Sunday, June 19, 2016

മറ്റൊരാൾ (Mattoral) (1988)

Director: K.G. George
Writers:  K.G. George, C.V. Balakrishnan
Cinematographer: Ramachandra Babu
Cast:        Mammooty, Karamana, Seema, Urvasi
Language: Malayalam 

An upper middle class family is torn apart when the middle aged mother elopes with a car mechanic. Their family friend (Mammooty) is trying to get the husband (Karamana) and wife (Seema) back together.

The husband is a Govt officer of significant stature who likes to restrict his wife into a homemaker. They have two kids and it is pretty evident from the early interactions that they don't have much chemistry anymore. I was thinking it would be more of a divorce case scenario and it was quite shocking when the central event in the film revealed itself. As is usual with K.G. George films, the interactions between its characters and their behaviour are very real.  He is certainly the best on that. However, my problem with this film is that it comes off as a bit regressive, especially coming from someone who made Adaminte Vaariyellu. He specialises in playing on clichés but the problem with that is that there is only a very fine line between it being a success or failure. Even though Karamana's character is shown as a bore early on, the film becomes quite one-sided later on with his character attracting a great deal of sympathy. The ending also ruins it further as  a hopeful one could have been truly path-breaking.

Despite my reservations about the ending and overall moralising tone of the film, it is still a good watch with excellent performances. I don't think there have been a film dealing with this subject matter in a real sense before and after this film in Malayalam. You are bound to get something out of a K.G. George film even if it is a lesser film of his.

Rating: 3/5