Aryan (1988 film)

Aryan is a 1988 Indian Malayalam-language action crime film directed by Priyadarshan and written by T. Damodaran. The film stars Mohanlal, Ramya Krishnan, Sharat Saxena, Shobana, Sreenivasan, Gavin Packard, M. G. Soman and Goga Kapoor. It was produced by Mohanlal and Century Kochumon through the company Cheers Films. Aryan tells the tale of an underworld battle and family bonds through Devanarayanan who arrives in Bombay with nothing and rises to become a gangster in a powerful crime gang.

Poster designed by P. N. Menon
Directed byPriyadarshan
Produced byMohanlal
Century Kochumon
Written byT. Damodaran
Ramya Krishnan
Sharat Saxena
M. G. Soman
Gavin Packard
Music byReghu Kumar (Songs)
Johnson (Score)
CinematographyS. Kumar
Edited byN. Gopalakrishnan
Cheers Films
Distributed byCentury
Release date
  • 26 August 1988 (1988-08-26)
Running time
180 minutes

Aryan was one of the highest-grossing Malayalam films of the year. It ran for over 200 days in theatres. Mohanlal won the Kerala State Film Award – Special Jury Award for acting. The film was dubbed in Hindi as Aaryan Mera Naam. Aryan was remade in Tamil as Dravidan (1989), in Telugu as Ashoka Chakravarthy (1989). It was remade in Kannada as Chakravarthy (1990). Saxena reprised his role in all the versions.


Devanarayanan (Devan) (Mohanlal) is a Brahmin priest from Kerala, who has to look after his entire impoverished family. He is in love with Aswathy (Shobana), but her corrupt father Govindan Nair (Innocent) is against their relationship. The wicked local businessman Arumukhan (M.G. Soman), along with Govindan Nair, Inspector Chandrappan (C.I. Paul), and their coterie of corrupt men of influential positions falsely accuse Devanarayanan of the theft of the local temple's Thiruvabharana (Deity's ornaments) and fabricate him in the case. Devan's father (Thikkurissy Sukumaran Nair) loses his trust on his son and Devan is forced to leave his village.

He reaches Bombay where he gets shelter from Kunjali (Balan K. Nair) and his daughter Sainaba (Monisha), who runs a tea shop. Some turn of events draws Devanarayanan into the underworld and he becomes the trusted aide of an ageing don Kareem (Goga Kapoor), who had lost his wife, brother, and uncle in an underworld gang war decades ago. Sainaba is in love with Kareem's only son. Their marriage gets fixed when Devan convinces both Kareem and Kunjali.

Nirmala (Ramya Krishnan), who is working for Kareem's gang, gets closer to Devanarayanan. Nair (Kundara Johnny), who was a trusted secretary to Kareem, joins hands together with the rival don Majeed Khan (Sharat Saxena) after feeling jealous and dejected when Kareem starts giving more importance to Devan. Kareem's son and daughter-in-law Sainaba, along with Kunjali are shot dead by Majeed Khan, Nair, and their henchmen during the Holi celebrations, leaving Kareem on a path towards religion and leaving all underworld business for good.

Majeed Khan and Nair plan to leave Bombay, but Devan successfully attacks them and gets them arrested. Devan is then sentenced to a five year imprisonment.

After he gets released, Devan along with his lover Nirmala leave for Kerala. He proves his innocence to his parents and family and teaches a lesson to all those wicked men who had once fabricated him.

But, by that time, Majeed Khan and Nair reach Kerala to take revenge from Devan and kill Nirmala. Devan kills both Khan and Nair.

The film ends tragically with a furious Devanarayanan screaming at the judge in the court of law for having being imprisoned under fabricated accusations.



The music was composed by Raghu Kumar and the lyrics were written by Kaithapram.

No. Song Singers Lyrics Length (m:ss)
1 "Om Jai Jagadeesh Hare" Sujatha Mohan Kaithapram 01:09
2 "Ponmuraliyoothum" M. G. Sreekumar, Sujatha Mohan Kaithapram 03:33
3 "Shaanthimanthram Theliyum" Kaithapram, M. G. Sreekumar, Sujatha Mohan Kaithapram 05:53

Box officeEdit

The film was a commercial success, becoming one of the highest-grossing Malayalam films of the year. It ran for over 200 days in theatres.[1]


Aryan was later remade in Tamil as Dravidan (1989) by Suresh Balaje, with Sathyaraj playing the lead role. It was also remade in Telugu as Ashoka Chakravarthy (1989) starring Nandamuri Balakrishna and unofficially as Dhruva Nakshatram (1989) both of which were released on the same day, and in Kannada as Chakravarthy (1990) starring Ambareesh.


  1. ^ Sidhardhan, Sanjith (24 January 2017). "Priyan and I share a special bond: Mohanlal". The Times of India. Retrieved 14 May 2020. I remember, in the late 80s when I had a hat-trick of hits - Vellanakalude Nadu did 150 days, Aryan 200 days and Chithram, 366 days.

External linksEdit