Why Angadi Theru was overlooked by National Awards committee


Angadi Theru

Nobody, including director Vetrimaran and actor Dhanush, would have expected even in their wildest dreams that ‘Aadukalam’ would end up with winning as many as six national awards in various categories. The awards, which were announced in New Delhi on Thursday, took many by surprise as Vasanthabalan’s ‘Angaadi Theru’ was considered by many to be the forerunner in this regard.

Set against the backdrop of Madurai’s cock-fighting community, ‘Aadukalam’ can hardly be termed as a commercial success despite the fact that it was promoted to no end on the tele-media by Sun Pictures. The film was no doubt a good attempt by Vetrimaran but the fact of the matter is, was it really deserving as many as six awards?.

It is felt by movie-goers that films like ‘Nandalala’, ‘Mynaa’, ‘Madarasapattinam’, ‘Kalavaani’ and ‘Angaadi Theru’ have been overlooked for some reasons by the awards selection committee. Even K. Balachander, who was recently awarded the Dada Saheb Phalke award for excellence in cinema, had appreciated Vimal’s acting in ‘Kalavaani’ and had observed that Tamil cinema had got another ‘very fine actor’.

‘Angaadi Theru’ stirred the souls in all the movie-goers who happened to watch it. The film was blatant, bold and yet practical as it set out to depict in graphic detail the seemingly ‘glossy’ but painful lives of the many salesmen and salesgirls working in superstores and malls. The film had power-house performances by Anjali and many others besides having top-class music, wonderful script and practical dialogues.

Even ‘Nandalala’ by Mysskin deserved a close-look which had amazing music by Ilaiyaraaja. Likewise, ‘Mynaa’, which was appreciated liberally by top-stars Kamal Haasan and Rajinikanth, was grossly ignored by the committed. Vijay’s ‘Madarasapattinam’ was another movie which deserved serious look-in by the committee, it is widely felt in the industry.