact, the newfound solidarity between Jennifer and Shanti is most refreshing.
Honestly, every cast member from Koobeshan, Ugan, Madhushan to Mishqah plays their part with commendable finesse.
My absolute favourite is Mariam as Aya. She’s a hoot.
Her one-liners - “I’m on my last breath and you want me to blow balloons”, “Tell Prishen to put his key in” and “Go die, Dhanasagree” - left me rolling with laughter on the couch.
Don’t even get me started on the scene where she lays into Elvis and Preggy: “You two donkeys need to pull up your socks. You take your wives for granted.”
This was followed by the “wake-up” hand gesture that is well-known in the Indian community.
Of course, Jayan always has a showstopper event that brings the story and characters together, in this case, it’s Diwali.
“Trippin’ with the Kandasamys'' will leave viewers in stitches.
It’s everything you imagined it would be - but with more bang.