Vikram-ji! Many happy returns of the day!

It’s Vikram’s birthday today, and Bollystalgia! put out a call for us to celebrate worldwide by posting about Chiyaan.When India is sweltering in heat and Chiyaan is working away at various locations across the globe or in some film studio in Chennai, many a cold climate dwelling filmi fan got through the brutal winter by imagining that south Indian heroes like Vikram did our chores; from the strenuous to the more simple things, like changing our clocks for daylight savings time.  Liz from My Year of Prakash Raj organized those images at Ayoo! South Indian Heroes Do Your Chores.  Vikram did many chores as evidenced by Liz’s site, one of which was wishing me happy birthday (and doing my snow shoveling), so it’s the least I could do to reciprocate, and wish him many happy returns of the day.
I first fell for Vikram when Apunbindaas, the Hmong Chick who loves Indian cinema, was kind enough to send me  Anniyan (2005)  all the way to Minnesota from Atlanta, Georgia, USA.

Anniyan is the story of “Rules” Ramanujam Iyengar alias “Ambi” (Chiyaan Vikram), a lawyer who suffers from Multiple Personality Disorder. Ambi is an innocent and honest lawyer. If he comes across anyone not obeying the law, he files cases against them but all his efforts go in vain. (source)

Doesn’t reading Multiple Personality Disorder let you know already that this movie is a winner? 

It’s one of those multiple personalities that makes the film.  Once I saw Vikram’s Remo character (the crazy side of the multiple personality) that was it, I was in filmi love like never before!  Enjoy Vikram in his crazy Remo character here in the tune, Kadhal Yanai  with Nandhini (Sadha) playing the love interest and Yana Gupta as gori extra, (playback singers Nakul, Nelwyn & G. V. Prakash Kumar) and be sure to watch it all the way through so you can see Remo’s  love detector.


Arul (2004) also captured my attention when his passionate character went bilkul ballistic when he heard anyone engage in swearing or poor language, which he refered to as dirty talks.

Really makes you think doesn’t it?  Arul makes you want to be a better person, hai na? I liked Arul (2004) so much that I’ll write that up soon, but in the meantime head to Filmi Girl’s entertaining review of the movie HERE.

I also loved seeing Vikram in Mani Ratnam‘s Raavanan (2010) as a marvelous villain (misunderstood and surely with a heart of gold), but have yet to see him playing the good guy in Raavan, the Hindi version of the same film.  I saw  Raavanan on the big screen last year without subtitles, and now am fortunate to now be able to see it again in Minneapolis next week,  but this time WITH subtitles in English since it’s part of the 2011 Minneapolis-St.Paul International Film Festival.

Vikram speaks here about the process of filming Raavan (2010, Hindi)  and Ravaanan (2010, Tamil)  concurrently, playing separate roles, in different languages:

For more honors to Vikram on his birthday, head over to FilmiGirl in the USA, and click across the globe to New Zealand and read what Ness over at Shahrukh is Love  has to say about Bheemaa (2008).  Now head back to Bollystalgia, representing Boston, MA and Detroit, MI and every place in between to see her Happy Birthday Rampwalk Remo  post.  Huppy Burday to Chiyaan!  Now is simply the intermission until I see another Vikram film!   Until then, I feel like I’m behind bars!

What Vikram movies have you seen?  Tell me your favorites and your recommendations.  Check out Chiyaan Vikram’s website HERE.

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23 thoughts on “Vikram-ji! Many happy returns of the day!

  1. hee hee this is awesome! I have sadly not seen NEARLY ENOUGH Vikram films (I’ve seen maybe…4, Bheemaa and Anniyan are BY FAR the best of the ones I’ve managed to get my hands on, oh. And Ravanan. I always forget that. I DON’T KNOW WHY).

    I DID in honour of the birthday boy manage to convert another fan to the glory of Vikram – my flatmate asked me to suggest some films to watch so I gave him Ravanan and he was all like….”WHO’S THAT GUY?! he’s AWESOME”

    • Ness-ji!
      Thanks, I’m glad you enjoyed it and now I want to see Bheemaa after your post. Now I’ve seen Raavanan, but not Ravan, have you see that too? I understanf your flatmate’s reaction, since that’s the same one I had when I saw Vikram for the first time. :)

  2. Thanks for this heads-up, and for directing me to Filmi Girl’s site. You have both got me really interested in this guy. But unfortunately I can’t find any of his films on my rental site. I have even been waiting for Raavan for months already. I will just have to buy it I think, because my rental list needs livening up and I’ve got through your 2010 recommendations now. I’ll let you know how I get on.

    • Joss-ji,
      It’s too bad that the Tamil films can be harder to come by depending on where you live. I heard that Raavanan was better than Raavan, which makes me think Raavan would be easier to get, assuming there’s less demand, but either way you get Vikram. I’m looking forward to seeing Ravaan no, and can’t think of why I put off seeing it. Let me know what you think and thanks as always for your comments, I appreciate you reading what I write. :)

  3. Thanks for the pyaar, Sita-ji :D

    I am glad you got into Vikaram, even though I’m not head-over-heels for him like the rest of the Twitter folks. I do think he’s a very handsome man and a very good actor :D

  4. I’ve seen Arul and Majaa and I can’t wait to see Raavanan. Unfortunately, the only way to see the latter here in the States, is to buy a copy. Tamil films are so spotty on Netflix. I highly recommend Majaa…it’s a fun introduction to the sexy Vikram.

    • Kim-ji,
      Thanks for stopping in to comment. I have also seen Majaa and enjoyed it a lot, since I also appreciate Asin’s acting. I thought she and Vikram made a nice pair in that cute film. I loved this number from that one:

      Tamil film certainly are spotty on Netflix, but hopefully they’ll get the hint there soon, since afterall it’s a chance for more $$$ for them.

      • Wow! I love this! Fantastic music and choreography. How do these people keep thinking up new stuff like this. They are amazing!

  5. I feel like I am totally missing out of a giant piece of filmi pie by not seeing anything other than Hindi films. I’d never heard of Vikram before Ravaanan, but you can only hear someone (aka filmigirl) go on an on and on about someone before you want, na, need to see what all the fuss is about! I haven’t, unfortunately, been able to get my hands on any of the films I’ve been looking for (even the movie store I generally buy at only had really old Telugu and Tamil stuff). I might have to actually place an order online.

    Also, how different does Vikram look sans facial hair? I would have never recognized him.

    • Shellie-ji,
      The pie is so gigantic, so how can we taste it all? I was so happy Nicki sent me Anniyan, or else it may have taken me a while to “find” him, even though he’s clearly a superstar, but as Kim writes above, the Tamil films (with subtitles) are hared to come by in the US, and I suppose Canada too, than the Hindi filums, na? Do you get Netflix in Canada? Vikram can definately look very different with facial hair modifications, you’re correct. If you haven’t already, go to his site and see some of his varied looks.

  6. Sitaji, don’t feel too bad for missing out on Raavan. The only part where it is VASTLY superior to Raavanan is this sinfully delicious song:

    Yummmm!!! :)
    Let’s just say I had no interest in even seeing it in the Tamil version after this.

  7. Dolce and Namak-ji,
    Lovely song, but I ask you:

    a. wouldn’t you like to more of Vikram thought the ENTIRE movie, which you’d get in Raavanan

    b. wouldn’t you like to see same number in Raavanan by the also exceedingly attractive Prithviraj?

    Thanks for the comment and the clip. I still want to see Ravaan though. :)


    My absolute favorite song from the film is Ranjha Ranjha, both the Tamil and Hindi version, too bad in Ravaanan they cut it so short. Here’s the Hindi/Ravaan one, just a video collage with clips from the film to the song, but still it’s the whole song:

  8. And that’s why I went to see both in the theatres :) Ok, also because I’m crazy and hang out with an even crazier Vikram fangirl than me, but we’ll leave that aside for now :D

    But if I were to buy a copy (I didn’t think it was worth it, but hypothetically speaking) I would buy Raavanan. And maybe a song compilation with the Hindi picturizations because I prefer the Hindi soundtrack (it’s a simple matter of which one came first, I suspect, nothing to do with language preference).

  9. I must admit I haven’t seen most of these (too contemporary for me, especially these days :) ), but I saw Anniyan, and oh my, that’s a strange one! :)

    The main reason to see Anniyan, IMO, is the “Randaka” song:

    …with that memorable nonsensical “Randaka” refrain, which inspired a few people including Maya Arulpragasam

    • Richard-ji,
      I’d forgotten about that one, which is also great, but Rampwalk-Ringtone-Rainbow Remo song just eclipses this one because it’s oh so delighfully weird. Good point about the nonsensical “Randaka” refrain!

    • RIchard-ji,
      Your link does work with a double click, it’s that pesky “embedding disabled” by Eros. I love how you traced the history of “Randaka” and landed on the bizarre Anniyan. What did you think when you found it?! I suppose it could have made you realize just how tame the “wild” MIA is compared to some of what’s inspired her.

      • Oh, I meant to get back to this earlier, but got too caught up in our conversations on my blog. :) Anyway… I’m trying to remember now if I ever did see Anniyan with English subtitles… Because when I first “traced” to this movie, I landed on it without subtitles (for free online), and if I’m recalling correctly, the only words in the whole film that I could understand at the time were “multiple personality disorder,” which phrase was repeated many, many times. Actually, I thought this was funnier than anything M.I.A. had ever done. :)

        I’m glad that you appreciate my tracing-from-M.I.A. method for finding Indian films… I ended up looking at four movies by tracing samples in Maya’s songs on her second album, Kala. The other other films were Thalapathi (sampled in “Bamboo Banga”), Disco Dancer (well, everybody knows about “Jimmy,” right?), and Jayam (sampled in “Bird Flu”)… All a bit more over-the-top in some way or other than M.I.A. herself. :)

      • Richard-ji, Yes I completely love your tracing of original tracks that appear in MIA songs. Funny you saw Anniyan without subtitles, but remember multiple uses of multiple personality disorder, but how about love detector and love detector test? I’m glad MIA was your gateway drug to the more absurdly authentic world of Indian cinema and its music and dancing. She is completely milk toast by comparison, hai na?

  10. Ah, yes, “love detector test”; that rings a bell…

    BTW, I guess M.I.A. was a gateway drug and I made much of it at some time, but she was far from the only gateway drug. :) Anyway, getting serious now, maybe “milk toast” is a bit harsh(?), especially in reference to the first two albums, when she was actually good (I still think)… And I am grateful to her for the education that she gave me.

    I could say the same sort of thing about our old friend Bally Sagoo (whom I first heard about 12 years before I heard Maya). His remix songs don’t always rock as much as the classics that they’re drawn from, but he helped me to learn a few things…

    • Richard-ji,
      Yes, “milk toast” is a bit harsh, but let me clarify to make it less so. :) I meant that despite MIA’s wild creativity, it’s really quite tame when one sees the source of her entertainment nectar, and the real deal originals are more potent, a higher proof of POW! And that also holds true for Bally Sagoo’s mixes. The whole reason why they’ve both done memorable work is it’s really based on some solid original work. They both use quality building materials, isn’t it?

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