Vanaprastham (Malayalam)- Movie Review

June 10, 2010 at 7:44 am | Posted in Malayalam, Movie Review | 2 Comments
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Hello everybody

I saw a Malayalam  movie (Art) called Vanaprastham today. I would consider it as an art rather than a movie. I have not seen many Malayalam movies, I think this is my third movie. This movie is strictly for hard core movie lovers and not for everyone. I don’t like revealing the full story of a film, so I will give a brief outline of the plot….

Set mainly in the 1950s when India was still under British rule, Kunhikuttan (Mohanlal) is a Kathakali dancer. This is an expressive form of South Indian theater that uses sign language, pantomime, music, and dance to relate stories of Indian mythological and historical figures. Kun is a respected performer but is a member of a lower caste, without wealth or personal happiness. His father (Venmani Haridas), an upper class Namboodiri (Brahmin), has rejected him and he is stuck in an arranged marriage that provides no comfort, enduring it only for the sake of his beautiful daughter. An alcoholic by day, he comes alive when he puts on colorful costumes, hears the beat of the chenda drum, and takes on the persona of the mythological heroes he portrays.

It is a movie which shows the emotions of a son neglected by his father. This movie is very subtle and moves in its own pace. Technically the movie is great because of Santhosh Sivan’s Camera and Zakir Hussain’s music. The music is so soothing to hear when watching the movie. I have never seen a kathalkali dancer before but after seeing this I can imagine only Mohanlal as a kathakali dancer.  He was so natural in his emotions and I was literally moved by his performance in the climax. Suhasini has acted a subhadra and she has performed very well in the movie. She looks old and the dubbing given to her didn’t suit her at all. This movie won national award for the best movie and Mohanlal won national award for the best actor.  Please don’t miss this if you like artistic movies……or watch it for Mohanlal…..



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  1. great review……..

  2. Mohan lal’s performance in vanaprastham is a classic example and a research material for acting students on under acting..

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