Monday, May 29, 2006
This post might make sense only to any mallu out there. And I guess the only mallu who reads this is a fraud one, who even talks a non-Indian language in his family, this might appeal to no one. Still I had to write.
Oduvil Unnikrishnan died two days ago. He was a great actor of malayalam films. A character actor par excellence and from the comments that his colleagues give, he was a kind man.
Oduvil never was the center of attraction in any film except perhaps at the end of his career, when he had established a strong reputation. He was the sort of actor who you will not notice when you watch the film but then at the end you realize how much he contributed to the experience. And the reason that you did not notice him was that it never felt that he was acting. It was so effortless that you hardly took it seriously. No great histrionics, but just gentle mannerisms which made him the adorable of the masses. But his effortlesness on the screen must have taken lot of effort offscreen.
Oduvil's best roles are definitely the comic ones but he made us laugh with his dialogue delivery and the timing. I am sure he must have had a role to play in the writing of the dialogues.
Many of his roles are those of a bufoon or a looser but one who knows and accepts that he is one and is able to laugh at himself. So you get to like him for that. The role that I liked his most was in Sargam, where he plays a typical Namboothiri karnovar with a panache. The role required a sarcastic humour and also the ability to deliver in a style which is easy to exaggerate. Infact, I think Oduvil is the only one apart from Thilakan who can handle a namboothiri's role without making fun of him and yet making us laugh.
May his soul rest in peace.