Apoorva Sagodharargal (1949 film)
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|Produced by||S. S. Vasan|
|Written by||Kothamangalam Subbu|
|Starring||M. K. Radha
R. Nagendra Rao
|Music by||S. Rajeswara Rao|
|Distributed by||Gemini Studios|
|21 October 1949|
Apoorva Sagodharargal (English: Rare Brothers) is a 1949 Indian Tamil-language action film directed by T. G. Ragavachari and written by Kothamangalam Subbu. The film which was adapted from Alexandre Dumas' novel The Corsican Brothers stars M. K. Radha and P. Bhanumathi in the lead roles with Nagendra Rao and Suryaprabha playing supporting roles. The film revolves around the two lookalike brothers who were separated during childhood by their cruel uncle who murdered his parents, rest of the film shows how two brothers join together in avenging the death of their parents. It was simultaneously produced in Tamil, Telugu and Hindi languages by Gemini Studios. The Telugu version Apoorva Sahodarulu (English: Rare Brothers) was directed by C. Pullaiah, and the Hindi version Nishan (English: Mark) by S. S. Vasan.
Mahendra Bhoopathi and Marthandan are rival kings. When Bhoopathi’s wife gives birth to conjoined twins, Dr. Nanjappa separates them skillfully. In a surprise attack, Marthandan and his men set fire to Bhoopathi’s fort thinking that the entire Bhoopathi clan perishes. But the good doctor has taken the babies to the safety of his house. And thereafter the elder twin Vijayan grows up in the city, while the younger twin Vikraman is brought up in the forest by the loyal Marudhu. When they are 25 years old, the doctor sends for them and introduces them to each other and makes them aware of their history. The twins swear to avenge the dastardly killing of their father, and restore the glory of their kingdom. Meanwhile, Vijayan saves the beautiful Kanchana from the aging yet lust-filled Marthandan and his men. Vijayan and Kanchana fall in love in due course. Problems crop up between the brothers in the forest, as Vikraman too falls for Kanchana. And being the younger of the conjoined twins, Vikraman aches with frustrating feelings of physical desire whenever Vijayan and Kanchana are together. Not wanting to be the cause for the brothers turning against each other and in order to enable them to reach their avowed objective without further distraction, Kanchana leaves Vijayan in the forest, only to fall straight into the clutches of Marthandan. The rescue of Kanchana, and Marthandan getting his retribution form rest of the exciting tale.
|M. K. Radha||Vijayan & Vikraman|
|R. Nagendra Rao||Marthandan|
|L. Narayana Rao|
|G. Patttu Iyer|
Apoorva Sagodharargal was adapted from Alexandra Duma's novel The Corsican Brothers. Gregory Ratoff adapted the film and Douglas Fairbanks Jr played the dual role of the conjoined twins Lucien and Mario Franchi. The film became successful which inspired Vasan to adapt the film in Tamil. TG Raghavachari alias Acharya lawyer turned film maker was selected to direct the film. M. K. Radha was selected to play the lead characters with Bhanumathi playing the lead actress. For the negative character, Vasan approached P. U. Chinnappa who refused fearing his image with Kannada actor Nagendra Rao being finalised for the role. "Stunt" Somu who did the stunt choreography appeared in the role of Marudhu, close associate of Bhoopathi. This film was often considered an unofficial sequel to Chandralekha.
The music was composed by S. Rajeswara Rao, MD Parthasarathy and R Vaidyanathan and lyrics were written by Kothamangalam Subbu and Seetharaman. The song "Laddu Laddu" sung by Bhanumathi was well received. A duet meant for the Hindi version was composed on the piano by Rajeswara Rao, and Vasan liked it so much he wanted it for the Tamil version too. This song was added after the shoot was over.
- aaha aaduvEnE geetham paaduvEnE sung by T. A. Mothi & P. Bhanumathi
- laddu laddu mittai vENumaa by P. Bhanumathi
- maanum mayilum aadum sOlai by P. Bhanumathi
- manamOhanamE vana vaasamE by P. Bhanumathi
Release and Legacy
The film was released on 21 October 1949 with reel length of 4,465 metres (14,649 ft) and received "U" (Universal) certificate from Central Board of Film Certification with runtime of 143 minutes. The film was a major success both at the box-office and with the critics. Dhananjayan praised MK Radha's acting as "finest and best in his career" and appreciated director Acharya for "bringing out the best performance from everyone and presenting an entertaining and engaging film". Randor Guy of The Hindu wrote that the film "is remembered for the excellent performances of Bhanumathi and Nagendra Rao, and for the music". The film was remade in Telugu as Apoorva Sahodarulu with Radha reprising the character. It was also remade in Hindi as Nishaan with Ranjan. Bhanumathi was the lead actress for all the three versions.
The film introduced the concept of identical twins and their feelings and eventually became a trendsetter for similar themes. M. G. Ramachandran played the twins in a rehash of the film titled Neerum Neruppum, in 1971 which did well and this was remade as Gora Aur Kala in Hindi starring Rajendra Kumar in 1972. Later 1999 film Vaali starring Ajithkumar also had a similar concept.