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Rest House (1969)
One of Nazeer's earlier action films
Prem Nazir is a talented actor but it took him a while to establish himself as an actor. If he didn't get the Mythological films, C.I.D(1955), Mariyakkutti(1957), and a few other hit films to act in, his career would've gone downhill. After the debacle of Marumakal(1952), Nazeer got films like Vishappinte Vili(1952), Rest House(1969), the much hyped up Achan(1954) but all of these films flopped at the box office.
Rest House was his 1969 film and it was actually sort of a C Grade film which was a James Bond Rip Off. The film is about India's greatest detective Mr.Raghu who has to solve one of his toughest cases ever, the case is of a fugitive named Red Dragon. This guy is some kind of random Thai looking villain who kidnaps kids. He wants a lot of money and his way of making money is kidnapping innocent children. He needs money because to revive his businesses that were destroyed thanks to Mr. Raghu. The rest of the film is how Mr. Raghu solves the case and saves the children from the clutches of Red Dragon.
Direction by Shashikumar is crass, he fails to connect the movie properly. Yes the movie has a flow but it is not a proper one, random action scenes is how the movie starts. Some random sensuous songs are what follow and then all the explaining happens. The movie has a poor start but the follow up is somewhat decent. Red Dragon look like a mastermind and his character is well built but his master plans are delayed thanks to some boring romance and stupid comedy in the first bits of the film. The second half is when the movie picks up, the movie's main plot thickens and the action helps build the movie. However, the end is stretched and the final few scenes are prolonged. The main tempo of the film is present in the first half but is poorly edited and scripted in the first half. The film awfully drags in the first half of the film and why the police can't make a move on the Dragon is a stupid thing. They have an overpowered agent like Raghu so why can't they have him sneak up on Dragon and free the children. Instead of this, the film drags with forced songs, forced comedy, and forced action that finally get's back on track when the movie shifts to Thamilnad. Prem Nazir in his earlier days was OK, his action is good but his voice modulation was bad. He was dubbed in a few scenes but that doesn't make his act completely wasted. He does contribute to some good moments, the intelligent confrontation with Daaga is will handled at the beginning(the only decent part from the first half of the film). His expressions are decent but he tends to overact in parts. Sheeia is a lousy heroine, she looks like a bad cousin of Kuriyedathu Thathri. She tries to look good but that's all she tries to do, she doesn't succeed in acting nor looking beautiful. The other comedy actress just looks good in the songs but knows very little acting. Paravoor Bharathan does good as the Red Dragon but overdoes it as Daaga. He tends to badly overact as Daaga and his death scene as Daaga is hilarious. However, as Red Dragon he is awesome.
Songs are done to death, most of them try to attempt a James Bond theme with girls all around Mr. Raghu. None of the songs are good, they all sound the same. Despite having veteran artists like C.O Anto present, none of the songs are worth listening.
On the whole, Rest House is a below average James Bond rip off film. It tries to be a thriller but ends up being a badly made one, the action is good but the story and the editing is poor. It is clearly lifted off a Bond film or a professional English film but, the film fails to make good use of the inspired story and ends up being a crap film. I would only recommend this film to die hard Prem Nazeer fans, but other's this is not even a decent one time watch. Being an Prem Nazir fan, I didn't mind watching it but this is one of Nazeer's weaker films.
It took long time to complete this movie much awaited & released in 1969, This movie has every thing that required in spy thriller, 1st most requirement is the Hero, 1. Looks,Style, actions, acting,Nazir has already proved his multi acting skills in C.I.D which was a Jubilee Hit & his great look & style fit to do the James bond type movie, in my view no other actor will fit in this category, He has done this type of James bond thriller 1. C.I.D, 2nd Karutha Kai, 3rd this movie Susie, He is the real James bond of Malayalam films till date, no other actor can compete to him, Sharadha also done her very best, stunts were fine, 2 songs also good, If you are a James Bond type movie goers, don't miss & watch out this fantastic movie.
C.I.D Rajan is a cult film figure, Nazir Sir played the character with style.
'Inspector' is remembered till today, for Nazir sir's killer dances and of course his ever-natural acting. The songs were Chartbusters.
Aayiramaayiram Kanyakamaar, Anuraagamalarvana Sundharimaar, Jeevithayaathrayilennarikathaay, Eevazhiyennum Vannoo, Eevazhiyenghum Vannoo, Athiloruthimaathram Manassinullil. Anuvaadhamillaathe Virunninethee . Oh man, what a classic! I've the film long back, all I remember is the songs, and Nazir Sir dancing on them.
Nazir Sir made 2 sequels to 'Inspector'... which were also fun & had superb songs.
C.I.D Rajan, the Indian Bond... is nothing short of Cult.
Vijayanum Veeranum (1979)
Nazeer shines in Double Role
This movie is a very special one for Nazeer fans as it is the only good movie in which he plays a set of twins.Other movies where he tried to repeat it namely Thirichadi and Rahasyam,bombed badly. Vijayanum Veeranum is a fast paced action thriller which has a taut screenplay and Nazeer in his full form that makes the movie worth watching. The movie starts with Vijayan(Nazeer) a small time gambler getting engaged in a brawl.As the movie progresses we come to know that he is a great gambler and he always wins the game of cards.Enter bad guy(Jose Prakash) who hires Vijayan to play in his own casino so that he can rob some influential people and later use their services to his own benefit.One such person is Nath(Aalammoodan) who is working with the intelligence.Vijayan wins around 75,000 and leaves Mr.Nath bankrupt.Now in order to save himself from disgrace Nath has togive out the secret plan K2 which is actually wanted by Saxena(Janardhanan as a humming villain).Saxena has a team of bad men who r Romesh(Kunjan),Sethi(Sam) and Marconi(Rajashekharan).Alongwith them is Romesh's girlfriend Shabnam(Seema baby at her best).Due to an internal fight between them Sethi flees to Tamil Nadu with evidence against Saxena.He contacts the Kerala Police who send their trusted man Veeran(Nazeer again) to collect the evidence.Meanwhile Vijayan is also heading to Karnadaka to marry Shubha so that he can win the wealth of her dad(P.K Abraham).After a series of action sequences and great location viewing we come to know that Vijayan and Veeran are twins who got separated in their childhood.They join hands to destroy the evil men and eventually get their respected ladies and their sister(who appears only for 2 and a half scenes). C.N Venkidaswami is known for his Kilunghatha Changhalakal type of movies.He gave many hits with former superstar Prem Nazeer. Vijayanum Veeranum has shades of both Blackmail and Midukkipponnamma.He has kept the pace of the movie quite fast and aided by a tight screenplay he succeeds in keeping the viewers glued. The locations where the movie is shot are very beautiful The movie boasts of being shot in Andhra Pradhesh,Karnadaka,New Delhi and Tamil Nadu.The cinematography is excellent.The action sequences form the highlight of the movie and are very well executed. the fight between Prem Nazeer and Shetty(in a cold storage) is excellent.The music by A.T Ummar is good.The song '' Marijuana....'' is great.But the evergreen ''Madhyamo Maayayo....'' picturised on Nazeer and Seema on a boat in New Delhi is a classic song by all standards.The background score specially the tune when initially Elizabath and later Seema dance while sending secret codes is haunting. The way Chennai,Hydherabad,Banglore and Delhi are shown in the movie,it has an national look. Nazeer carries the movie very ably on his shoulders. He has looked his best in both the roles.The coats,glasses and shirts he wear go very well with the characters.He acts very naturally and looks very handsome.This is perhaps the only double role film where there is no difference between both the roles.There is absolutely no difference between Vijayan and Veeran in looks,voice,way of dressing and habits.This leads to some confusion for the viewer as well.Seema and Shubha play their part comfortably.Jose Prakash,Aalammoodan, Janardhanan and Kunjan are adequate in their respective roles. The peculiar and interesting part of the movie is the different type of villainous character namely Saxena,Romesh, Sethi and of course Marconi enacted ably by Sam, Rajashekharan,P.K Abraham and Sujit Kumar.Janardhanan plays an unusual and interesting character Saxena who starts humming tunes even though he is discussing serious topics.Aalammoodan as Romesh is at his menacing best.Kunjan plays Sethi in a way that it becomes his most famous performance.However it is Sam as Marconi, who has an accent and talks funnily, who gets away with the cake with his superb timing. Kunjan was a regular in C.N Venkidaswami films but this one is really special.Elizabath shines in a cameo. Another unknown feature about this movie is producer Mani C Kappan shooted for the movie in a fight sequence where he played Prem Nazeer's DOUBLE!!! When released in 1979 Vijayanum Veeranum met with modest success but it has high repeat value which makes it a must watch for Nazeer fans.Venkidaswami and Nazeer again teamed up for the 1981 blockbuster billingual ''Kilunghatha Changhalakal''. Still, Vijayanum Veeranum although often compared with Ponnil Kulicha Raathri remains a must watch for Swamy's ability to handle an action film with panache and for the class Nazeer generates as Vijayan and Veeran.
Mainatharuvi Kola Case (1967)
Fine Movie :)
Mainatharuvi Kolacase Is A Action Thriller Directed By M.Kunjacko....Story Is About Mariyakkutty Who Is Middle aged women A Prostitute...Gets Into A International Intrigue Abroad A Luxury Yacht....She Begins to Suspect...She Can't Trust Anyone... Even Her Boyfriend Seems To Be One Of The Suspect.. Some Plot Elements Are From The Another Malayalam Movie : Madatharuvi.. Script Is Good ...Screenplay Is Fine...But It Has Some Unnecessary Twists...Action Sequences Are Good... Sathyan As Undercover Cop Is As Usual ...Similar To His Previous Thriller Movies....He Does Nothing New...Sheela Does Well...Kottarakkara Shreedharan Nair As Boss Is One Best Part Of The Movie....Adoor Bhasi & Adoor Pankajam Are Entertaining Too..
Music Composed By V.Dhakshinamurthy Is Average...There Are 4 Songs ...Numbers "Appanaane Ammayaane" & " Pallaathuruthiyaattil " Are Good....
Overall The Movie Is OK ....Watch If You're A Fan Of Action Thriller Movies...:)
Kottayam Kola Case (1967)
Detective Prabhakaran lands the job of solving the mystery of many young women disappearing. ..
Little does Prabhakaran know that he has acquired a shadow who watches every move of his. This leads to a comic set of interludes. Pandurang, the constable is funny, and is the epitome of the Bombay sakharam as depicted in Malayalam films. Rajamma (Sheela) is the younger sister of one who has gone missing, has taken it upon herself to track her missing sister. Prabhakaran and Sheela's path's cross. It is not love at first sight. They have many obstacles to hurdle. G.K Pilla, as Pachu Pilla is as usual credible crime boss, with iron control over his vast empire, with the help of his goons with guns. He has the usual trappings of power, palatial mansions and people at his beck and call to deal with every whimsical order. He is no fool and uses advanced technology to manage his fiefdom. Adoor Bhasi, is a comic dealer of antiques, who lives alone with a passion for gin.There is another forgettable song. He gets drawn into this complex masala of deceit and violence.
Prabhakaran introduces an undercover operative who proves to be quite useful, till unmasked, which puts the operative's life in danger. Commando style operations, and other action scenes keeps the plot moving quickly. Fight sequences are typical of the period, though the music is generally uninspiring.
The end, when it arrives, leaves one feeling that this film has some good acting, a pertinent storyline, good plot development and good fun.
Yaksha Gaanam (1976)
a typical 60s/70s masala flick
I give this movie a 8 out of 10 even as it is quite predictable. But to be honest the movies in these days were quite predictable. What made the movies were the performances, music and actors. And Yakshagaanam has it all, drama, comedy, romance and great songs. Madhuis, well Madhu. Sheela is looking good as always and gives a typical Sheela performance while K.P Ummar is good as usual. Special mention must go out to T.K Balachandran who gives a good performance in the first half of the movie. If you want to enjoy more movies of him check out any P.Subrahmanyam directed movie and he'll be in ti for 85 percent. The songs by M.S Vishwanathan sung by K.J Yeshudas and L.R Eeshwari are gems. Songs like ARUPATHINAALU KALA and NISHEETHINEE NISHEETHINEE are in this movie. A treat to watch
A family drama worth watching
It's a simple family drama with a civic message about caring your parents; a good son who cares for his parents and a bad son who does not. Mohan is fantastic as good son, so is Vincent as bad son. Lakshmi is unimpressive, she is just a pretty face but fails miserably in acting department. Prema as Sarju was over acting most of the time. Adoor Bhasi is excellent as crooked but confident Premnath. Shankaradi, K.P.A.C Lalitha, Kuthiravattam Pappu and Sadhan did well. V.Dhakshinamurthy delivers nice compositions; 1) Ariyaamo Ninghalkkariyaamo, 2) Maanikyashreekovil, 3) Muraleegaanathin, 4) Thiruvaathiramanassil. Deserves a watch.
Comic, romantic and ultimately gut wrenching
Agnipushpam is the story of an idealistic young man Somu (Kamal Haasan) who rescues an amnesiac young girl, Reshmi (Jayabharathi), from a brothel and takes charge of her life. She has the mental age of a five year old and her parents are looking all over for her. Reshmi gets in and out of trouble. Somu has to deal with her pranks and misdemeanors. He is pursued by the very sexy young wife (Reena M John) of his boss. Eventually the amnesia will go away - we have been told that it is just a matter of time. But when memory returns will the memories of Somu fade from Reshmi's mind?
What can one say about Kamal? The man wrote the book on acting. Here he is young, very good looking and absolutely perfect as the idealistic school teacher who decides to rescue a girl in trouble. Stalked by Reena M John, he also get ample opportunity to flex his dancing skills in a fantasy item number! Jayabharathi is very good as the five year old trapped in a young woman's body. She has the expressions and gestures down pat. Maybe there is exaggeration in the acting, but I can see her as a hyperactive 5 year old. Then she provides a perfect contrast as the young woman who wakes up from this nightmare. Reena M John has ooomph in ample measure and there is also an ampleness to her. One wonders how good some of today's anorexic leading ladies would look with those curves! The ultimate tragedy of the film leaves one in shock and mourning for what could have been while at the same time Reshmi's return to normalcy is celebrated. The film is well directed and the camera work is extremely beautiful. Kamal still has traces of his Tamil Malayalam accent, but is miles ahead of his Kanyakumari days. All in all this is a very satisfying cinema experience. Yes you will be saddened by the story but the beauty of the film is a joy that must be experienced.
Mattoru Seetha (1975)
Satire on 70's lost socialist young generation
Seventies was an era of unemployment crisis was so palpable and corruption and favors of politicians rules in job interviews. All those hopeless lost generation of jobless educated youth took solace as socialist rebel. They just smoke, do whatever is available and kill their time.
Written & Directed by P.Bhaskaran, the film portrays the life of Seeta (Shobhana), a teenage girl, lives with her mother and elder sister (Sheela) who runs the house with her harikatha performances. Seeta falls in love with Chandram (Vincent), but evil Gopalakrishna (Kamal Hassan) has an eye on her and hires goons to bash Chandram, who dies on the spot. Seeta marries Madhava Rao (Adoor Bhasi), father of Gopalakrishna, and makes Gopalakrishna realize his mistakes.Some of the dialogues penned by none other than Shreekumaran Thambi are really so ironic and striking one to the scenes depicting reality. The film is woven with satirical humor and captures delicately the everyday reality of that era. Watch fake lunch scene full of overacting. Wow what a contrast!!! These are just few examples, there are many such brilliant sarcasm running throughout the film.
Where most of the Directors often highlighted either the melodrama or light comedy while dealing with such a subject, P.Bhaskaran had kept the spirit of both of them alive in right proportions and that's make the film a fine sensible and sensitive watch. Perhaps he would have made some more such films in Malayalam!!! Kamal Hasan has done a few films in Malayalam and this one is hardly remembered by anyone but as a jobless struggler poet and hater of hypocrisy, he once again gave his well nuanced performance here. Perhaps a few people of today's generation know about the actor Paul Venghola who almost did the negative roles of street gambler, drunkard in so many films. Watch him here in one of his fine act of good for nothing scornful father and I bet any other actor can do justice to it. Actress Shobhana ruled in 70's B graders revenge flicks but here she too is so natural and average. The only unfortunate parts of the film are its last half an hour which is quite stereotype and dragging one and the other is music. V.Dhakshinamurthy failed to score the magic of memorable melodies he composed in P.bhaskaran's blockbuster hit 'Chumaduthanghi'. Recommended to all sensible cinelovers.