An emotional Marykutty misses an opportunity to achieve her dreams, and just to be away from everyone’s eyes, goes to the washroom where she spots ‘Men’ and ‘Women’ signs. Marykutty goes ahead and closes the door, and viewers get to see the sign ‘disabled’. Although the society sees transpersons as disabled people, the need for recognition and the respect they deserve is what Ranjith Sankar’s new movie Njan Marykutty all about.
Ranjith Sankar has put his stamp in all his movies right from Passenger to Punyalan, and, like an indulgent mother who packs her sandwiches with thick spreads of butter, fills his offerings with dollops of goodness and positivity. Even his ghost story Pretham is rich in such ingredients. Like his earlier movie Su Su Sudhi Vathmeekam, which grapples with the struggle of a man with a speech disorder, Njan Marykutty too takes a look at the traumatised life of the outcast.
“This is not the world of men and neither it is of women; this is the world of talents”, is what Marykutty says and we can’t help admitting and admiring the talent of Jayasurya. The movie belongs to him, and he takes it on his shoulders with amazing grace and poise.
Mathukutty is born into a Christian middle class family settled in a rural village of Kerala. Since childhood, he develops an obsession to ‘girly’ dressings. His parents punish him for this, and in spite of his various demons, turns out to be a well-qualified professional. All that was swelling within him finally erupts. He quits his job and undergoes surgery to be reborn as Marykutty. The Marykutty is simple yet beautiful, bold but sentimental, looser but determined.
In the movie, when Alvin (played by Aju Varghese) is asked how can he be friends with Marykutty, he says, “Initially, I hated her but when I looked closer, I realized she has a beautiful heart”.
There have been several instances when the characters of transpersons are used in movies for comic relief but Njan Marykutty shuns such stereotypes.
Jayasurya with minimal make-up and pretty sarees (thanks to Saritha Jayasurya) gets into the skin of the character with expert ease. From basic mannerisms (keeping finger on mouth) to body language (running and crying), the actor Jayasurya needs a standing ovation for his commitment. Joju George as angry young police officer and Suraj Venjaramood as calm and sincere collector are intriguing in their roles.
A special mention for actor-director Siddharth Siva for lighting up the mood (his lawyer act reminds one of Salim Kumar from Meesamadhavan). Innocent as church priest, Jewel Mary as close friend and Shivaji Guruvayoor have done justice to their roles.
The soulful music by Anand Madhusoodhan is an added advantage.
The movie with a positive vibe might appear a bit dramatic at certain sequences. But for a feel good movie, this is par for the course.
As is often said, ‘there is a new beginning to every ending’, Njan Marykutty sets an example for the bold subject often neglected by mainstream cinema.