Audio cassette Cover
|Directed by||Balu Mahendra|
|Produced by||V. Gnanavelu|
|Written by||Balu Mahendra|
by Stephen King
|Edited by||Balu Mahendra|
Julie Ganapathi is a 2003 Indian Tamil psychological thriller film directed by Balu Mahendra, featuring Saritha, Jayaram and Ramya Krishnan in the lead roles. The film is an adaptation of Stephen King's novel, Misery. Featuring music composed by Ilaiyaraaja, the film opened to positive reviews in February 2003.
Julie Ganapathi (Saritha) is a staunch fan of a popular television show, Manga. Over the years, Julie grows to identify herself obsessively with the main character of the show. The author of the series, Tenkasi Balakumaran (Jayaram), leaves his home for a few days to be alone to write the last few episodes of Manga. On his way back home after completing his work, his vehicle gets into an accident which leaves him seriously injured and crippled. Julie rescues Bala and takes him home, but she is revealed to be emotionally unstable, and deliriously obsessed with the character in Bala's story. Julie asks Bala to allow her to read the scripts for the concluding episodes that he has just completed.
Over the next few days, she reads the story and finds the ending not to her liking. She forces Bala to rewrite the ending by various means, forcing him to escape his captor's clutches before it is too late. Soon after, Bala becomes aware of how Julie has not informed anyone of his situation and is not at all planning to release him anytime soon. As a result, he tries to escape her home. In this, he is caught and suspended to remain in his room. She also disables him from getting up.
Afterwards, a policeman investigating Bala's disappearance decides to go to the house of Julie since she has made her love for Manga known around the village. When investigating her home, he discovers that Bala was in fact being kept there. Julie then draws a weapon and kills him. She then informs Bala that they will then die together. Just to get him some time he uses the excuse of having to finish his new version of the last Manga script. With that, he finishes, tricks Julie into getting him a weapon, and with a fight, manages to kill Julie and escape. The film forwards to Bala with his family, discussing with the press his experiences, stating that she was in fact an inspiration to him.
- Saritha as Julie Ganapathi, a staunch fan of the TV show Manga who is obsessed with Bala
- Jayaram as Tenkasi Balakumaran, the author of Manga who becomes crippled after a vehicle accident
- Ramya Krishnan as Vijaya
- Mohan Raman as Channel's Head
- Sashikumar as Ivan, a writer
- Dhivyadharshini as Writer
- Naren as Julie's husband
- Junior Balaiah
- Delhi Ganesh as Inspector Ganesh who later get killed by Julie Ganapathi
- Vatsala Rajagopal
Balu Mahendra had read the Tamil translation of Stephen King's novel, Misery, and adapted it into a screenplay. Post-release, he revealed that he had not watched the English film version of the novel, Rob Reiner's Misery (1990), and was unaware that such a film had been made. He drew comparisons between the similar theme of the film, with his previous ventures Moodu Pani (1980) and Moondram Pirai (1982). Balu Mahendra chose Jayaram to play the lead role, after having watched and been impressed with several of the actor's performances in films, as a part of jury committees for awards. The actor's Malayali background meant that he adapted the script to make the protagonist a Malayali-born settler in Tamil Nadu. Jayaram recommended Saritha's name for the film, and the actress made a comeback to cinema after an extended sabbatical. For her role, Balu Mahendra had requested Saritha to put on ten kilograms, and after an initial period of hesitance, the actress later agreed.
A major proportion of the film was shot in a single room with just two actors, Jayaram and Saritha, with Balu Mahendra opting to use only natural light. The producers of the film insisted that a song was added for the commercial viability of the film and against his own wishes, Balu Mahendra shot and included a sensuous song featuring Ramya Krishnan.
The film opened in February 2003 to positive reviews from critics. A reviewer from Sify.com wrote "the film is dark, deadly, daring and is the best thriller to come along in years", adding that it is "recommended and a must-see for those who love thrillers". Rediff.com also gave the film a positive review, noting "Balu Mahendra proves even after five years he has not lost his touch" and that "is a film worth watching". Likewise, The Hindu also gave the film a positive review, praising the performances of Saritha and Jayaram, and adding that Balu Mahendra's work is a "fulfilling fare" and "that the veteran lives up to it in inimitable style". Although the film had a slow start at the box-office, it picked up, owing to positive word-of-mouth reviews.
|Original track list|
|1.||"Minmini Paarvaigal"||K. J. Yesudas||5:04|
|2.||"Enakku Piditha Paadal" (female)||Shreya Ghoshal||4:31|
|4.||"Enakku Piditha Paadal" (male)||Vijay Yesudas||4:30|
|5.||"Idhayamae Idhayamae"||Shreya Ghoshal||4:30|
|6.||"Thanni Konjam Yeri Irukku"||Prasanna||4:38|
- Eat This With Some Fava Beans