Category Archives: Mani Ratnam

Alaipayuthey 20

Celebrating 20 years of Alaipayuthey with 20 specialties of the movie.

1. Colours

Be it the happy, vibrant colours of Shakti’s salwar kameez or Karthik’s blue shirts or the scenery in Pacchai Nirame or the rich Indian colours during functions in Yaro Yarodi, Alaipayuthey or Mangalyam songs or be it the dark tone when the movie takes on a serious note in the second half. The colours by themselves match the scene in every single frame.

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The Magic of Alaipayuthey – 20 Years Later

This blog of mine has always been synonymous with celebrating all things Alaipayuthey! So, it would be highly unfair if I leave this special occasion of Alaipayuthey turning 20 without at least a passing mention here. But when have I ever been able to stick to just a ‘passing mention’ of Alaipayuthey? 😉 So, here is yet another heartfelt raving about that special movie!

Sometime in the beginning of April during one of those sleepless nights, it struck me that Alaipayuthey was turning 20 this year. Since then, there have been quite a few reminiscences going on in my mind. From thinking of 20 special things to 20 special scenes to recollecting certain write-ups of mine, Alaipayuthey has yet again been giving me quite a few relaxing moments during this much-needed anxious period!

While it would be cliched to say that this movie remains as special to me today as it was 20 long years earlier, it is indeed the case. When I saw earlier in the day that Mani Ratnam was going to be appearing Live on Facebook with Suhasini, I set a reminder and watched it from the start to finish, absolutely hooked to it. And then when Madhavan made an appearance in the show, I can’t tell you how much the Alaipayuthey fan in me was rejoiced! Is there any better way to celebrate Alaipayuthey?!

As Madhavan said the famed ‘Naan onna virumbala’ dialogue in the show, the magic in these words were as fresh today as it was when we first heard it. Madhavan asked Mani Ratnam about why there was such lengthy, filmy dialogue in this, so unlike his usual style. Before I knew it, I was thinking about several of the proposal scenes in all his other films.

When Suhasini showed a mirror with a colourful backdrop, even before she started talking about it, I shouted out loud, ‘Hey this is the Alaipayuthey mirror!’ 😀 She indeed did confirm that this was a mirror which she had bought in Hauz Khas, Delhi and was used in Alaipayuthey. Knowing yet another new trivia about anything and everything related to Alaipayuthey excited me today as much as it did during my teens. 🙂 That mirror in which the thaali is hung 🙂

If watching a mere Live conversation with Mani Ratnam gets me this excited, guess how much the movie still excites me even today!

Chekka Chivantha Vaanam

Spoiler Alert

Chekka Chivantha Vaanam is indeed painted red all through, what with ruthless bullet shots and gruesome murders. As Varadan (Arvind Swami) says in the movie, we are all nothing but a big cipher when death strikes. The internal family war, which we find out in the end is brilliantly planned by Rasool, is fought in this movie till everyone in the gangster family is turned to nothing but a big cipher.
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Jugni – Kaatru Veliyidai

There are those songs that start like a whiff of fresh air. Jugni is one such – the opening soft music as fresh as the air in the snowy Himalayas where the video of this song is shot!

Then those foot-tapping beats change the mood of the song. The constant dance-worthy beats all through and those intermittent exploding beats, the soft layers of short snatches of music in the background here and there – at times soothing, at times intense, but all through mesmerizing – stay with you long after this song gets over.
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Kaatru Veliyidai

Breathtaking visuals, beautiful colours, mesmerizing music, people with flaws and feelings abound, a leading lady in lovely costumes, a love story on a setting that makes you think beyond your normal lives and thank those brave soldiers who are helping us lead a safe life – that is Kaatru Veliyidai for you.

If you are looking for a story of two perfect and caring people falling in love with each other and leading a happy life together, then this movie is not for you.
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Alaipayuthey – The Colours!

Watching Alaipayuthey fully last Saturday, I seriously couldn’t recollect the last time I watched it fully! It definitely has been a few years! Watching it make me feel 17 years younger, got me away from feeling like an oldie having entered into my 30s. 😉 And yes, it made my hands itch to write something about it here!

I love colours – deep, rich colours, vibrant hues, bold strokes of colours on a canvas and even dull, moody tones. Alaipayuthey is one movie which literally celebrates colours through the song ‘Pacchai Nirame‘ and through almost every single frame. It is not just Pacchai Nirame, each and every scene of which glorifies the many varied hues of colours painted naturally by nature on this wide canvas called earth and sky.

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Pacchai Nirame – Happiness!

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Listening to Pacchai Nirame on a loop, after a long, long time, I realize yet again that

  • despite the years that have passed by, the song still sounds as fresh as it did the very first time I listened to it!
  • the happiness oozing out of it still continues to rub off on me and makes me feel so very happy!
  • its music is as vibrant and cheerful as the colours portrayed in its picturization and lyrics!
  • every time I am in awe of the rich colours of nature, it is this beautiful song that will come to my mind first!
  • this is a song to turn to for celebrating those simple, boundless joyful moments of life, for, after all, wasn’t this song created to portray that simple happiness evoked by getting a smile from the lady the man is attracted to?
  • this is THE song which makes me forget everything else and brings back nostalgic memories after memories which are ALL happy ones!
  • this is THE song which makes me feel like the awestruck teenager that I was who went gaga over Alaipayuthey, Rahman, Mani Ratnam and the very handsome Madhavan 😉
  • this is one unique song by Rahman which doesn’t have similarities with any other song
  • I can never have enough of writing about Alaipayuthey and everything associated with it
  • the song and its movie have so many memorable blog memories too associated with them
  • it will always remain THE most special song!

Raavan

I don’t have a clear answer either for the ‘How was Raavan?’ question or for ‘Did you like Raavan?’ Of course, the answer for the second question is definitely not a ‘No’. But it isn’t a whole-hearted ‘Yes’ either. And that’s why I didn’t even attempt to write on the movie all this while.

Spoiler Alert (But I guess this won’t matter since most of you might have watched the movie by now.)
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