indian cinema heritage foundation

Azhiyadha Kolangal (1979)

  • Release Date07/12/1979
  • GenreRomance
  • FormatColour
  • LanguageTamil
  • Run Time106 min
  • Length2965.61 meters
  • Censor RatingA
  • Censor Certificate Number3711-A
  • Certificate Date06/12/1979

Popular businessman Gowri Shankar (Kamal Haasan) receives a letter from his childhood friend Pattabi informing the death of their teacher, Indumathi (Shobha). On reading the letter, Gowri gets nostalgic and recollects his childhood days... 

Gowri, Pattabi, and Raghupathy (Manohar) are close friends and study at a village school. Pattabi is senior to Raghupathy, who is in the 8th standard. The events that happen during the adolescent age of these three friends in that small village are beautifully captured on celluloid. Filmed in very beautiful scenic locations, the movie takes us through an exotic joy ride of emotions, first love, and the agony of death. The three friends try to explore sex through a prostitute but run away immediately after reaching her house. Pattabi likes the girl who visits his house and starts spending time with her. Gowri likes the new teacher Indumathi or Indu and dreams of living with her, despite the huge age gap. Raghupathy looks for excitement through his friends. 

Gowri's dreams get shattered when Indu's fiancé (Pratap Pothen) arrives. Indu spends more time with her fiancé, which upsets Gowri. Pattabi and Gowri fight on trivial issues but stay united due to Raghupathy. The boys get influenced by the postmaster, who indulges in sexual activities outside the village. They also get tempted to smoke like Indu's fiancé to experience it. Then, all their excitement comes to an end when Raghupathy gets drowned in the village pond when all the three go swimming. Everyone is shocked and the friends feel the loss. Their life is never the same again. When Gowri visits Indu, she is also in tears (for losing her student) and shares her pain with him. 

Gowri comes back to the present and with tears in his eyes, recollects those happy incidents, his friend's demise, and time spent with his friends. They are inerasable memories indeed! 

[from the book Pride of Tamil Cinema: 1931 to 2013 by G Dhananjayan, Blue Ocean Publishers, 2014]