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Ormakkaay (1982)“ In Memoriam ” – (Lit. Translation)
Ormakkaay (1982) is a milestone in the career of both the Director and the Male Lead Actor of the production, on many levels. This could possibly be the rare instance in Malayalam cinema production, when the honors of the Best Film and the Second Best Film at the State Awards of a particular year went to the same Director who also won the Best Director and the best Art Director Award for that given year. Palangal (1982) and Marmaram (1982) – Bharathan’s other two releases for the year combined with Ormakkaay, ruled the box-office charts and the Kerala State Film Awards that year. And it becomes all the more significant due to the presence of Bharat Gopy in all three of them in significant roles.
Nandagopal is a young, popular and successful sculptor and media artiste, working out of his spacious beachfront home-cum-studio. He is also deaf and mute. Susanna tries to make ends meet as a part-time model and a regular “form” for Nandagopal’s art installations, and has a soft corner for this exceptionally talented virtuoso. Susanna’s father, whose compulsive gambling has now left them with hardly anything other than her meagre income from odd-jobs, still dreams of a golden Jackpot that will bring him millions. Naturally, anyone with money in their wallets becomes his new best friend. And local pop star Peter Lal, the latest music sensation, a ladies’ man and “loaded” to the hilt, enters their lives one day. Nandagopal, Susanna and Peter Lal gradually find themselves amidst a dangerous interplay of lust, love and honor, and a series of events that lead to disastrous consequences.
A Movie Clipping from Ormakkaay (1982)
Kerala State Film Awards – 1982
Second Best Film – Ormakkaay
Best Director – Bharathan
Best Actor – Bharat Gopy
Best Actress – Madhavi
Photography – Vasanth Kumar
Best Music Director – Johnson
Best Editor – N.P.Suresh
Best Art Director – Bharathan
Bharat Gopy as Nandagopal : An Overview
There has never been a sculptor and media artiste like Nandagopal on the Malayalam screen before Ormakkaay (1982) or after. As Bharat Gopy always used to love reiterating, it always helps for an actor when all of his senses and the motor co-ordination are in their prime, as it heightens the actor’s ability to portray otherwise. A close observation of Nandagopal in Ormakkaay reveals a nuanced yet simple characterisation of the deaf-mute artiste, in his prime, as wanton to emotions and feelings like any normal being and is apprehensive of expressing it outright, especially with Susanna, his favorite model.
No mention of Ormakkaay (1982) is complete without the “naming ritual sequence” that could well be called the “Most Helpless Moment in Malayalam Cinema”, but there is more to Nandagopal than just that moment in isolation. To borrow a phrase of the times, all of Bharat Gopy’s performances are immersive experiences. To know him, one has to willingly plunge headlong into it.