What is it you like about your comedians? Some like the split-second comic timing, some like the comic contortions they make with their faces, and hell, some people just laugh at the way their favourite comedian look. If I think about Cochin Haneefa, who left Malayalam cinema viewers today, I would think that it was the buffoon-who-wanted-to-be-a-thug persona that I loved.
Here was a guy who was built to be a bouncer, rather a street rowdy,but who's on-screen IQ always equalled that of an eight year old. How could you not help laughing at him in his garish red kurta, handkerchief tied around his neck, sleeves rolled all the way upto his armpits, and a silly excuse for a pocket knife twirling in his hand? And the way he would go 'Ashaane!!!' (roughly translated as 'sir' but yeah, not quite the same thing at all)
He invariably played a lovable rowdy, and invariably came with his chest puffed up, and left with his tail between his legs. Of course, he didnt start off this way. He started off as most wannabes started - as the villain's side kick and partner in crime and rape. Sometimes, he was the only rapist on screen. But I felt that he truly found his groove in comedy. Nobody even remembers his villainous roles - heck I don't. But I know his comic roles. Can't forget them.
There are people who can move you with their acting. Cochin Haneefa will never be known for being a great actor. Far from it. But will he be missed? Profoundly.
You will be missed Ashaane..