Avalude Ravukal

Avalude Ravukal (transl.Her Nights) is a 1978 Indian Malayalam-language drama film directed by I. V. Sasi and written by A. Sheriff. The film explores the life of Raji (Seema), a teenage prostitute and those of the people around her. Upon release, the film received less audience in the first three days but the situation changed in the coming days and it became one of the highest-grossing films of the year.[1][2]

Avalude Ravukal
Avalude Ravukal.jpg
Directed byI. V. Sasi
Written byA. Sheriff
Based onAvalude Ravukal Pakalukal by Alleppey Sheriff
Produced byM. P. Ramachandran
Edited byK. Narayanan
Music byA. T. Ummer
Murali Movies
Distributed bySithara Pictures
Release date
  • 3 March 1978 (1978-03-03)
Running time
144 minutes

It is considered one of the boldest Malayalam films of all time.[3] Sasi, the experimental and the most popular director at that time, tried to highlight a theme which most mainstream directors are afraid to get into.[4] Kamal Haasan and I. V. Sasi made guest appearances in the film. The film was dubbed and released in Tamil as Avalin Iravugal and in Hindi as Her Nights and were also successful at the box office. It was remade in Kannada as Kamala (1979) and in Hindi as Patita (1980).


The story pivots around Raji, a young prostitute, and three young men in her life: Two college-going youngsters, Babu, Jayan and a school teacher Chandran.

Raji loses her parents early in her life, leaving the responsibility of bringing up her younger brother Sudhakaran on her shoulders. Circumstances and her unskilled status force her into the life of a prostitute. She begins living in a slum with Mariyaamma Chedathi and a cycle-rickshaw driver Damu, her 'agent' or pimp.

Babu is a student who stays in a nearby hostel. Raji falls for Babu and becomes a regular visitor at his flat, even though he, afraid for his reputation, repeatedly tries to throw her out. Raji's declares her love for Babu but says that she does not want to have sexual relations with him, as then he would be like another customer. However, she cajoles him into letting her sleep at his place on the floor, gently refusing his romantic overtures. News spreads about Babu's relationship with Raji, assumed falsely to be that of a customer and prostitute.

Raji's brother Sudhakaran has a teacher-student relationship with Chandran. One day a beggar steals Chandran's wrist watch through an open window. Sudhakaran is arrested by the police, because he is a regular at Chandran's room, and is the immediate suspect. He is beaten up by the cops in police custody and dies from the physical trauma after his release. The real thief is later arrested; Chandran is uneasy about it and whether his hasty judgement resulted in the boy's loss of life. From remorse, Chandran offers money to Raji, but she refuses to accept it or forgive him in any manner.

Babus's father, Karunakaran, decides to have his son marry his wife Lakshmi's brother's daughter, Damodaran's daughter Radha. Karunakaran, Damodaran, and Radha visit Babu's hostel room and are shocked to see Raji in there, who, as usual, was just there to talk to Babu and be with him. They, of course, assume that the two are sleeping together. Damodaran, ashamed and angered, breaks off the engagement and has Radha marry another man.

Jayan, who had had a severe drinking problem, dies of liver-related complications. On his death bed he asks Babu to not abandon Raji and emphasises it with the justification that her love for him is pure, even if its 'impure' in the eyes of society. Raji is gang-raped and Chandran's timely intervention saves her; Raji then finally begins to forgive Chandran.

Babu's mother believes her son's denials of impropriety with Raji, and comes to meet Babu and eventually Raji. She takes pity on Raji when she learns of her past and her son's blind love for her. Lakshmi accepts her as her daughter-in-law and takes her home, and eventually Babu's father is also forced to accept Raji as his daughter-in-law.


"Many of the leading ladies of the day were not bold enough to play the role of a prostitute. Then I thought of Seema, who had caught my attention as a dancer while shooting Itha Ivide Vare."[4]

- I. V. Sasi about the casting of Seema. Avalude Ravukal was Seema's first lead role and she went on to associate with Sasi in 30 more films. They got married later.


The film was produced by M. P. Ramachandran under the banner of Murali Movies. The film story, script and dialogues were written by A. Sheriff. Vipindas was the man behind the camera and K. Narayanan edited the film.[6] This film was shot in black-and-white. The final length of the film was 4,134.61 metres (13,565.0 ft).[7]


The music was composed by A. T. Ummer and the lyrics were written by Bichu Thirumala. Guna Singh composed the background score. Music for the song "Raagendu Kiranangal" was allegedly copied from the song "Pal Bhar Mein Yeh Kya Ho" in the film Swami released in 1977.[6]

No. Song Singers
1 "Antharindriya Daahangal" K. J. Yesudas
2 "Raagendu Kiranangal" S. Janaki
3 "Unni Aarariro" S. Janaki

Release and receptionEdit

Avalude Ravukal was released on 3 March 1978.[6] It was given an "A" (adult) certificate by the Central Board of Film Certification.[7] The film was distributed by S. Pavamani under the banner of Sithara Pictures.[8] The film was dubbed and released in Tamil as Avalin Iravugal and in Hindi as Her Nights and were also successful at the box office.[6] Avalude Ravukal was remade in Hindi as Patita (1980), also directed by I. V. Sasi.[9] The film has over the years devoleped into cult film.[10] B. Vijayakumar of The Hindu wrote that the film was "Remembered for the social movie with a strong message and good music".[6]


  1. ^ Warrier, Sreejith (6 April 2015). "How a toddy shop rendezvous resulted in Avalude Ravukal". Onmanorama. Archived from the original on 30 August 2022. Retrieved 30 August 2022.
  2. ^ "അവളുടെ രാവുകൾ (1978)". malayalasangeetham.info (in Malayalam). Archived from the original on 13 October 2014. Retrieved 30 August 2022.
  3. ^ "Avalude Ravukal, a trendsetter of 80's". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 11 November 2018. Retrieved 1 March 2017.
  4. ^ a b Ajithkumar, P. K. (25 April 2013). "Architect of blockbusters". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 28 November 2019. Retrieved 30 August 2022.
  5. ^ Babu, Subash (27 October 2017). "IV Sasi's 'Her Nights' was a bold take on sex work that was unfairly dismissed as porn". Scroll.in. Archived from the original on 14 February 2019. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  6. ^ a b c d e Vijayakumar, B. (11 May 2014). "Avalude Ravukal: 1978". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 30 August 2022. Retrieved 6 July 2021.
  7. ^ a b "Gazette of India, 1978, No. 438". The Gazette of India. 16 September 1978. p. 1541. Retrieved 6 July 2021.
  8. ^ "Film producer S Pavamani passes away". The New Indian Express. 1 September 2010. Archived from the original on 9 July 2021. Retrieved 6 July 2021.
  9. ^ Parkar, Shaheen (29 January 2002). "Patita Was The Film For Me". Mid-Day. p. 38. Retrieved 6 July 2021.
  10. ^ "Trendsetting titan". Frontline. 8 November 2017. Archived from the original on 6 July 2021. Retrieved 6 July 2021.

External linksEdit