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Neelavukku Niranja Manasu 1958

Produced under the Royal Films banner, Neelavukku Niranja Manasu was directed by K. Somu, assistant to the American Tamil filmmaker Ellis R. Dungan.

Written by A. P. Nagarajan, the film has music by K. V. Mahadevan and lyrics by A. Marudhakasi and A. S. Narayanan. Well-known singers Tiruchi Loganathan, Soolamangalam Rajalakshmi, Jikki, L.R. Eswari, and Jamuna Rani lent their voices.

The film has a star-studded cast with Pandari Bai and V. K. Ramasami in leading roles. The story is about Ramasami, who works in a jewellery shop and struggles with four unmarried daughters (Pandari Bai, M.N. Rajam, Ragini, and T.P. Muthulakshmi) after the mother dies. The eldest Neela (Pandari Bai) decides to stay single till she can get her sisters married. Of the sisters, Ragini, as Rajama teacher, is a musician, while Muthulakshmi stays home and has the young ward (Thangavelu) of a rich widowed grandmother (Rajakantham) falling in love with her.

T. R. Ramachandran plays a foolish guy who wants to learn music from Ragini and drives her mad. The bad guy is the wicked jewellery shop owner (Veerappa) who wants to marry Rajam, but is finally arrested for his tricks. After all the sisters marry, only Neela remains single.

When a young man (M. Sriram) loses his sight after being attacked by the jewellery shop owner, she comes forward to marry him. Pandari Bai stole the show while Thangavelu gave a fine performance, including a Westernised song and dance number, ‘Originality… osandha quality… onna number beauty… paatti!’ (lyrics: A.S. Narayanan, voice: Loganathan) where he plays several musical instruments such as clarinet, guitar and drums and also does the tap dance. (The dance, of course, was done by someone else with only the feet showing on screen.) The song became a major hit.

There was also a dance by the famous Helen from Bombay, which was shot in Gevacolor.

The film was shot at Newtone Studios, and was only an average success mainly because of the predictable storyline and treatment.

Remembered for: the performances by the cast, and the song and dance sequences.



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Printable version | Jan 19, 2021 6:20:56 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/cinema/cinema-columns/neelavukku-niranja-manasu-1958/article6895490.ece

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