Arasa Kattalai was directed by M.G. Chakrapani. He also played a cameo role in the film. It was written by Sornam, based on the story created by MGR Pictures Story Department. The story of Arasa Kattalai deals with a ruler of Kumarinadu (Veerappa in a guest role), a despotic king, who is aided by his ambitious and villainous minister (Manohar) and also Vijayan (MGR) who is the leader of the common people.
Vijayan loses his father due to the villainy of the king, and therefore, he plans to take revenge in the middle of the night by killing him. The king and Vijayan engage in a sword fight, and finally, the king, who is greatly impressed with Vijayan’s skills, announces that he will rule Kumarinadu and kills himself. Prior to that, he hands over his daughter (Saroja Devi) to his custody and expresses his desire that they must get married. This ignites the minister’s anger and he hatches a plan to kill Vijayan.
As expected, the story goes through several twists and turns and ends with Vijayan marrying the princess. The highlights of the film were the sword fights between MGR and Manohar (stunts by Shyamsundar), the song and dance sequences with MGR and Saroja Devi, and also with a 19-year-old Jayalalithaa (it is for the first time that her name was affixed with Kavarchi Kanni in the tiltle), and the dialogues in chaste Tamil penned by Sornam.
The music composed by K.V. Mahadevan, assisted by his able disciple Pugazhendi, was a big hit too. The film has seven songs rendered by T.M. Soundararajan and P. Susheela, with lyrics by Vaali, Alangudi Somu and Muthukkoothan.
Some songs like ‘Aadi vaa…aadapiranthavaley aadivaa’ (voice: TMS; lyrics: Muthukkoothan) ‘Vettaiyaadu vilaiyaadu’ (voices: TMS and P. Susheela; lyrics: Alangudi Somu) were immensely popular.
Cinematography was by A Shanmugam and the film was produced by M.C. Ramamurthi under banner of Sathyaraja Pictures and made at Sathya Studios. In spite of excellent cast, songs and dances, the film did not do well for a MGR movie and ran only for 10 weeks.
Remembered for: The songs and dances, music and swordfights and dialogues.