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The Chieftain's Son More at IMDbPro »Thevar Magan (original title)

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13 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Don't compare it to God Father please!!!

Author: Neelakantan Sharma from Mumbai, India
1 July 1999

Asokan, Thevar Magan is no way similar to Godfather... Nayakan is. It was unnecessary to force the comparison because Thevar Magan is a very original story... and brings out the psyche of the Thevar community, their heroism, violence and honor.

Your review otherwise reflected my opinion on the movie. It's one of the few films where every character has been well-conceived. And what a brilliant performance from all!!! Unfortunately, the director of this classic, Bharatan is no more. (He like many of his peers went unsung, largely due to the step-motherly attitude of the POP media (read Hindi dominated media) to regional movie makers. Thevar Magan is a great movie that deserves a hall of fame in the annals of Indian Films.

N Sharma

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12 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

One of the finest Indian films of the decade. Believe me!

8/10
Author: Asokan Nirmalarajah (asokan.nirmalarajah@t-online.de) from Cologne, Germany
17 June 1999

If you look for quality movies (great story, great actors, great cinematics) from the Indian exploitation cinema corner, then don't mind the movies of the industry's megastar Rajnikanth too much. They are great entertainment, but mainly shallow. So stick to Kamala Haasan who despite being a very big star is also one of the greatest actors currently working in India.

If you want a prove for my statement just compare the 1992 released Rajnikanth-flick ANNAMALAI and Kamala-Haasan-Masterpiece THEVA MAGAN, a light Indian variation of THE GODFATHER-story, but without crime, spaghetti and restaurant massacres.

The Bharathan-directed movie is about a young man (Kamala Haasan) - similar to Al Pacino's character Michael Corleone - returning to his little tradition-bound village with a modern-thinking girlfriend to build a restaurant. He meets his old and very proud father, the Chieftain (legendary actor Shivaji Ganesan) - similar to Marlon Brando's character Vito Corleone -, who is sad that his son doesn't want to take over his duty in the village community. He has another son but he's a unreliable drunk. Having a conflict with his sensitive father Haasan sends his girlfriend home and tries to slowly follow her. But because of a "war" that breaks up between his family and the family of Nazar (impressive villain!) he stays there - for a while, he hopes. But when his father is disrespected by Nazar on a public discussion and dies on a heart-attack while resting the shocked Haasan has to take in his place and faces Nazar, who in the brutal final forces the happily-married (with the beautiful and wonderful Revathi) new Chieftain to a one-on-one-fight, which doesn't lead to a happy end.

Wonderful cinematography, great songs and a haunting score by Illaiarajah, throughout first rate performances by the brilliant cast and a moving and fascinating story that often reminded me of Coppola's classic masterpiece. One of the finest Indian films of the decade. Really!

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5 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Devar magan - a tribute to tamil Cinema

10/10
Author: Elavarasan Rajan (elametly@gmail.com) from India
14 June 2009

Devar magan is my all time favourite movie.It brings the two versatile actors of Tamil Cine industry,even Indian Film Industry together to give a movie which depicts the reality of most villages and Devar's religion.The scene between Kamal and Shivaji remains one of the best ever scene in tamil cinema.May be Urban people may find it different, but the peoples from villages, will find at least one character or one event similar to their place or peoples.Though two Gems acting in same movie there is lot of scope for others to act and they all used it well.(Nasser,Gautami,Revathi and even Vadivelu).KamalHaasan-Ilayaraja music combination once rocks for the nth time.

Don't forget to watch it.

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5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Class unmatchable !

10/10
Author: de-prakash from India
26 April 2008

Shivaji and Kamal are two great legends of Indian cinema and if there was a movie that could get them together it had to be a movie as strong as "Thevar magan". Yes it has shades of Godfather but not completely. This story couldn't have asked for better screenplay.Role of Shivaji could be performed only by him. Kamal is often criticized for suppressing other characters in his movies but this is an exception , it has great characterization for everybody in the movie right from Shivaji to vadivelu. PC Sriram is amazing with his camera work and gives us pleasant visuals throughout the movie.The biggest asset of the movie is Illayaraja, his back ground music is heavenly, he brings out the intensity in the scene superbly with his BGM score. The story is already discussed by others but the highlights of the movie are - The Scene were Kamal argues with Shivaji on his decision to leave the village, The Panchayat scene were Nasser shows disrespect to Shivaji and the aftermath, Kamal's entry with the Devar getup(he looks majestic in it), The marriage scene,The Hospital scene were Vadivelu excels as a faithful servant to Kamal,Kamal's acting when he fails to convince Gautami, The climax scene after he kills Nasser. Every dialogue in the movie is carefully and masterly crafted. Bharathan has done a splendid job. Overall it is a movie which highlights the Thevar community in a very realistic way. It will go down as one of the Best movies of Indian cinema.

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5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

The Mother of all caste-based movies

10/10
Author: Krishna R (you_can_do_it@indiatimes.com) from Zurich
15 June 2006

One of the most successful movies of Kamal Hassan's Rajkamal International production company. A cult classic that got both critical acclaim and huge box office collections. About a dozen movies were released along with it, on Diwali '94 but all these were reduced to box-office disasters(including the Rajinikant starrer 'Pandian'). Such was the impact of Thevar Magan. The thespian Sivaji Ganesan was aptly cast in the role of Kamal's father, the village chief. Nasser, Revathi and Gouthami reveled in their roles and Revathi won the National award for 'Best Supporting actress'.

But more than everything, this is the movie which spawned a deluge of flicks based on the caste-feuds happening in villages, none of which could match the original in terms of grandeur, story or performances. Thevar Magan, upon its release, was literally worshipped by the 'Thevars', a warring caste in Tamil Nadu's rural areas. Some political organizations still argue that the movie itself is the reason for the violence happening in these villages.

The telugu dubbed version 'Kshatriya Putrudu' was an equally big hit. Later the movie was remade in Hindi as 'Virasat', starring Anil Kapoor, Tabu, Amrish Puri and Pooja Batra. The Hindi version too was a success.

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

my best Indian movie...

9/10
Author: pearlmaharajan from India
22 September 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

What a 3hr show by the crew. Kamal Hassan and Bharathan has done their home work very well. The script is flawless. As many has said, this movie is like a village based Godfather. Outline may resemble like that. But the story plot is different in many aspects.

Important things to be noted in the movie are the locations, BGM, dialogues with the peculiar language slang etc.,

I would call this to be the perfect acting by the veteran Shivaji Ganesan. This is different from his usual films which lacks reality in acting and more like a stage drama acting. Kamal hassan has done the best as always he does. Another couple of people to be mentioned for the acting are 'Kaakkaa' Radhakrishnan and Nassar. I still remember the acting of this man in the crew filled with masters. I think Nassar played an equal amount of natural acting just like Shivaji Ganesan. If I am awarded as a jury to pick an actor in the movie for his performance, I would go with Nassar.

Again, this film is a tank circuit of Kamal Hassan and the maestro Ilayaraja. I really don't know from were the later gets his music specially for Kamal Hassan. Anyone can watch the film with the eyes closed. BGM will narrate the entire plot. This film's BGM can be considered as an example for the upcoming youngsters.

PC Sriram, once again proved he is the best in business. Also the lyricist were equally good. You would never feel the songs as a disturbance in the movie. And the special song features the Tamilan's special martial arts "Silambattam" is too good.

I would really select this movie to be one of the all time favorite of Indian and International film. Do you people still want me to put any review points ?????

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5 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Awestuck experience!!!

10/10
Author: gane_durairaj from India
18 May 2010

Wow, wow, wow!!!

Such a wonderful movie i would say. Theme, cast and crew at its best. Sivaji Ganesan vs Kamalhaasan Vs Ilaiyaraja vs Bharathan, who will you vote, i have no idea, this is supposed to called as the Show of LEGENDS. Nasser,Revathi, Vadivelu, Gowthami and every others didn't act but lived.The scene between Sivaji and Kamalhaasan is the best ever seen i have seen in my entire life.Dialogues are razor sharp.Some people claim this movie is inspired from Godfather, maybe but it didn't appear like that to me as this film is more concentrated on the traditional way of Devar(a caste in Tamilnadu).Its more like watching a epic.

U want to know the real meaning of a complete classic movie, go for it.

I bet you will like it.

Over all My rating 10/10.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

The Best among all Classics...

10/10
Author: Sakthi Harish from India
26 June 2010

The Movie won the all time best Tamil film award in the Vijay awards ceremony(2007), which analyzed the complete list of Tamil movies from the early 1940's. Need i say more?. Its the best movie there is in Tamil cinema even today. The movie is aptly paced and portrays the courage and pride of the Thevar community as realistic as possible. The performance of all the actors are outstanding, especially Kamal Hassan and Nasser in the climax. The duo even outperform the veteran Sivaji Ganeshan, considered to be the greatest Tamil actor of all time, with their stunning acting. Hats off to Kamal and the director for taking Tamil cinema to new unknown heights.

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4 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

The best inspiration of godfather.One of the best Indian movie ever

10/10
Author: vigneshwaran shanmugam from India
15 February 2006

So far many films are copied or inspired from godfather....but this is the best inspiration!.In fact the best example for an inspiration! The plus of the movie is the actor selection!Shivaji Ganesan as the father of Kamal.....the best possible combination of father-son in India.Shivaji with his memorable performance played his part to perfection.Kamal shines as a writer more than an actor in this movie.Nasser must be specified too..a good performance indeed.The movie looks so good due to the direction of Barathan..a renowned Malayalam director..who made the movie look so realistic and entertaining too!

Music by Ilayaraja.Ilayaraja is always good in rural based movies...and he shines here too.

Photography by P.C.Sriram which won him the national award..really an award winning photography.

Story and dialogue by Kamalhaasan...one of the best screenplays in Indian cinema.Dialogues are so powerful.In climax Kamal saying "pongada..poi pulla kuttigala padikka vaingada"(make your children study...don't let them indulge in violence)is awesome...the relationship between Kamal and Shivaji is explained wonderfully!

Shivaji Ganesan in many aspects resemble Marlon Brando in his acting and Kamal has been inspired by Al Pacino greatly which could be noticed by his acting.With these two great actors on screen with godfather outline..this must be the best inspiration of Godfather..10/10.

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

All Time Best Indian-Tamil Language Movie

10/10
Author: pradeepmek from Tamilnadu, India
15 May 2012

This is the All Time Best Indian-Tamil Language Movie... extra ordinary straight screenplay...this is the example for neat screenplay...Indian-Tamil culture dependent Movie...extra ordinary work by Kamal Hassan sir...upcoming movie makers definitely watch this movie 2 learn lot.... i watched The God father movie also there's no similarities between this movie..

Acting: classic performance by Shivaji Ganesan & Kamal Hassan sir.. even world actors r also 2 learns acting from Shivaji Ganesan sir exactly conversation scene between Shivaji Ganesan & Kamal Hassan definitely its the world class performance by Shivaji Ganesan sir.....

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