Panchathanthiram (Eng: Five Ruses) is a 2002 Indian Tamil comedy movie directed by K. S. Ravikumar and written by Crazy Mohan. Panchathanthiram features Kamal Haasan, Simran and Ramya Krishnan in the lead roles, with a large supporting cast including Jayaram, Ramesh Aravind and Nagesh.
Ramachandramoorthy alias Ram. C. M or Ram (Kamal Haasan) is a pilot based in Canada and an irredeemable womaniser. In the course of a mid-air hijacking, he meets Mythili (Simran). Mythili and Ram stop the hijacking and save the plane. They fall in love and get married.
After marriage Ram quits his playboy character and remains faithful to his wife. Ram’s four closest buddies, Nair (Jayaram), Iyer (Yugi Sethu), Hegde (Ramesh Aravind) and Reddy (Sriman) are present at the wedding . One day, when Ram prevents Hedge’s ex-girlfriend, Nirmala (Devayani), from committing suicide, Mythili misinterprets the situation. She presumes that he is having an affair with her and leaves him to be with her parents. Further misunderstanding occurs when he sets out to meet Mythili, drunk, in the middle of the night and enters the wrong house.
To take his mind off Mythili for a while, his four friends drive him down to Bangalore and rent a room to hire a call girl called Maggi (Ramya Krishnan). Ram won’t have any of it. He gets into a fight with Maggi and they leave the premise. To salvage the situation, Iyer hurries back to Maggie’s room, only to find Maggi dead. Panicking, Nair, Iyer, Hegde and Reddy decide to get rid of the body in spite of Ram’s pleas to call the police. They manage to roll the dead body in a blanket and dispose it in a dry river and drive back to Chennai to return to their normal lives.
Ram discovers a cache of diamonds inside the dead girl’s cell phone. A few days after, the friends get very nervous when they learn of a news article regarding the discovery of a dead body in the same area that they disposed their dead body. A traditional festival (Ugadi) has the wives of the four friends planning a party. While planning, Mythili gets invited to the party to be rejoined with Ram.
At the party, a “twist” is revealed when the supposedly-dead Maggi appears, demanding her diamonds back. She then reveals the truth, that the diamonds belong to her diamond-smuggling boss (Manivannan), and that she had stolen it from him. She had seen an opportunity to fake her death in order for her diamonds to be temporarily safe with Ram. Ram, with the help of his friends and the police force, arrest Maggi and her boss. Mythili promises to reform her suspicious ways and the two get back together.
Directed by K. S. Ravikumar
Produced by P. L. Thenappan
Written by Kamal Haasan & Crazy Mohan
Starring Kamal Haasan, Simran, Jayaram, Ramya Krishnan, Ramesh Aravind, Sriman, Yugi Sethu
Narrated by Simran
Music by Deva
Cinematography Arthur A. Wilson
Edited by Thanigachalam
Production Lionheart Production House
Release dates 28 June 2002