In the upcoming film Kurup, Dulquer Salmaan plays one of the longest wanted fugitives Sukumara Kurup, accused of murdering Chacko in 1984 and passing his corpse as his own to claim insurance money. When the police were onto what he did, Kurup had gone on a run, and has been absconding ever since. The Srinath Rajendran film tells the whole story from the point of view of the murderer, which is why Kurup has been getting some flak for glamourising a real-life criminal. Kurup: The Curious Connection Between Dulquer Salmaan’s Thriller and 1984 Film NH 47 That Goes Beyond Sukumara Kurup!
Whatever may be the verdict for the film is, everyone is expecting Dulquer Salmaan to give a kickass performance in his antihero role. While we wait till November 12 to see if he has pulled that off, let's go back down the memory lane and list our 11 favourite anti-hero roles played by popular actors known for their hero or positive roles.
Mammootty in Vidheyan
Mammootty scooped a National Award, and rightly so, for this imposing performance as the arrogant Bhattetari in this classic. Years later, he did a similar role in Ranjith's Paleri Manickam, and ended up impressing us once more in his rare negative portrayal. Mammootty Birthday Special: From Vidheyan to Munnariyippu, 15 Times Malayalam Megastar Impressed Us in Roles With Shades of Grey.
Mohanlal in Uyarangalil
Mohanlal may have started his acting career with negative roles, but Uyarangalil came at a time when he had begun making an impression in positive characters. As the manipulative and self-preserving employee in a tea-estate, Mohanlal's Jayarajan is someone who will go to any lengths to make a quick buck and rise on top, even if that means murder. Mohanlal Birthday Special: From Lucifer to Drishyam, 7 Best Films of Malayalam Superstar of The 21st Century Ranked by IMDb.
Prithviraj Sukumaran in Mumbai Police
The handsome actor has done his fair share of negative roles, but his most impressive anti-hero role comes in the Rosshan Andrews thriller. As an amnesiac cop investigating his own case, Prithviraj's Antony Moses discovers layers being peeled of his former life, including his abrasive methods to make criminals toe his line and his desperate measures to hide a dark secret about his own self. Prithviraj Sukumaran Birthday: From Nandanam to Lucifer, 15 Movies That Defined This Malayalam Superstar's Interesting Career.
Jayan in Sarapancharam
We still remember the late Jayan, Malayalam Cinema's original macho man, in this film for that iconic horse-massaging scene. Jayan got a big breakthrough in this film with his anti-hero role of a horse caretaker who sleeps with his mistress and later marries her, only for the lady to realise what a dangerous man he is. On Jayan’s 40th Death Anniversary, Unni Mukundan Pays a Fitting Tribute to the Legendary Malayalam Actor.
Fahadh Faasil in Kumbalangi Nights
Fahadh has no qualms in taking up dark and negative roles as proven in films like 22 Female Kottayam, Immanuel, Chappa Kurishu, Vellaikaaran, among others. However, his most popular anti-hero role is as Shammi in Kumbalangi Nights. As the creepy, pervasive epitome of toxic masculinity, Fahadh's Shammi makes us realise that the worst villains around us could be in our homes. Fahadh Faasil Birthday Special: From Being Called ‘Wooden’ to Being Hailed as Best in Business, Recapping the Spell-Binding Journey of the National Award Winner.
Tovino Thomas in Kala
When we talk about alpha masculinity, how can we forget Tovino in his home production Kala? The brutal visceral revenge thriller sees Tovino's character who is proud of his physique, his family honour and his dog, and when these are challenged, he feels his very manhood is being challenged here. Kala Movie Review: Tovino Thomas’ Thriller Is a Brutal Saga That Pokes Holes Into Alpha Masculinity.
Shane Nigam in Ishq
Shane Nigam is another young and talented actor who has no qualms in taking up complex roles. In the deceptively titled Ishq, he plays a young man who and his girlfriend are caught in a terrifying episode of moral policing. While the girl, more shaken by the incident than him, wants to move on, the boy takes that experience as a slight to his manhood and tries to exact a similar shameful torture on the perpetrator. Only that he never comes off as a better person in the process. From Fahadh Faasil’s Kumbalangi Nights to Mammootty’s Unda, 7 Malayalam Movies of 2019 to Watch If You Want a Break From Bollywood Masala!
Jayasurya in Classmates
Let me clarify that this year's State Award winner Jayasurya's best negative role is in Amal Neerad's Iyobinte Pusthakam, but he is a proper villain in the movie. His best, and very entertaining anti-hero role comes in this Lal Jose classic where he plays a committed but envious student leader Satheesan Kanjikuzhi. It is a role that is a mix of humour and antagonism, and Jayasurya is fantastic in delivering both the aspects, without turning into an actual villain. Jayasurya Birthday Special: 7 Memorable Times the Malayalam Actor Impressed Us With His Negative Portrayals.
Kamal Haasan in Vayanadan Thampan
An immortal being who seduces and kills virgins and offers their blood to appease a demon goes straight into villain territory. But Kamal Haasan's Vayanadan Thampan, like his role in Sigappu Rojakkal, is a murderous being till he commits himself to an emotion that he shouldn't have committed to - Love. Which turns this villain into a far more complex character, like Count Dracula.
Appani Sarath in Angamaly Diaries
Lijo Jose Pelissery's brilliant Angamaly Diaries is a film filled terrific performances from newcomers. Standing out among its talented cast, is Appani Sarath as the rough rival leader of the protagonist's gang, whose biggest antagonist trait is that he is merely the rival in a movie filled with flawed characters. Lijo Jose Pellissery Birthday Special: From Nayakan to Jallikattu, Ranking All His Films From Worst to Best.
Sreenivasan in Mukundetta Sumithra Vilikkunnu
If there is a contest for greatest conmen in Malayalam cinema, Sreenivasan's Viswanath should come up as tops. There is not a single sentence that he tells which isn't a lie, as he fools his best friend, his employer and an entire colony to fulfil his own means. If the airport security was as stringent as it is nowadays, then Vishwanath would have gotten away with his grand deception.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Nov 10, 2021 09:35 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).