Saturday, January 31, 2009
One of the greatest actors one can ever get to see. So great that at one point, K. Balachander apparently mentioned to Kamal Haasan during a shoot that - "had this scene been done by Nagesh instead of you - picchu udhariruppan". Most of my memories of thamizh cinema - from Kathalikka Nermillai to MMKR - revolve around him. Among the rather less-mentioned movies of Nagesh, one certainly has to mentioned Soap Seepu Kannadi & Anubhavi Raja Anubhavi. They were the kind of movies that brought cheer to even the darkest of moods.
Probably no other actor-director combination has worked as well as Nagesh-Balachander combination. And K.B has done many movies with Kamal haasan. His numerous movies with MGR. His immortal line - "maadhu vandirukken". Everything about the song "muthu kulikka vaariyhalaa". His questions in Thiruvilayaadal. His quick comical cracks even when he played a villain in Aboorva Sagodharargal. His lines in MMKR - 'kaameshwara, kaameshwara - ippadiyum iruppiyo". An extremely versatile actor. One can go on and on about his movies for years. Let me stop here.
One of the saddest stories I've heard about Nagesh is about him and his mother. Apparently, he ran away from home as a boy, vowing never to return unless he made it big in life. After establishing himself in the movie industry - he drove to his hometown in his own car with some cash as gift for his mother. Only to reach there and find his family doing the last rites for his mother.