Grandmaster (film)

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Official poster
Directed byB. Unnikrishnan
Produced by
Written byB. Unnikrishnan
Music by
CinematographyVinod Illampally
Edited byManoj
Distributed byMaxlab Cinemas and Entertainments (Kerala)
UTV Motion Pictures (Overseas)
Release date
  • 3 May 2012 (2012-05-03)
Running time
130 minutes

Grandmaster is a 2012 Indian Malayalam-language action thriller film[1][2] written and directed by B. Unnikrishnan and produced by Ronnie Screwvala and Siddharth Roy Kapur under the production company UTV Motion Pictures. The film stars Mohanlal as Chandrasekhar, an IPS officer who begins investigating a series of murders after receiving an anonymous note. The supporting characters are played by Priyamani, Narain, Anoop Menon, Babu Antony, Jagathy Sreekumar, and Arjun Nandhakumar.

Grandmaster was the debut Malayalam production of UTV Motion Pictures. The film was released on 3 May 2012 to widely positive reviews from critics and was a commercial success at the box office.[3][4] Grandmaster was released in the online video streaming service Netflix in the United States and Canada, making it the first ever Malayalam film to be released on Netflix. It was also the first Malayalam film to be released with English subtitles outside Kerala.


Chandrasekhar, a senior IPS officer, (Mohanlal) is the head of the newly created Metro Crime Stopper Cell in Kochi. Chandrasekhar arrests Jerome, a psychologically deviant man and rescues three girls he had kidnapped, but his ex-wife Deepthi (Priyamani), who is a lawyer, manages to get Jerome sent to treatment in a psychiatric facility, rather than a prison sentence. It turns out that the three girls had been mocking Jerome, which had led to his actions of kidnapping them in the first place.

Chandrasekhar gets a congratulatory note from an anonymous man calling himself "Z" who challenges Chandrasekhar to figure out how he is going to bump off one target after the other. Chandrasekhar is forced to investigate a string of murders: coffee shop owner Alice (Fathima Babu), famous singer Beena Thomson (Roma Asrani) and leading businesswoman Chandrika Narayanan (Seetha). These murders follow a mysterious alphabetical pattern, and each victim also has a cross slit on their forehead. Around the same time, Chandrasekhar's daughter is preparing for a play under the lead of famous actor Mark Roshan (Arjun Nandakumar).

Chandrasekhar divorced three years earlier because Chandrasekhar discovered that Deepthi was using information from Chandrasekhar for professional gain. Deepthi confesses to Chandrasekhar that the three recently murdered women were all involved in the murder of Paul Mathew and made it look like a suicide. Chandrasekhar realizes that Deepthi is the next target and comes with her to their daughter's play where they meet a religious fanatic named Victor Rosetti (Babu Antony) who had been present in all three crime scenes, disguised as a salesman, and has been stalking Deepthi. The recurring theme of chess is obvious in the game between Chandrashekhar and the unknown Mr. Z.

Chandrashekhar understands that there is a mastermind behind Victor Rosetti and decides to play a 'queen's gambit' in his own words. Chandrasekhar finally manages to corner Victor on the rooftop of a theater, Victor commits suicide by falling off the rooftop to the pavement. Then, Chandrasekhar questions Dr. Jacob and says that he has evidence that he is the killer of the three women, in a ploy to mislead the real killer. He has his men protect his daughter but lets his wife into the school where the play was held. The real murderer comes in, attempting to strangle Deepthi with a red scarf. Fortunately, Chandrasekhar stops him and then finally corners the real murderer on the stage. The murder turns out to be none other than Mark himself, who is then revealed by Chandrashekhar to be Paul Mathew's younger brother, his real name being Roshan Mathew.

Mark confesses that he has held a grudge against the women for his brother's death, which Chandrashekhar had already known. Then, Mark also confessed that, disguised as a priest, he manipulated Victor, a schizophrenic patient, into believing that he had committed the murders himself. He had planned for Victor to commit the final murder on Deepthi during the play, but attempted to use the scenery of the fight between Chandrasekhar and Victor to complete his plan. In a last-minute attempt to avenge his brother, Mark tries to jump from the stage to murder Deepthi with a dagger, but is shot to death by Chandrasekhar, thus saving Deepthi's life. The film then ends with Chandrasekhar and Deepthi, along with their daughter, finally together again in their house.



Grandmaster is the maiden production of Bollywood production company UTV Motion Pictures in Malayalam cinema.[5] About naming the film Grandmaster, Unnikrishnan said he cannot thinks a better title than Grandmaster, "the whole story is about a grandmaster. He is a great chess enthusiast; he is also a great detective. It is the most appropriate title".[6] For the leading female role of advocate Deepthi, Unnikrishnan approached Andrea Jeremiah, Sonia Agarwal, and Reemma Sen before signing Priyamani. Grandmaster is the first film of Priyamani with Mohanlal.[7] Few years back Priyamani had expressed her desire to act in a film alongside Mohanlal.[8] Deepthi is a criminal lawyer who is separated from her husband Chandrasekhar and in the turn of events, they are forced to work together.[9]

Principal photography began in December 2011 and was carried out primarily at Kochi and Ottapalam.


Soundtrack album by
Released4 April 2012
GenreFeature film soundtrack
ProducerDeepak Dev
Deepak Dev chronology
Padmasree Bharat Dr. Saroj Kumar
101 Weddings

The soundtrack of the film was composed by Deepak Dev and consists six tracks. It was released on 4 April 2012, launched at a function held at People's Plaza, Kochi.

Track listing
1."Akaleyo Nee"Chitoor GopiVijay Yesudas4:38
2."Aaranu Nee"Chandra ShekarSuchithra4:52
3."Doore Engo Nee"HariSanjeev4:25
4."Aaranu Nee (Club Mix)"Chandra ShekarSuchithra4:14
5."My Moment"Deepak DevKrishna Kumar2:02
6."The Grandmaster Theme" Instrumental 
Total length:25:04


Grandmaster was expected to be released on 27 April 2012, but was postponed. The film was released on 3 May 2012.[10][11] In Vue, it was released on 29 July 2012. Surya TV purchased the broadcast rights for 3.25 crore (US$460,000).[12] Grandmaster was released in the online video streaming service Netflix in the United States and Canada, making it the first ever Malayalam film to be released on Netflix.[13][14] It was also the first Malayalam film to be released with English subtitles outside Kerala.[6][15]


Critical reaction[edit] rated the film 3.5 out of 5. Sify's critic rated the movie as "watchable" (3.5/5) and said, "Grandmaster easily turns out to be an engaging watch".[16]


Award Category Recipient(s) Result Ref.
Kerala State Film Award Best Male Singer Vijay Yesudas (for "Akaleyo Nee") Won
Asianet Film Awards Best Actor Mohanlal Won
Asiavision Awards Best Actor Mohanlal Won
South Indian International Movie Awards Best Debutant Producer Siddharth Roy Kapur, Ronnie Screwvala Won

In popular culture[edit]

Grand Master's Kitchen, a multi-cuisine restaurant opened by director B. Unnikrishnan in 2016 in Palayam, Thiruvananthapuram, was named after the film.[21][22][23][24]


  1. ^ "Grandmaster: Mohanlal plays a lonely divorcee". CNN-News18.
  2. ^ "Grandmaster (2012)". Box Office Mojo.
  3. ^ "Mohanlal to have five more releases this year". The Times of India. Times News Network. 18 May 2012.
  4. ^ "Loving on the edge". The New Indian Express.
  5. ^ "Grand Master Cast and Crew". Archived from the original on 24 May 2012. Retrieved 20 October 2011.
  6. ^ a b Narayanan, Nayantara (20 August 2014). "Why half the Malayalam films released last year had English names". Retrieved 13 June 2019.
  7. ^ Moviebuzz (10 November 2011). "Priyamani replaces Andrea in Mohanlal's Grandmaster". Sify. Retrieved 24 October 2011.
  8. ^ "Priyamani in Mohanlal film". The Times of India. Times News Network. Retrieved 13 June 2019.
  9. ^ Nagarajan, Saraswathy (12 April 2012). "Ms. Confidence". The Hindu. Retrieved 13 June 2019.
  10. ^ Updated Sunday, 5 August 2012 01:47 AM IST. "Movies | Interviews |". Manorama Online. Retrieved 4 August 2012.
  11. ^ "മലയാളത്തിരക്ക് ഊര്‍ജ്ജം പകര്‍ന്ന് നവനിരസിനിമകള്‍". 30 May 2012. Archived from the original on 2 July 2012. Retrieved 4 August 2012.
  12. ^ @SuryaTV (17 January 2019). "അടുത്ത നീക്കത്തിനു മുൻപ് എന്തും സംഭവിക്കാം! #Mohanlal ത്രില്ലർ #Grandmaster ഇന്നു രാവിലെ 9 മണിക്ക്" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  13. ^ "How about paying for viewing films online?". The Times of India. Times News Network. Retrieved 13 June 2019.
  14. ^ Netflix - Watch TV Shows Online, Watch Movies Online
  15. ^ Moviebuzz (14 May 2014). "Malayalam films to come with English subtitles". Sify. Retrieved 13 June 2019.
  16. ^ "Movie Review: Grandmaster". 3 May 2012. Retrieved 3 May 2012.
  17. ^ Press Trust of India (22 February 2013). "'Celluloid' wins Kerala state award for best film". The New Indian Express. Thiruvananthapuram. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
  18. ^ Smitha (21 January 2013). "Asianet Film Awards 2013 – Winners List". Retrieved 15 April 2016.
  19. ^ Satish, A.K.S. (10 November 2012). "South Indian stars shine at Asiavision Awards". Gulf News. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
  20. ^ "Winners List". SIIMA. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
  21. ^ സ്വന്തം ലേഖകൻ (24 June 2016). "സിനിമാ സ്റ്റൈലിൽ ബി ഉണ്ണികൃഷ്ണന്റെ കിടിലൻ ഹോട്ടൽ". Malayala Manorama. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
  22. ^ Sreekumar, Priya (2 June 2016). "Menu card of Unnikrishnanan". Deccan Chronicle. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
  23. ^ Times News network (27 June 2016). "These cafes dish out books, paintings and games - Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 29 June 2016.
  24. ^ "Film fantasy: This Grand Master can tease your taste buds, satiate appetite". Deccan Chronicle. Thiruvananthapuram. 25 June 2016. Retrieved 29 June 2016.

External links[edit]