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1988 171’ col Malayalam d/s Priyadarshan pc Shirdi Sai Creations p P.K.R. Pillai lyr Shibu Chakravarty c S. Kumar m Kannoor Rajan, Johnson lp Mohanlal, Nedumudi Venu, Ranjini, Raju, Srinivasan

Along with Kilukkam, the same year, Mohanlal established his collaborations with director Priyadarshan as among the most infallible in the commercial Malayalam cinema. When Kalyani’s (Ranjini) rich father returns from abroad on a brief holiday to settle the inheritance of his property, Kalyani’s uncle (Venu) hires a thief and con man, Vishnu (Mohanlal), to masquerade as her husband. The reason for this impersonation is to keep the father’s property from falling into the hands of a bunch of baddies (Srinivasan, Raju) who run the estate. Most of the film exploits the several comic possibilities of a spirited woman and a crazy hero being forced to pretend to be married. The story takes a tragic turn when Mohanlal is revealed as a murderer facing a death sentence, and he tells his tale in flashback. He had killed his deaf-mute girlfriend Revathi, when he mistook her Naxalite brother as being her lover. His child by Revathi was put into an orphanage when he was arrested. At the end, Vishnu and Kalyani, having fallen in love, are parted by the law, as he goes off to his death sentence while she is saddled with the responsibility of raising his orphaned child. The film adheres to the sometimes inexplicable tendency, for viewers unfamiliar with its generic codes, of 80s Kerala melodrama to end in tragedy.