Thampu (1978)

 ●  Malayalam ● 2 hrs 10 mins

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Aravindan’s finest b&amp;w film chronicles three days with a circus in a small town in Kerala. A series of high-angle shots, as the circus drives into its new location, introduce us to the village. Several sequences use a remarkable quasi-documentary effect combined with minutely choreographed action e.g. the sunset as the manager (Gopi) directs the raising of the big top. The episodic film tells of a soldier who befriends the circus strong man in a toddy bar and shows how the bizarre characters from the circus including the dwarf merge with the local populace. Much of the imagery is genuinely poetic, accompanied by some remarkable b&amp;w work by Shaji, sustained by a narrative that consistently replaces conventional storytelling with a sense of the cultural geography of the village. The film’s documentary style, including direct address to camera, is in sharp contrast with Aravindan’s previous feature, <a href="">Kanchana Seeta (1977)</a>, also shot by Shaji, although the same reverence for nature animates both works.

Cast: Bharath Gopi, Jalaja Prakash Nair, Nedumudi Venu, VK Sreeraman

Crew: Govindan Aravindan (Director), Shaji N Karun (Director of Photography), MG Radhakrishnan (Music Director)

Rating: U (India)

Genres: Drama

Release Dates: 01 Sep 1978 (India)

Malayalam Name: തമ്പു

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Film Type:
Colour Info:
Black & White
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.39:1 (Scope)