Kaali (2018 film)
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Kiruthiga Udhayanidhi|
|Produced by||Fatima Vijay Antony|
|Written by||Kiruthiga Udhayanidhi|
|Music by||Vijay Antony|
|Cinematography||Richard M. Nathan|
|Edited by||Lawrence Kishore|
Vijay Antony Film Corporation
|Distributed by||Red Giant Movies|
Kaali is a 2018 Indian Tamil-language period action film directed by Kiruthiga Udhayanidhi, starring Vijay Antony in the lead alongside Sunaina, Anjali, x Shilpa Manjunath, and Amritha Aiyer. Produced by Fatima Vijay Antony, the film began production in March 2017 and was released on 18 May 2018. The film was also released in Telugu language as Kaasi.
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Bharath (Vijay Antony) is a successful surgeon in America who is the managing director of his similarly-named hospital. Every time he sleeps, he gets a recurring dream about a bull chasing a baby and the voice of a woman; this leaves him confused. When Bharath's mother (Sreeja Ravi) goes into an emergency kidney transplant surgery, he decides to be her donor, but his father reveals that it may not be possible because he is an adopted son. After his mother's successful surgery, Bharath goes to India to find out about his biological parents. Upon inquiry in the orphanage that he grew up in, he finds his mother's village and goes there. Bharath befriends Gopi (Yogi Babu) in the village, and together, they find that Bharath's mother's name is Parvathy, his actual name was Kaali, and she died trying to save him from a charging bull. Bharath assumes his given name Kaali and is able to piece together the reason for his dreams. When he asks about his father, nobody seems to know who he is, so he sets up a free clinic in the village and tries to do a DNA match test of all the patients who come there. The villagers line up to receive free treatment from him, and there is a sharp decrease in the number of patients coming to a local Siddha doctor named Valli (Anjali). She is upset and plays pranks on Kaali, and they get to know to each other.
Meanwhile, Kaali and Gopi have their suspicions on the village head Periyasamy (Madhusudhan Rao) because he is left-handed, just like Kaali. They get him drunk and ask about his past, where a young Periyasamy (Vijay Antony) is in love with his college mate (Amritha Aiyer), but they face opposition from their parents due to caste differences. They plan to elope when they find that his girlfriend is pregnant, but due to problems at his house and communal riots in the village, Periyasamy arrives later than expected, and his girlfriend consumes poison and dies upon thinking that he had betrayed her. When Kaali asks his girlfriend's name, Periyasamy tells that she is Thenmozhi, and Kaali realizes that Periyasamy is not his father.
Later, in a drunken brawl at a local bar, Kaali and Gopi come across a man named "Thala Vettiyaan" Maari (Nassar), who has the name "Parvathy" tattooed on his arm. They try to find out about him, and he tells that the tattoo is the name of his girlfriend. A young Maari (Vijay Antony) is a thief and goes to a house in the middle of the night to steal. He finds a married woman named Parvathy (Shilpa Manjunath) trying to kill her influential, aged, and abusive husband Gounder (Vela Ramamoorthy), who forcefully married her. Maari threatens Parvathy and steals money and jewels while she watches in terror. Once Maari is out of the house, Parvathy follows him and tries to fight him and retrieve the stolen things, but he overpowers her. Somehow, this incident blossoms into love between the two, and they try to elope to escape Gounder. Gounder finds out about the affair and orders his men to kill them. Parvathy dies while trying to save Maari. In rage, Maari chops off Gounder's head, and this begins a communal riot in the village. Kaali now finds that Maari is also not his father.
In the meantime, the DNA test results come, and Kaali surprisingly finds a match with an old woman named Vellathayee (Shanthi Mani) who may be his grandmother. She tells that she had a daughter who worked in the church and died in a fire accident, and Kaali realizes that his mother's name is not Parvathy but Poomayilu (Sunaina). He is suspicious of Father John (Jayaprakash), a kindhearted person who has the respect of all the villagers. Kaali tries to match John's DNA and reads his personal diary, where he comes to know about his past. A young John (Vijay Antony) comes to the village to become a Christian priest. He finds about the casteism in the village and that people are still being subjected to ill treatment. He abolishes the caste system and teaches the villagers to be united. Certain upper caste members object to this, and Gounder is one of them. His henchman Das (RK Suresh) beats up John, and Poomayilu tends to John while he recovers. They accidentally make love, and Poomayilu becomes pregnant. John realizes his mistake and tries desperately to convince Poomayilu to elope with him and get married, but she refuses, saying that the whole village is united only because of John, and if he leaves now, they will go back to their old ways.
While this conversation happens, Das sets fire to all the lower caste community's huts in the wake of Gounder's murder committed by Maari. A communal riot begins, and a lot of people die in the fire accident. Das is arrested and vows to take revenge on John. Poomayilu is also presumed to be dead. John becomes a priest and has been serving the village as per Poomayilu's wish since then. In reality, Poomayilu escaped the village without anyone's knowledge, had given birth to Kaali, and lived under a different identity as Parvathy until she died. Kaali now finds that his biological father is John and his DNA also matches to prove it. Das comes out of jail and tries to kill John, but Kaali saves John. Das eventually gets killed. John thanks Kaali for his help. Kaali, however, chooses to hide the truth from John and let him live in peace and continue his service to the community. He leaves the village since his mission is complete and takes along his maternal grandmother and Valli with him to America.
- Vijay Antony as Kaali (Bharath), Young Periyasamy (Samy), Young Maari, and Young John
- Sunaina as Poo Mayilu (Parvathy)
- Anjali as Valli
- Shilpa Manjunath as Parvathy
- Amritha Aiyer as Thenmozhi
- Jayaprakash as Father John
- Nassar as "Thala Vettiyaan" Maari
- Madhusudhan Rao as Periyasamy (Samy)
- Yogi Babu as Gopi
- Vela Ramamoorthy as Gounder
- R. K. Suresh as Das
- Sreeja Ravi as Bharath's adopted mother
- Shanthi Mani as Vellathayee, Poo Mayilu's mother
In January 2017, it was reported that Vijay Antony would work on a project to be directed by Kiruthiga Udhayanidhi, who had earlier made Vanakkam Chennai (2013). In March, Vijay Antony confirmed that he would star and also produce the film, which was titled Kaali, with Kiruthiga revealing it would be a "family drama". Four actresses were cast in the film: Anjali, Sunaina, Amritha Aiyer, and Shilpa Manjunath.
After shooting for the film alongside his commitments in Srinivasan's Annadurai (2017), Vijay Antony chose to briefly prioritise his work for Kaali in April 2017, after Annadurai's co-producer Raadhika underwent a tax raid on her properties. He later continued to shoot for both films simultaneously.
|Soundtrack album by|
|Released||24 January 2018|
|Genre||Feature film soundtrack|
|Vijay Antony chronology|
The soundtrack of Kaali consists of five songs composed by Vijay Antony.
|1.||"Arumbey"||Vivek||Nivas, Janaki Iyer||04:52|
|2.||"Amma Alugiren"||Arun Bharathi||Nivas||04:17|
|3.||"Yugam Noorai"||Arun Bharathi||Vedala Hemachandra, Sangeetha Rajeshwaran||05:21|
|5.||"Manusha Vaa Munnera"||Madhan Karky||Jagadeesh||04:56|
All tracks are written by Bhashyasree.
|1.||"Andama"||Nivas, Janaki Iyer||04:52|
|3.||"Prathi Janma"||Vedala Hemachandra, Sangeetha Rajeshwaran||05:21|
A Chennaivision reviewer wrote: "On the whole, the first half of Kaali is impressive and interesting. But things fail to impress us much in the second half. It is a mixed ride of positive and negative things." Ashameera Aiyappan of The Indian Express wrote, "Kaali would have been more effective had it been an anthology of three stories of estranged love set in late 1980s, where society plays the devil." 
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