MATHILUKAL (The Walls) Adoor Gopalakrishnan

Adoor Gopalakrishnan
India. 1990.120 min
Cast : Mammootty, Thilakan, Karamana

Confined to the narrow space of a prison cell, Bashir falls in love with a woman in the neighbouring prison compound. They are separated by a high wall so that they never see each other and have to devise ingenious ways for communicating. Narayani, Bashir’s love is presented as a female voice and never appears in person in the film.

On the centenary of Indian cinema in April 2013, Forbes included Mammootty’s performance in the film on its list, “25 Greatest Acting Performances of Indian Cinema”.  About casting Mammootty as Basheer, Adoor says: “To play someone when he is living is no mean challenge, and the Malayalam star rose up to it”.