Veerapandiya Kattaboman

Veerapandiya Kattaboman, a 1959 bio pic of the ruler of that same name who was against the British rule in part of south India in the 18th century. He refused to accept British sovereignty over his kingdom and waged a war against them. He was the chieftain of the small kingdom of Panchalankuruchi in Tamil Nadu. As usual the British took the help of another ruler of Pudukottai to nab him and hang him to death. Shivaji Ganesan played him in the movie of that name in 1959. The production values were quite good for a 1959 movie. The movie is too long, though and overly dramatic with lot of emotional elements added to it. Authenticity is lacking because the British officers were shown as locals speaking Tamil and that too pure Tamil not the anglicised Hindi we see in most movies depicting British officers. Moreover the costumes are way over the top so lacking the beauty of a period cinema. Gemini Ganeshan and Padmini have major roles in the movie. The best action sequence in the movie is the jallikattu scene right at the beginning, which looked quite authentic. Worth watching for Shivaji Ganeshan acting and to know about this small time ruler who defied British.

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