35 Years Of Superstar Rajinikanth’s MurattuKalai

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Murattu Kalai- A mass commercial entertainer setting a new trend in Tamil Cinema has completed 35 years.

Story Screenplay Dialogues & Lyrics: Panju Arunachalam
Cinematographer: Babu
Editor: R. Vittal
Art Director: A. K. Sekhar
Music: Illaiyaraja
Producer: M. Kumaran, M. Saravanan & M. Balasubramaniam
Director: S. P. Muthuraman

About the film: AVM Productions, one of the premier production houses of South India, returned to film making after a hiatus of 8 years with Murattu Kalai. Rajinikanth first film for AVM, it went on to become a super hit. Rajini became a larger-than-life-hero & the real Superstar of Tamil Cinema after this film. The acting hero became a action hero with this film. S. P. Muthuraman, who directed this film, directed 25 films of Rajini. Jai Shankar, who was acting as a hero till then, played the villain role for the first time. Post the success of this film, he became a regular villain & character artiste, thus getting a new lease of life.

Murattu Kalai received widespread appreciations for the never before seen fight scenes. especially train fight. Ananda Vikatan in its review (18/1/1981) mentioned, its a mass commercial entertainer & gave the film B rating (40-45 marks)

Critical Appreciation: R. Vittal received the Best Editor of the year award & Suralirajan received the best comedian fo the year for 1980-81 from the Tamil Nadu Government.

Films which followed the trend: Technically, this film was a trendsetter in Tamil Cinema. The stunt sequences in Murattu Kalai were a novelty in those days. The train fight sequence was brilliantly shot & became a benchmark for future films. Tamil cinema produced many such action entertainers later, but this was the earliest trendsetter.

Landmark Achievement: This mass commercial entertainer set a new trend in Tamil cinema. When Tamil cinema was seen to be moving towards realistic & hard hittting films, Murattu Kalai changed the trend & brought back the MGR formula of mass commercial entertainer. The film ran for over 150 days was a big commercial success.

Trivia: The train scene were taken near Tenkasi railway station using a hired train. The fight scene was shot in 3 days by the crew at a high cost. The train fight scenes have become a benchmark in Tamil Cinema for its quality & making for all future films.

The Jallikattu(Bull Fight) scenes were taken at Paganeri near Sivagengai. The famous Rekhla race scene organised by Chinna Vanavarayar was shot at Pollachi.

Since Murattu Kalai was completed in early of 1980 itself but due to A. V. Meiyappa Chettiar’s demise it was postponed to December. During the intial days of Rajini’s career he used to go to shootings in his scooter itself. Saravana once saw Rajini going to some shooting in his scooter so immediately signed Rajini on the road itself due to his busy schedule!

Film ran 100 days in 8 theaters Chennai devi Paradise, maharani, avm rajeswari, Madurai sivam, pattukottai ayya, Salem Oriental, kovai karnatui, trichy prabath