Minnaram – Another Priyadarshan-KV Anand Visual treat that we don’t talk much about

There has not been another director in Malayalam Cinema who visualized his movies as brilliantly as Priyadarshan. In 1994, he found a great accomplice in the extremely skilled Cinematographer K V Anand as they teamed up first time for the visual magic that was Thenmavin Kombath. The movie’s exquisite frames that are still discussed today, got K V Anand the National Award in his very first film. Perhaps it is only because that Thenmavin Kombath is so iconic for its camera work that this director-Cinematographer’s another movie in the same year -Minnaram is not much talked about.

A look back at Minnaram’s beautiful visuals which makes sure the film doesn’t look like 27 years old. Rest in Peace K V Anand. Thanks for how you amazed us with your camera !

No one picturizes songs like Priyadarshan. KV Anand gelled so well with Priyadarshan to make several frames in Minnaram memorable. This one is from “Oru Vallam ponnum” song.
There is a sincere attempt from the unit to make each frame rich in Minnaram. This one is from Bobby(Mohanlal)’s room in “Chinkara kinnaram” song. It helps that Minnaram has art direction handled by Sabu Cyril, arguably the best the country had produced in this field.
“Chinkara kinnaram” song continued to have good visuals like this….
… and this. It helps that Mohanlal and Shobana has one of the finest lead pair chemistries in Malayalam Cinema.
“Nilave Mayumo” should be one of the most well picturized songs in Malayalam. In this song, Priyadarshan and K V Anand experiments with small portions of reverse motion with successful results. This is a very well edited song too.
More from ” Nilave Mayumo”‘s reverse motion sequences.
Like most Priyadarshan movies, Ooty is captured well in Minnaram too. This song with Neena and kids is almost like a tribute to the Sound of Music.
Another frame where you feel you are sucked to the enchanting Ooty.
Shobana (as Neena) hasn’t looked this beautiful in many movies. K V Anand’s camera portrays the actress so brilliantly in the movie.
This frame at the end of the song where Neena has win over both the kids and their granddad(Thilakan) is particularly a lovely frame.
Minnaram is a movie done well in colours. Look at how in this frame, the uniform of the kids just gel with the colours of the wall and lamp.
Just more frames on how K V Anand does so well with colours in Minnaram.
… and more.
Even the choice of water bed in Nilave Mayumo song is how you bring in small details to add richness to the visuals
Minnaram is one of Mohanlal’s finest performances in comedy. As Neena tells Bobby that he is not kid’s father, he is relieved. But he really wants to know who the father is. He puts in a weird smile and asks ” Pinne ?” ( Then who is the father) .This is a particularly interesting close up shot.
And just as Neena turns her eyes back at him, watch out for how K V Anand is quick to capture Bobby’s next expression that is now more empathetic and sincere as he again asks ” Pinne ?” . 3 years later, K V Anand would be a part of Chandralekha (along with Jeeva) which again films a lot more brilliant close up expressions of Mohanlal
There is also this sequence where K V Anand uses rack focus technique and films a fine emotional scene between two iconic actors in Malayalam.
K V Anand’s use of windows and lighting is an interesting technique used to add depth to the emotional scenes in Minnaram. When the two brothers and I. G Mathews ( Thilakan) are caught up in a conflict or when Romy ( Lalu Alex) has to inform Bobby that his sister has passed away, you see this technique used.
And Windows and the lighting is another factor that add depth to the Nilave Mayumo song as Bobby and Neena spend their final moments together.
Finally even two small but important characters in the movie – The guitar and the recorder has their own special frames.

To think K V Anand did both Thenmavin Kombath and Minnaram in his first year is amazing. You will be missed.

Also Read – Devadoothan and Frames that were ahead of its times