Maya Bazaar — Kids just love it!

Some 35 years back, I got to see Maya Bazar for the first time in Kamadhenu theatre in Luz, Mylapore. The first things that struck me was of course the fascinating battle between Abhimanyu (Gemini Ganesan) and Gadothgachan (SV Ranga Rao) featuring special effects of weapons flying.

Many years later I revisited the same film when my kids were just growing up. They absolutely loved the film and would watch it so many times again and again. Slowly one started looking at some other highlights. Terrific music for once. What melodious songs! Even some of the background scores were superb. A wonderful dance sequence showing the Bhasmasura story. Extraordinary acting by Ranga Rao and Savitri. Not to forget the star cast with people like NTR & MN Nambiar.

The brilliant KA Thangavelu, the twin astrologers(Sarma & Sastri) and the Sarathy in a series of hilarious sequences. Though Ranga Rao and his “Kalyana samayal saatham” was such a big hit, the Thangavelu scenes were a greater hit with the kids. They would continuously repeat the Sarma & Sastri dialogues along with the film ad nauseum.

Like a Twitter “Narasimha alert” whenever the Vijaykanth starrer comes on air, my family has a Maya Bazar Whatsapp Alert! I really cannot think of too many Tamil films released in 1957, that can engage kids today the way Maya Bazar can.

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