Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Favorite Tamil Cinema Romances - I

Mouna Raagam – Karthik, Revathi

A true trendsetter, the romance between Karthik and Revathi in Mouna Raagam is one for the ages. Manirathnam crafts a memorable character in Karthik – an always playful, supremely self-confident, loveable rogue. And pairs him with the level-headed Revathi for a truly classic romance. Karthik's approach to wooing Revathi is non-typical and borders on brashness. But it is undeniably cute and the parked bike stunt, the college intercom declaration and the “Mr. Chandramouli” routine are all true classics.

It is a once-in-a-lifetime role for Karthik and he really aces it. His cocky style and dialog delivery, now an irritation, were fresh at the time and fit the role perfectly. If there is a woman who didn’t fall for him after Mouna Raagam, I’m yet to meet her. Revathi ofcourse is brilliant as always, portraying perfectly a girl gradually falling for a rogue.


At 11:54 PM, Blogger Siva Nara said...

I agree with this being No.1.

It is my most favorite Tamil Movie and a breeze role for Karthick.

At 12:03 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How could this not be No. 1?.. I don't know any film or director who has bettered what Mani had done in Mouna Raagam.. I remember that as a teenager after watching MR, my dad and I used to have discussions about English movies that we would watch and wonder who would be really good in those roles if they were remade in tamil.. the two names that would invariably come out of my mouth were Karthik and Revathi..

I hold an all-time personal record of watching Mouna Ragam once every day during summer vacation. Almost 90 days of Mouna Raagam every day! (and I'm not kidding! The video rental store owner asked me if I wanted to purchase the film.. instead of spending so much to rent it!) :-) :-);-)

Balaji, you are right!.. There ain't a girl in this planet who didn't fall for Karthik after Mouna Raagam..

At 1:17 AM, Blogger மு.கார்த்திகேயன் said...

I too expected that the #1 will be Mouna Ragam..

At 5:00 AM, Blogger prakash said...

Don't necessarily agree with the rest of your list, but in total agreement with this choice.

Related trivia:

A few years after MR became popular, one of his earlier movies was dubbed from Kannada. Pallavi Anupallavi, starring Anil Kapoor! Don't remember much about the movie, but the entire "Unakku bayam. Enna paarthu mayangidiviyo-nnu bayam" sequence is there in 'Pallavi Anupallavi'.

At 6:27 AM, Blogger Quill said...

Bala -

Join the MR fan club !!
I've been having the Piano BGM in MR as my ringtone since my day one of mobiling .I live in Delhi and Delhi reminds of MR every single day !!
BTW - you seem to be going ballistic on movies these days .
DWPF has been on the "now reading " space for months now .
Finish it atleast before America bombs Iran !!

At 6:53 AM, Blogger Raju said...

Mouna Raagam romance is a true gem. Good choices, Balaji..

As I said, I guessed Ghajini, Roja, Kaakha Kaakha and Aasai to be your favorites. So, only one out of 4 was right.. :-(

At 7:39 AM, Blogger Chitra said...

How can Mouna Raagam not be number 1!! It has been ages since I even thought of the movie. I need to watch it sometime again. Thanks Balaji!

Yes, the Kannada movie Pallavi Anupallavi is very nice. Probably Mani's very first movie. Of course I could be totally wrong. Illataraja music for the same is beautiful. I didn't know it was dubbed into Tamil as well. Thanks Prakash for the trivia.

At 7:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about Madhavan-Simran in Kannathil Muthamittal or SPB-Radhika in Keladi Kanmani?

At 7:52 AM, Blogger Preethi said...

Hi Balaji,

I guess "Mouna Ragam" will be the hands down choice by everyone for the 1st position. I have seen the movie atleast 10 times already, but each time I see it, the feel of the movie is still fresh. While "Dhil" was a total surprise to me, I expected ur list to include "Khakha Khakha" & "Alaipayuthey". Do come up with more Top 5's in various categories. It's FUN!

At 10:39 AM, Blogger Orange Fronkey said...

I never liked Karthik in that movie!

I was siding for Mohan instead... hehehe

At 11:28 AM, Blogger Kumari said...

I agree with all your choices tho I wish you had decided on a Top Ten varisai...that way you could have squeezed in "it's a girl thing" from Kaakha Kaakha :D I loved that movie for its mature handling of romance not making it frivolous like most movies tend to do.

At 12:06 PM, Blogger TamilPonnu said...

I agree with you.. karthik was just awesome!!! 1 of my fav movies.

At 1:38 PM, Blogger mitr_bayarea said...


Agree with you on the No.1 choice, of course, as everybody else, naanum fan of Revathy and Karthik, esp. Mouna Raagam.

Not too impressed by Dhill and Vaali being on the list, maybe Alaipayudhe, Kandu Konden Kandu Kondein could have replaced them.

At 2:32 PM, Blogger Me too said...

I guessed Mouna Ragam(in no. 1 spot), Dhill and Ghajini.
In those days when VHS cassettes, DVDs were not owned, I had the whole Karthik-Revathy sequence recorded in an audio tape!! One of my north Indian friend who understood only a few tamil words, saw 'Mauna Ragam' God knows how many times!!

At 4:35 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

siva, a favorite for most i think :)

sandhya, nope. no other director has even come close actually :)

karthik, that was an easy guess :)

prakash, yeah remember that one. didnt see it though. that was his 1st movie i think before he came to tamil with 'pagal nilavu'(thank god!). it had a famous actress as heroine too i think...

quill, am a card-carrying member of the club :)
actually i'm done with DWPF. havent written about it yet since my next book(5th horseman) hasn't arrived yet and i didnt wanna leave the 'now reading' section empty :)

raju, then u must be the only one who didnt guess MR!!

missy, yw :)
and u're right... it was his 1st movie...

preethi, thanx. and yep, i definitely plan to :)

merino, my wife used to say that every girl wanted a boyfriend like karthik and a husband like mohan at that time!! have the cake and eat it too :)

At 6:08 PM, Blogger b a l a j i said...

obvious choice BB. But Surya, Jyothika in Kakka kakka would have been my second

At 9:55 PM, Blogger Krish said...

The latest time that I saw this was at my friend's place when I had gone there for Pongal (he has KTV along with Sun). I can say that to this day that is MR's best movie (more than even Nayagan) :-)

At 11:14 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

raju/anon/preethi/kumari/mitr/balaji, the movies u all mentioned definitely have good romantic tracks that i like too. but for this list i kinda had another self-imposed rule to have some variety. i didnt want to list more than 1 movie by a director or starring an actor or actress... movies like 'kannathil muthamittaal', 'kaakka kaakka', etc. didn't make it because of that :)

At 11:04 PM, Blogger vICkNeS said...

totally agree with mouna ragam being the number one...mani showed why he is the best director in India with that movie...but others on your list....hmm.....i don't think so the couples in dhill or valli could match up murali and heera in idhayam....or even maddy and jhotika in 'dum dum dum'...

My top 5 romantics will be:
Mouna ragam
Dum Dum Dum
Mundram Pirai

At 1:34 AM, Blogger ammani said...

Just about everything in Mouna Ragam - the casting, the music, the camerawork - was as perfect as it could get. My favourite scene is the one where Divya's family sits around discussing what they like about the maapillai after he's gone. It's so true-to-life. The summer following the release, we must've watched it every single day.

At 5:32 AM, Blogger vidhyavd said...

Obvious choice for everyone,great movie and my all time favourite movie.I really liked mohan-revathi portions much.

At 1:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mouna Raagam is definitely a timeless classic. Hats off to Manirathnam sir. Well, i think Rythm is also another good movie. I loved it immensely. Though it did not click at the box office it was very good.


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