Kireedam (Crown) @ 30 years

One week ago, 30 years ago, this film, Kireedam was released. If you are not familiar about Malayalam films it’s understandable that you don’t know this 30 year old film. But for a person from Kerala, this movie is a classic. The hype, emotions, story and performance is one that has lived through all the things that changed through these 30 years. Therefore I felt it was apt to write a post about it.

Films that are special to me and have reached these monumental milestones in time, are ones I always wish to record specially on my blog. Similar to my post on the movie, Titanic, when it had been 20 years since it’s release, or when it was 15 years since Kal Ho Naa Ho released.

Therefore for all the people who don’t know this film, and for all the people who know and love this film. Here’s my take (never a review, as it’s an age old classic) on Kireedam.

The release poster for the DVD

Country of origin : India

Language : Malayalam

Title : Kireedam (trans. Crown)

Directed by : Sibi Malayil

Written by : A K Lohithadas

Starring : Mohanlal, Thilakan, Parvathy , Mohan Raj

Music : Johnson

Cinematography : S. Kumar

Released : 7 July 1989

Duration : 140 minutes

Thilakan as Head Constable Achuthan Nair

The movie starts with Achuthan Nair, a head Constable at a police station dreaming a happy dream. He dreams that he is at the police station, working , when the Sub Inspector of the station arrives to which he stands up and salutes. But we see that he is happily saluting his son, who is now the Sub Inspector of the station. Achuthan Nair wakes up smiling and happy at the dream he had in the morning.

He goes home to where he lives with his wife,two sons and a daughter. They are a happy family and Achuthan Nair is particular all his children must study well and get good jobs.

From left to right, Parvathy as Devi and Mohanlal as Sethu Madhavan

Achuthan Nair had highest hopes for his eldest son, Sethu, to become an S.I. Sethu has cleared his physical tests and is awaiting the interview call and is preparing well for it. Although he sneaks in good once in a while, Sethu loves his father and works hard to achieve their dreams.

Sethu is also engaged to Devi, the daughter of his maternal uncle.

Everything seems to be going well, until-

Achuthan Nair is a man who wouldn’t budge from being sincere to his job. One day while performing his duty he annoys the son of a Minister leading to him getting a punishment transfer to the town of Ramapuram.

He and his family then move to Ramapuram where they realise that the town and the market place are controlled by goons led by Keerikaadan Jose (played by Mohan Raj) . He’s a notorious criminal who can’t be controlled even by the police there.

Keerikaadan Jose played by Mohan Raj

One day Achuthan Nair while trying to prevent a fight at the market place gets beaten up by Keerikaadan Jose and his gang. Seeing this, Sethu runs to his father’s aid and fights off the goons. The villagers hail him as a hero who “killed” Jose .

But as time passes by, Sethu is seen to be a notorious person like Jose and gets tangled up in crimes and things he never did all over the village. It goes to a point that his own family doesn’t believe him.

The film then shows how slowly, things go downhill for Sethu, and with the return of Jose after recovery, it’s a story that goes till the death. We see a helpless Sethu turn into a murderer ripping his family apart.

Literally the most famous scene in the movie after Sethu kills Jose, and his father cries and begs him “to put the knife down”.

From the plot I think it’s understandable why this film turned out to be as good as it is right?

This film is monumental in the history of Malayalam cinema. It was a commercial success and got remade into several languages as well. The movie is really relatable because Sethu and his family is just like every working – class family out there. The family is a typical,happy family.

The way things go downhill for Sethu is very relatable because honestly it could happen to anyone. Even if we don’t go to the lengths of killing someone, we all know phases of our lives when everyone turns against us, even our family making us retreat into a lonely shell.

As for the crew that helped in this film, this film was one of the highlights of all their careers. Sibi Malayil is now a very well known director. As for the story by Lohithadas, he is often known to be famous for writing stories that touch the hearts of people, and this one is not the only one. There’s many more that I can point out. As for the music by Johnson- it’s beautiful music that ebbs and flows straight into our heart powered by some amazing lyrics, especially this song – Kaneer Poovinte (which traanslates to the tears that touch the cheek of a flower), as Sethu walks away painfully from Devi knowing he is no longer a good choice for her.

The movie has a very gradual pace and nothing is rushed and moves smoothly. The acting prowess of all the actors showed so many humane factors. Be it, being sincere to ones job, ones family, or anything at all.

It’s definitely a movie that will live through not just 30 years but many many more as it’s a tale of humans, just like you and me!

Let me know what you feel about this movie in the comments!

If you’ve seen this movie, let me know your thoughts on it as well!

Image courtesy : Google Image Search

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