As a sequel is being released on Friday, The Federal revisits Balu Mahendra's 1979 film Azhiyaatha Kolangal.
The year 1979 was truly golden for Tamil cinema. Then-superstar Sivaji Ganesan’s 200th film Thrisulam (Trident) had just been released. Sivakumar’s 100th film Rosa Poo Ravikkaikkaari (A woman wearing rose coloured blouse) and Kamal Haasan and Rajinikanth-starrer Ninaithaale Inikkum (Sweet Memories) became major hits. One of the finest but short-lived actress Shoba got the National Award for Best Actress for her role in the film Pasi (Hunger).
At least a hundred films were released around the time. But only two films left a lasting impact in the hearts of film-goers. One was J Mahendran’s Uthiri Pookkal (Scattered Flowers) and the other was Balu Mahendra’s Azhiyaatha Kolangal (Enduring Patterns).
Considered an ace filmmaker in Tamil cinema, Balu Mahendra started his life as a photographer. Despite his interest in studying direction at the Pune film institute, he was put in cinematography course after seeing his lighting skills.
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