Do you know why we all love watching horror movies? Apart from the psychological aspect of it, the thrill and excitement of watching the unknown give us a kick. These ‘60s -‘80s Malayalam horror movies have managed to set a genre standard in Mollywood that today’s moviemakers are yet to pass. Some of these movies are brilliant. Others, not so appealing. But, they’re all worth the watch.
Anyway, moving on. Here’s a list of ‘60s -‘80s Malayalam horror movies you can watch when you’re bored out of your wits.
Bhargavi Nilayam (1964)
When romance and horror are coupled together, you get a movie like Bhargavi Nilayam. It’s a classic Malayalam horror movie that’s even being remade soon by Aashiq Abu. Written by Vaikom Muhammad Basheer and directed by A. Vincent, Bhargavi Nilayam stars Prem Nazir, Madhu and Vijaya Nirmala in the lead roles. The movie tells the story of an author who shifts into a house. He later comes to realise that the house is haunted.
Another classic horror movie of the ‘60s, Yakshi is known for its psychological horror elements that are talked about even today. Sreenivasan is ostracised by his own people after facing an accident that leaves his face disfigured. He marries a woman whom he, later on, confuses with a spirit. His mental state of mind is unable to figure out of his wife is a real person or not. The film is consistently suspenseful and will leave you wondering about the truth.
You’d be intrigued to know that this was Sheela’s directorial debut film. Yakshagaanam is a story of a sibling duo who take a trip to an estate. On the way, one of the siblings, Dr Venu realises that his sister is possessed by a spirit. He goes on to seek help from his psychiatrist friend to diagnose the issue. Why does the plot feel like Manichitrathazhu?
Lakshmi, an introverted woman, gets a job in a small town. She befriends Kala who happens to be her go-to friend for anything. Lakshmi is soon possessed by a spirit. The spirit makes Lakshmi more confident and outgoing. Upon noticing these behavioural changes, Kala is shocked to notice the uncanniness of Lakshmi’s new actions with that of her dead friend, Lisa. This movie is an intelligent piece of well-written horror that has cracking moments to make your jolt a bit.
Two friends travel to a bungalow where they meet a spirit. The spirit narrates its tragic story to them. While this is the premise of Sakthi, it’s worth a watch because there’s a suspenseful payoff waiting in the end.
Two lovers are about to commemorate their relationship. But, a vengeful mother who rises from the dead to exact revenge. The story of Karimpoocha is as dramatic as the two lines previously mentioned. It’s a family drama with a horror element. Definitely a one-time watch.
Sreekrishna Parunthu (1984)
The true test of celibacy lies in calming down one’s sexual desires. Sreekrishna Parunthu is all about Kumaran Thampi’s sexual urge and how that leads to his downfall. This is not your typical horror movie. Rather, it’s about temptations muddled in traumatic experiences. Creepy much? BTW, this stars Mohanlal, and we personally feel it’s one of his best performances ever.
Pacha Velicham (1985)
Mukundan, a Railway personnel, meets a young woman while working late. She borrows a torch from him to go home. He gladly helps out. The next day, he comes to know that the lady passed away a year ago. Pacha Velicham plays a lot with your mind. A hidden gem.
Veendum Lisa (1987)
Remember the Lisa we spoke about earlier? Lisa veendum enthunathan – in a sequel! Lisa possesses a homemaker who wants to take revenge against her husband. Apparently, there’s a history between Lisa and the homemaker’s husband.
Kalpana House (1989)
Don’t hate us for suggesting this! Kalpana House is a vampire-driven story. Johnny is damn sure that his neighbour is a vampire. But, no bloody person believes him. A priest comes to the rescue. What follows…we don’t really have to spill the beans, right?
The ‘60s -‘80s Malayalam horror movies had a great edge to them unlike what you see today. It’s definitely worth the watch.