Monday, October 19, 2009

Rosy (1965)

P. J. Antony, Prem Nazir, Thikkurissi Sukumaran Nair, Kaviyoor Ponnamma

REALISTIC THRILLER P. J. Antony with Kaviyoor Ponnamma and Prem Nazir in the film 

Produced by Mani under the banner of ‘Vrindavan Pictures,’ ‘Rosy’ was the first directorial venture of P. N. Menon. The script and dialogues for this crime-melodrama by P. J. Antony was based on a story authored by the director himself. Unlike earlier crime thrillers in Malayalam like Avakasi (1954), CID (1955), Jailpully (1957), Poothali (1960) that were unrealistic with several twists simply introduced for entertainment, the storyline of ‘Rosy’ was closer to real life.

The film was not a huge hit. One reason must have been that the usual ingredients like dances, stunts, comedy etc. were not incorporated in the film. In fact, the film completely dispensed with comedy scenes and comedians.

P. J. Antony was the hero of the film. Prem Nazir also had a main role in the film. ‘Rosy’ is one of the very few films in which Kaviyoor Ponnamma acted as heroine.
The film maps the consequences of an unintentional murder committed by the hero in a very realistic way. The script and dialogues penned by P. J. Antony were impressive. The whole story was picturised in the backdrop of remote villages and forests.

Having unintentionally murdered a man to save his sister’s honour, Thoma (P. J. Antony) flees. He finds shelter in the hut of a fisherman, Ouseph (T. S. Muthiah). Thoma helps Ouseph in his job and days pass by. Ouseph’s daughter Rosy (Kaviyoor Ponnamma) falls in love with Thoma. Thoma conceals his past from all of them.

Ouseph becomes furious when he comes to know about Rosy’s love affair with Thoma and asks him to leave his house. Ouseph’s neighbour Kasim (D. K. Chellappan), his daughter Nabeesa (Vijaya Nirmala) and her lover Salim (Prem Nazir) support Rosy. They succeed in getting Ouseph’s consent for the marriage of Rosy and Thoma. Kasim, Nabeesa and Salim leave for another village to start a business there.

Rosy and Thoma lead a happy married life. That was when a police officer, Sankaran Nair (Thikkurissi Sukumaran Nair) happens to see Thoma. Thoma runs away from the village along with Rosy. They seek shelter in the village where Kasim had settled. Thoma reveals his past to Rosy, Kasim and his family. They take pity on him. Thoma gets a job in the forest, Rosy becomes pregnant. Days pass and Rosy’s health deteriorates. Nabeesa nurses her.

The arms of law reach the forest in search of Thoma. Rosy dies during childbirth. Thoma buries his family and surrenders before the police.
The film stood out for its technical perfection. Sound recording by ‘Revathi’ Kannan and Jagannathan; editing by Venkatraman and Mani; and camera work by E. N. Balakrishnan was praise worthy.

P. J. Antony and Kaviyoor Ponnamma excelled in their roles. The drunken scenes involving Ouseph (Muthiah) and his aide raised a few laughs. Thikkurissi and D. K. Chellappan also impressed.

All the five songs in the film, penned by P. Bhaskaran and set to tune by Job, were hits. The all-time romantic hit, ‘Alliyambal kadavil annu...’ sung by K. J. Yesudas, is considered one of his best. This song is easily the best of the film songs created by Job, who has only a handful of film songs to his credit. The romantic duet by Udayabhanu and L. R. Easwari, ‘Kannil enthaanu...’ was a unique in that Udayabhanu whispers melodically. This song also became a super hit. The folk song modelled on ‘Pulluvanpattu’ sung by P. Leela ‘Engilo pandoru...,’ the Easwari solo ‘Chalakudi puzhayil...,’ and the song ‘Velukkumbam puzhayoru...’ sung superbly by Yesudas and chorus, are all songs that linger in memories even after four decades.

Will be remembered: As the directorial debut of P. N. Menon. It will also be remembered for its excellent music and as a well-directed crime-melodrama.

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