From Mammootty’s Oru Vadakkan Veeragatha To Mohanlal’s Kaka Kuyil: Eight Malayalam Films Restored And Streaming

These films, streaming on Amazon Prime Video, Disney+Hotstar and YouTube, are sureshot nostalgia triggers, writes Satvik Kumar.
From Mammootty’s Oru Vadakkan Veeragatha To Mohanlal’s Kaka Kuyil: Eight Malayalam Films Restored And Streaming

There is a certain sense of nostalgia when watching yesteryear classics starring present-day legends such as Mammootty and Mohanlal in their prime. They either remind you of when you watched the films during theatrical release or just about how old one is! However, Indian cinema has not been at its best when it comes to preserving or restoring classics. We often come across reports that reels of movie classics have been destroyed, either by the ravages of time or due to bad preservation techniques or natural calamities.

Recently, OTT platforms have been pushing for restoration to meet content quality standards. A  few Malayalam films currently streaming on OTT platforms and YouTube have been through an extensive restoration process, and now have improvised display resolution and sound.


Available On: AmazonPrimeVideo

Released during Christmas of the year 2000, this mystery thriller directed by Sibi Malayil turned out to be an average grosser, even though it received critical acclaim. A lot of that had to do with viewers who were still riding high on the frenzy that Narasimham had created the same year. 

The film featured an ensemble cast that included  Mohanlal, Jayaprada, Murali, Jagathy Sreekumar and Vijayalakshmi, and is considered a cult classic. Its iconic soundtrack composed by Vidyasagar featured classics such as 'Poove Poove' and 'Entharo Mahanu'. It has excellent cinematography by Santhosh Thundiyil, and a restored and upscaled high definition digital format is currently streaming. on #.


Available On: Amazon Prime Video

 What happens when you pick Mammootty's classic family drama Valsalyam, and recook it with two spoons of mass masala, a dash of melodrama, and a whole lot of Mammukka-isms? You get Valliettan. Written by Ranjith and directed by Shaji Kailas, this Onam release of 2000 went on to be a box office hit. 

The cast also included Shobana, Siddique, Manoj K Jayan, Sai Kumar and NF Varghese. The version streaming now is well-restored and has HD resolution.


Available On: Amazon Prime Video and YouTube

Director Priyadarshan's ode to the classic French Kiss starred Dileep and Bhavna Pani as the leads. Co-written by writer duo Udayakrishna and Siby K Thomas, the film included a star cast featuring Priyadarshan regulars — Kalabhavan Mani, Innocent, Janardhanan, Nedumudi Venu, Radha Ravi, Jagathy Sreekumar, Cochin Haneefa, Jagadish and Mamukkoya. 

Vettam could be termed as Priyadarshan's last attempt in the slapstick genre in Malayalam. The version streaming now is restored and in HD.

 Oru Vadakkan Veeragatha 

Available on: YouTube

Oru Vadakkan Veeragatha holds an iconic place in Malayalam cinema. Legendary writer MT Vasudevan Nair penned the story, taking inspiration from Vadakkan Pattukal, a collection of Malayalam ballads of yore. 

Directed by Hariharan, this classic stars Mammootty, Balan K Nair, Suresh Gopi, Madhavi, Geetha and Captain Raju. The film went on to win Four National Awards for Best Screenplay, Actor, Art direction, and Costume Design, and Seven Kerala State Film Awards for Best popular film, Cinematography, Female playback singer, Child artist, Actor and Screenplay. 

A digitally upscaled version offered by the production house Grihalakshmi is currently streaming.

Summer in Bethlehem 

Available On: Amazon Prime Video

A stellar starcast, incredible soundtrack and an apt cameo by Mohanlal are a few of the good things going for this romantic comedy. Starring Suresh Gopi, Jayaram, Maju Warrier and Kalabhavan Mani, this film is written by Ranjith and directed by Sibi Malayil. It narrates the story of Dennis (Suresh Gopi) who owns a farm called 'Bethlehem' and the twist and turns he faces when relatives of his friend Ravishankar (Jayaram) land up at his farm as guests. 

PS: It's been 22 years since the movie released but that ambiguous climax still rankles: To whom does that freaking cat belong?

Kaka Kuyil

Available On: Amazon Prime Video

The second Priyadarshan film on this list, Kaka Kuyil brought back the essence of the director's 80s classics such as Boeing Boeing and Mazha Peyyunnu Maddalam Kottunnu, which also starred Mohanlal and Mukesh. The story deals with an identity mismatch when the principal characters end up in a house where an elderly visually impaired couple resides. The plot is inspired by the 1988 comedy caper A Fish Called Wanda. Later, Rohit Shetty adapted the story for his film Golmaal: Fun Unlimited. This version is restored and in HD. 

Veendum Chila Veettukaryangal

Available On: YouTube

For film buffs exploring the works of director Sathyan Anthikkad, this film is a must-watch. Written by the legendary AK Lohithadas and performed extraordinarily by Jayaram and Thilakan, this film narrates the story of a father who tries to mend his youngest son, and get him into the right path. The film marked the debut of Samyuktha Varma; she won the Kerala state award for best actress. 

The scene where Samyuktha's character attempts to sell a product to Jayaram manages to get people to laugh, 21 years after the film's release! Watch it in 4K resolution.

Oru Maruvatur Kanavu

Available On: Amazon Prime Video and Disney+Hotstar.

Lal Jose's debut directorial starring Mammootty, Biju Menon, Mohini, Divya Unni, Sreenivasan, Kalabhavan Mani, Sukumari and Nedumudi Venu was loosely inspired by the 1986 French film Jean de FloretteThe story revolves around an elder brother's attempt to support his younger sibling's family. The character Chandy portrayed by Mammootty reminds us of his earlier classic Kottayam Kunjacchan

Other films

Also check out these digitally upscaled HD versions streaming on YouTube — P Padmarajan's Kallan Pavitran, Priyadarshan's Adhwaytham, IV Sasi's Angadi, Venu Nagavalli's Kalipattam and Sibi Malayil's Akashadoothu.

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