Sunday, June 8, 2014

Perumthachan (1990)

Director: Ajayan
Writer:    M.T. Vasudevan Nair
Cast:       Thilakan, Nedumudi Venu, Prashanth, Monisha, Manoj K. Jayan

Perumthachan (Thilakan) is a pious, respected and master carpenter of mixed background. He has a son whom he raised after his wife died during the child birth. At the beginning of the story the father is resentful towards his son since he considers him to have killed killed his wife but nevertheless he teaches him his craft and he grows up to, under many people's eyes, surpass his father. Even though people play up the rivalry and jealousy of father towards his son the film is ultimately about the universal theme of generation gap.

This generation gap is evident by the different ways in which father and son react when they respectively had their dalliances with the upper caste women for whom they were working. Perumthachan was deeply regretful about his lust and asks his Gods for forgiveness whereas his son doesn't find anything wrong with it. He questions the conventions and asks his father why he is happy to consider himself to be of lower caste due to his mother's caste and at the same time don't mind his Brahmin parentage getting the credit for his skills. The ending of the film is a bit  abrupt for those who are watching it for the first time. 

It was interesting to see the portrayal of women in this film. With the 'Marumakathayam' system that was prevalent in Kerala, the women are shown to be much more independent willed in terms of the choices that they have for their marriage as long as they stick to the same caste. I wonder how true it is to the history. Anyways the film is great watch.

Rating: 4/5