Naran (transl. Man) is a 2005 Indian Malayalam-language action drama film directed by Joshiy and written by Ranjan Pramod. The film tells the story of Mullankolli Velayudhan (Mohanlal), an innocent homeless ruffian who exercise control over the Mullankolli village to maintain order with his code of conduct. Produced by Antony Perumbavoor through Aashirvad Cinemas, it also features Siddique, Innocent, Bhavana, Madhu, Jagathy Sreekumar, Devayani, Mamukoya, and Maniyanpilla Raju in supporting roles.
Mullankolli is a rustic remote village in Wayanad district of northern Kerala. Velayudhan (Mohanlal) is an orphan whose pregnant mother had come floating during heavy floods years ago, and was brought up by Puthusseri Valiya Nambiar (Madhu) a do-gooder and a feudal landlord of the village. Velayudhan grows up into a riff-raff, drunkard and a local rowdy with a good heart. He hates injustice and has set his own rules for the villagers who are scared of him including local moneylender and politician – Member Kurup (Jagathy) and Gopinathan Nambiar (Siddique), son-in-law of Valiya Nambiar who wants to rule over the village in his own way.
When Velayudhan plants a stick or rod, it means that it has his stamp of authority. The only men whom he listens to are Valiya Nambiar and also Kelappan (Innocent) who looked after him as a child and is now his best friend. The villagers including Kurup and Gopinathan regularly bring goons from outside the village to fight Velayudhan but they fail. There are three women in his life – a prostitute Kunnummel Shantha (Sona Nair), his childhood crush Janaki (Devayani) and Kelappan’s daughter Leela (Bhavana).
Janaki’s husband Krishnan (Maniyanpilla Raju) who runs a PDS store and is a heavy drinker, hates Velayudhan as he knows of him being the childhood crush of the former’s wife. Gopinathan has his eyes over Janaki as well and Velayudhan despite knowing Gopi’s true colors doesn’t harm him solely due to his respect towards Sunanda (Rekha), Gopi’s wife and Valiya Nambiar’s daughter. During the annual temple festival in the village, Member Kurupp after accepting donations from most of the villagers hires goons from Mattanchery to fight Velayudhan. Just before their fight, Gopi gives them extra payment to stab Velayudhan in the dark. However all their efforts are in vain and all of them are beaten up by Velayudhan shortly before Velayudhan gets arrested by the police for the same. Later the Sub Inspector (Sai Kumar) lets him free after learning of his innocence from an elderly constable.
Soon, the monsoon season arrives and Velayudhan gets engaged in his routine adventure of getting hold of articles (including large tree trunks) which come flowing with the stream water as part of the floods. Assisted by Kelappan and the boat man Ahmed (Mamukkoya), Velayudhan is trying to get hold of a fast-flowing tree log when Hamsa, a goon brought in by Gopi, cuts off the hanging rope tied to a tree using which Velayudhan balances himself and also gets hold of objects. However Velayudhan spots him, shortly before risking himself to properly get hold of his target log. Once he gets the log securely tied to an adjacent tree, Velayudhan beats up Hamsa and breaks his teeth in front of Gopi and Kurup to issue them a warning.
Velayudhan is planning to bring in a marriage proposal for Leela, Kelappan’s daughter. Kelappan’s wife Narayani who hated Velayudhan starts treating him well when she realises his love for the family. However, the proposal fails as Gopi’s men spread rumour that Velayudhan has illicit relationships with Kelappan’s daughters, a lie invented by Gopi via Kurup. Velayudhan is angered and beats up Gopi’s men for creating troubles to Kelappan and his family. However, Kelappan asks Velayudhan to stop his act and even slaps him in public before asking him to get out of his house forever.
A heartbroken Velayudhan goes to Gopi’s house and condemns his cowardly ways. Realising his innocence, Valiya Nambiar meets him the next day and tells him to marry Leela as according to him that is the only way to save her name. Valiya Nambiar tells Kelappan about Velayudhan’s innocence. However Leela dislikes him and decides to commit suicide to escape from the marriage. While attempting to jump off from a cliff, she is stopped by Velayudhan who assures that he isn’t interested in marrying her. Next day, Valiya Nambiar makes Velayudhan to promise Leela and Kelappan that he will never drink or beat anyone again. That night, Velayudhan narrates about his embarrassing childhood and also his love for Janaki to Ahmed who feels sorry for him and gives him shelter. However, the next morning Ahmed arrives to see Velayudhan beaten up badly in his sleep, by the village goons. Ahmed informs this to Valiya Nambiar and tells him that he is responsible for this as Velayudhan kept his promise of not beating anyone. Some of the villagers even sympathize with Velayudhan after the incident.
In the absence of Velayudhan, goons and social evils cause mayhem in the village and everyone realises how much Velayudhan’s absence has affected the village. Later, Gopi asks his henchman Keeri Raghavan (Bheeman Raghu) to provide necessary food items to Janaki an attempt to earn her respect. Despite Janaki turning the offer down, Krishnan who is regretful of his actions towards his wife, confronts Keeri at the local toddy shop and gets beaten up by Keeri. In the mayhem, Krishnan is inadvertently stabbed by Keeri using a glass bottle and he flees after understanding the danger. Gopi shelters Keeri at his home but also cunningly informs the police about his hideout thereby getting him arrested. Later, Gopi also gets hold of documents under the chit fund scheme headed by Kurup. Thereby Kurup understands that he has been duped but can’t do anything to resist. Valiya Nambiar understands Gopi’s intentions and apologises to Velayudhan for making him promise that he won’t beat anyone.
However, the next day, Valiya Nambiar dies apparently due to a heart attack, and his death is mourned by the entire village including the still-recovering Velayudhan. While there, Hamsa provokes him into fixing a fight after his limbs rejuvenate. However, Velayudhan raises his voice at him and plants his walking stick (the way he plants a rod to establish his authority), thereby silencing Hamsa. The entire village wants Velayudhan back in power.
The following week, there are heavy rains in the village, and Velayudhan plans to carry out his usual river adventure with bandaged limbs much to the fear of Ahmed and Kelappan. He sets out to get hold of a log in the river, and somehow ties himself to it after which Kelappan and Ahmed try to pull him towards the bank. The entire village and even Kurup gets hold of the rope enthusiastically, and Velayudhan walks to the shore as the log gets pulled in by the group of people. The villagers are happy to find their hero back in action.
That night, Janaki and her daughter are confronted by Gopi who lusts after her. In the following struggle, Janaki and the girl jumps into their well and Gopi escapes. Next morning, the police arrives while Kurup tells Velayudhan that Gopi is the one responsible and also reveals that he is also the one who killed Valiya Nambiar. Velayudhan confronts Hamsa, and breaks his promise with a smile before beating up Hamsa while Kurup reveals to the villagers that Valiya Nambiar was murdered by Gopi.
Gopi flees in his jeep, but gets interrupted by Velayudhan and the villagers. After a long fight, Velayudhan drowns Gopi in the river which kills him, thereby avenging the murders of Valiya Nambiar and Janaki. As the police arrives, Velayudhan hides his tears and reveals that he is too happy to see the entire Mullankolli Village present to bid goodbye to him.