Ullam Ketkumae (2005)
|Company||Amni Pvt. Ltd., G.V. Productions|
Ullam Ketkumae (transl. The heart wants more) is a 2005 Tamil-language romantic drama film directed and co-written by Jeeva, with dialogues by Sujatha. The film features Shaam, Arya, Laila, Asin and Pooja in the lead roles as five college students. The film's score and soundtrack are composed by Harris Jayaraj, while Vairamuthu penned the lyrics for the songs. The film tells the reunion of five friends who were together at college and exploring their relationships during the years. The film released after several delays in 2005 and went on to win critical and commercial success. The film marked the first successful film for Jeeva and Shaam while Arya and Asin received several film offers after the release of the film.
The movie is all about a group of five college friends — Shaam (Shaam), Emaan (Arya), Pooja (Laila), Priya (Asin) and Irene (Pooja). The friends gather for Emaan's wedding, years after everyone has parted ways.
The movie starts with Pooja leaving the USA to go to Indian cricketer and her friend Emaan's wedding. Meanwhile, back in India, everyone else is helping Emaan with the preparations for his wedding and catching up with their long-lost college friends. The movie goes through series of flashbacks of old memories during their college days. Emaan and Irene meet for the first time after years. It turns out that they were once in love during their college days but Irene, who is from an unstable family, decides to part ways with Emaan after he loses focus on his long time goal of becoming a successful cricketer.
Another flashback occurs when Shaam gets reminded of Pooja. She is a fun-loving tomboyish and naive girl, who is best friends with Shaam. Shaam realizes that he is in love with Priya, but on the other hand, Pooja realizes that she is falling for Shaam. Shaam and Pooja had respectively decided to propose their love interests on the coming Valentine's Day. But on that day, Pooja learns beforehand that Shaam is in love with Priya instead. Heartbroken by what she has just learned, she decides to keep her love for him a secret. When Shaam proposes Priya, she rejects his love as she believes in a more traditional approach towards finding a life partner. She reveals to him that she will be getting married, right after their graduation, to the man of her parents' choice. Pooja eventually goes to the USA for her higher studies and settles down there. Shaam has also tried to move on since then and becomes a fashion designer.
The film transitions back to the present on Emaan's wedding day. Everyone attends his wedding as Pooja finally arrives. She is no longer the same girl she was back then, as she is much more mature now and not as tomboyish as she was back then. Over sometime, Shaam has come to realize that he missed Pooja's presence and is much fond of her now. He realizes that he had failed to appreciate her all those times when she was there with him. The day after Emaan's wedding, Pooja leaves to catch her flight back to USA. Right before her departure, she decides to pass Shaam the Valentine's Day card that she had wanted to hand him during their college days and reveals her love for him. Shaam realizes that Pooja is the one that was meant to be for him and not Priya. The movie ends with Shaam accepting Pooja's love for him.
- Shaam as Shyam
- Arya as Emaan
- Laila as Pooja
- Asin as Priya
- Pooja as Irene
- Murali as Pooja's father
- Pyramid Natarajan as Priya's father
- Rajiv Choudary as Irene's father
- K.P.A.C. Lalitha as Emaan’s mother
- Revathi Sankaran as Priya's mother
- Srinath as Pathchu
- Japan Kumar as a college student
- Kaveri Lalchand as Irene's mother
- Hemanth Kumar as a college rowdy (uncredited)
- Raju Sundaram as a dancer in the song "Mazhai Mazhai" (uncredited)
- Krish Srikkanth as himself at Emaan's wedding reception (uncredited)
The film was first reported in April 2002, where it was revealed that Shaam and Richa Pallod were going to team up with director Jeeva, who had launched Shaam in the critically acclaimed 12B, for a college love story titled Pepsi. Susi Ganeshan had appealed for the title Pepsi for a film; however, since the title Pepsi was registered by Jeeva, Ganeshan ended up renaming his film Five Star (2002). The title Pepsi had stemmed from the first letter from the names of the five friends — Priya, Emaan, Pooja, Shyam and Irene. The film was later renamed and the film took part of the brand Pepsi's tagline in Tamil Nadu - Ullam Ketkumae More - as the new title. Laila was also reported to be a part of the cast. Asin signed the film aged eighteen and the film was meant to mark her début in Tamil films. This was the second film that Asin has worked on after the Malayalam film Narendran Makan Jayakanthan Vaka (2001). While working as a software engineer, Jamshad was approached by Jeeva to audition for the film in 2003 after Jeeva spotted Jamshad walking in his neigborhood. Jeeva gave Jamshad the stage name of Arya for this film. Pooja was also signed on to make her début. Srinath, who worked as an assistant director under Jeeva in 12B (2001), was cast in this film as Shaam and Arya's friend. Model Hemanth Kumar was cast in a negative role.
Art director Thotta Tharani created a college campus for the film to be shot in, with his work drawing appreciation. A scene featuring an inter college day cultural had 100 students from various states take part in the shooting while decorations and a podium were put up for a marriage scene in Taj Connemara hotel. Raju Sundaram choreographed five songs including a song shot at hot water springs in New Zealand.
The film went through production hell, with three years being spent on the announcement till release. The film was supposed to be the debut film of Arya, Asin, and Pooja. Th delay of the film enabled the lead actors to gain popularity with other releases: Arinthum Ariyamalum (2005) for Arya, M. Kumaran Son of Mahalakshmi (2004) for Asin, and Jay Jay (2003) and Attahasam (2004) for Pooja. Despite giving indications that the film would release after delays on 14 April 2004 it was further pushed back due to financial issues. In May 2005, the Supreme Court finally cleared the decks for the release, as earlier the Madras High court by a 25 February order appointed "Joint Receivers" for the film, which was objected by Prasad Labs who had gone to Supreme Court. It was agreed that the collections from the film will be received by "joint receivers" who will pay Prasad Labs for 72 prints of the film.
The film released on 3 June 2005 and became a commercial success at the box office with pundits describing the film as a "sleeper hit". A critic from Sify gave the film a verdict of above average and stated that "On the whole, Jeeva has been successful to make an entertainer with a wafer-thin story. Everything, from the choice of lead actors, their lines and gestures, interpersed with perfect song-n-dance is perfectly coordinated". The film took a 90 percent opening in four Chennai screens with large collections reported at the Devi theatre in Chennai in the opening weekend. The film opened at number two at the Chennai box office despite stiff competition, just below the Rajinikanth starrer Chandramukhi. The film was also dubbed in Telugu as Preminchi Choodu and released on 30 March 2006.
The music and background score were composed by Harris Jayaraj and became popular upon release. The songs were released on YouTube by Think Music India in 2020.
|Soundtrack album by|
|Released||22 April 2005|
|Genre||Feature film soundtrack|
|Harris Jayaraj chronology|
|1.||"Ennai Pandhada"||Vairamuthu||Srinivas, Srimathumitha||4:52|
|2.||"Kanavugal"||Pa. Vijay||Karthik, Tippu, O. S. Arun, Premji Amaran, Febi Mani||5:33|
|4.||"Mazhai Mazhai"||Vairamuthu||P. Unnikrishnan, Harini||4:55|
|6.||"Lieko Laima"||Pa. Vijay||Ranjith||1:28|
All tracks are written by Bhuvanachandra.
|1.||"Enno Janmala Bandham"||Srinivas, Saindhavi||4:53|
|2.||"Enno Ennenno Kalale"||Karthik, Arunmozhi, Premji Amaran, Febi Mani, Pop Shalini, Suchitra||5:34|
|3.||"O Manasa"||Madhu Balakrishnan||4:54|
|4.||"Shodhinchuko"||P. Unnikrishnan, Harini||4:55|
|5.||"Sie Sie Sie"||Franko||5:49|
The film was notably one of the first Tamil films in the reunion genre. Several news websites including The Times of India and The New Indian Express listed this film as one to watch on Friendship Day along with several other films including Thalapathi (1991), Kadhal Desam (1996), Friends (2001), Chennai 60028 (2007), Naadodigal (2009), and Nanban (2012).
The success of the film brought a series of offers for Shaam, whose career was struggling prior to release. The success of the film prompted ABCD, another film starring Shaam, to release two months later. Arya and Asin were able to consolidate their positions as rising actors. Srinath garnered acclaim for his role as a bespectacled college student in this film.
Arya and Pooja, who played lovers in this film, went on to feature opposite each other in Oram Po (2007) and Naan Kadavul (2009). Manigandan, who worked as an assistant director in this film and taught Arya how to act, later worked with Arya in Chikku Bukku (2010). After this film, Shaam and Arya starred together in Purampokku Engira Podhuvudamai (2015).