Alai Payuthey (2000) Poster


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Mani Ratnam Attempts An Urban Love Story
Chrysanthepop17 December 2008
With 'Alai Payuthey', Mani Ratnam comes back with an urban love story set in contemporary India. While he has used similar themes in his previous films such as 'Bombay', it was usually against the backdrop of another theme such as the case of political Hindu-Muslim dilemma in 'Bombay'. 'Alai Payuthey' solely focuses on Karthik and Shakti's love story and how it develops from before till after marriage. Ratnam's storytelling is sincere and even though one has witnessed such story numerous times in Indian cinema, 'Alai Payuthey' feels fresh. The chemistry between Madhavan and Shalini, the romantic moments, Karthik and Shakti's struggle post marriage, the guilt etc..all of it is well demonstrated. There are a few glitches here and there, like some of the petty fights between the newly weds seems a little too petty to be believable. A.R. Rehman's melodious soundtrack is mesmerizing but a few of the songs, especially the item number, could have better been left out. The two leads are outstanding but the 'Alai Payuthey' belongs to Madhavan. The actor really gets under the skin of the character. Shalini too is brilliant though at times she's a little over the top. The supporting cast is adequate. Overall, this is another winner for Mani Ratnam and I hope he comes back to making good films like he did before 'Yuva'.
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a poignant work
alvk_svce_chennai15 December 2006
At first sight this may seem like just another feel good film about love.But the core theme of this film is the complexities that lovers-turned-couples face.

The chemistry between the film's lead pair is good.the hero steals your heart with his expressions right from his introductory song. the score is exceptional in the original version.But in the Hindi version the lyrics suffer proving that the music is complex.

The lyrics deserve a special mention. especially when the lyricist tries to visualise the colour red through the legs of a new born baby and brings out the difference between marriage and love.

Cinematography is the hallmark of this film. various parts of India such as Kashmir,kerala,chennai and goa are picturised beautifully in the song sequences.

The maker has been successful in bringing the muted emotions to the fore.The film sends a subtle message that love before marriage is shortlived and more of illusion while the affection that blossoms after marriage is permanent and real.
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A great movie on human relations
navya_hermione27 September 2004
The story of Alaipayuthey may be simple(like any other love story)but the way it is shown,i think all the credit goes to the brilliant Mani Ratnam,A.R.Rahman and cinematographer P.C.Sreeram.Every frame has some meaning in this movie.This movie is not only technically good,but also has moral sense.The lead roles played by madhavan and shalini are very impressive.Every single person who acted in this movie have given their full skills.I personally liked every single scene in this movie.Songs given by A.R.Rahman is one of his best.I think this movie is one of the best in tamil cinema's history.

A must see movie for all movie lovers.I'd recommend the DVD if you don't know the language.
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Simply superb!! Heart warming love story!
srininet124 February 2001
I have NO words to describe HOW WELL this movie has been made. This movie rediscovers the beauty of LOVE, long after the success of DDLJ, when creativity started dwindling with more and more movies trying to replicate it rather than coming up with something altogether different or FRESH. We thought to ourselves, WILL WE EVER GET TO SEE A DECENT AND TOUCHING LOVE STORY??!!!! Mani Rathnam heard us and gave us `Alai Payudhe'.

As we all know, Mani is the JACK-OF-ALL-TRADES and MASTER of none, but after watching this movie, we feel that is an UNDERSTATEMENT to praise such a talented Filmmaker who's always filled with new ideas. Hats off to him and his GREY CELLS, which come in use ever so often.

It is the way in which he goes about telling the story which GLUES us to our seat and makes us LAUGH till we CRY. The treatment is what is important in a LOVE STORY and NOT the Cast or the Locales, which has been given MOST importance in Bollywood and nowadays, even Madrasi filmmakers are going the same way. Mani tries to prove all of them WRONG.

Truly different, this movie has the Best of Mani's creativity, Rahman's music, P.C.Sreeram's cinematography (though it's a bit shaky in the climax), and SUPERB performances by the WHOLE cast. Well worth the money I spent on the VCD!!!

Pros Award winning Direction, Music, Cinematography, Dialogues, First rate performances by the whole cast, simple storyline and Superb screenplay.

Cons Few clichés, minor glitches in photography, tear jerking climax and the scantily clad Sophiya Haque song.
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Another Heart Soothing Movie ...
kkumsindia14 October 2005
Mani Ratnam has once again created a movie par excellence. A movie with a romantic touch takes you through a romantic journey in which you are glued to your seat on account of the excellent cinematography...A.R.Rehman's ear soothing numbers add color to the movie..Pleasing choreography and camera work for the song "Pachai Niramae" is a treat for eyes...Unique editing adds to the success of the movie..Overall a movie that any movie buff does not want to miss... Mani continues to mesmerize people with his simple telling techniques.. Creativity added with good script has been always been Mani Ratnam's trademark.. "Roja","Nayagan","Thalapathi" and now "Alai Payuthey" speak why Mani Ratnam is one of the best directors' India has ever seen...
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Holds your attention to the end
sudheerapte15 July 2002
Many friends recommended this movie by Mani Ratnam. I had been impressed by the Hindi Dil Se (1998) by this director, so even though I don't know a word of Tamil, I rented the DVD since it has English subtitles.

I was not disappointed! The dialogue is very natural, and you start to identify with the young couple and the people around them. The location shooting is also vintage Mani Ratnam.

The DVD by Aingharan U.K. is superb---much better than most Indian DVDs, and comparable to the DVD of Dil Se by DEI. The colorful song sequences can be enjoyed by themselves.
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This is Love in India
sidhu4 June 2005
Most Indian movies that you see are mostly belong to this category.

1) Boy sees a girl .

2) Boy falls in love but the girl rejects.

3) Then the girl realizes that she also like the boy so they start loving.

4)Fortunately or unfortunately there is an enemy which doesn't let them to unite.

5) After all the hurdles they get married and the end.

But this movie doesn't just end after the marriage , it shows the problem in marriages and what true love really is.

Also watch this movie for great song picturisation.Super hit movie with super hit songs.
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A Love story that goes after Love..
AshokePrabha6 June 2002
This is a repost.

It is an urban love story. In Mani's own style. Not like usual love stories in which heroes will be diving over boards and bikes to fight against the will of (mostly) heroine's dad or some wicked uncle, this one goes some months after a love marriage and tries to look in the problems somewhat realistically.

Basic elements of love story such as good songs, photography and interesting scenes are amply available. So it's a treat and fun to watch. I watched this movie between 15 to 50 times(max). The foremost reason being Shalini for whom I had got such a likening. It's unfortunate that she did not continue acting after her marriage. She gives a good performance with Madhavan(introduced in this film).

AR Rahman's songs of this film are still standing melodies. The film was a huge hit in A and B centers in TamilNad, India. I even know certain instances of marriages following this film's logic. Heard somebody said this one was from an English movie and all. This one might have some influence but definitely not a copy.

Another interesting thing to me in this film is the narration style. If the same story narrated in a linear mode then it would not have evoked the same emotions one would feel. Writer(director)'s choice was good.

I bet at least 70% of Chennai city lovers would have watched this movie. Was such a popular one at that time. This is a well made, perfectly acted, scored, photographed and scored movie. But can not be a classic. My rating is a 7. Oh..+ 2(just for Shalini alone).

Watch it to get your mind wavered with love(alai payuthey's literal meaning is '{my mind} is wavering').
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Aside from being longer than it can sustain, this is an enjoyable genre film with higher than normal production values
bob the moo26 October 2003
Warning: Spoilers
Karthik goes to meet his wife at the train station but finds that she hasn't turned up. He begins a frantic search for her and we assume that they must be a great couple. However the film flashbacks to their first meeting, courting, conflict over being different classes, their secret wedding and the reality of day to day marriage.

I'm not a big fan of this genre but will always give them a stab just to be fair and not prejudge the genre. This film is, as almost all of them are, overlong by about 30 minutes, but it still worked quite well. The plot is a different type of love story and can be quite moving at times, it isn't afraid to show the reality of married life and how things do change as the type of love changes. I found it quite hard to watch because it resembled my own life in some ways but it was moving without the parallels.

The songs are actually pretty good and, for the first time for me, actually sound different across the film as a whole. There is one artificial dance number (the beach party) but the others, even if they have dancing, seem less work and fit into the film. Technically, the sound quality is good and doesn't sound totally different during the songs. Also the cinematography is great apart from a few ill judged slow motion moments towards the conclusion.

The two leads are quite good. They can do the usual genre stuff of falling into romantic love, but they also really perform in the marriage and make it feel like a real couple battling it out and being insensitive to each other daily.

Overall this is not a great film mainly because it is a little flabby and overlong – didn't it have editors? I can only assume that they are worried of not giving value for money – but quality is always better than quantity in these matters. The songs are good (first time I've said that in a review of this genre) and the plot is quite moving at times.
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Movie with eternal subject and wonderful team!
nelufar_up13 February 2013
It's been 13 years since the release of movie but the core issue addressed in the movie-plot is eternal. In fact watching it after such a long time also is a very pleasing experience.

The way movie starts and then moves back and forth in time is wonderfully presented. A very very special applaud to Mr. P. C. Sreeram! Especially for the transition frames with changing color schemes and well-captured emotions which are simply mind-blowing!! Even the last frame of the movie which could be little disturbing because of the surrounding and situation also seems so beautiful and picturesque that instead of being sad you are awestruck.

Music by the maestro is intoxicating. I am very thankful to Mr. Mani Ratnam for eventually including the songs (as I read in reviews that he was aiming for a song-less movie).

And finally the soul of the movie: Actors and Mr. Director!! I have no words to describe their fantastic job.

Definitely this is one of the all-time watch movie.
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dkemathas7 October 2012
Warning: Spoilers
Alai Payuthey is a 2000 Tamil romantic drama film directed by Mani Ratnam which stars Madhavan Ranganathan and Shalini Ajith in the lead roles while Swarnamalya, Aravind Swamy, Kushboo Sundar, Jeyasudha Kapoor, Ravi Prakash, V. Nadharajan, Venu Aravinth, Vivek and Karthik Kumar play other pivotal roles. The cinematography was handled by P.C. Sriram while A. Sreekar Prasad did the editing. Farah Khan who had earlier worked with Mani Ratmam in Iruvar was signed up to do the choreography. The film carries a popular soundtrack which was composed by the Academy Award winning composer A.R Rahman and the lyrics were written by ''Kaviperarasu'' Vairamuthu. The late G. Srinivasan who was Mani Ratnam's elder brother produced the film.

The film revolves the story of a troubled couple who fell in love and got married against their parent's wish.

Karthik (Madhavan Ranganathan) and Shakthi (Shalini Ajith) are two young individuals from different class of family. Karthik, a computer engineering graduate, is son of a famous criminal lawyer named Varadharajan (V. Nadharajan) while Shakthi, a medical student, is daughter of a railways employee named Selvaraaj (Ravi Prakash). They both meet for the first time at a wedding and later begin to meet on suburban trains frequently. They both fall in love, but Shakthi denies to get married to him without her parent's consent. Karthik's parents meet Shakthi's parents and ask for their consent to a marriage between Karthik and Shakthi, but eventually disagree because of misunderstandings and cancel the wedding plans. Shakthi breaks up with Karthik and decides to move on.

Shakthi later goes to a medical camp in another city and Karthik decides to go after her. While Shakthi is at the medical camp and Karthik is traveling to find her, they both realize that they miss each other so much that they can not live without each other. When Karthik arrives the medical camp, Shakthi hugs him and asks him to marry her. They both get secretly married at a temple and begin to live with their parents.

One day when Raghu (Venu Aravinth) and his family come to ask Shakthi's parents to a marriage between him and Shakthi's elder sister Poorni (Swarnamalya), his father asks Selvaraaj for his consent to a marriage between Shakthi and his younger son (Karthik Kumar) as well. Shakthi denies and tells the truth that she is already married to Karthik. Both Shakthi and Karthik get kicked out of their house and they move together to an apartment and begin to live their married life.

After several months Shakthi meets her mother (Jeyasudha Kapoor) and Poorni on a suburban train. She gets to know that her father is about to die. She asks Karthik to come with her to go and visit her sick father, but Karthik denies because her father slapped him before. Shakthi then decides to not go to a house where people do not respect Karthik, but Karthik changes his mind and they both decide to go and visit her father the next day.

The next day they get to know that Selvaraaj is dead. Her mother gets angry, tells Shakthi to get out of the house and the relationship between the two young lovers begins to walk on the edge. Misunderstandings gradually turn out to be suspicions and the silence begins to speak.

The couple stop talking, but Karthik re-arranges the wedding plans for Poorni and Raghu to win back Shakthi's heart. One day when Shakthi gets to know that Poorni and Raghu are going to get married and that Karthik was behind everything, she decides to go to Karthik's office to meet him and ask for apology. On the way to Karthik's office Shakthi gets into an accident and is taken to the hospital. Shakthi is admitted at the hospital and fights for her life while in Karthik's mind Shakthi is missing. He has no clue about where she is. How Karthik finds Shakthi forms the crux of the story.

Madhavan Ranganathan (credited as R. Madhavan in films) made his debut as a big screen actor with this movie and quickly got everybody's attention because of his acting skills and his look. Both him and Shalini were faithful to their roles and they had a beautiful chemistry throughout the film. The film had great visuals and colorful locations which not only made the couple to look beautiful, but the whole movie beautiful. It did not surprise me that the film carries a popular soundtrack. With A.R Rahman's music and ''Kaviperarasu'' Vairamuthu's lines you can be 100% sure and say that the soundtrack will definitely be a hit and this soundtrack did not fail to win everybody's heart. It is still popular all over the world. Songs like ''Endrendrum Punnagai'', ''Pachai Nirame'' and ''Snegithane'' have turned out to be nowadays youngster's favorite songs when it comes to Tamil Cinema Music. If you ask for my opinion I would say that this album is the finest work by both A.R Rahman and Vairamuthu.

Like Mani Ratnam's earlier films this film does not have focus on politics, terrorism and today's society. This film explores a marriage life and learns the audience about how important the word ''sacrificing'' is when it comes to marriage. I am sure that every married couple who love their life-partner from the bottom of their heart will enjoy this film and learn the meaning of true love. Alai Payuthey will definitely be one of the best romantic drama films in Tamil Cinema's history for the next 20-30 years. According to me this is the finest work by Mani Ratnam till date.

Verdict: Alai Payuthey... A treat of love!
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10 stars for the Songs, -2 for the movie
forumgeneral1 July 2006
While this movie is incredibly stupid, boring and uses the same old formula again and again, the songs by AR Rehman are absolutely mind blowing. The acting is OK but the story and flow is not what you expect from Mani ratnam. So why does this movie deserve 8 stars? Its because without the movie and plot itself, the songs may have never seen the light of day or given AR Rehman the appropriate ideas. The situation (not plot) is very similar to Thiruda Thiruda where the movie itself is garbage but the songs were ground breaking and downright unbelievable. Along with Thiruda Thiruda, this film has to have the best songs ever produced from India and some of the best in the world. In emotional terms, very few around the entire world even come close.
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Love poetry
gouthambrc1 March 2021
This is the normal Indian lovestory but Mani sir way off presentation storyline telling and Misc was until
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Just Madhavan & Shalini Show.
harishmadireddi16 November 2020
There is always a subtle dignity in the way maniratnam's character behave. Coming to this movie, it was just love through out and bringing the scenario of how newly married people deal themselves and their partners. Shanti/shakthi's character was awesome and the shalini has brought more beauty to it. Her expressions, her performance everything were very well executed. I was wondering why was madhavan having huge female following during early 2000's after sakhi and found the reason for it. He was smooth and carried that aura of smartness in him. Lastly aravind swamy and khusbhoo as well have made the impact on screen in that small duration itself, especially aravind. Maniratnam, pc sri ram and ar rahman were just magical. Almost every song, scene and shot were intriguing and attention seekers.
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This film as everything love laugh emotion
nmsahu-8519311 November 2020
Mani ratnam Sir made amazing film this film maker is a one of the best of Indian cinema and this film by performance by cinematography by everything the music also is superb
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Good innocent romance
AnonymousbutDilpreet00212 August 2020
Among the better ones. I usually don't like romantic films. Alai payuthey is not very different than most other such films but Mani Ratnam did it in his own style. It's less dramatic than other, seems realistic. It's based on real life issues. Character's are natural. It's not happy go lucky story, it has it's share of sad moments(which are overdone in second half).

Parents meeting scene in the film is the best. The actors executed it very well. I can't imagine a more realistic and well written scene like this.

The ending did not go well with me. Final 25 minutes felt forced.

Songs were good. First song goes well with the flow of the film. Snehthane Snehthane was the best song but it felt disconnected from the film. September Madham was not good.

The high drama(not melodrama) prevents it from being a great film. The length might be a problem as it felts atleast 15 minutes too long.

As of now, it needs 95 more votes to enter top 250 Indian chart. That is hard to believe coz it has cult following in Tamil Nadu( + Tamil films are popular among Malayalam audience as well) ,even it's Telugu dub is a hit. Maybe, IMDb is unfair to old films.
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Good movie
athiprakash374 August 2020
The film shows how girls should be given rights to attract to, love choose their life partners.. They too are humans after all.. right?
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An Epic Masterpiece
blueblackrebel14 April 2020
There are movies which are emotional, and there are movies itself being an emotion, this is one of the later kind. From the nation's legendary director Mani Ratnam sir, nation's finest cinematographer P.C.Sriram, nation's finest music composer A.R.Rahman team with some of the nation's finest technicians, dialogue writers and actors to work on a script based on emotional drame, you get a movie like Alaipauthey.
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Still mesmerizing.
afridrahman21 November 2019
Saw this movie after 19years of its theatrical release. Shocked to find that the dialogues from this movie still relate with year 2019 - Like Wow ! Hard to believe that this was Maddy's First movie . The chemistry between the lead protagonists is beyond mesmerizing . ARR's Music brought more romanticism and Love ! Watch this Mani's best romantic movie if you are a lover of this genre .
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Short review
sarathpillaijl2 August 2019
A refreshing classic. The mood that this movie puts you in is very new. It gives awesome insights on relationship and marriage. The complexity is showed perfectly on screen. The direction and screenplay is top notch. Its very new for a movie of that period of time. The cast is perfect. Everyones role was carried out perfectly. Although there were some unsuitable roles for some of the members of cast.. The story is not at all new. But the director has somehow managed to twist and turn it and use it to the maximum potential. Overall a very good movie
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Extraordinary musical love film
abbastriplefive20 November 2018
It's the love story for all generations with best melody songs(exclusively that colors song).
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Simple and Real... A Masterpiece!
Jini-B4 June 2018
I saw the Bollywood remake of this film as a kid, but after seeing the original Tamil version, I can say for sure that this one is even better! The lead actors have absolutely incredible chemistry and there's this beautiful innocence in the relationship they portrayed in the film. Madhavan and Shalini created fire on screen in this movie. I had a smile on my face throughout the scenes depicting their romance. Also, this movie is family-friendly and there are no excessive public displays of affection. The language was not known to me, and this was also the first time I was able to sit through a movie with subtitles. I had tried it once before but gave up midway. Here, I was so engrossed in the story and the characters that I hardly paused the film.

The romance was so organic and nothing felt forced. From the first look, the first conversation, the proposal to their marriage, Shalini and Madhavan created magic together. So much so, that every time they had separate scenes in the movie, I longed to see them together again. I am usually very skeptical when it comes to romance in movies, so I was pleasantly surprised to see something like this happen. The story, the direction, the acting, everything is of a superlative degree in this film. Incredible is an understatement for this movie.

A.R Rahman creates an almost perfect album. I have grown up hearing these tracks in Hindi and it was a nostalgic trip down memory lane while listening to these tracks. These songs will never grow old. Every track (except for one) found its own spot in the film and it did not seem like the filmmakers were using the tunes as fluff. The songs pushed the story forward and the chemistry of the lead actors, again, did most of the work on the visual front. That, backed with the picturesque cinematography, turned all the songs into snippets of viewing pleasure. When compared to the music of the Bollywood remake, Saathiya, it seems that even though the music is the same, the lyrics are different, thus making most of the songs drastically different. Gulzar writes phenomenal lyrics, but there's a different kind of magic in the original lyrics. These lyrics, or what I gleaned from the English translations, had a soul of its own. That paired with the lead actors, the innocence in their eyes, the looks shared between them, their conversations... made this movie a masterpiece.

Words will fall short if I try to compliment Madhavan and Shalini. Both were perfectly suited for their characters and left an imprint on me with their talent. The supporting actors were also well suited for their roles and nothing, not a thing of the main story, felt out of place. I really wish more movies in India were like this. Simple, real, innocent. Suffice it to say, Alai Payuthey is in a league of its own, and even though Saathiya is a good tribute, this movie and the beautiful feelings associated with it, cannot be replicated that easily.
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Strong Performance from Madhavan, but Unconvincing
GypsiB22 April 2020
In this romantic drama, Karthik (played by Madhavan) falls in love with Shakti (Shalini), woos her for some time, and eventually wins her. They marry, against the wishes of their fathers, and find that marriage is much more difficult than romance.

The realistic portrayal of marriage is excellently done and the plot is well written. However, it was hard to sympathize with Shakti, whether it was the character or Shalini's acting; Shakti was too sharp and smug, especially when compared to Karthik's openness and innocence (or Madhavan's generally good performance). The music was mostly good, with one song particularly memorable. I expected to fully enjoy this movie, based on reviews, but the difficulty with Shakti and a lack of convincing emotional buildup kept me from completely connecting with the film.
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Lazy manipulative romance drama
ravenus4 April 2020
By God, what a terrible movie. A vella software guy stalks a medical student till she falls for him and they get married in secret. When the secret is spilled, both are turned out by their families. They discover that romance is sometimes not everything. Then an event occurs that throws everyone into turmoil.

Utterly manipulative script dependent entirely on the charms of the cast. Madhavan's Karthik comes across as a consummate lout during the courting phase (more than Arvind Swami in Bombay, and that's an achievement). I am still unable to comprehend what the heroine Shalini's medical student Shakthi finds so irresistible about him (the sequence in which he follows her to the medical camp where she's interning, I imagined would end in her telling him to stop being a hangdog and focus on making something of himself. Instead, she's suddenly so in love with this wastrel she wants to get immediately married, even if it means having to hide the marriage from their respective families). The manner in which he and his friends search for the missing wife (pointlessly hanging around train platforms and delaying contacting the police and hospitals till the last moment) is horrifyingly inept. Even more so than other Maniratnam "cute" movies every scene has a manufactured quality to it, and the item song (September maadham) seems to have been transplanted from another film altogether. Thoo!
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Alai Payuthey
santhosh-1029016 July 2019
Worst Movie. Nobody acted good in the movie. Songs and BGM in the movie were good. There was no interesting part in the movie. The movie was so boring. This movie is one of the Worst Movie of Mani Ratnam. The movie had nothing new. Worst Movie.
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