Wednesday, April 27, 2005

'Old' Mohanlal

Malayalam cinema has been dominated for a long time by two Ms - Mammootty and Mohanlal. While both of them are great actors, I've always felt that Mohanlal is the more versatile of the two. He is equally at ease whether clowning around, dancing or fighting while Mammootty doesn't seem comfortable doing comedy or swinging a leg. But Mammootty definitely has the upper hand when it comes to changing his physical appearance. He manages to alter his hairstyle, look, etc. for each role while Mohanlal essentially looks the same in every film, conveying differences through the strength of his performance. Wearing glasses and twirling his moustache is as far as I've seen him go!

Mohanlal is playing dual roles of a father and son in the upcoming Udayon and the father's role sees him in a very different getup of an old man. Based on the stills and the story, it promises to be an interesting performance.

31 Comments:

At 10:56 AM, Anonymous Vijays said...

Balaji, Lalettan has changed appearances on a few occasions in the past (Uncle Bun, Ravanaprabhu)

Barring 'Udayananu Tharam', none of Mohanlal's recent efforts have been even remotely watchable!
But 'Udayon' definitely looks interesting..I hope Bhadran and Lal deliver another entertaining film on the lines of 'Spadikam.

 
At 12:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Barring 'Udayananu Tharam', none of Mohanlal's recent efforts have been even remotely watchable!"

How about "Hariharan Pillai Happy Aanu"? It was hilarious!

 
At 1:11 PM, Anonymous ram said...

for some strange reason was thinking of the Coundamani joke when i saw this Kerala naatu post...

In Malabar Police...Satyaraj serves him some tasteless "health food" and sings:
Kadale Nakkara Pororey...

Counds responds:
Naan Kanji Nakka Poreney!

 
At 5:45 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

yeah, true. But still very few and not even close to the number of changes Mammootty has had.

Havent seen a new Mohanlal film in a long time. Mainly because they r not available in DVD. Mallu movies r real bad when it comes to release on video and even worse about releasing on dvd. I get real excited about a movie but lose all interest by the time it comes out on video! And the DVD quality of the few out there is ridiculous. Bad prints, no subtitles, etc.

ram, i remember koundamani had quite a few jokes at Malayalam's expense in that one. Very funny one there...

 
At 5:46 AM, Blogger Munimma said...

How about a blog on mallu movies? Just a list of good comedies would do. Have been so out of touch with mallu movies for the same reason as you Balaji. I have been buying some good 80s comedies from anytamil.com. Some of my favorites include poochakoru..., pattina pravesam (was this the one with Mohanlal and Srinivasan?), Abhayam Thedi, Kaakakuyil and some more I have forgotten the names of.

 
At 9:59 AM, Blogger Balaji said...

munimma, the movies u mention, except for kakkaakuyil, are a bit older than my fav period in Malayalam cinema. I would rate late 80s-early 90s as a truly golden period with many real classics. Will try to do a post on them sometime soon...

 
At 11:47 AM, Anonymous Vijays said...

Yup Balaji, late 80s - early 90s was truly an amazing period for Malludom!
Just off the top of my head:
Mukundettan Sumithra vilikkunu
Thaniavardhanam
Oru CBI diary kurippu
August 1
Chithram
Kireedom
Chanakyan
Oru vadakkan veera gadha
Kilukkam
Vandanam
His highness Abdullah
No.2 Madras mail
Iyer the great
Dhwani
Mazhavil kavadi
Devasuram
Godfather
Ramji rao speaking
Innale
Thazhvaram
Bharatham
Sargam
Sadayam
Manichitrathazhu
Phew! And the list is not even complete...

 
At 12:17 PM, Blogger Munimma said...

vijays, can you give me a one liner on these movies. I have seen some (which are early 80s btw) and I might have seen some more and forgotten the title. One movie I am trying to recall had mammooty and Amala, at the end they throw away and key and miss each other. Which was the one manasukkul mathaapu was remade from?
kaanamariyathu was my eye-opener to malludom. Had a big crush over mammooty ever since. :-)

 
At 12:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Manasukkul Mathapoo xerox of Thalavattam which is xerox of One flew over cuckoo's nest

 
At 12:45 PM, Anonymous Vijays said...

Muni, I assume the movie you are asking is Vandhanam (based on the key-word!), and it actually stars Lalettan and Girija! The Telugu remake (I think Nirnayam) of the same had Nagarjuna and Amala in it.

 
At 12:57 PM, Blogger Munimma said...

vijays,
ipdi vasayaagara kaalathala confuse pannalama? Amala, definitely (forgotten beauty?)
lal and Girija sounds familiar, I have seen that movie, can't recollect much though.

 
At 1:12 PM, Anonymous Vijays said...

Muni, as far as I can recall, only 'Vandhanam' had that famous 'throw away the key' sequence.
mammoo and amala paired in 'Mounam Sammadham' and that was in Tamil!
Thalaivar Balaji, can you clarify??

 
At 1:18 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

vijays, think ur list covers most of the movies i had in mind when talking about the golden period of Mallu cinema. 'Pavithram' is one you missed.

yep, vijays is right. 'Vandhanam' had the throw-away key sequence and starred Mohanlal and Girija. Storyline had Mohanlal stakeout Girija's house since she was the daughter of a professor(Venu) who was accused of killing one of his students. Nagarjun/Amala starred in the Telugu remake which was dubbed into Tamil too.

anon, right. and priyadarshan is now remaking it in Hindi with salman khan and kareena...

 
At 2:16 PM, Anonymous Vijays said...

Dont exactly remember Pavithram, Balaji..Is it a mammootty starrer?

 
At 2:24 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

Pavithram stars Mohanlal(and Urvashi, I think) and is about his love for his sister. He excels in the climax. Guaranteed to create a lump in your throat!
Couple of other good ones:
Vaalsalyam
Vietnam Colony
Suryagayathri

 
At 2:42 PM, Anonymous Vijays said...

I vaguely remember the film..I think Valsalyam stars Mammootty rt?
Vietnam colony and Surya.. are still fresh in my mind. I also forget to add 'Varavelpu'(Mohanlal and Revathi) in the list..Hilarious and touching film!

 
At 6:48 PM, Blogger Munimma said...

Hmm, I remember seeing something of Mammooty and Amala in Mal. may be not. I do remember that professor movie with Venu.
Kilukil pambaram is funny too.
To me, Bharathan was the ultimate Mohanlal movie. That song when he knows his brother is dead, he was too good there. I remember the tune, words are fuzzy.
I have always liked his movies. Quite versatile.
I liked Hitler and Narasimham also. I heard Thomas and sons were good (funny) too.
Harikrishnans somehow maybe because of the bad print didn't appeal too much.
Another mammooty's good one was that temple drummer one. Aaraam thampooran was good, and it had great songs.

 
At 8:07 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

yes, 'vaalsalyam' is mammootty's. raises his brothers only to c them abandon him later.

'bharatham' is a true classic. simple but gripping screenplay, great performances and memorable songs.

 
At 9:00 AM, Anonymous Vijays said...

This list keeps growing! Forgot to mention:
Cheppu
Thalayana Mandram
Advaitham
Chenkol(Kireedom sequel)
Amrutham Gamaya
Thoovana Thumbikal(how could I forget this one! Padmarajan's masterpiece!))

 
At 12:05 PM, Blogger sen said...

vijay let me add some of the movies you missed.

#)Vanaprastham(how can u miss this)

#)Guru

#)Boeing Boeing

#)Nadodi kathu

i think u r mixing up varavelppu with killukkam.have u guys seen AHAM. i saw it like 10 yrs before it brought me to tears.

in the recent ones most of them where garbbage, i felt vanapuram bus route and bramachari to be ok.

 
At 2:45 PM, Anonymous Vijays said...

Senthil - The period defined by Balaji was late 80s - early 90s..I listed out the films solely based on that criterion.Boeing... was released in 1984 I think. Guru (A masterpiece by Rajiv Anchal) and Vanaprastham (Didnt like it that much) were released in 97-98.
How can you conclude that I mixed up Varavelpu with Kilukkam when I had already listed Kilukkam in the list? FYI,Varavelpu is the Sathyan Anthikadu film starring Mohanlal and Revathi. The story is about the Gulf-returned Lal's trials and tribulations in starting and running a bus service in his home town. An alternately hilarious and very touching film!
Does it ring a bell to you atleast now?

 
At 12:57 AM, Blogger Balaji said...

senthil, no havent seen 'aham'. any details about it? actors, storyline, etc.?

vijays, i had a feeling your list missed an important one and after racking my brains, i finally got it... Dasaratham! An absolute favorite for its mature topic, fabulous characterization, strong emotions and classic climax.

 
At 7:29 AM, Anonymous Vijays said...

Yup! you are right Balaji :-)
'Dasaratham' was phenomenal!..Sibi Malayil did a splendid job in handling the surrogate mother theme with a lot of sensitivity, and Lalettan was simply amazing in the film!
Keep adding to the list, as I am sure there is lots more to come...

 
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At 10:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi
I'm an biggg fan of malayalam movies and am making a list of funny movies esp late 80s and early 90s(have already got many frm ur previous posts).can u help me with more sibi malayil ,fazil etc movies?mohanlal,mammootty,sreenivasan etc(serious ones with a great storyline can also be included)

one of my favourite mammootty movie is manimutthooril aayiram shivaraathrikal thouugh its serious and i'm a mohanlal fan

 
At 1:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually I like Mohanlal

 
At 1:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mohanlal is the best

 
At 1:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yoh Mohanlal
He is a superstar

 
At 1:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lalettan is the best

 

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