Malayalam കിലുക്കം
Directed by Priyadarshan
Produced by R. Mohan
Screenplay by Venu Nagavalli
Story by Priyadarshan
Music by S. P. Venkatesh
Cinematography S. Kumar
Edited by N. Gopalakrishnan
Goodknight Films
Distributed by Manorajyam Release
Release dates
  • 15 August 1991 (1991-08-15)
Running time
156 minutes
Country India
Language Malayalam
Box office 5 crore[1]

Kilukkam (English: Jingle) is a 1991 Indian Malayalam-language musical romantic comedy film directed by Priyadarshan and written by Venu Nagavalli. The story set in Ooty revolves around tourist guide Joji (Mohanlal) and photographer Nishcal (Jagathy Sreekumar). They happen to meet a lavish tourist Nandini (Revathi), whom they bet their fortunes on. It also stars Thilakan, Innocent, K. B. Ganesh Kumar, Sukumari, and Sharat Saxena, with Murali and Jagadish making cameo appearances. The music was composed by S. P. Venkatesh.

Kilukkam was released on 15 August 1991. The film was the highest-grossing Malayalam film at that time, with gross over 5 crore for the first time in Malayalam film history; it ran for more than 365-days at the theaters. Kilukkam won five Kerala State Film Awards, including a Best Actor for Mohanlal, Second Best Actor for Jagathy Sreekumar, Best Editor for N. Gopalakrishnan, and Best Cinematographer for S. Kumar. The film is regarded as one of the best comedy films ever made in Malayalam cinema.

The film was remade in Telugu as Allari Pilla and in Hindi as Muskurahat by Priyadarshan himself. The film spawned a sequel, Kilukkam Kilukilukkam, released in 2006.

Plot synopsis

Joji (Mohanlal) is a tourist guide down on his luck. Nandini (Revathy), a tourist, with mental retardation, and a series of events make her presence in Ooty intertwined with the lives of Joji and his friend Nischal (Jagathy Sreekumar). In the early part of the movie, hilarity ensues in their misguided attempts in getting rid of Nandini. However, they find out that she is an escaped mental patient who has a bounty on her safe return. When they find that the bounty has been increasing for a while, they decide to hide her for a while and claim the bounty when it gets big enough. In time, they realize that things are not as they seem, and more complications are unraveled.




The initial plan for the film was set when Priyadarshan met "Goodknight" Mohan in an airport. The story was developed by Priyadarshan from a thought which came to his mind, about a mentally-ill mischievous girl who is saved by a poor guy. Priyadarshan employed Venu Nagavally to script for the film.[2] The film's title was chosen as Kilukkam, since the character of Nandini is introduced in the film with the clink of her anglets when she jump off a train and she is all perky like a kilukkampetti (a toy box that makes clinking sound).[3] The story of a girl who has to face some miseries in her lifeit was the idea Priyadarshan initially intended for the film. While working on the story he met director Fazil and discussed about the idea. Fazil at the time was directing Ente Sooryaputhrikku (1991). He told Priyadarshan to "reverse think" the story of Ente Sooryaputhrikku, which was about a girl trying to find her mother. And in Kilukkam it became, a girl trying to find her father.[4]

Mohanlal, who is the usual choise of Priyadarshan was the protagonist in mind from the initial stage itself. Amala was signed for the role of Nandini. Priyadarshan initially chose Sreenivasan for the role of Nischal, but he was unavailable during his scheduled date due to another commitment. Hence, Priyadarshan opted for Jagathy Sreekumar, to whom he asked 30 days continuous dates. Sreekumar, at the time, busy acting in multiple films at a time, gave his continuous dates for a long period for the first time. The film's pooja function was held at Kothandapani Studio in Madras (now Chennai). The recording of songs started at the same day in the studio by S. P. Venkatesh. By the time of commencement of filming, due to some unknown reasons, Amala had to opt out from the film, and was replaced by Revathi. Jagadish played a pivotal character in the film as a still photographer, the professional rivalry of Nischal, but in the final cut of the film, for reducing the length, his portions were cut short to a minor role.[2]


The Fernhills Palace in Ooty was a major location. It was shot as Justice Pillai's (Thilakan) bangalow.

Principal photography began in March 1991 in Ooty, which was the main location where the film is set. In Ooty, The Fernhills Palace was the central location, which was shot as the bungalow of Justice Pillai, played by Thilakan.[2] The mist is utilised in the film to the maximum. Major part of the filming took palace early in the morning, so that they could capitalise on the mist covered location; the mist only lasted for a couple of hours. One of the initial scenes in the film where Mohanlal and Thilakan are taking a morning walk, was shot in a secluded location in Ooty which was accidentally discovered by the team. They wanted to look the place as beautiful as some places in Europe, so they set a lamp posts, a couple of chairs and produced fallen leaves. They painted leaves and brought it to the location in a lorry and scattered it there to look like a natural foliage.[5]

While filming the song "Ootyppattanam" in Ooty, Mohanlal escaped from what would have been a fatal injury. A sequence in the song was shot over the top of a moving train, where Mohanlal was standing opposite to Sreekumar and Revathy. There was a leaning electric line over the train passage, which the production team did not notice. While performing, Sreekumar suddenly told Mohanlal to fall down, which he immediately did without questioning. The line just touched his hair.[6] In a later interview, Priyadarshan said that, he never laughed while filming Kilukkam, he believed that if they laugh in the sets, the audience will not get that laugh in theatres. Several unscripted dialogues were used by Mohanlal and Revathi in their combination scenes.[4]


Kilukkam was released on 15 August 1991, in 32 centres in Kerala. Within 50 days run, it grossed 1.59 crore from the releasing stations.[2] Kilukkam ran for over 365-days at many releasing centres and was the first Malayalam film to gross over 5 crore from theatrical revenue. Kilukkam was the highest-grossing film ever in Malayalam film history at the time.[1][7][8] The film is often regarded as a classic, it is considered as one of the best comedy films ever made in Malayalam cinema.[7][9][10]

In a later interview, Priyadarshan has said that, he exploited the Mohanlal Sreekumar chemistry to the maximum and incorporated certain elements of emotions in the film unlike his earlier comedy films Aram + Aram = Kinnaram (1985) and Boeing Boeing (1985), which made the film one of the all time hits in Malayalam.[4]


Kilukkam (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
Soundtrack album by S. P. Venkatesh
Released 15 March 1991 (1991-03-15)
Recorded March 1991
Studio Kothandapani Studio, Madras
Length 18:17
Language Malayalam
Label Millennium Audios
Producer R. Mohan
S. P. Venkatesh chronology

The songs were composed by S. P. Venkatesh for the lyrics penned by Bichu Thirumala.[2][11]

Kilukkam (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
No. TitleArtist(s) Length
1. "Kilukil Pamparam"  M. G. Sreekumar 04:41
2. "Ootypattanam"  S. P. Balasubrahmaniam, M. G. Sreekumar, K. S. Chithra 04:46
3. "Meena Venalil"  M. G. Sreekumar, K. S. Chithra 04:28
4. "Panineer Chandrike"  M. G. Sreekumar 05:02
Total length:


Kerala State Film Awards[12]

Plan for 3D conversion

In 2012, the executives of Ultra Rays 3D Technologies Private Ltd in Kochi approached Priyadarshan and Ram Mohan for talks for the 3D conversion of Kilukkam.[13] In that case, Kilukkam would become the first Malayalam film to be converted into 3D.[14] Priyadarshan confirmed the news that the company approached him but the final call should be made by the producer Ram Mohan. In the The Times of India report in late 2012, Mohan said that nothing has been finalised, discussions are going on.[15]


  1. 1 2 Vasudevan, Aishwarya (3 November 2015). "Priyadarshan – Mohanlal: Best films of the duo". The Times of India. Retrieved 18 August 2016.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 Online Desk (16 August 2016). "25 th Anniversary of Malayalam movie Kilukkam". Vellinakshatram (in Malayalam). Archived from the original on 5 November 2016. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  3. Cris (25 August 2016). "The many tales behind titles". Deccan Chronicle. Retrieved 22 November 2016.
  4. 1 2 3 മാധവൻ, അനുശ്രീ (13 August 2016). "ഇനി കിലുക്കമെടുക്കാനുള്ള ധൈര്യമില്ല: പ്രിയദർശൻ" [No Courage To Take Kilukkam Again: Priyadarshan]. Mathrubhumi (in Malayalam). Archived from the original on 20 November 2016. Retrieved 22 November 2016.
  5. Onmanorama Staff (19 August 2016). "#ThrowbackThursday: Here's how 'Kilukkam' magic happened". Malayala Manorama. Archived from the original on 22 November 2016. Retrieved 22 November 2016.
  6. സ്വന്തം ലേഖകൻ (17 August 2016). "കിലുക്കത്തിലെ സെറ്റിൽ മരണത്തിൽ നിന്ന് രക്ഷപ്പെട്ട മോഹൻലാൽ" [Mohanlal Who Escaped Death From The Sets Of Kilukkam]. Malayala Manorama (in Malayalam). Retrieved 18 August 2016.
  7. 1 2 "25 years of 'Kilukkam' magic !". Mangalam Publications. 29 August 2016. Retrieved 22 November 2016.
  8. Poojari, Smita (16 November 2015). "Mollywood movies that ran for more than 300 days". The Times of India. Retrieved 18 August 2016.
  9. Moviebuzz. "Dileep is 50 percent of Mohanlal: Priyadarshan". Sify. Retrieved 18 August 2016.
  10. Entertainment Desk (30 January 2016). "Priyadarshan birthday special: Top 6 movies of the National Award-winning director!". Retrieved 18 August 2016.
  11. Millennium Audios (15 August 1991). "Kilukkam (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) - EP by S. P. Venkitesh on Apple Music". iTunes. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  12. "State Film Awards (1991)". Department of Information and Public Relations. 1991. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  13. "3D conversions of foreign films being undertaken at Kochi". Zee News. Press Trust of India. 18 October 2013. Retrieved 18 August 2016.
  14. DC (19 October 2013). "2D to 3D for a song! Anubha gets it done". Deccan Chronicle. Archived from the original on 5 February 2014. Retrieved 22 November 2016.
  15. Zachariah, Ammu (30 November 2012). "Mohanlal hits are hot favourites to be made into 3D". The Times of India. Retrieved 18 August 2016.

External links

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