|Directed by||Mani Ratnam|
|Produced by||G. Venkateswaran|
|Written by||Mani Ratnam|
|Cinematography||P. C. Sreeram|
|Editing by||B. Lenin–V. T. Vijayan|
|Distributed by||Sujatha Productions (P) Ltd.|
|Release dates||August 15, 1986|
|Running time||146 minutes|
Mouna Ragam (English: Silent Symphony) is a 1986 Tamil romantic drama film directed by Mani Ratnam. The film stars Mohan and Revathi in the lead roles, with Karthik in an extended cameo role. The soundtrack and background score are composed by Ilayaraja and the cinematography was handled by P. C. Sreeram. Mouna Ragam released on 15 August 1986, coinciding with Indian Independence Day. The film was Mohan's last blockbuster and was critically acclaimed upon release. It received the National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Tamil in 1987. Mouna Ragam was dubbed in Telugu under the same title.
Divya (Revathi) is a mischievous and naughty girl in a conservative family. Her father is a government servant and is very strict about her conduct. One day, she finds out that there is a marriage proposal for her which her parents are very much looking forward to. Unwilling to get married, she deliberately comes home late on the day the groom's family is there to meet her; so that they reject her. To her surprise, the groom, Chandrakumar (Mohan) and his family are patiently waiting to meet her. Divya talks very arrogantly to Chandrakumar in an attempt to make him dislike her, but he ends up liking her and agrees to the marriage. Divya succumbs to family pressure and marries Chandrakumar.
Post marriage, Chandrakumar takes Divya to New Delhi with him. Unable to come to terms with her marriage, Divya snubs her well-meaning husband at every given instance. This culminates in her asking for divorce when Chandrakumar asks her what she wants as a wedding gift. A shocked Chandrakumar probes her for a reason and her flashback unfolds where she was in love with another man. It was during her college days that she met a man Manohar (Karthik), who along with his gang beat up the son of a M.P and robs his money. She considers it a gang theft and reports to the police. But later, she finds out that the theft was done because the M.P's son had run his car over a poor girl and to arrange money for the girl's treatment. After knowing this she feels guilty of framing him and bails him out of the police station. Manohar falls for her and tries to win her love. Divya initially rejects him but falls in love with him in due course. Manohar is a member of a revolutionary troop which plans an illegal rally. Divya doesn't approve his participation in such unlawful activities and persuades him not to attend the rally. Manohar urges her to marry him the next day. On the day of the marriage, Manohar, being a suspect, is falsely charged for participating in the previous day's rally. As he is arrested and taken away by the police, he attempts to escape and runs to the marriage register's office where Divya is waiting for him. In the following chase, the policeman accidentally shoots him and Manohar dies on the footsteps of the registrar's office.
Chandrakumar is ready to forget her past and live with her but Divya cannot accept another man in her life. Both of them file for a divorce, but as per the law, since they are newly married, they can get it only after one year of their marriage. Divya is forced to live with Chandrakumar and she slowly gets starts liking him. But Chandrakumar ignores her completely, since after a year she will be gone and he doesn't want to get used to her. Once Chandrakumar is attacked by his company's labourers as he had suspended their union leader, Divya struggles to save his life. After his discharge from hospital she renders her services as a wife. Chandrakumar however neglects it, which hurts her. Divya finally comes to understand her love for him and tries to reveal it by wearing the anklets which he gifted her just after marriage. But he is irritated by her immature acts and asks her to leave to her parent's home and even books tickets for her travel. Until Divya leaves the house both of them don't share their feelings for each other. While she is about to depart Chandrakumar gives her the divorce papers which she asked as a gift. Divya bursts out and finally admits that she loves him and she would wait for him till he realizes it and leaves. Chandrakumar, finally coming to terms with his repressed feelings, gets her out of the train and both return home happily.
- Mohan as Chandrakumar
- Revathi as Divya
- Karthik as Manohar
- Ra. Sankaran as Chandramouli (Divya's father)
- V. K. Ramasamy as Chandrakumar's boss
- Kanchana as the lawyer
- Vani as Divya's Mother
- Bhaskar as Divya's brother
- Kalaiselvi as Divya's sister
- Baby Sonia as Divya's sister
While scripting, Mouna Ragam was originally titled as Divya, named after the female lead Revathy's character in the film. However, the song Naan Padum Mouna Ragam from Mani Ratnam's previous film Idaya Kovil, inspired him to change the title. The film was also Ratnam's first collaboration with cinematographer P. C. Sreeram. Mouna Ragam was extensively shot in North India, being shot primarily in New Delhi. The song Panivizhum Iravu was shot at the Taj Mahal, while scenes from Mandram Vandha were shot at the India Gate and Sikandra, Agra. Lead actor Mohan's voice was dubbed by S. N. Surendar. The film is said to be a "reworking" of the film Nenjathai Killaathey, directed by Mahendran.
|Soundtrack album by Ilaiyaraaja|
|Genre||Tamil Film Soundtrack|
The soundtrack consists of five songs composed by Ilaiyaraaja, with lyrics by Vaali. The soundtrack along with the background score was positively received at the time of release. The hit number Mandram Vandha was later adapted by Ilayaraja as the Hindi song Cheeni Kum in the 2007 namesake film. Filmmaker Poongothai Chandrahasan said, "I like the way 'Nilave Vaa' is shot. It's not like they go into some exotic location but this sort of flows seamlessly, integrated into the narrative. And Ilaiyaraja's music is such that even when you listen to it ten years later, you still remember the song."
|1.||"Nilaavae Vaa"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam||4:36|
|2.||"Mandram Vandha"||S. P. Balasubrahmanyam||4:46|
|3.||"Chinna Chinna Vanna Kuyil"||S. Janaki||4:24|
|4.||"Oho Megam Vandhadho"||S. Janaki||4:25|
|5.||"Panivizhum Iravu"||S. Janaki, S. P. Balasubrahmanyam||4:32|
Mouna Ragam was critically acclaimed, notably for its realistic portrayal of urban Tamils. Receiving more praise for its musical score by Ilaiyaraaja and cinematography by P. C. Sreeram, it became director Mani Ratnam's first commercially successful film, and a "milestone" in his career.
Filmmaker Poongothai Chandrahasan, in an interview with The Hindu said, "Obviously, one of the most important things about a film that makes it a classic is that it has to stay in your mind. When most Tamil movies were doing a girl-meets-boy-and-falls-in-love routine, this was so different. That too, it was done within the commercial format. Mani Ratnam had the guts to make a film that interesting with a different storyline. Also the way P.C. Sriram shot the film was so beautiful."
Upperstall.com said, "Mouna Ragam is looked at as Mani Ratnam's breakthrough film and though somewhat dated in places in terms of both content and style, the film has some of his finest moments." The critic praised Revathy's performance as among her "best ever", and added "As the gentle, kind and patient husband, Mohan is not bad even if as mentioned, he is too good to be true." and concluded, "All in all, Mouna Ragam is well, well worth a watch even today."
Behindwoods said, "There are some movies which remain etched in your thoughts not because they dazzle you with wizardry but because they make their presence felt in a quiet manner. Mounaragam fits into the second category." and concluded, "In today’s world, where youngsters have more freedom to choose their life partners, Mounaragam may seem anachronistic. Yet, it is a film to be watched to understand the nuances of a good and lasting marriage."
|34th National Film Awards||National Film Awards||Best Regional Film||G. Venkateswaran||Won|
|36th Filmfare Awards South||Filmfare Awards South||Best Tamil Director||Mani Ratnam||Won|
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