Sri MGR Year 96, 8th October, Tuesday
Director A.S.A.Samy, who raised MGR to the status of Hero in films. He stood stern in the movie Rajakumari that nobody except MGR should do that hero role. He had directed MGR in two movies, Sri Murugan and Rajakumari.
His article about our Puratchi Thalaivar.
When Shakespeare stated that some men are born great some achieve greatness and others have greatness thrust upon them, he did not have the likes of Dr.MGR in his reckoning. MGR does not belong to any of Shakespeare’s categories. Greatness dawned upon MGR. If uniqueness is the one true attribute of greatness, then MGR has it aplenty.
The orbiting of his life from being just one of those obscure juvenile actors in a drama troupe to unparalleled heights of fame and popularity as the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu is indeed a unique achievement.
Twice he passed through the gates of death but death was unable to get him. Revolver shots at murderously close range wound not shatter him. Ailments fraught with mortal complications dare not undo him. His resolute fortitude and the deep trenched power of his will to battle against the severest of odds have now become an object lesson to doctors and physicians to lecture to their patients as to how they should face their calamities with courage and faith.
It is ever body’s knowledge that he strode the celluloid world like the Colossus of proverbial fame. His films have minted gold to his producers. It is for nothing the he was titled “Vasool Mannan” – the monarch of the Box Office. But more than the Box Office pull, it was the pull he held on the masses that infused in their unlettered minds a socio-political consciousness of an indestructible kind. He infused in the masses hope for better things in their lives. In one of his films he proclaims through a song ‘Naan Aanai Ittal, Athu Nadanthu Vittal’ (If I were to issue orders and if such orders can fructify many are the good things this land and its people will have).
That, was not a flimsy or flimsy pronouncement of a celluloid hero but was “all real” was amply proved by his noon meals scheme mooted as soon as he took up the reigns of Government. Fully cognizant of the fact that today’s children are the citizens of tomorrow he had special messages for them in his films. In one song he advises thus ‘Thoongathey Thambi thoongathey"’ (slumber not young man, slumber not; lest you be dubbed as an idler). In another he sings ‘Chinna payale, chinna payale’ (Little chap, little chap listen to these tidings) In the evolution of such and similar songs he would as all have personal experience take prolific and painstaking interest to see that the contents of the songs were pregnant with purpose and that the tunes of the songs were easy and catchy. He wanted the songs to touch the hearts of the people. Such was his concern about the welfare of the land and its people. He used a medium, which primarily was only his profession for personal gains, for the good of the public too.
He was an actor all right. But he was at the same time a proficient technician too…. As an accredited technician I have been amazed, times without number, at his technical acumen. I often times, used to sense that if he would take to direction he would stand head and shoulders above many others of repute and that he would stamp his own individuality in ample measure. That mine was not an empty conjecture has been indisputably proved in the pictures for which he has handled the megaphone.
The quality of munificence associated with him, are too many and too various to need a repetition here. Here again his is an out of the ordinary known ways of the benevolence of those who are TONNED with money. It is said of most money bags that either they become seized by an incurable malady of preserving their ACCUMULATIONS ill gotten or well gotten that they sit over their money bags like watchful sentries preventing any depletion of what they possess or that they are so saturated with ideas of blowing up what they have and what they get, that they, therefore cannot and do not have the time or that thought for compassion or clemency. The more they have the more they want. To them the quality of mercy, if and when they do have it, would only be strained. In the case of MGR however it dropeth as the gentle rain from Heaven, blessing him that gives and him that receives, as Shakespeare would put it. He is a sort of this century's version of the KODAI VALLALS of historic glory of Tamil Nadu. The more he has the more he wants other also to have. He, perhaps, is one who believes that true happiness is in seeing other happy – freed from their travails and tribulations, wiped of their tears – shed or unshed. He is one, to whom according to that hard nut CHO – a hungry empty pocketed person can go after kindling a confident fire in his hearth and return with the where – withal for his meal. Unique is his attributes of mercy.
Such attributes and many more are embossed in a single person. Indeed unique. How has that been possible? Many and varied are the explanations that could be offered. Is it due as astrologers would want us to believe to an extra ordinary combination of stellar positions? Or is it, as the karma theorist would have it, that MGR has had various attributes in his previous births and that they have welded together in this birth of his? Is it, as the God minded would like to avow that MGR is one of those specially favoured by divinity? Is it, as the philosopher would emphasis, one of those rare occurrences when a phenomenon – like a comet – that manifests itself on and off in the history of mankind? Is it, as the sage would declare with convinced profundity, that MGR’s charities have been an armour against forces of evil? That is, as he would say Dharmam Thalai Kaakkum. Is it, as the realist would assure, that MGR is so, just because he is so? Is it, I would venture to suggest – an intrinsic part of an intensive personality as intrinsic as the magnetism in magnet, the glitter in gold, or the melody in music?
Verily MGR is indeed an ENIGMA, Indeed.