Mani made his debut with the critically acclaimed film, Pallavi Anu Pallavi, in 1983. From 1983 to this day, Mani’s films have enjoyed success and following, earned awards and praise, and some of his political dramas have even attracted controversies. Without losing a spring in his step, he has made movies for 34 years.
Now, his latest movie, Kaatru Veliyidai, is getting ready for a wide release.
Each song from the soundtrack album – “Azhagiye,” “Vaan,” and “Saarattu Vandiyila” – was released fortnightly. And, needless to say, all the songs have become blockbusters. I, for one, have been listening to the Telugu versions, too.
The trailer which hit the web recently has brought in comparisons, and, parallelly, raised expectations.
The first few lines I heard in Kaatru Veliyidai’s trailer woke up my memories of watching OK Kanmani’s trailer two years ago. (Suggested read - REFLECTING ON MANI RATNAM'S LOVE STORY WITH MIRRORS)
Here’s how Karthi opens the dialogue: “Manasu maarichu na, next Saturday, 5 PM… flight la! (If there’s a change of heart, the flight takes off at 5 PM next Saturday!)”
To which, Aditi says, “Officer ku kaadhu kekkaatha? (Has the officer gone deaf?)”
Karthi: “Doctor ku manasu maaraatha? (Won’t the doctor have a change of heart?)”
The volume in which Karthi and Aditi speak in Kaatru Veliyidai is slightly above the tone of Aadi and Tara’s introductory lines in OK Kanmani.
Also, the leads in Kaatru Veliyidai come close through a dance for the first fifteen seconds, and then the leads speak up. Similarly, in OK Kanmani, we don’t see the leads speaking to each other for the first ten seconds. They are actually looking through a train’s windows in the beginning. Later, Nithya and Dulquer exchange glances and names amidst several people.
If you watch the two trailers again, look closely. When Karthi flirts with Aditi, there are many people in the ballroom. But, nobody is interested in eavesdropping on their conversation.
Therefore, Mani Ratnam creates a moment of romantic interaction in these two films, between the leads, by putting them in a room full of people who are busy in their own world. That’s how the hero and heroine have a private talk laced with love in public.
More notes on similarities:
1. Karthi is asked in Kaatru Veliyidai if he, perhaps, can’t take no for an answer (I’m guessing she says no because Karthi is hoping that she’d go with him to some place in spite of his request being turned down).
2. Nithya asks if Dulquer runs behind girls in OK Kanmani sarcastically.
3. Though Nithya and Aditi raise an eyebrow at the impertinence displayed by Dulquer and Karthi, in the two movies, their playful smile tell a different story. The women are, obviously, smitten by the men.
If a minute-and-a-half trailer can rain so many things on us, what’s the 120-plus-minute movie going to do?
Going by Kaatru Veliyidai’s trailer, the main contents seem to be romance, tension, and anger. I can’t say for sure if the film will turn into stars on the shoulders of Aditi and Karthi. Yet, I know that Rahman is going to enthrall us with his music.
“Kaatru Veliyidai Kannamma!”
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Written by - Karthik Keramalu