There are only a handful of Malayalam movies that a huge group of people like and cherish for years in their heart. One such film is Nadodikkattu. This movie is the best among the three movies of its franchise and is a movie that people love rewatching. So what makes it different from its sequels, and similar movies?
Nadodikkattu is fondly remembered for the portrayal of friendship between the two pivotal characters Dasan and Vijayan. They discuss how to impress a girl; tease, poke and laugh at each other, but the issues between them exist only till they face a problem. This is beautifully shown through Vijayan’s reaction upon knowing Dasan’s mother’s demise. Even amidst a thousand problems, they are keen on planning their bright future with ideas beyond their current reality. However, this warmth is not maintained with the same intensity in its sequels.
The movie paints a picture of reality in the 80s when unemployment was rampant. The characterisation of Dasan and Vijayan is that of youngsters with inferiorities and false prestige. These are manifestations of youngsters of all generations. While Dasan announces he is a B.Com 1st Class Graduate umpteen times, Vijayan who completed his pre-degree is extremely unhappy with his labour job.
They think that their milk business is going to boom from day one and imagine that the Gulf is the silver bullet to all their problems. But due to the plot development, this interesting factor is not present in the sequels as in here.
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Mohanlal’s and Sreenivasan’s impeccable timing and natural acting is the heart of the movie. They aren’t super-human, just two normal men. Their roles are not performance-oriented, but it is difficult for an actor to pull off effectively. Mohanlal’s controlled acting and voice modulation add to the intensity in the scenes where he knows his mother’s death, and when he says “Pattiniyanu Baletta, muzhuppattini”. And then there is Thilakan as Ananthan Nambiar and Captain Raju as Pavanayi – both breaking the traditional villain mould to add to the comedy and helping carry the weight in the second half of the movie.
The romance between Mohanlal and Shobana is not romanticised but is rooted in the harsh reality where they live; without any love-at-first-sight drama. Radha is the main person who motivates Dasan to find a job and helps him by giving money for his business. The scene where Dasan says, “Chodikkanum parayanum aarum illenkil kaashu pokunna vazhi kaanilla” to Radha is still regarded as one of the best romantic scenes in Mollywood.
Above the fun and relatability, ‘Nadodikkattu’ offers many beautifully written dialogues. While the dialogue “Ennod adukkunnavarkk kodukkan ente kayyil onnumilla” effortlessly reflects the mindset of a hopeless person, the dialogue “Chodikkanum parayanum aarum illenkil kaashu pokunna vazhi kaanilla” once again beautifully depicts who a person Dasan met at his office has grown to become.
The songs from Nadodikkattu are a light year ahead of the songs in the sequels. When one thinks of a Dasan-Vijayan song, “Karakana” is what comes to mind. Similarly, when asked to sing a romantic song from the trilogy, most of us would think of “Vaisakha Sandhye”. The songs from the sequels don’t seem to have the same recall value (except maybe “Swargathilo”).
Evergreen Comedy Scenes
Many of Nadodikkattu’s comedy scenes are regarded as classics. The entire movie proceeds through a set of hilarious co-incidents. While the real characters in Nadodikkattu are thrown into silly situations, the sequels have silly characters thrown into silly situations. Dialogues like “Sasiyettan bharaniyilaa”, “Ethra manoharamaya nadakkatha swapnam”, “Pavanayi savamayi”, etc are still cherished and used by us in our day-to-day lives. These dialogues are also referred to in many Malayalam movies. There are not many movies that get such an amount of love from the audience.
Do you love Nadodikkattu too? Share your thought in the comments section.