(Un) locked Chambers: Reconsidering Men and Masculinities in Manichitrathazhu
Manichitrathazhu (1993) is one of the celebrated films produced in Molly wood and was later remade in Hindi and Tamil. Even years after its release and repeated telecasts in television channels, the film continues to enchant the audience with its magical aura. The story spins around the superstitions and myths that envelop a mansion in a remote village. Even though the story tells about a woman gone mad or being possessed by an evil spirit, a re-reading of the film unfurls the invisible strands of female transgression and misogyny. An exploration into these patriarchal structures that confine women reveals more about the masculinities that are actively engaged in this contrivance. The masculinity that enslave both men and women, the way they extends their grip over their psyche and the significance of male-male bonding can be unveiled from the narrative. Thus, Manichitrathazhu displays an array of masculinities that are engaged in a process of incarcerating femininity. The paper strives to look into the representation of male characters in the film and the myriad ways by which they vehemently resisted female transgressions.