I have heard about this man in various occasions. If we bring up the topic of Villains of Tamil Cinema, we can never miss out this name Nambiar. Yes, the greatest villain known to the Tamil cinema world. You know how they say, heroes are villains in real life and villains are the real heroes. This man is the epitome of those lines. I guess he is the only one in the industry who everyone affectionately calls as Swami. Both for his righteous and straight forward characteristic as well as his unwavering devotion and spirituality.
This book is a walk through his life written by his grandson Deepak Nambiar. Deepak spent most of his childhood growing up with Nambiar and that makes Nambiar and his wife more of a parent to him then grandparents. Who better to tell Nambiar’s story then this man himself. Deepak alternates the narration from first person point of view and third person throughout the book. This is because some of it is from the eyes of Nambiar and some from his own experience. This gives a sense of authenticity for the book itself.
From the early lifes of Nambiar to his final days, this book gives us a picture of an alternate reality of reel life and real life of a villain. He is a very disciplined man, with immense love for Lord Ayappa. Till his legs gave up on him, he did not stop his yearly pilgrimage to Sabarimalai. That is how much he is devoted to Lord Ayappa.
Something caught my attention while reading this book was the love between Nambiar and his wife. We are talking about an era where Public Display of Affection is still a taboo, but here we have a man who can easily be said one of the biggest name in Tamil Nadu will always make sure that his wife takes the first bite of his food before him. From the day they were married to the day he passes away he doesn’t eat anything else but what is cooked by his wife. And his wife travels to every shooting spot that he has to go, for this very reason. If this is not love, im not sure what is.
Deepak also cleverly inserted some insights from other famous co-workers of his. To see Nambiar from the eyes of people like Jayalalitha, Karunanithi, Rajnikanth and so on is also a pleasure. Trust me once you are done with this book you will not look at this man the same again.
Nambiarswami; a real life hero