It’s obvious that the director of this movie attracts more audience than the title or the cast. Mani Ratnam has always been a no nonsense director commanding tremendous respect for anything he touches upon and Kaatru Veliyidai is no different and can be easily considered one of the top guns in his arsenal for sure. Among his recent movies if Kadal and OK Kanmani are gears 1 and 3 Kaatru Veliydai is easily a notch higher at number 5.
If you are planning to munch a bag of popcorn throughout the movie (which is what I did 🙂 ) and come back home you are in for big surprise because this movie is meant to squeeze your heart till the last drop of tear pours out in the end. Varun aka VC and Leela are two people who are not meant for each other but find a way to stick together. Movie is set in the Kargil days of war between India and Pakistan where Varun plays the role of an air force commander and Leela who travels to Kashmir as an amatuer doctor providing servcies to the Kashmiris. Leela meets Varun in the hospital after a dramatic accident at the top of the hill and the two of them start their romantic air force spiced journey. Varun invites Leela for a ride in his military jet (which was more like a private jet) and the two of them engage themselves in some serious come close to each other romance. I hate to put these things in a funny way but I have to tell you that the romance is very serious and music is simply music to the ears. It is easy for the audience to get bored of such romantic stories but the genius of Mani Ratnam will never let that happen.
There are two battles in this movie. One between India and Pakistan and the other between Varun and Leela. Varun is a haughty and arrogant military officer who takes lot of pride in his work and trades a lot of women for his happiness. Leela apparently is more serious to him and is mentally unable to reduce his ownership stake over her. While Leela is still contemplating whether Varun is still worth her love in return the two of them fail to make compromises on who they are and what they want from each other. Leela neither wants the slightest show of manly force on her nor the slightest disrespect while Varun explains she is way up the hierarchy when it comes to the relationship. Typical household men vs women arguments where a woman feels she needs to be treated better than someone who makes babies.
The show goes on for a good two and half hours with some good songs and background scores (so good that you will sometimes forget about the dialogues they speak) till final punch arrives in the climax. War separates the two of them, Varun lands in enemy jail and plans an escapade to return home, receives awards of honor and still feels empty.
Lost love is of course the reason for his emptiness and he begins his search for Leela in Kashmir. The ends arrives when the two of them meet each other after a break of 3 long years but this time with an unexpected and surprising new little baby who fails to recognize her father. How the two of them explain this coming together is for you to watch and feel and trust me you will be in for an emotional punch. It’s beyond words. Makes it a super movie instead of a good movie.