Food adulteration and pesticide use are not exactly breaking news. But throwing light on the different modes and nuances of food adulteration is Malayalam director Kannan Thamarakkulam’s new film, ‘Pattabhi Raman’.
Thamarakkulam and Jayaram team together for the fourth time in this investigative thriller written by Dinesh Palath.
Jayaram plays the titular role of ‘Pattabhi Raman’, a health inspector.
“He is also a good cook, a trait inherited from his grandfather who cooked for the Kochi Maharaja,” said Thamarakkulam. “And, this bachelor is yet to find his soul mate.”
With his crusade against adulterated food Pattabhi Raman earns the wrath of some restaurant owners and businessmen whose interests are affected.
Set in Trivandrum where Pattabhiraman is newly posted, the 24th posting of his career, the film goes on a thriller mode.
“We did not want the film to become a boring documentary on food adulteration,” said Thamarakkulam who came up with the idea when he found an apple remaining fresh for more than three weeks in his house.
The research for the story was shocking, he added.
“Chickens are fed chemicals to gain weight. These chickens reach hotels often dead and are prepared into a delicacy. With people dining out more and apps delivering food home, we are consuming poison.”
Even the tender coconut water that we believe to be pure and organic is tainted. Chemicals are injected into its trunk.
“This is a film for children,” said Thamarakkulam. “Adulteration begins from the time a child is born and he/she is made to taste honey. It’s our endeavour to educate them through humour.”
Baiju Santosh plays a significant role, he is a health inspector too but not an honest one like Pattabhi Raman. Miya George plays a celebrity TV host of a cookery channel. Tamil actor Jayaprakash is the antagonist-he plays a businessman. The supporting cast includes Sheelu Abraham, Parvathy Nambiar, Sheelu Abraham, Madhuri, Anumol, Ramesh Pisharody, Sudheer Karamana, Prem Kumar as well as veterans Janardhan and Saikumar.
M Jayachandran has composed music.
Thamarakkulam said that post release of the film in Kerala, the food ministry was impressed and steps are being taken to curb this malady.
‘Pattabhi Raman’ releases in the UAE on September 19.