Rating: 3 Stars!!!

When I wrote the Pooveli review I used the oft repeated phrase "love story with a difference". I don’t want to give this review the same title but it is simply too tempting to draw (possibly intended) comparisons between Sangmam and that timeless classic Thillana Mohanambal. Adhu mambazham idhu vaazhapazham ana prachanai ellam onnu than ! Rather than quote a kambar or a valluvar I decided to keep to the context by quoting our very own Goundmani in his famous strip in karakaattakaran where he draws a parallel with the pazhani incident in kailasam!

Great acting, interesting classical dance performance, a good comedy track – hold your breath, I was talking of the Shivaji-Padmini starrer here – the actual movie in question doesn’t boast of any of these components – but offspring always have something in common with the parent – and in this case its awesome music. The “prachanai” here is simple – a battle waged between folk dance and classic dance. The hero is Rehman and the heroine is a newcomer who, to put it in plain English, can’t act for nuts. sangamamThat leaves you hoping that they might have chosen her for that role because she might be a good dancer. Well, you are relieved of the suspense very soon. I’m tempted to think she has an influential relative in the tinsel world. The movie starts with the song “Alalaganda adalukku thagappa vanakkamungo”. For those who haven’t followed the thamizh here it’s a tribute to Lord Shiva. A very nice song which repeats in the climax in a different form. The crux of the story is a challenge between the folk troupe headed by Manivannan and the dance medhai Vijayakumar (thankfully we are spared a Vijayakumar dance performance). Debates heat up to a point where the two challenge each other as to who will raise more money at a dance performance. The central theme is good. Classical dance being an art of the elite draws fewer people but allows for expensive tickets while folk dance belongs more to the common man and cannot, by its own nature, demand high ticket prices. The climax is well made in keeping with this theme.

Kaithattal scene: Of course I don’t have to mention that the hero and heroine don’t have a big part in this one. Manivannan returns home after his savaal with Vijayakumar and the members of his troupe themselves go against him saying that defeat is imminent. Manivannan surpasses himself in that scene. Watch the movie for the songs. “Mudhal murai” is a duet between a car and bullock cart. A good song but it seems to have shades of “Naalai Ulagam” from Love Birds. “Marghazhi Thingal Allavaa” is also good and so is “Varaaha nadhi karai” and “Sowkiyama” sung by Nithyashree. Get the mp3s from here. I’d like to hear comments on the songs. Comments on the movie? It gets 0.5 of the 3 stars. See it for the songs, like it for the songs, forget the movie.

K.Subramanian

Original Photograph (Sangamam): Thanks to Cinema Express, Kumudam
Photograph scanned & reworked by: Krishna