Mani Ratnam is widely regarded as one of the most accomplished filmmakers to ever hail from India. His films are nothing less than works of art in their own right. Mani Ratnam’s ability to captivate audiences all around the world with his stirring narrative and magnificent presentation of tales that hit close to home has gained him many fans. In honor of the remarkable work that Mani Ratnam has done, I would like to recommend the following films by him:
1. Mouna Ragam (1986)
Do you know that Mani Ratnam received the National Award for both Best Film and Best Director for his work on the movie Mouna Ragam? The movie’s main characters, Revathi and Mohan, were played by the actors. Divya, a lady who is still in mourning after the passing of her sweetheart, is coerced into entering into an arranged marriage with Chandra Kumar. During the course of a year, the pair worked hard to accommodate their presence beside one another and learn how to cohabit. This film’s score on IMDb is 8.4, making it an absolute must to see it.
2. Nayagan (1987)
The cult classic novel The Godfather by Mario Puzo served as the basis for the film Nayagan, which not only achieved commercial success but also won praise from film critics. The principal roles in Nayagan are played by Kamal Hassan and Karthika. In 2005, Nayagan was included in the list of the 100 greatest films of all time that was compiled by TIME magazine. Moreover, the National Prize for Best Actor went to Kamal Hassan for his work in this masterwork. It has an 8.6 rating on IMDb, therefore you really should watch it.
3. Thalapathi (1991)
This masterwork has two of the most famous actors in the world, Rajnikanth and Mammootty. Since the tale had such a compelling narrative, the film is still considered a masterpiece even to this day. A boy called Surya who was brought up in a slum becomes friends with a powerful criminal lord named Devaraj and eventually begins working for him. When a new district collector who is trustworthy comes, their very survival is put in jeopardy. IMDb gives the film an 8.5 out of 10 ratings.
4. Anjali (1990)
Anjali, another one of Mani Ratnam’s masterpieces, is a film that is brimming with goodwill, smiles, and generosity. The film, which dealt with a very touchy subject, was nominated for three National Awards. This movie broke a lot of people’s hearts since it showed the resilience of a family that had a kid with special needs. This film, which has received an 8.2 rating on IMDb, has Revathi and Raghuvaran in the leading roles.
5. Roja (1992)
Another one of Mani Ratnam’s works that have been hailed as a masterpiece both by audiences and by film reviewers alike. The story of a love that is ripped apart by politics and terrorism is shown through the lens of this film, which stars Arvind Swamy and Madhoo. The movie took home three National Awards: one for “Best Film on National Integration,” “Best Music Direction,” and “Best Lyrics.” A rating of 8.1 out of 10 on IMDb makes this movie an absolute must-see!
6. Bombay (1995)
Bombay, another one of Mani Ratnam’s masterworks, was yet another one in which he tackled the difficult topic of terrorism. At the time of the destruction of the Babri Masjid and the aftermath that led to the tragedy of Hindu-Muslim riots in the country, the movie depicted a love tale between a Hindu boy and a Muslim girl. The events that followed led to the destruction of the Babri Mosque. Arvind Swamy and Manisha Koirala play the lead roles in the film. In addition to taking home the prize for best film editing, the National Award for Best Film on National Integration went to Bombay.
7. Iruvar (1997)
This film’s plot, which was heavily influenced by the competition between two prominent politicians, Karunanidhi and M.G. Ramachandran, received a lot of praise from film critics. Iruvar, which starred Mohanlal and Prakash Raj, was the recipient of two National Awards: one for Best Cinematography and another for Best Supporting Actor. Also, the film served as Aishwarya Rai’s introduction to the acting world.
8. Dil Se
The plot of the film centered on a love affair between a regular citizen and a violent extremist, and it starred Shah Rukh Khan and Manisha Koirala. This film got a lot of praise for its powerful representation of human rights breaches, and the excellent music that was composed by AR Rahman was a big reason why.
9. Alaipayuthey (2000)
Alaipayuthey is an urban love tale between two immature people, and it takes place in the city. The film follows R Madhavan and Shalini as they play a couple whose relationship in a society that is stratified according to class proves to be challenging. The newlywed couple learns that marriage is not at all what they expected it to be over the course of time. This film was redone in Hindi and given the title Saathiya. Rani Mukherjee and Vivek Oberoi starred in the new version.
10. Yuva (2004)
Yuva is a political thriller that was directed by Mani Ratnam. The story follows three individuals named Michael (Ajay Devgan), Arjun (Vivek Oberoi), and Lallan (Abhishek Bachchan), who come from three distinct social classes. When their paths inevitably collide one morning in Calcutta, it is a moment that will permanently alter both of their destinies.
Ponniyin Selvan is a fantastic narrative that is based on the early life of prince Arun Mozhi Varman, who went on to become the renowned Raja Raja Cholan later in life. The story is based on Arun Mozhi Varman’s childhood. The Chola era in the 10th century, during which there were conflicts within the royal clan, is the subject matter of the book that served as the basis for the film’s inspiration.