Alaipayuthey (Part 3)

During Karthik’s search for his lost wife, two scenes worth mentioning are the one where he meets his mother-in-law (this happens to be the first-ever scene that Madhavan shot for the movie) and the one where he goes to the police station to enquire what happened to the FIR that he had filed saying his wife is lost.

In the first scene, the mother’s concern for her daughter though they are not in speaking terms anymore is shown with a dialogue like, ‘Enna paNNa en poNNa’ (What did you do to my daughter?).


In the second scene, Karthik telling the inspector, ‘Adhu un pondattiyaa irukkum!’ (That must be your wife!) when the inspector tells him his wife must have run away with someone brings out Karthik’s frustration at that time at not being able to do anything to find his wife and having to listen to that Inspector’s nonsense talk.


Instead of using lengthy dialogues or showing some other stupid scenes to make Karthik understand what married life is all about, Mani Ratnam introduces two new characters, Ram (Arvind Samy) and Meera (Khushboo) after Shakti’s accident. Just seeing the way they both talk to each other itself, Karthik actually realizes his mistake (and understands how a nice and understanding husband behaves like? 😉 ).

Right from the very first scene where the character of Ram is introduced, you can see that he is a guy so typical of Mani Ratnam’s movies, an understanding and straight-forward guy like Chandrakumar (Mohan) of Mouna Raagam, Rishi (Arvind Samy) of Roja and Shekhar (Raghuvaran) of Anjali. (At least that’s what I felt) While Ram initially does shout at his wife for not waiting for enough time after the accident to ensure that the girl was safe and also for driving the car when she doesn’t even have a license, later, he comforts her and then, takes the responsibility upon himself to see that everything is done to save the girl’s life.


At no point of time does he scold his wife for letting the accident happen (in fact, he asks her to relax at home while he checks what happened to the girl!) and goes to the extent of taking the blame upon himself. Quoting Karthik’s dialogue in the climax,‘VeLila oru purushan caraala ethi nesikkittu vandhurkara pondattiya paatthu nee onnum seyyala ma naan paatthukaraennu sollittu poaraan!’ (There’s a husband outside who is telling his wife who has made an accident with her car that she hasn’t done anything and he will take care of everything). Meera too doesn’t want to let Ram take the blame and tells that it was she who did the accident when she is no longer able to bear seeing Karthik shouting at her husband.

With the ‘lesson’ learnt, Karthik tells Shakti, ‘Enakku purinjuduchu. Inime namakuLLa sanDa nadakkaadhu.’ (I have understood. We will never fight from now on.)


When Shakti finally regains consciousness (I love the scene where Shalini’s eye trying to open is shown in close up), the conversation between her and Karthik is one of the sweetest what with Shakti telling him, ‘Pondatti poittaa’ and struggling to bring the next word out of her mouth given her condition, before which Karthik panics on hearing it and then, she jovially telling him, ‘Pondatti poittaa jollyaa irukkalaannu nenachiya?’ (You thought you can live happily after your wife dies?) 🙂 After that, the unforgettable dialogues of Alaipayuthey, ‘I love you’, ‘trainlaendhu gudhippiyaa’ (Will you jump from the train?), ‘Appadinna enna mean paNre?’ (What do you mean by that?), ‘theriyaadhu aana I love you!’ (I don’t know. But, I love you!’)(Incidentally, Poorni is the only other person in this scene who would understand the significance of the dialogues, ‘trainlaendhu gudhippiyaa’, ‘Appadinna enna mean paNre?’ apart from the audience, of course 😉 )


And, so ends, my most favourite movie and this post too. But, shouldn’t we see how Shakti Selvaraj fell in love with Karthik and vice versa? 😉 Coming soon is the next post that is not going to be serious even one single bit. 🙂

26 thoughts on “Alaipayuthey (Part 3)

  1. Adiya

    Thats all man’s hero are underplay heros. thats how he paints his heros.
    you can web all his heros like that, yes ur analogy is right. well said.

    Ram | Meera nice naming convention for an ideal couple.

    likely Shakthi | Karthik can be named as
    Shakthi | Siva ( or some form of siva ) right.. ??? any comments ?

    //Maniratham mm.. friendaa erudha thaan recommend pannuma.. appadiya recommend pannuran 🙂

  2. adiya

    most of the time mani design his heros are underplay personities. very well said ur analogy is right.

    Ram | Meera – nice naming convention for an understanding couple. good..

    Instead of Shakthi | karthik if he kept Shakthi | some form of sivas name it sounds apt isn’t it. ?

  3. F e r r a r i

    Lovely series. I liked the police inspector though. Subtle comedy when they encounter Madhavan and his friend on the road. ‘South na? yaazhpaanam aa?’. It had me in splits. I still like that scene 🙂

    And yes, Arvindswamy was dignified and very good.

    Good post Aparna 😉

  4. sivaramang

    As usual a very good and deeply observed post too!

    At first i confused why two new characters at the end of the movie. It should not be a good screenplay at all if a writer introduces a new character at the tail end. But Mani won this particular aspect also by including them as a part of a story and how ram and meera managed to change karthick’s mind set towards shakti.

    And you have done a neat job by giving detailed subtexts which he used in the film.

    very well done aparna!

  5. chiroti

    Thesis is still going on in full swing! 😉

    I loved Jayasudha’s acting as a mother, she was brilliant. If you remember that scene where she shouts@shakti for skipping breakfast and compares her to Poorni’s good nature, its lovely isn’t it? 😉 You will relate to it more if you have a sister, its such a typical dialogue…

    Madhavan – never thought that from his silly Kab Kyun Kahan in Zee TV, he would turn out to be such a fantastic actor! As Karthik, he was superb. His expressions of fear when Shakti doesn’t return home and his speechlessness when Shakti’s mother questions him, superb.

    Ram – again observe his naming and portrayal of his character, so typical of a good husband. So again an observation on naming. I can see that even Adiya has commented on similar lines. 🙂 While Shakti is a strong character, Karthik is a boy next door kind of a character 🙂 What do you think? 😉

    God! Am I also ending up writing a thesis unintentionally? ! :O

    Waiting for the love story part next! 🙂

  6. sivaramang

    A nice and deeply observed post!

    I first got confused why he is introducing two new characters at the later end of the movie since adding new characters in the tail end of the screenplay would not be good at all. But Mani took this challenge and made a marvellous turning point of karthick’s mindset towards shakti through ram and meera. Due to this particular reason itself, the screenplay builds a strong power in itself.

    Its very happy to see the descriptive subtexts used in the screenplay with pictures. Very well done aparna.

  7. Girish

    Good ones…Keep them coming…I am eagerly waiting for ur analysis of its songs.. (A kind request from a ARR fan) 🙂

  8. Sriram

    Interesting series, Aparna! for every Maniratnam fan and more so as the movie had geniuses like Rahman and PC in its crew. Alaipayuthey also had some phenomenal BG Tracks from Rahman like the Vishwamohan Bhatt piece for Shakti and her family and the Jazz bit for the Karthik-Shakti after marriage issues… In case you need, I can mail you the original track recording of these pieces.
    I think a similar analysis post on Iruvar would be more interesting as I feel Iruvar was Mani’s best in a lot of sense.

  9. daneel olivaw

    one request. could you please please add the english translations of the dialogues that you quote here? want to ensure i understood the stuff correctly. not to mention how useful that would be for those who don’t understand the language.

  10. Aparna

    Yes nice naming convention! As Chiroti says, Karthik is a boy-next-door kinda character. So, Karthik itself seems apt. 🙂

    Thank you!

    Thank you! 🙂

    Thanks! Btw, have you watched this movie?

    Thanks! Oh you are a fan of ARR too! 🙂
    Btw, did you find those links helpful for learning more about Carnatic music?

  11. Aparna

    What thesis? 😉

    Yes! Anyone having a sister will relate not only to that scene but to many other scenes in the movie featuring Shalini & Swarnamalya. (For that matter, some scenes in Roja too) That’s what makes Mani Ratnam’s movies all the more special! Most of the scenes are so natural.

    Yup, Madhavan’s acting was superb and so was Shalini’s. (Mani makes everyone act well 😉 )
    Intentional or not, I can see a thesis in the making. 😉

  12. Aparna

    Thank you!
    Yes, the background score of Alaipayuthey is one of the best!
    A post on Iruvar might be difficult! Anyway, I will try to come up with one sometime soon.

    Thanks for the suggestion. Will surely do that tomorrow.

    That’s great! You watch it. After all, one never gets tired of watching Alaipayuthey irrespective of how many times you have watched it before. 😉

  13. Adiya

    hello appadi inna ennakku puriyala? don;t pull chiroti into this..
    whats your view on the naming convention. Infact In offline we discussed tons of threaded reviews towards .. )

    unga view solluinga.

    oru strong extra strong shakthi character ikku next door payyan, smart aa erukan, nalla payana karthik correct innnu solluringala mm.. mm.. ???

  14. Aparna

    What I am saying is given the fact that Karthik is just an ordinary guy or as many generally put it, a boy-next-door kinda guy (and chiroti had also said the same thing), the name Karthik itself seems apt. I don’t think Karthik & Shakti are like Shiva & Shakti. Adhaan ennoda view.

    >next door payyan, smart aa erukan, nalla payana karthik
    You have yourself said nalla payyan. That’s what matters, doesn’t it? 😉 Extra strong characteraa irundhaa enna illaatti enna, she has got a nalla payyan as her husband. That’s enough! 😉

  15. Girish


    Yes yes I definately found the carnatic music link useful….sorry for not replying back….

    Regarding the music of Alaipayuthey, well ARRs compostion of ‘Alaipayuthey Kanna’ was too good!!! Wats say?

  16. daneel olivaw

    madam, next part? and oh, karthik as boy next door, and sakthi as unconventional girl! beautiful observation. keep them coming.

  17. daneel olivaw

    wow thanks. it’s so much more enjoyeable now. but i guess your other readers will be irritated now that the flow gets disrupted because of the translations. however, if you don’t mind yet another suggestion (i have really been commenting a lot on your blog), maybe you could club the translations of a long conversation at the end rather than after each sentence, e.g., for the one between karthik and sakthi right at the end.

    keep them coming!


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