Bramayugam (2024) Movie: Mysterious Ghostly Tale From Kerala

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The ‘Bramayugam’ film is a mysterious ghostly tale from Kerala, India. Interestingly, the original Malayalam period drama is in monochrome colour, so it is a black-and-white movie.

The other fascinating point is that its title ‘Bramayugam‘ means ‘The Age of Madness’.  It is a worsened era of the most degenerate age, the ‘Kaliyugam‘ (The Age of Darkness). The departure of the Gods and Goddesses marks the beginning of ‘Bramanyugam‘. So, this particular era brings out the worst in people, sometimes even the well-intentioned ones.

Rahul Sadasivan wrote the story of this Horror film during the COVID lockdown period and it took him about 8 months to finish its script.

Rahul (Sadasivan) had conceived the film in black and white… The first thing he said when he pitched the film to me was that it was going to be in black and white. The idea is to take you away from a realistic milieu into another world. It adds to the mystery… With black and white, the characters gain more texture – you can see the features, the sweat and the dirt…

Shehnad Jalal, DOP |
Bramayugam is the first black and white movie in Malayalam (Kerala, India) to collect more than Rupees 50 Crore.

Trailers of the Bramayugam (2024) Movie

Trailer in (Original) Malayalam
Malayalam Trailer – Bramayugam (2024) Film – Sony Liv | YouTube
Trailer in (Dubbed) Hindi
Hindi Trailer – Bramayugam (2024) Film – Sony Liv | YouTube

Synopsis of the Bramayugam (2024) Movie

After narrowly escaping slavery, Thevan (Arjun Ashokan), a folk singer of the Paanan caste, in 17th-century Kerala stumbles upon a mysterious mansion inhabited by a cook (Sidharth Bharathan) and his formidable master Kodumon Potti (Mammootty), leading him to the discover of an ancient tradition that alters his destiny.

Rating of the Bramayugam (2024) Movie

FM Rating4.10/5
FM Short CommentsAlthough it takes a while to adjust to the black-and-white movie, it is all worthwhile. We loved the meaningful storytelling of this enigmatic Malayalam film. The acting by Mammootty is eerily top-class. The Arjun, Sidharth, and Amalda play their parts perfectly. This minimalistic film from Kerala India is a good watch in this multicoloured age of Special Effects.
Bramayugam (2024) Film – FM Rating

Spoiler Free Review of the Bramayugam (2024) Movie

The introduction

The Malayalam entertainment industry from Kerala (India) continues to impress us with its good-quality cinematic products. A couple of years ago, we reviewed the JOJI film and then this year, we also shared an article about the Perilloor Premier League series. The horror thriller Bramayugam film is also of the same high-quality pedigree. This contemporary film taps into Kerala’s folk horror traditions like Chaathan/Chatan, now, let us talk about it.

The story

During the 17th century in Kerala, the influence of Tantra/Maya was strong, A young singer belonging to the Paanan caste of folk singers, Thevan narrowly escapes from slavery and finds himself lost in unfamiliar territory. While desperately fleeing, he stumbles upon a distinctive bungalow nestled deep within a dense forest. The house is inhabited by a seemingly kind master and his loyal servant, creating a scary atmosphere.

Initially, the master extends a warm welcome to Thevan, but as time passes, it becomes evident that he is not who he appears to be. In reality, he is a malevolent goblin (Chaathan), assuming the identity of the master. This sinister creature from the depths of darkness ensnares anyone who enters the house, forcing them into a lifetime of servitude. The story delves into the struggle of Thevan and the current first servant (cook) as they attempt to break free from the goblin’s control and escape. As they dream of their freedom.

Unique Selling Point is its Black-and-White film

The unique selling point (USP) is the use of black-and-white colour film to add a certain mystery and depth to this periodic drama about the occult and spirits in India. This sorcery narrative unfolds within a sprawling decrepit mansion, where Kodumon Potti (Mammootty) and his cook (Sidharth Bharathan) reside, the low-caste singer Thevan (Arjun Ashokan) stumbles upon locked chambers, unsettling noises, and an undeniable air of the supernatural. Not to forget, the beautiful Yakshi (Amalda Liz), who lives in that area too. Then, this folk tale-inspired film, its tale delves into casteism, feudalism, slavery, bodily possession, etc.

The film utilized a 2:1 aspect ratio to intensify the impression of being trapped inside the mansion.

We loved its story, the music, the cinematography, etc.

All those who have read the folk tales from India will not be surprised by its story content. However, for others, this film has quite a few unexpected twists and turns in the story. We loved the layered and messaging aspect of the script and its caste metaphor. Even the open-ended ending (spoilers below) is open to interpretation. Besides, the writers and director of the film, the music director, the cinematographer and other people have done a wonderful job of building the riddles, thrills, tensions and secrecies in this horror film.

Rahul Sadasivan, the writer/director shot the film at Varikkasseri Mana in Palakkad, a structure built in the classic Kerala architectural style.

Christo Xavier, the music director, fastened guitar strings onto the exposed bucket. These strings were then stroked with a violin bow, resulting in a frightening sound with a distinct reverberation. The Kodumon Potti Theme was crafted using a plastic bucket.

Jayadevan Chakkadath, the sound designer, made use of a diverse selection of unique sounds throughout the film. During the forest introduction scene, he blended the sounds of blue whales seamlessly into the atmosphere. Moreover, he included rattlesnake sounds in the sequence where Yakshi seduces Koran. 

Jothish Shankar, the Art Director, along with his team, procured approximately 3000 grow bags of grass for the exterior design of the mansion. The grass was cultivated over a period of four months until it reached the desired length.

The conclusion

Mammootty is Mammootty, the master of his art. His screen presence as a negative character is impactful, to say the least. The other actors/actresses Arjun, Sidharth, Amalda, etc are impressive too. Although we do not understand the Malayalam language, still we enjoyed the eerie musical numbers in the film, check out the Malayalam (Audio Jukebox) too on YouTube. We loved this fantastic supernatural spooky tale from Kerala, India.

Key Details about the Bramayugam (2024) Movie

GenreHorror, Mystery, Thriller
Original languageMalayalam (Kerala, India)
Interestingly, Malayalam is a palindrome word.
Duration2 hours 19 minutes
WritersRahul Sadasivan & T.D. Ramakrishnan
Film DirectorRahul Sadasivan
Music DirectorChristo Xavier
Art DirectorJothish Shankar
CinematographyShehnad Jalal ISC
CastMammootty (Master/Kodumon Potti), Arjun Ashokan (Singer/Thevan), Sidharth Bharathan (Cook/Servant), Amalda Liz (Yakshi), etc.
ProducersNight Shift Studios
NetworkSony Liv
TaglinesThe Age of Madness
Bramayugam (2024) Film – About

Poster of the Bramayugam (2024) Movie

Bramayugam (2024) Film – Poster

Spoilers Alert – Story (Plotline) and Ending Explained

Story Explained – the plotline of the horror film

17th Century, Kerala, India

In the 17th century, in the Malabar region of Kerala, Thevan (Arjun Ashokan) and Koran (Manikandan Achari) successfully eluded capture by Portuguese slave traders in Ponnani and found sanctuary in the eastern part of the region. While camping along the Bharatappuzha River one fateful night, tragedy strikes when the Koran falls prey to an attack by a Yakshi (a captivating female spirit/ghost).

In this film, the "Poomani Malika" song contains references to the historical context of Malabar in Kerala, India. It subtly depicts the invasion of Valluvanadu chiefdom by Zamorin, which sparked a lasting rivalry between the warriors of Valluvanadu and Zamorin.

A big dilapidated mansion in the middle of nowhere

Filled with solitude and fear, Thevan manages to flee and stumbles upon an abandoned mansion the following day. The cook (Sidharth Bharathan) caught Thevan stealing a coconut and presented him before the master of the estate, Kodumon Potti (Mammootty). Despite Thevan’s initial reluctance, Potti was impressed by his musical talent and urged him to spend the night.

However, the cook cautioned Thevan against prying into the house or the master’s history while escorting him to his room.

The Chaathan/Chathan (the male Spirit/Ghost)

Over the next few days, he is informed by the cook that the potti is related to Chudalan Potti, who received a Chaathan (the male Spirit/Ghost) as a helper from the goddess Varahi. Chudalan Potti’s harsh treatment of the Chaathan eventually drove it to madness, resulting in the tragic fate of Chudalan Potti and his family. Kodumon Potti later managed to subdue the Chaathan and lock it away in the attic of the mansion.

Thevan was alarmed when he witnessed the cook digging a grave in the backyard, fearing it was meant for him. He becomes desperate upon realizing he has lost his memory and has been confined within the mansion for months. Shockingly, the cook reveals that the grave is intended for Kodumon. The true master of the mansion is the Chaathan in disguise, who has locked up the real Kodumon in the attic, causing him to lose his mind and meet his demise. To break free, they must overcome the Chaathan by extinguishing a perpetually burning lamp hidden in a secret chamber beneath the mansion and trapping the creature in a unique chest.

Ending Explained – the end scenes of the horror film

The fightback and the chaos

During a heated argument, the cook skillfully snatches the key to the chamber from the Chaathan’s possession. By unlocking the lair, he extinguishes the lamp, effectively depriving the Chaathan of its power. Thevan and the cook expose the Chaathan’s true form by setting its disguised figure on fire. It is then revealed that the cook is Kodumon’s illegitimate son. He attempts to wear the ring, believing it will grant him control over the Chaathan. However, Thevan intervenes, recognizing the potential for corruption that comes with such power. He firmly believes that humans should not possess such abilities. As they grapple with each other, a raging fire engulfs the mansion, ultimately collapsing upon them amid their struggle.

The end

Surviving amidst the chaos, the cook unexpectedly comes face to face with Thevan outside the compound, only to realize that the person standing before him is not the real Thevan but the Chaathan in a cunning disguise. Gripped with fear for his safety, he hastily escapes into a nearby river. Tragically, mistaken for a dangerous person, he meets his demise at the hands of a Portuguese soldier.

Meanwhile, completely oblivious to the supernatural occurrences, a battalion of Portuguese soldiers steadily advances towards the grand mansion. As the Chaathan aimlessly wanders deeper into the forest, the once-majestic mansion now lies in ruins, symbolizing the definitive end of its sinister and haunting legacy.

In the end, the singer Thevan (Arjun Ashokan) became, what he was escaping from the all-controlling and powerful devil Chaathan. Perhaps, all of these scenes mark a new beginning of another round of violence and exploitation of the weak by the strong people.

So, are we going to second part of this film in future, too? We are not so sure, as of now.

The finale of Bramayugam mirrors the conclusion of Apocalypto (2006) directed by Mel Gibson. A greater threat looms with the appearance of the Europeans, with the Spanish in Apocalypto and the Portuguese in Bramayugam.

Poster, Featured and Other Images of Bramayugam (2024) Film are courtesy of Sony Liv.

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