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aka The Other Shore 1983 118’ col Malayalam d/p/s K.N. Sasidharan pc Sooryarekha Film c N. Diwakar Menon m M.B. Srinivasan lp Gopi, Madhavi, Mammootty, Nedumudi Venu, Rani Padmini, Baby Vandana, Mohanlal, Master Prasad Babu

FTII graduate Sasidharan’s debut satirising the phenomenon of Malayalis emigrating to the Gulf States and the rise of a culturally degenerate neo-rich class. Honest clerk Gopinath (Gopi) tries to learn typing and tailoring in an effort to emulate the success of men like Johnny (Venu) and Ismail (Mammootty). His ambitious wife (Madhavi) lusts for the consumer objects with which her neighbourhood is awash, but this gets the clerk into a series of difficulties. He has an encounter with a prostitute that leads to a scandal, is cheated by a labour agent and ends up as a porter carrying the luggage of Keralites returning from the Gulf. The film was important to future megastar Mammootty, establishing a generic context for many of his thrillers (cf. Eenadu, 1982, where he plays a Dubai-returned Muslim youth).