Thank You!

My day started with watching the video shown below.

Of course,the video touched my heart deeply but it did bring back a timeline of events which taught me how to “really” say thank you.

The first lessons of saying thank you were from my parents. Every time somebody gifts me a chocolate,they would tell me “Say Thank You” and I would tell “Thank You”.I always thought it was a custom to tell Thank You when somebody gives us something.After a while,when my parents started making me hand over the gifts to people,I was told to say “You are welcome” once they tell me “Thank You”.Even telling “You are welcome” was a mechanical activity.During school days,though the entire class shouts “Thank You Madam/Sir” after every class,I am sure that neither me or my classmates were thankful about it.The chanting of Thank You was more about the happiness and relief which we got when the teachers left the class than the thankfulness for teaching us.But then,as we grow up,we do learn a lot of life lessons.During my teenage phase,telling somebody Thank You was about shedding the my ego.So I rarely thanked anyone.I felt so embarrassing when somebody thanked me. I would look down wondering what to reply them.I used to feel very awkward by hearing the word Thank You.So I would show a fake smile and run away from the situation.I didn’t know how to handle such situations.

Things changed when I started my college.First time away from home,new place,new language,new people and new food.Altogether I was in a messed up state.But,luckily I got a friend,Chittu, on the second day of the college.We talked for hours in a stretch and became friends in no time.Chittu and I became the relief sources for each other.My roommate and I were struggling to get along well and Chittu and her roommate were on the same phase too.Interestingly,my roommate and Chittu’s roommate became buddies.In a week,Chittu had reached the saturation point of her frustrations.Wardens were strict about the rules as they claimed that in first year, students from same state should not be roommates.Yes,Chittu is from Kerala.Chittu was infamous for her punctuality.She was always the last one to reach the class.As we both go to the class together,I will also end up reaching the class late.Daily,for 8.30 AM class,we will be the last ones to run from the mess.Then one day,we were royally late to the class;so we skipped our breakfast and ran to the class.To make the worse worst,she slipped and fell down on the steps of the hostel.And the shameless we are,we smiled each other and went to mess to have breakfast.We were happy to skip the first hour of class and leisurely walked to the class.By end of the day,back pain started for her.The second week of our college had just started and nobody knew each other well.But,we still managed to borrow an electric kettle and an Iodex cream.My roommate was happy to temporarily move to Chittu’s room for few days.After three days,Chittu and I reluctantly talked with the warden and to our surprise she agreed to the idea of Chittu moving in with me and we kicking out my roommate to Chittu’s room.After talking to the warden,I was just simply standing at the door of my room.I don’t know what happened in next five minutes.Looks like Chittu had all her suitcases packed and ready.She just ran across the corridor twice or thrice and there she is,shifted to my room.Both of us laughed like crazy people and she hugged me so tight and said Thank You.That was the first time I felt the real meaning of Thank You.The Thank You she said had all the happiness and relief which she had felt then.That was a very genuine Thank You.One Thank You made me feel so special and that was the beginning of a very beautiful friendship.Thus I started thanking people very sincerely.I made it a habit to look into the other person’s eyes and thanking them with a smile.Some people respond,some just stare at me and some others show their happiness.

Trust me,this habit has made both my life and smile more beautiful.And,this is a Thank You note for Chittu which was long overdue.

So,next time don’t hesitate to thank someone.A Thank You can make wonders in life.

 

 

 

 

PS : Thank you Brags for that Facebook post.

10 Valuable Lessons Malayalam Cinema teaches Men and Women

Disclaimer  : The post deals with Malayalam cinema because I don’t have enough knowledge to extend the details of this post to the movies of other languages. But, considering that we live in India, I am sure that most of what told in the post could be generalized.

 

Lessons for Women

1) Women should not shout

It is a common and indispensable dialog in a Malayalam movie. If ever a woman shouts, then the next dialog will be a man shouting back at her reminding her that a woman should not shout. I think this dialog comes automatically from a scriptwriter’s pen. Also, a woman’s voice touching the roof of the house or coming out through the bedroom wall will collapse the house.

2) Girls should be courteous, coy, pleasant, well dressed, well-mannered, and presentable and she should know cooking

Most of the movies will have a five to ten minutes session for advising a girl to be a “girl”. This is the part where the hero gets to talk on and on about his knowledge about perfect women. The situation in the movie will be as follows. The girl will be smart, talkative and independent. She likes to wear western attires and the clothes suit her well too. There will be a positive vibes of happiness around her. She drives a car. She eats food cooked by her Mother or maid. What on Earth is wrong in that? But, then there comes the hero. He tells her that girls should be coy and demure. Girls should not talk much. Girls should wear a saree. Girls should know cooking. A girl allowing the man to drive is feminine. He would shame her either in front of her family or in front of her friends. But neither her family nor her friends would stop the hero from puking the advices. Instead, they would stand like statues. Then with a heavy heroic background score the hero will leave the scene. And the transformation happens. There she is, our heroine, standing in a saree with her neck drooped   and cheeks blushed. She fell in love with the hero.

What the !!!

3) Life is lost, nothing is lost, but chastity is lost, then everything is lost

When I hear some dialogues, I feel that the world is balanced on a girl’s chastity. A man going to jail by killing someone is still a matter of pride but a woman losing her chastity is the biggest sin. In Malayalam cinema, there are only two solutions for this problem. One; the girl’s family, at times the neighbourhood will also join the family, begs the molester/rapist to marry her to wash off the bad name on the family. The girl’s father would fall on the molester’s feet, the girl’s mother would beg and finally the wedding happens and they live happily ever after. A song will be shown to portray the transformation of the molester and then the girl’s gets pregnant and delivers a baby boy and all is well. Two; the girl kills herself and all the shame and crack in the family honour are restored in minutes.

4) No matter what goes wrong, it is always a girl’s mistake

This dialog is reserved for the girl’s Mother. And yes, Mothers are always right. If a man stalks her, it is her mistake. If a man gropes her, it is her mistake. If a man rapes her, it is her mistake. If a man gives her a love letter ,it is again a girl’s mistake. If the family business dooms, then it a girl’s (daughter – in – law) mistake. No matter what shit happens, end of the day, it is always a girl’s mistake. Why did you allow him to stalk you? Why did you allow him to touch you? Why did you walk through that route so that he felt like raping you? You must have definitely done something to attract/provoke him.

Holy shit!

5) The best way to shame a girl is by talking nonsense about her morale and conduct

Any woman could be silenced by talking nonsense about her morale and conduct. The misconduct could include travelling alone, talking with boys, going out with men, drinking/smoking habits, going to clubs, going for western form of dances(traditional dance forms make a girl divine),failed relationships or marriage, not obeying her husband or parents, and wearing clothes which are not in the list of clothes allowed for a Malayali girl. Between every two lines, the hero or any other male character would boast a lot about the culture of Kerala and if the scriptwriter include point no.2 also, then this scene will be received by thunderous applause.

6) Nirvana of a woman’s life

This scene comes when a girl refuses to get married. Either her Mother or Aunt gets this piece of dialog. The scenes teach us the importance of getting married and staying married. The dialogues are gems of life changing information that they explains how important it is to have a man in a woman’s life, and how important it is for a woman to be accepted by the in-laws. And a woman’s life is completed only when she suffers the pain of delivering a baby, preferably a baby boy so that she has somebody to take care of her once the Husband dies.

7) Education is shit!

Girl: “Enikku padikkanam” (I want to study)

Girl’s parents: Pinne,padichittu collector aakan povalle. (Oh, as if you study and become a Collector)

These two dialogues are one of the most clichéd dialogues. Any time, if the girl refuses to get married and tells the parents that she wants to study, then the parents will shun by teasing her.

Some other dialogues related to education of a girl are

  • Pennkuttikal padichittendha oru kaaryam,veruthe kaashu kalayan.Aa kaashu kondu avale kettikkan nokku                         (What’s the point in a girl studying? Waste of money. Instead spend that cash and get her married off)
  • Pennkuttikal itrayokke padichaal mathi                                                                                                                                                                       (This much education is enough for girls)
  • Veettukaaryam nokkan valiya padipponnum venda                                                                                                                                              (You don’t need education to take care of a house)
  • Veruthe padippichittu pennine vazhi thettikkano?                                                                                                                                                  (Why do you want to educate her and spoil her conduct?)
  • Valiya degree undayittonnum oru kaaryamilla,vallathum vechu undakkan ariyanam                                                                                     (Having a degree is not a big deal. You should know how to cook well)

8) A girl is the light of the house

This is the safest way to make a girl obey the rules of patriarchy without making her feel that her life is restricted within an invisible boundary. The society and the movies glorify this fact so much that this is imprinted in people’s mind. They proclaim that girl is everything for a family and then impose rules on her to fulfil the mandatory conditions to be the light, mop and mixie of the family.

9)A girl falling in love

Though recently there has been a change in real life in the way the family reacts when they find out that the girl is in love, the cinema industry is still stuck with the chaos mode. The Father will blame the Mother for not making the daughter understand the value of culture and the family pride. The Mother in turn curses the daughter and blackmails her by holding kerosene can ready to pour on her. If she falls in love with somebody of a same caste, then the chaos level is normal. If she falls in love with somebody out of her caste, then the chaos level is at its maximum with a ten fifteen minutes scene of explaining her the family’s tradition, pride and name or about the hardships which the parents had to undergo to bring the kids up. If the girl falls in love with somebody of other religion, then the chaos cannot be measured. The Father would declare either to kill the daughter or go to jail (yes, killing daughter and going to jail is an awesome act) or to suicide together as a family.

10) A family which has to survive on a woman’s earnings is shame for the predecessors

This dialog is slightly out of fashion now but the grandparents who are heading the family cannot sleep without delivering this dialog whenever the women in the family wants to go out for work.

 

Lessons for Men

1)Slapping a woman is a man’s birthright

In Malayalam movies, slapping a woman is considered as the most matured act of a man. Husband slaps wife, brother slaps sister/s, and strange man slaps strange woman. In short, slapping is considered as the best medicine a man can give a woman to shut herself. An argument goes on and instead of the third dialog, the man slaps woman and there will be roars in the theatre. Women in the theatre shamelessly nod for this telling it was the heroine’s fault and getting one or two slaps will only make her a better woman.”Onnu koodi pottikeda avale”(slap her once more) is a common dialog which male audience shouts  and most of the times, the man on-screen slaps her once more as if he has heard the audience. See, the scriptwriter knows the audience well.

2) Love a girl? Stalk her,dude!

I don’t have any hopes about this trend dying soon. Some writers are even more brilliant. At times, raping her makes her fall in love. The hero whistles, tries to hold her hands or hair, follows her everywhere, intrudes her privacy and then voilà, she falls in love. The much appreciated Annayum Rasoolum was an epitome of stalking .A stranger following you daily at night till your doorstep is creepy and not romance.

3) One of the duties of a man is to protect family’s honour

The man will never allow anybody to spoil the honour of the family. So the best way to restore the family pride is either by kicking the girl out of the house or by killing her. If the family is powerful, then they can kill the man with whom she is in love and then force her to marry somebody else.

4) He is the decision-man

He decides and he orders. He decides what the Mother should do, what the wife should wear, what the son should study, whom the daughter should marry etc. The family which runs on a man’s command is a good family and a family which runs on a woman’s command is a bad family. It is an itching for the screenwriter if he doesn’t portray the family ran by a woman as a bad one and then an angelical man would enter into their lives and advises the woman head of the family to step down. He takes up the place as head of the family and all is well. The End!

5) Rules for men

A man should know how tame a woman and make her obey him.”Pennine varacha varayil nirthuka”(making the woman obey the man without protest) is a classic art and a man who learns it is THE MAN. Obeying wife or Mother(or any other woman) is considered as degrading the manliness. Other men would advise like “poyi chathoodada”(Cant you go and die?) if they come to know that their friend listens to his wife/Mother.

6) The sign of machismo

Womanizing by getting bored of sleeping with his wife is a sign of machismo but if a woman strays then she is a whore. The hero would list out why he is bored with his wife and then nobody asks a question. Should I explain what happens if a woman sleeps with somebody else?

7) Mistakes made by men are never mistakes

Men make mistakes but every mistake made by them is pardonable even if they kill somebody because they will always have a valid reason. The scriptwriter will make sure that the man(especially the hero) has enough reasons to support him for his actions; even if he rapes a woman. In that case, the man will sob saying I lost my control, it was a mistake—Do you think I will ever do such an act when I am sober?

Bloody hell!

8) Want to take revenge?

A man has the power to spoil a girl and the girl’s family. So if you want to make another man obey you, the best way is to threaten them to rape the women in the family. Why using your brain when all you need is to open the zip? Seriously, when we watch certain movies, the plot tells it without any shame. This is considered as the easiest way to threaten or take revenge.

9) The freedom to fall in love

A man has complete freedom to fall in love with whomever he wants. Why is it so? A man has the freedom to tell about his openly but a woman telling her love is a risk. Not just in movies, even in real life, people around her would tell her not tell anybody because it will reduce her chances for “good” proposals.

I doubt whether there is any movie which tells the man not to fall in love. Why is it so?

10) Man is always right…

…even if the woman counterpart is more intelligent, more educated, smarter and more talented than him. Period.

A to Z Challenge 2014 : Eric

The lights were dim.At times,the lights flickered.Eric ordered one more shot and licked the left over chilli chicken masala.He tried to figure out which song is played.He looked around and saw more boys and girls than men and women.A gang of ten was celebrating one of their friend’s birthday,another gang was celebrating a bachelorette party and a newly married couple was romancing in a corner couch.He got up from the seat and walked up to the smoking room.He pushed tipsy boys and girls to find a way.The room was packed but he got little place to lean on with his right shoulder.He noticed the young couple standing opposite him and smoking the same cigarette by taking turns.She wore a small black top which was up to her belly button and a micro mini skirt.Her boyfriend was enjoying the attention he and his girlfriend were getting.She took a puff and then kept her head on his shoulder and told him something.

Oops,is she talking about me?“,Eric asked himself and walked out of the smoke room.

He thought about his friends teasing him,“Hook up with someone man;otherwise what’s the point of going to the pub daily and drinking alone?”

“Yes,I am alone.I am 43 and I have no one,forget about woman,in my life”,he stumbled on a shimmering high-heeled stilettos,“How on earth are these women wearing them?”

When he walked up to the seat,there was a girl sitting in his chair and there was a guy hugging her and standing next to her.He stood in front of them for a while wondering what to tell to make her get up from his seat.

“Eric sir!”,Rakesh called out holding out a mug of rum coke.He took the mug and walked to the dance floor.

This pub has been Eric’s evening place for past five years.Earlier he used to come here with his friends.Later all of his friends got married and now they either don’t have time for him or don’t get the permission from their wives.Bullshit! Today every bartender is his friend.Bouncers greet him with a smile and there is no stag entry fee for him.Even during the most crowded nights,he will still get an entry.He leaves only when any of the bartenders asks him politely to leave.People never mess up with filthy-rich single men.

During his teens he was against drinking.He made sure he isn’t drinking or tasting alcohol even by mistake.For him the smell of alcohol was the smell of his Mom.Every night when the car horn honks in the midnight,he would run and stand at the stairway.His unconscious Mom would be in the hands of the driver.The driver would lift Mom and then make her lie down on the couch.One day,the driver smooched her only to find Eric standing in the hallway.He left hurriedly but Eric couldn’t forget what he saw.In fact there was nothing he could do then.He heard lots of stories about his Mom from the housemaids and his friends.Looks like she was an introvert simple girl when she married his Dad.Something happened between them which nobody knows clearly.But,when his Dad died of out blue,she was the happiest person on the earth.There was a rumor that she didn’t even shed a single tear when his Dad passed away.Eric was a year old then.When he wakes up in the morning,she would be still asleep and she would still smell alcohol.He dresses up alone and one of the maids would serve the breakfast.One of the drivers would drop him at the school.When he comes back from school,she would be sitting at the dining table in glittering translucent saree which showed every curve of her body.He would sit opposite her and the maid will keep a mug of hot milk in front of him and a mug of coffee in front her.She would talk sweetly to him for which he would answer in monosyllables.When the car honks,she would get up from the chair to kiss him.Every evening,there will be a patch of red lipstick on his cheeks.She didn’t notice him growing up and one night the hell broke loose.Eric still loses himself when he thinks of that night.

“Excuse me Uncle,could you please change the seat?Our gang doesn’t have enough space there.”,a boy in his early twenties sat next to Eric and pleaded.Eric smiled at the boy’s usage of the word Uncle rather than Sir.He silently occupied the other seat.He kept thinking about his inability with women.No!he isn’t impotent but he has trust issues.He trusts nobody.He trusts no woman.Wait! He had trusted one during his college days but when she learned stories about his Mom,she left him even without letting him know.He got to know about his own breakup news when his friends told him that she is going out with one of his classmates.

At times he wonder whether he has loved his Mom or not.But,he was sure about one thing.As he grew older,he started sympathizing and empathizing her more and more.But,even then there was no love for Mom.It was a feeling of hatred melting into practical nonsensical sympathy.

He had stopped waiting for her car coming home in the night.He was in Class Twelve then.When the car honked he didn’t bother about it.Later,he heard arguments downstairs and before he reached the hall he heard a thunderous slap and Mom’s shrieking cry.He saw Dad’s best friend Mahesh Uncle standing determined for slapping her for the second time.Eric ran to him and beat him up with the chair at the dining table.When Mahesh Uncle shouted *****,Eric lost all the control.He beat up Mahesh Uncle and dragged him on the floor to the car porch.He smashed the car glass and shouted at Mahesh’s driver to get out of the place.Eric was shivering in anger and went back inside.He saw his Mom crying.His senses weren’t working.All the anger which had been boiling inside him for years erupted without any control.He pulled up his Mom from the sofa and slapped her hard.He slapped her until he overcame his rage.His Mom’s nose and lips were bleeding and her face looked purple.He ran into his room and opened the bathroom door.He stood in the shower until he broke into tears.He didn’t wipe himself and fell on the bed.

Next morning he woke up hearing the non-stop knocks on his door.He had appointed one of the maids to knock on the door until he wakes up and opens the door.He made the maids satisfy his early morning sexual thirsts too.When he opened the door,a crowd welcomed him.Nobody seemed talking and he almost guessed it right.He saw his Mom’s dead body and policemen in the house.She had hung herself the night before.

After that day,he has been always alone.He fired the maids and drivers.He punched his Uncle when he and his family tried to stay over at his place.He lost lots of money trusting wrong people.He stopped college and took over the business at the age of 23.

“Sir,bill.”,Rakesh stood there with a smile and a bill.

Eric kept two hundred bucks extra and winked at Rakesh.

The watch showed 12.45 AM.He slowly walked out of the pub and waited for an auto.In front of the pub,a couple was fighting over some issue.“You cheat!”,the guy was shouting at top of his voice and the girl showered him names.

“Everybody cheats and I am cheating myself”,he sang and walked on the road until an auto rickshaw followed him and insisted him to get inside.After reaching home,he searched for the light’s switch and saw the photograph of his Mom on the wall.

“You *****!”,he shouted and fell on the couch and slept off.

Next day,again at 7 PM,he sat in the pub and ordered for another shot.

 

 

A to Z Challenge 2014 : Dev

Priya has been playing Candy Crush for quite sometime.Boredom at its best,she lamented.Nobody,including her Husband,is in town.She skipped breakfast and slept until the clock struck two in the afternoon.Still not hungry.She called up the usual home delivery outlet and ordered food.Only then she realized that she hasn’t even brushed.She was lazy to get out of the bed,so again played Candy Crush.

After half hour,the door bell rang.A new delivery boy — she smiled at him.She took the food packet and the bill and went inside to take cash.While taking the cash she thought the delivery boy doesn’t have the cliched looks of a delivery boy.

“What’s your name?”,She asked while paying the cash.

Karthik“,he answered smartly.

“Which class?”

“10th”

“Wow!No class today?”

“No class on Saturday Madam”

The conversation went on and on and before closing the door,Priya knew everything about Karthik and his family.She handed over a hundred rupee note and told him to come to her if he needs any help with Mathematics.He left the place in joy.

While in shower suddenly she realized,”Oh God! he looks like Dev. F****,how come it didn’t strike for me?”

She tied towel around her head,tightened her robe and got out of the shower.She hopped to the bedroom and opened her laptop.While logging into Facebook she searched among the many Dev and finally found his profile.

“Dev!”,she whispered in mixed feelings.

Years back,he was the dream boy of every girl in the school.He was tall,lean and handsome.His smile was heavenly.His dimples made girls blush.He talked well,he danced well,he sang well and he studied well too.Teachers and students loved him unconditionally.His hair always fell on his eyes.Girls competed to get his attention.

Priya forgot when was the first time she started noticing Dev. I think it was in Class Nine.She found the puberty period extremely annoying.She felt that she is in love with every guy whom she met.Later she found that her friends also have the same problem.Tina was in love with Aditya for a week then suddenly she started having feelings for Govind and later she was in love with Rakesh.

“Total confusion!”,Tina told Priya and Anita during the class break.

“We should not think such things.My Mother told me that it is a sin to think about such things until we get married.”,Anita took out her daily dose of lessons.

“Shut up Anita,we are just 14 and there are ten more years for us to get married.”,Priya teased.

“But,my Mother.. “,before she could complete Tina screamed.“I think I love Dev.”

“What??!!??”,Both Anita and Priya were shocked.

“I think he likes me too.”,though Tina sounded optimistic,Priya found it difficult to digest the fact.

Next day during the class Priya looked at Dev. His eyes were curious and his forehead showed that he was trying to understand what the teacher was writing on the board.That day while getting out of the class in the queue he stood before her.When he turned back and saw her,he smiled at her.He looked through his hair that had fallen on his eyes.There was a thunder bolt inside Priya’s heart.Her heart skipped a beat and she tried to smile back at him.He offered her to stand in front of him in the queue and she readily accepted.After crossing the school gate,when she looked back for him he had disappeared in the crowd.Her eyes searched for him in the crowd while getting inside the school bus.He had gone.Two days later,after lunch while washing the lunch box,Priya heard the song “Raja ko Rani se Pyar Ho Gaya“.She turned to her left and there he was singing and washing his lunchbox.He winked at her and she smiled.That day she couldn’t sleep.His smile took away her sleep.

Every morning she would look at herself a lot in the mirror until the school bus honks.It was then the tension clouded over her head.One fine morning she had pimples all over her face.Her face became pink and she was embarrassed.She applied Mother’s face cream in the hope of getting rid of them.

“Do you know Leena proposed Dev?”,Tina dropped the gossip bomb and that bomb fell right at the core of Priya’s heart.Her heart burned.She couldn’t stop not looking at Dev for rest of the day.He is always happy.Nobody has seen him tensed.Teachers love him more than any other student.He was the most popular student in the school — There are no cultural festivals or sports meets or excursions without him.And yes,Leena is the most beautiful girl in the school. Priya was undoubtedly sure about those two getting together.She got inside the school bus and chose a window seat to sit.She had no interest to play anthakshari ,so she looked outside and thought about the lost love.It was then she heard  hush-hush talks from the seat behind.She was the happiest person on Earth when she got down in front of her house from the school bus. Dev rejected Leena.She jumped in joy.

That night she went for the movie Mission Kashmir with her parents.She didn’t see Hrithik and Preity Zinta on the screen and instead she saw Dev singing and dancing with her.Her Mother didn’t like the movie but the “Soja Chanda” song and her Father was impressed with Hrithik’s acting skills.After the movie, while walking to get out of the cinema hall,Priya looked down hard not to stumble and fall inside the poorly lit hall.She held Father’s left hand and slowly walked.When she crossed the row of seats,Dev was standing at the end of the row.He smiled at her.She felt that she was dreaming.No!She wasn’t. He was standing in front her for real.She was overexcited and introduced him to her parents.That night while driving back she talked only about him .

Next day,she had every reason to be happy.She was waiting for Tina and Anita to get inside the school bus to tell the news.When they reached school,Priya told about meeting Dev in a very casual way,though her heart was beating in excitement.It was towards the end of the lunch break,when she was walking to get out of the class,she saw Dev coming towards her.

“Liked the movie?”,he asked.

“Yes,very much”,she blushed and replied.

“By the way,your new haircut suits you well.Looks good on you.”,He said this and walked away.That night Priya sat in front of the mirror and pampered her hair.Days went on with smiles and glances and school closed for the summer vacation.

“Dev’s house doesn’t have a phone.That’s the problem”,Priya complained to herself.For the first time in life,she wanted the school to reopen soon.One Sunday afternoon,she was coming back from a wedding.The wedding feast was toothsome that she ate a lot.Throughout the way she slept in the backseat of the car.She woke up when she heard noises of people and train.She sat up on the seat and looked around;the car was at the railway signal.She yawned and again fell on the seat to sleep.

It was then she saw somebody who looked like Dev. She rolled down the car window and looked carefully.Yes,it is him.

He was sitting next to the rail with his friends.He wore a bright orange lungi which had pink and green dots.His hair had still fallen on to his eyes.His friends looked malnourished and they were also wearing lungi.He and his friends were eating pan masala and one of his friends was smoking a beedi.“Does he have a twin brother?”,Priya tried to recollect the facts she knows about him.But other than his name,she knew nothing.Their eyes were locked. Dev reluctantly stood up and watched her and her car crossing the rail.

Later she got to know that he was a bastard child.His rich Father wanted him to study in a good school as he is good at studies. Priya’s heart was broken into a billion pieces.For two days she cried for no reason.

When the school reopened,she couldn’t look at Dev and she never told Tina and Anita about the incident.

Priya again looked at Dev’s Facebook profile picture.His hair has not fallen on his eyes;it was trimmed well.He has put on weight and his smile was fake.But,his eyes still sparkled with happiness.The About Me section read like he is married and he is working as a showroom manager at a car showroom.

She quickly dressed up and drove to the car showroom.She gave her car for the service and waited for the bill.And there he was standing right in front of her.

“Is there anything else Madam?”,he asked without realizing who she was.

She said nothing and smiled at him.

When she got out of the showroom she told herself,“No,his smile is not fake.It is still heavenly.”

A to Z Challenge 2014 : This year,it is all about Men

I’m lazy.I have been always lazy.Last year,this time,when the A to Z challenge was happening,I happily sat back and read others’ posts.Remember,during our childhood we feel an urge to try things what our friends(enemies) do.Last year,towards the end of the challenge period,I too felt like writing about things from A to Z.But,laziness is inborn,so writing twenty posts and publishing them were a grueling task.So I made my thoughts concise and stuffed everything into one post;you can read the post here.

2014 is an awesome year for me.So I thought,why don’t I disown laziness and mood swings and then write twenty-six posts.So this year,the theme for my A to Z challenge is about men:short stories about men whom I have met,seen,known,heard,liked,disliked,loved and hated.No! this series is not about the men I fell in love with or about men who fell for me.Yes! you can find few love stories and also regular readers might see a couple of repeated posts but short stories will be mostly about so many other flavors of life.

Don’t panic.I will not be using the real names of the people.

So,watch out for the series in the coming days.Who knows may be it is your story.

 

Continue reading

Love,Lust and Bubble

“Diya! You there?”,Vidya banged on the door.

“Let’s go?”, Anu pinned up her dupatta and asked Vidya.

“Diya is still not up”

“She must be tired from the trip. Let her come for the second hour. It is Malathi’s class. She will not let us in if we are a minute late. Come… Come…” Anu dragged Vidya.

Vidya again banged on Diya’s door during lunch break. Vidya stood in front of the door and tried calling Diya’s phone.

“Vidya, what happened to Diya? Is she too tired from the trip that she can’t even come for the class?”, Shalini laughed loud.

“Listen, I know it was you who spread the news about her trip.”

“Of course, it was me. Tell me one reason for not doing it.”

“Past is past.”

“Then what I had told about her is past too.”

“Diya, just open the door!”, Vidya yelled at the closed-door and banged on it.

Students flocked and they asked Vidya so many questions. Vidya gave up and told everyone that Diya is sick.

During the class, Vidya told her concerns to Anu. Diya’s phone is switched off; her parents have already called Vidya thrice; nobody has seen her after trip.

“Don’t worry; this is not her first time. Or on a happy note, may be they must have made out too many times that she is tired.”

“But still, can’t she at least open the door?”

“We will do one thing. Let’s bunk the next class and then go to her room.”

“OK. Let’s do that.”

When they reached Diya’s room, it was latched from outside.

“She must have gone to the toilet.”

“Let’s sit inside the room.”

They waited for an hour chatting each other.

“Diya’s guts! appreciated.”

“I don’t feel that she has done anything great.”

“But, again how did she make it? Aren’t her parents very pestering and strict?”

“Sigh! She told her parents that she is going to Kodaikkanal for the class trip and then went to Ooty with Deepak.”

“Whoa! She has brains to handle her parents. But still, I would have shivered to death for going on such a date. That’s why Ramesh and I date only inside the campus and I chose him over Naresh because Ramesh and I are from the same caste. I can’t handle complications. It is very difficult to sleep with one guy and then marry another one. I kinda feel disgusting.”

And Diya came holding her bucket in one hand and toiletries in another hand. She looked terribly tired. Eyes looked droopy and face looked pale.

Vidya and Anu sat straight eagerly waiting to hear the stories.”Diyaaaa”, they called teasingly.

She didn’t look at them but stood next to door opening it wide. Vidya looked at Anu and then looked at Diya.She was still standing there holding the opened door.

Shalini was sitting in the mess and Vidya purposely avoided looking at her.

“How is Diya? Her phone is switched off.” A text message flashed in Vidya’s mobile phone. It was from Deepak. She immediately called him but he didn’t pick up the call.”*******”, Vidya told herself.

Then Anu came running to mess and dragged Vidya out.

“Looks like there is some problem.”

“What?”

“Ramesh told me that there is a rumor that Deepak was just idling time with Diya.He is not serious.”

“Oh that, even I knew. I don’t think even Diya is serious about the relationship.”

“Then who cares. Let them **** how much ever they want. I was worried that Diya was cheated.”

“No, Anu. She isn’t that kind of person. She knows well that any guy would fall for her charm. So if not Deepak, then somebody else.”

“I seriously want to know the art of being a *****.Guys come and go just like this in her life. Phew!”

“LOL!!”

Four days passed and nobody saw Diya in the class. For two days Vidya and Anu checked on her before going to class but then they got busier for the cycle tests.

During the first test,Diya came to class.She looked terrible.She had dark circles.Her hair was messy.Her lips were dry.The entire exam hall looked at her but she walked slowly to her seat.After ten minutes,Diya walked out of the exam hall.Anu leaned and looked at Vidya and she looked equally clueless.

Vidya and Anu ran behind Deepak after the test.

“Hey,listen,is there any problem between you both?”,Anu asked in stern voice.

“No.What problems?”,Deepak asked innocently.

Deepak joined his friends, laughed over some boys joke and cycled away.

Vidya slightly pushed the door and it opened. Diya was lying down on her bed. Anu also got inside the room and closed it from inside.

“Diya, wake up.”

Diya got up and hugged Vidya tightly. She screamed blue murder.

“What happened?”Anu whispered.

Diya cried. She cried uncontrollably. In two minutes, there was a pool of tears on her.

“Did you see Deepak?”

“Yes, we met him after the test. He looked normal. What happened to you?”

“He has a girlfriend in Delhi.A relationship approved by their parents.”

“WHAT?!!??”,both Anu and Vidya exclaimed.

“Yes,she had called me few days back.She shouted at top of her voice.I didn’t know what to reply.”

“What did Deepak say?”

“He told me that going to Ooty was my idea.Now the blame is on me.”

“Huh!”

“Actually,why did you go with him?Anyway you were not serious and he was also not serious.”

“Who the hell told you that I was not serious?”

“So you were serious? Oh my God!”

“Of course I was serious. Otherwise why would I weave such a big story and tell my parents?”

“So, what is next?”

“I don’t know.”

“Coming for lunch?”

“No!”

Anu and Vidya walked over to the mess and Anu said, ”What goes around comes around. This is the punishment for snatching Shalini’s boyfriend last year.”

“Don’t talk nonsense.”, Vidya joked,” punishment it seems.”

Days passed and the cycle tests were over. The weekend came. Diya and Anu had gone home. Vidya was bored watching movies and sleeping over books. She went to the mess for evening tea. The mess was deserted, so she stretched her legs and kept it on the chair on the other side of the table. She enjoyed the hot elachi tea and went for one more cup.

“Is Diya going out with Ashish?”

Vidya looked back to see who it is. She smiled at Shalini.

“No. I mean I don’t know; I don’t think so.”

“Hmm”

“By the way,which Ashish?”

“Ashish — Deepak’s roommate; Rakhi’s boyfriend.”

“Oh!”

“I saw Ashish and Diya in the railway station on Friday night when I went to see off my friends.”

“Oops”

“What is she up to?”

“They must be the new friends.”

“Rakhi told me that Ashish broke up with her on Thrusday night.”

The elachi tea tumbler fell down from Vidya’s hand.

Sunday night,Anu texted Vidya — “TTE caught Diya and Ashish from train’s loo. It is a chaos here.”

Vidya looked at the text message and then deleted it.

 Next day while going to the class,Vidya knocked on Diya’s door.She was lying down and crying.She hugged Vidya tightly and cried.

“Why did you do this?”

“I don’t know.”

“Leave it.Get ready.”

Before reaching the class,Diya got a call.Both of them stopped their cycles.

“I am bunking the class.”

“Why?”

“Manish wants to talk to me.”

“Diya! Don’t do this.”

“Bye.I will come for the next class.”

Vidya said nothing and cycled to the class.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cabbage

Priya stretched her right hand to touch Saahil.

Saahil“,she called him pulling his hair,”Saahil,calling bell;maid“.

He rolled over to the other side and snored.Priya patted him on his bum and got out of the bed.She yawned and tied her robe’s ribbon.When she opened the door,Akka stood there with a bag half-filled with vegetables. Akka’s forehead showed the daily frustration of waiting in front of the door.

How many times have I told you to give me a spare key?“,Akka murmured and went to the kitchen.The noises of vessels falling into the sink released her irritation.

Priya went back to the bed and crawled inside the quilt.She hugged Saahil from behind and bit his left earlobe. Saahil chuckled and rolled on top of her. Priya laughed and Saahil passionately kissed her.

***************************************************************************************************

Akka,all ready?“,Priya stood at the kitchen door and asked.

Muaah! Bye“,Saahil kissed Priya on her cheeks and sipped the milk and rushed to the front door.

Lunch!“,Priya shouted.

Team lunch today“,the voice came out from somewhere down the staircase.

Akka,tomorrow buy some chicken.It has been a while.

That guy owes Rs.20.He is an asshole.

That’s OK.No problem.

Please pack my lunch too Akka,I am already late.

Then who will wash the dishes?

Don’t shout.I will pack it.

Priya went to the room and brought her hand bag.She took out a smelly lunchbox and smiled at Akka.

Sorry,forgot to wash it.

Huh!Give it.

Priya grinned.

Wait,why did you buy cabbage?Haven’t I told you not to buy cabbage?

Today,plantain was not there,so I thought I will buy cabbage and shred it.

Don’t ever buy cabbage.

Why?

Priya said nothing.

Akka,let’s go.I am already late to office.” 

Akka came out holding the garbage bag in one hand and a cloth bag on the other.”Dish wash liquid is over.Mustard and jeera are over.

OK.You buy them tomorrow.Keep this.”,Priya stretched out a Hundred Rupee note.

After driving for a while,Priya stopped the car and breathed heavily.She opened the door and puked on the road.She searched for the bottle and gulped lots of water;but,again puked.She closed the door and turned on the air conditioner.She turned the blower on to her face and swallowed air.

5.30 AM.The alarm rang. Riya woke Priya up and went to the toilet.

Riya! Did Priya wake up?“,Mom asked from the kitchen.

Priya dragged herself from the bed and leaned on the toilet door.

I don’t want to go to school today.

As if I want to go.”

“It is because of our school bus.The class starts at 8.45 AM and for that we need to start from here at 5.30 AM.

What to do?

Why can’t you tell parents to send us in public bus?Then we need to start from home only at 8.15 AM.

We are too small.

You?Small?Aren’t you in 6th standard?

But,Parents will not agree.And,yeah at least today please don’t puke.

What will I do?They smoke up the bus with foul-smelling agarbathis and I feel suffocated.”

Today also cabbage“,Riya opened the steel lid and smirked at Priya.

Amma!”,Priya shouted.

I know but what can we do.There is no money.I will tell Dad to buy something else tonight.Few more months — once our new house is built then Dad will have money with him.

Amma,you don’t know anything.Rice and cabbage for breakfast,rice and cabbage for lunch and rice and cabbage for dinner.Do you know,I vomit daily in the bus?

“Ayyo,what happened Priya?” “Riya,is it true?”

Riya said nothing and continued eating.

Yes,Amma.I am telling the truth.I feel suffocated inside the school bus.The agarbathis smell churn my stomach.This cabbage never digests for me and I puke until I reach school.Two days back when I puked,rice and cabbage came out and boys made fun of me telling that I eat rice for breakfast.Friends always tease me saying Amma knows to cook only rice and cabbage.

Amma said nothing.That day,an hour after getting inside the school bus,when Priya burped,smell of cabbage prevailed in the air surrounding her.And she knew,it is time to run to the door.The bus driver braked upon seeing her next to his seat.She ran to the nearby bushes and puked her soul out. Riya sat in her seat without acknowledging the happenings.

Can’t you tell your parents to buy some medicine to stop vomiting?“,driver showed all his disliking in his voice.

Are you pregnant?“,asked Vijay and his boys gang.There was a big laughter when Priya walked back to her seat.The taste of undigested half-cooked cabbage lingered inside her mouth for the entire day.

Madam,ID card?

Priya flashed her ID card through the car window and drove off to the parking lot.That day when she opened one of her lunch boxes,she saw fried,yellow colored shredded cabbage.She smelled it once and then ran to washroom.

15 Malayalam Movies which I want the World to Watch (Romance)

*Spoilers all over

It was an uphill battle to make a list of love stories in Malayalam Cinema as I have strictly avoided chick flicks and college romance.

15)Chamaram

Chamaram tells the story of Indu played by Zarina Wahab who is engaged to her cousin brother Ravi despite her Father’s disliking towards Ravi.Indu’s Father was never faithful to her Mother,so after her Mother’s demise he runs a relationship with another woman.Indu gets a job in the town as a college lecturer and moves from the village.Meanwhile,Vinod,played by Prathap Pothen, is a spoiled brat student in the college and he falls in love with Indu.He will tries to woo her but she moves away from him telling that she is already in love with Ravi. During vacation Indu reaches home and sees that Ravi is already married to somebody else.She comes back to the college and gets closer to Vinod.The movie has a very beautiful song Naadha nee varum.

14)Ulkadal

It is the story about Rahulan(Venu Nagavally) and the three women with whom he falls in love with during the three different stages of his life.More than the movie itself,it is famous for the romantic duet Sarabindhu Malardeepa.

13)Rathinirvedam

Immense respect for Bharthan and Padmarajan for making this movie when such a concept was not even talked freely in the society.The movie is about a teenager Pappu and his fascinations about the next door girl Rathi who is older than him.Though Rathi ignores Pappu’s initial infatuation pranks,the story takes a turn when she starts to reciprocate.Kudos to Jayabharathi for her portrayal of Rathi chechi. It was indeed a role which most of the leading actress denied to do it.The movie is considered as a landmark in  the history of Indian Film.

12)Meghamalhar

It is said that the leading pair Biju Menon and Samyuktha Varma fell in love during the sets of this movie.We cannot blame them because the movie will make you fall in love.How many stories have you heard about finding the lost love of childhood. Let me not spill the beans and spoil the suspense. But this movie is such a simple and heartwarming love story.The climax scene of the movie is a beautiful silhouette frame which shows the charm of their love.

11)Mazha

This is a very intense love story.A rich girl(Samyuktha Varma) who loves poetry comes to a new place and falls in love with her music teacher(Biju Menon).The love blooms but it is broken when he is obliged marry to his fiancee. She moves to the city and continues her medical studies.She marries Chandran(Lal) but they lead a very mechanical life.They decide to fix their marriage and work on it.Then one day,he reads her old personal diaries and knows about her lost love. Chandran starts suspecting every man around her and gets addicted to alcohol.After the untimely demise of her husband,she goes back to the village to meet the music teacher to hear shocking stories.The movie is an adapted version of the novel Nashtapetta Neelambari by Madhavikutty.

10)Sukhamo Devi
This movie is said to be a page from the life of the director Venu Nagavally.The movie is about the love story of Devi(Urvashi) and Nandan (Shankar). Their friend Sunny dies in an accident the on the day Devi and Nandan were planning to elope.Devi is forced to get married to Dr. Venugopal(Nedumudi Venu) and she shows arrogance to her husband and her daughter. Nandan decides to marry Sunny’s girlfriend and tells Devi to go back to her husband and lead a happy life.

9)Ore Kadal

How do you handle when love gets complicated?How do you handle when you are married but loves another man strongly?This movie directed by the very talented Shyamaprasad deals with the conflict of love and its undercurrents. Mammootty plays the role of a famous economist and Meera Jasmine plays the next door housewife.The meeting between them sparks love inside her and the love,guilt and his denial eat her life.The scenes between Mammootty and Meera are very profound and deep.The movie went on to win numerous awards and it was screened in so many film festivals.

8)Nakhakshathangal

A love triangle written by M.T.Vasudevan Nair and directed by acclaimed director Hariharan.Monisha won the National Award for Best Actress for her role as Gauri,the maid in the house where Ramu(Vineeth) ends up.The daughter of that house,Lakshmi is deaf and dumb and she falls in love with Ramu and their wedding gets planned. Ramu gets into the dilemma of whether to show gratitude by marrying the Lakshmi or to fulfill the promise given to Gauri with whom he is in love.Listen to the melodies Manjal prasadavum and Areyum bhava gayakanakkum.K.S.Chitra won National Award for the first song.

7)Njan Gandharvan

This is one of my favorite movies.There is a belief that we will die if we take movies about Gandharva.Somehow making the belief true,death took away Padmarajan who was the director of the movie.The movie is about the fantasy romance of a college girl and the Gandharva.The songs by Johnson are soulful and the song Devanganangal is considered as one of the toughest songs to sing.

6)Innale

Gauri (Shobana) meets with a tragic bus accident and loses her memory.She gets admitted in a hospital and then becomes a part of doctor’s family.Sarath(Jayaram),son of the doctor(Srividhya) falls in love with her and their marriage is fixed.On the day of the engagement,the doctor gets a call from Dr.Narendran(Sureh Gopi) telling that Gauri is his lost wife and he has been searching for quite sometime.Dr.Narendran comes with his wedding pictures with Gauri but sees that Gauri has not recognized him.By seeing the love between Gauri and Sarath,Narendran leaves without telling the truth to Gauri.The story was new then and Shobana did a wonderful job as Gauri.Yet another love story from Padmarajan.

5)Chemmeen

Which song Keralites think when there is a lost love?The answer has been the same for decades.The song Manasa Maine Varoo sang by Manna Dey is one of the evergreen hits of Malayalam.The movie is about the lost love of Karuthamma(Sheela) and Pareekutty(Madhu) and the life of fishermen folks of Kerala.There is a belief in the fisherman community that the safety of the fisherman is in the chastity of the fisher woman back home.Karuthamma is the daughter of a poor fisherman who is in love with Pareekutty who is a Muslim fish trader. Karuthamma’s Father Chembankunju played by Kottarakkara Sreedharan Nair is his masterpiece role in his acting career. Karuthamma marries Palani (Sathyan)sacrificing the love.She moves into her husband’s village.But when Pareekutty visits her,the scandal breaks out.Palani’s friends laugh at him but he trusts Karuthamma and goes to the sea.He gets inside a whirlpool and at the same time Karuthamma and Pareekutty walks into the sea.

4)Pranayam

A recent movie which is directed by Blessy and it deals with the emotions of the lead actors when they confront truth.Grace(Jayaprada) and Mathews(Mohanlal) are staying with their daughter and family.Mathews is a retired Philosophy professor and he is constrained to a wheel chair.Grace and Mathews share a deeper bond of love and one day in the lift she finds Achutha Menon(Anupam Kher) who was her first husband.The movie is poetically beautiful and handles the subject of the feelings of older people well.Amidst the plethora of love stories about the teenagers and youth,this movie holds a  special place.All the three leads have amazingly acted and an extra word of appreciation goes to Anupam Kher for doing this very challenging role.I loved the way the scenes between the two old men have pictured;so real.Rarely we get to see two men bonding over the same woman they love.

3)Namukku Parkaan Munthiri Thoppukal

This movie is famous for its screenplay done by Padmarajan.The story revolves around Solomon and Sofia played by Mohanlal and Shari respectively.Solomon falls in love with Sofia who is his new neighbor.The acting of Thilakan as Paul Pailokkaran,Sofia’s stepfather was highly appreciated.The movie showcases the love of Solomon and Sofia and the hatred inside Paul.Though the plot looks like the cliched love stories,the beauty of the movie is in the screenplay which brings in verses from Bible.Even the proposal from Solomon is done with a biblical verse and the nod from Sofia is a smile.

2)Thoovanathumbikal
The most famous and the most discussed cult love story of Malayalam Cinema.This movie directed by Padmarajan is considered as one of the greatest Malayalam movies made till date.The movie is about Jayakrishnan played by Mohanlal who falls in love with two women.The background score of the movie done by Johnson is still fresh and beautiful.A must watch movie if you are following Malayalam movies.This movie is still widely studied by movie enthusiasts.I am not revealing the plot here because this movie should be watched afresh without any knowledge about the plot.It helps in ferreting your own love for the movie.NB : Don’t read the Wikipedia page.

1)Pakshe

Balan played by Mohanlal an IAS aspirant and Nandini is an upcoming writer.Though there are financial differences between the families,their wedding which was already fixed gave them the freedom stay closer to each other.One day,Balan’s Father kills himself shifting the responsibility of repaying debts to Balan.When Balan gets through IAS,Vikraman,a rich contractor,makes an offer to repay the debts for Balan. The condition kept in the offer will be to marry Vikraman’s daughter Raji to which Balan refuses.Everybody forces Balan to marry Raji but he goes to Nandini’s house in the night to elope with her.But she will refuse to go with him telling she can’t put his Mother and two sisters on the street.Only after the wedding,Balan gets to know why he was offered help.His married life becomes sour as years pass by and Raji asks to sign in the divorce papers.After a fight he leaves the house without telling anybody.During the vacation,he meets Nandini again.The second half of the movie is both beautiful and heartbreaking.This movie showcases brilliant performances by Mohanlal and Shobana,especially the latter.

Not Everybody Can Surprise Me

Ahem! I was so proud when I wrote the post, Want Surprises in Life?Ask ME!!, two years back.But, my friends took a great effort to surprise me with something which I hadn’t thought even in my wild dreams.

Yes,I am getting a year older this week and few of friends blew my mind with a gift.happy_surprise_by_pachoncku-d3avj2r

There was a custom of celebrating birthdays in a particular Facebook group I am in and then when people got busier,the custom slowly died.So when my friends invited me over to a mall,I wasn’t expecting anything though I had a slight doubt about it.But,when I considered the lectures,the blaming and the harassment they had poured on me over the phone the day before the meeting,my doubt vanished in the air.

And there I reach and see an empty table and the minute doubt that was inside my head disappeared.But, when they gave me a brown-paper cover, I used my Sherlock brain and guessed the gift.Wow! brilliant me — a greeting card signed by my friends.Two seconds later I realized that I am a shame to Sherlock and there are chances that Benedict might disown me by seeing my observation skills.

But before seeing the gift,don’t you want to know the culprits who almost made me cry out of happiness?

Thank you my sweetheart Meow,my loving Prasanna and my awesomatic Gils. Muaaah! and thank you Aaroo for turning up and making it a bigger surprise.

Now for the gift

CLICK HERE

For the password,please solve this anagram – That Big Id Fry

15 Malayalam Movies which I want the World to Watch (Drama)

***Spoilers all over***

15 . Sukrutham

A successful journalist plunges into depression after knowing that he has blood cancer.He sees no hope in life and prepares himself for dying.He even tells his wife to get closer to their friend,who had a crush on her for a long time,so that she gets a life once he is gone.It is then he undergoes a holistic treatment and that makes him a new person with full optimism and an urge to live.But when he comes back during the recovery stage,he confronts the stark truth.His wife is unhappy,his relatives are unhappy and his childhood crush who was serving him is unhappy too.He realizes that all the love and sympathy the people had showed were only because he was about to die.The heartbreaking scene is when he sees his own obituary kept ready in his newspaper office. Mammootty plays the protagonist role without any glitch.The film won National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Malayalam.

14. Bharatham

It was after watching this movie that I started loving classical music.The movie tells the story of a classical music family.Nedumudi Venu plays the elder brother and Mohanlal plays the role of the younger brother.The movie shows the emotional bonding of closely knit family relationships.The story becomes serious when the elder brother slips into alcoholism and to save the face the younger brother sings at the concert.The elder brother accuses the younger one to be an opportunist when the latter shot to fame and appreciation.The movie takes a turn when the elder brother goes missing to be found later as dead.The second half of the movie is the emotional struggle of the younger brother to hide the elder brother’s demise as their sister is getting married the next day.Mohanlal won the National Award for Best Actor for his role as Kalloor Gopinathan.The songs are too good that K.J.Yesudas won the National Award for Best Singer too.I love the keerthanam Raghuvamsapathe which is in the ragam Shankarabharanam.The keerthanam was a masterpiece from the music director Raveendran as he wrote it.

13. Kaliyattam

Inspired from the William Shakespeare’s play Othello,Kaliyattam deals with suspicion and back stabbing.The movie is set against the backdrop of the Hindu Theyyam performance and Suresh Gopi plays the protagonist Kannan as a Theyyam artist.The movie is very beautifully written and directed.This movie introduced Lal as an actor and his performance as Paniyan ,that too in a debut role,was simply amazing.The movie starts with Kannan marrying Tamara,the daughter of the village head, against the latter’s wish.The village head is played by Narendra Prasad who is a very powerful actor.He says to Kannan that if his daughter could cheat her own Father,then she might cheat her Husband too.Kannan’s right arm,Paniyan plants seeds of suspicion in Kannan’s mind about Tamara.Suresh Gopi has portrayed the Theyyam artist with sheer brilliance winning the National Award for Best Actor.

12. Deshadanam

Mothers in Kerala cried as much as they could after watching this movie.The movie revolves around a Namboothiri family.The movie deals with the personal pains of the family when they had to sent the family’s only child to a monastery.The songs are soulful and capture the depth of the heartache of the parents.My favorite scene is when the boy comes home after the ceremonies in the monastery. According to the rules,after the ceremony the kid is a spiritual person without any family ties but the boy is too young to understand the concept.He runs to his Mother calling “Amma” and she kneels down to show her respect to the boy.This broke my heart and I couldn’t resist my tears.

11. Bhoothakannadi

The beauty of this movie cannot be explained in ten sentences.Even today,critics and movie researchers write pages and pages of appreciation.A masterpiece from Lohithadas. This movie is a must watch one for the passionate movie lovers.The realization of the protagonist shown in the climax will remain a big pain your heart.My advice would be not to read the plot of the movie before watching.And of course Lohithadas won National Award for Best Director Debut.

10. Paithrukam

This movie might make an atheist believe in God.I love the dialogs in this movie especially the ones between Nadrendra Prasad who plays the Father and Suresh Gopi who plays the eldest son.The movie is about the disagreements about the principles and beliefs of a vedic scholar Father and an atheist son.Though I disagree with certain things shown in the movie,I can’t stop watching it.I lost count on the number of times I have watched this movie simply because of my love for the way the movie is taken.A personal favorite of mine.The rendered version of the keerthanam Seethakalyana is beautiful.

9. Sadayam

I was scared to go out of the house for many days after watching this movie.For the first time I was scared of Mohanlal.He plays the role of a convict and the movie shows his reason for killing them.

8. Vidheyan

I don’t like this movie because Mammootty has acted too well as Bhaskara Patelar and his looks haunt me still. Mammootty went on to win so many awards including National Award for Best Actor.He plays the role of a selfish,cold and pervert landlord.He is bloody cold in this movie that I wanted to kill him getting into the screen.What an amazing actor he is.Respect!

7. Kireedam

The movie which we, Keralites, are very proud of,yes indeed very proud of.The movie which made Mohanlal the King of Malayalam cinema then.The movie which showed what an actor Thilakan is.You will start believing in fate after watching this movie.You ask any Malayalee,Kireedam and the song Kaneer poovinte will be always their evergreen movie and song respectively.Kireedam shows the life of Sethumadhavan played by Mohanlal who had to kill a criminal to save his Father, who is a policeman,from getting attacked.And his life goes upside down.One of the best scripts from Lohithadas.

6. Mathilukal

Both the novel and the movie are incredible.The movie is an adaptation of the novel by the same title written by Vaikom Muhammad Basheer. The novel is said to be autobiographical one and talks about the prison life of Basheer. Mammootty plays the role of Basheer.This is one movie in which there is no female cast.The movie revolves around Basheer falling in love with a woman prisoner who is on the other side of the wall.They never see each other but talk across the prison wall.The woman prisoner is shown as a voice over.Then they come up with a plan to meet but before that Basheer gets released.The movie won four National Awards including Best Actor Award for Mammootty,Best Director Award for Adoor Gopalakrishnan and many international awards too.This movie is a classic and unique example of how we can make a love story without rosy visuals,erotic dialog and even without showing a female on the reel.This movie is awesome.

5. Nizhalkuthu

The plot is so profound that every scene lingers in you for days.The story is about the hangman in the Travancore,British India.The movie revolves around the life of a hangman.The guilty feeling of hanging an innocent man is pictured in raw.While watching,you tend to sink in too much for the hangman’s emotional struggle and yes,the movie is very disturbing.The performance by Oduvil Unni Krishnan as Kaliyappan is worth watching and in my opinion his performance was class apart.People who like to dissect movies should not miss this one because every frame is important.

4. Thaniyavarthanam

What will you do if people refuse to believe that you are sane?The plot of the movie goes like this –A family believes that one man in each generation becomes a lunatic due to a curse.Mammootty tries hard to make people believe that he is not the one in his generation who is suppose to become mad.But the people around him refuse to believe the truth even after the doctors declaring him as sane.Without any choice,he acts like he is mad and the movie ends with a tragedy by his Mother feeding him food mixed with poison.

3. Kodiyettam

Actor Gopi became Kodiyettam Gopi or Bharath Gopi after the portrayal of his role as Shankaran Kutty in this movie.He won National Award for Best Actor for living in the movie as a carefree,lazy and good for nothing guy.He pushes us into dilemma whether we should hate him or not.He refuses to change even after getting married.The movie shows how he changes in his life.My favorite scene in the movie is when Gopi goes to K.P.A.C Lalitha’a house for pennu kaanal and Lalitha becomes all coy and romantic by watching him from behind the door.

2. Elippathayam

After watching this movie,you will know why Adoor Gopalakrishnan is considered as a genius in the cinema industry all over the world.The movie shows the struggle of Unni,played by Karamana Janardanan.

Wikipedia says

It is critically considered by many to be one of the most outstanding pieces in Adoor Gopalakrishnan’s filmography.
This film documents the feudal life in Kerala at its twilight. The protagonist is trapped within himself and is unable to comprehend the changes taking place around him. The film won the British Film Institute award for Most Original and Imaginative film shown at the National Film Theatre in 1982. The film was shown at a number of film festivals around the world, including the 1982 Cannes Film Festival.

In this movie too,climax scene is a well written one.

1. Nirmalyam

Any day,any genre,any language,this movie will always remain as the best movie I have ever watched in my life.I have to tell you this — I deeply regret for watching this movie so late in my life.I have been hearing my parents raving about this movie and about the protagonist played by P.J.Antony but procrastination failed my attempts to watch this.The movie is made from M.T.Vasudevan Nair’s short story Pallivalum Kalchilambum which I had read during my school days.But back then,I was too young to understand the stark realities in life.I bet you that after watching P.J.Antony in the role of “Velichapaadu”(Oracle of a temple),you will not forget him for lifelong. M.T.Vasudevan Nair himself directed movie and his script was flawless.Of course P.J.Antony won National Award for Best Actor and the movie won National Award for the Best Feature Film.

So what is your score in the above list?

PS : and  wait for the next post — 15 Malayalam Movies (Love Stories)