The Journey with Mani Ratnam’s films – Part One
“Mounaragam, Alaipayuthey and O Kadhal Kanmani,” I guess, Mani Ratnam is the only director to create three different forms of scripts based on Love which are accepted by the people of the three generations.
Alaipayuthey – It’s been almost 16 years ever since its release, yet this film is slated to be one of the most loved 21st century films by the people of 20th century. It can be a love relationship between middle class woman and high class man, Alaipayuthey tends to be one of the pure class romantic films ever created. No matter how many times we watch, the intensity of Love still remains the same, since the release.
On board, the film starts off with Mani Ratnam’s Madras Talkies production credits. The next second there blooms the magical song, “Endrendrum Punaghai” under the composition of A.R. Rahman. And the two major roles were played by Editor Sreekar Prasad and Cinematographer P.C. Sriram. Free handed camera movement, the introduction of credits part in between the frames while the lead R. Madhavan (as Karthik) rides the motorcycle, it just added a beauty to the beginning.
The usage of Railway station: The director completely understood the real emotions which existed in “Hi” and “Goodbye”. Karthik feels so happy to meet his wife Shakthi (Played by Shalini) in the railway station, but the time goes on while Karthik is waiting and found that something is wrong with his wife’s return. Well, this is portion where the relationship between the director and editor reflects in the film. Introduction of the flashback, the sequential arrangements of the differential portions projected the integral beauty of this film.
The meet: The love in the first sight isn’t going to be a true love. Hence, to explain, the single line in a page turns to paragraphs in a novel. This portion explains the relationship between a camera man and an editor. The scene projection where Karthik and Shakthi were on two different trains but travelling in the opposite directions, the interchanging of the equal screen spaces with love as the midpoint among these two characters, the slow motion takes place when they suddenly meet each other, the music of “Yaro Yarodi” in the background, and everything just added up the beauty to this particular scene.
The songs: Mani Ratnam – Vairamuthu – A.R. Rahman, one of the greatest trios that the cinematic world has ever produced. Rahman’s one of the best albums in his career.
Vairamuthu’s lyrics for “Pachai Nerame” explained the beauty of colours with the wonders of this world, and along with the evergreen voice of Hariharan added a soul to this song. The composition of a modern tune for the marriage of Karthik & Shakthi with the reference to the traditional music attracted the youths of the generation. “Kadhal Sadugudu,” S.P.B. Charan’s voice proven to be that it’s from the S.P. Balasubrahmanyam’s blood. Clearly, it was like LHS = RHS (S.P.B’s voice = S.P.B.C’s voices), hence proved. The visualization of this song is an absolute brilliant. The synchronization of the backward motion of the visuals and lip movements for this song, it was an innovative stuff from the team. The composition of alternate tunes by A.R. Rahman for the happy and sad moments added up the sweet and sour flavors to this film. “Evano Oruvan,” Swarnalatha’s voice added up the breeziness to this song. This song comes to exist when Karthik and Shakthi were on a telephone call and displayed a terrific piece of performance. They hardly spoke one word each which was “Hello?” but their eyes spoke it all. “September Maadham,” Love vs. Marriage concept did explain the solutions for this debate.
The climax: The last 20 minutes of this film changed the romantic world. The addition of Guest and special appearances in these frames, the addition of friction effects when the characters come across to meet each other and everything made the screenplay so solid enough which will hook the audiences with this film. The last 5 minutes conversation between Karthik and Shakthi will define the literal meaning of “Love.”
In 2007, the Joker from Nolan’s Batman: The Dark Knight quoted as, “In their last moments, people show you who they really are…” Well, you could visually see this within 5 minutes and Shakthi says “I Love you” to Karthik for the very first time since the beginning of this film.
A two hours walk on the sea shore explained the true meaning of “Alaipayuthey.”