No matter how many times you go back and watch it, the 2015 film O Kadhal Kanmani aka OK Kanmani always feels like a breath of fresh air. Starring Dulquer Salmaan and Nithya Menen in lead roles as Aditya and Tara, the film gives us a sneak-peek into the life of a young couple who falls in love accidentally, but doesn’t see it lead straight to marriage.
This Mani Ratnam film was probably one of the first Tamil movies to completely dive into live-in relationships and show the reality behind them.
With music by A R Rahman, this film is so beautiful to watch that you’ll find find yourself falling in love with the characters and their quirks. Tara is an ambitious woman who knowns even before she begins her relationship with Aditya, that she needs to leave for Paris soon. Adithya, on the other hand, is a romantic but not keen on the idea of marriage, which Tara agrees with.
The two begin living together, with an ageing couple, portrayed beautifully by Prakash Raj as Ganapathy and Leela Samson as Bhavani. They grow and understand that they do not want to be apart, and wanting to follow their own career paths does not make them lesser than. What makes this film so beautiful is that neither of them are expected to compromise what they want from life, instead they meet each other in the middle. Not to mention the realistic portrayal of live-in relationships – from the fights over domestic chores to getting used to each other’s routines.
While Aditya and Tara’s love is what confused millennials feel when they are at the cusp of adulthood, Ganapathy and Bhavani’s love story is one for the ages.
And maybe that is what makes OK Kanmani such a great love story, it has something for everyone. Tara and Aditya – who take time to understand each other, live together, spend time away and learn that they still want to come back to one another. And Ganapathy and Bhavani – where Bhavani’s Alzheimer’s tests their relationship but Ganapathy is shown to be a patient man who constantly makes her feel loved and cared for.
Their stories are so far apart and yet quite similar. They teach you what love means, and what sacrifice and commitment can be worth. If you haven’t watched this sappy romance yet, then you definitely must catch the Tamil movie on Netflix or Disney+Hotstar.