Nandu (film)

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Nandu (film).jpg
Title card
Directed byMahendran
Screenplay byMahendran
Based onNandu
by Sivasankari
Produced byS. Dakshinamoorthy
CinematographyAshok Kumar
Edited byA. Paul Duraisingh
Music byIlaiyaraaja
Rangaraj Creations
Release date
  • 17 April 1981 (1981-04-17)
Running time
110 minutes

Nandu (transl. Crab) is a 1981 Indian Tamil-language film written and directed by Mahendran. The film stars Suresh and Ashwini. It is based on the 1975 novel of the same name by Sivasankari. The film was released on 17 April 1981 and failed commercially.


Ramkumar Sharma is a sickly engineer living in Lucknow in a large family. He suffers from asthma and does not like the behaviour of his autocratic father, but is deeply attached to his loving mother. Unable to get along with his father who compels him to marry a girl of his choice, Sharma leaves for Madras. He finds a job there and meets Seetha. Once settled, he goes around looking for a house with the help of house broker. Incidentally, he finds Seetha residing as a tenant in a portion under the very same house. He likes the portion and agrees to start living there. The lives of the girls who live in portions of the large house are brightened by the appearance of the engineer from Lucknow. Of them, two of them try to impress Sharma. One of them is the house owner's daughter, while the other is Seetha. Eventually, he ends up marrying Seetha.



Nandu is based on the 1975 novel of the same name by Sivasankari.[1] Suhasini, who previously appeared in Mahendran's Nenjathai Killathe (1980), worked as an assistant cinematographer under Ashok Kumar.[2] The film took liberties with the novel; while the protagonist in the novel is a cancer patient, the disease was changed to asthma for the film.[3]


Writing for Frontline, Venkatesh Chakravarthy believes the title Nandu is a metaphor used as a "double-edged weapon in the film".[4]


The soundtrack was composed by Ilaiyaraaja.[5][6] The songs "Kaise Kahoon" and "Hum Hai Akele" are entirely in Hindi.[7] The song "Manjal Veyil" is set in the Carnatic raga Kalyani.[8]

1."Kaise Kahoon"P. B. SreenivasBhupinder Singh, S. Janaki 
2."Hum Hai Akele"P. B. SreenivasS. Janaki 
3."Alli Thantha Bhoomi"Madhukur KannanMalaysia Vasudevan 
4."Manjal Veyil"Gangai AmaranUma Ramanan 

Release and reception[edit]

Nandu was released on 17 April 1981.[9] The posters were designed with a crab's shadow looming over the protagonist to indicate his eventual death.[10] Kumudam noted the film's abundance of Hindi dialogues, and caustically commented that any more dialogues in Hindi would result in K. Balaji (a film producer known mainly for remaking Hindi films in Tamil) remaking the film in Tamil.[11] The film failed commercially, with Maalai Malar attributing it to the audience's inability to understand the many Hindi dialogues.[12]


  1. ^ Swaminathan, G. (2 July 2020). "Print to celluloid: From 'Kalvanin Kadhali' and 'Mullum Malaram' to 'Ponniyin Selvan'". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 3 July 2020. Retrieved 15 April 2021.
  2. ^ Shivakumar, S. (31 January 1982). "Suhasini: A Shoba in the making". Mid-Day. Archived from the original on 6 July 2020. Retrieved 3 July 2021.
  3. ^ "Ace Tamil film director Mahendran, who helmed iconic Rajini movies, dies". The Federal. 2 April 2019. Archived from the original on 11 December 2019. Retrieved 11 December 2019.
  4. ^ Chakravarthy, Venkatesh. "Icon of change". Frontline. Archived from the original on 8 September 2021. Retrieved 8 September 2021.
  5. ^ "Nandu Tamil Super 7 Vinyl Record by Ilayaraja". Mossymart. Archived from the original on 10 June 2021. Retrieved 15 June 2021.
  6. ^ "Nandu". Archived from the original on 13 October 2021. Retrieved 13 October 2021.
  7. ^ Vamanan (11 December 2017). "கலைமாமணி வாமனனின் 'நிழலல்ல நிஜம்' – 106 | இந்தியில் பாடிய தமிழ் சினிமா அன்று முதல் இன்று வரை!". Dinamalar (in Tamil). Nellai. Archived from the original on 8 July 2021. Retrieved 8 July 2021.
  8. ^ Sundararaman (2007) [2005]. Raga Chintamani: A Guide to Carnatic Ragas Through Tamil Film Music (2nd ed.). Pichhamal Chintamani. p. 142. OCLC 295034757.
  9. ^ Mahendran (2013) [2004]. சினிமாவும் நானும் [Cinema and Me] (in Tamil). Karpagam Publications. p. 344.
  10. ^ Narayanan, Arjun (23 February 2019). "Canvas of cinema – An interaction with artist Jeevananthan". The Times of India. Coimbatore. Archived from the original on 15 September 2021. Retrieved 15 September 2021.
  11. ^ "பார்த்தது படித்தது ரசித்தது – சுதாங்கன் – 1–12–19". Dinamalar (in Tamil). Nellai. Archived from the original on 17 April 2021. Retrieved 17 April 2021.
  12. ^ "மகேந்திரனின் நெஞ்சத்தைக் கிள்ளாதே: மோகன்- சுகாசினி அறிமுகம்". Maalai Malar (in Tamil). 15 May 2012. Archived from the original on 19 May 2012. Retrieved 8 July 2021.

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