Eight Classic Tamil Comedies From The 80s And The 90s To Binge On, Film Companion

The world seems to be moving slowly right now. And if the current streak of the pandemic’s second wave continues to rage on, we may need to find other ways to keep ourselves occupied. For now, though, we can depend upon some classic comedies from Tamil cinema to help us sail through the summer.

Avvai Shanmugi (1996)        

Director: K. S. Ravikumar

Are you even a true Kamal Haasan fan if you don’t break into, “Rukku, rukku, rukku… arrey, baaba rukku… oh, my jaanu, give me a look-u?” every time you hear the title Avvai Shanmugi? Also, if you don’t understand the pun behind “Mudaliyar” and “Mudali-yaro,” you should revisit this work of classic that has some of the best lines written by Crazy Mohan.

Available On Amazon Prime Video (With Subtitles)

Thillu Mullu (1981)

Director: K. Balachander

Legend has it that if you chant the name of Aiyampettai Arivudainambi Kaliyaperumal Chandran a hundred times a day during the IPL season, the Chennai Super Kings will lift the IPL cup. And if you think that it’s hogwash, then maybe you should re-watch Thillu Mullu to see how wonderfully Rajinikanth pulls off a full-length comedy with a major assist from Thengai Srinivasan and Sowcar Janaki.

Available On YouTube

Indru Poi Naalai Vaa (1981)

Director: K. Bhagyaraj

The best part about Indru Poi Naalai Vaa is its silliness. Thanks to this movie, whenever a politician from North India talks about the importance of Hindi, Tamil people collectively come forward to say, “Ek gaon mein, ek kisan raghu thaatha.” The joke never gets old since Hindi is still a language that’s far removed from the cultural ethos of Tamil Nadu.

Available On YouTube

Kaathala Kaathala (1998)

Director: Singeetam Srinivasa Rao

Kaathala Kaathala is a certified comedy of errors that has the power to tickle your funny bone on any given day. The name of the house that the four protagonists (played by Kamal Haasan, Soundarya, Rambha, and Prabhu Dheva) settle into – Roon Jaham – is still used as an ice-breaker in many social circles. Well, you can’t help it because it’s as hysterical as it was more than two decades ago.

Available On YouTube

Ullathai Allitha (1996)

Director: Sundar C.

Ullathai Allitha can run in the background while you’re working. It will, in fact, occasionally lift your spirits when you’re least expecting it. The dialogues and the quirky music will guide you towards achieving your daily goal. And the loudness with which Goundamani delivers his lines will remind you of the good old days. Do you need more reasons to pick this 90s bonanza?

Available On YouTube

Aan Paavam (1985)

Director: Pandiarajan

VK Ramasamy is an underrated genius. He was definitely a celebrated actor during his time. But he was always brushed under the carpet as yet another character actor. He certainly had several other tricks to offer. And when you catch this flick, you’ll know that he’s a really funny man.

Available On YouTube

Nadigan (1990)

Director: P. Vasu

Sathyaraj and Goundamani make a great duo. They have starred in many movies together in which they have unleashed their inner beasts. They can get on your nerves sometimes, albeit in a humorous way. And with Nadigan, they share the screen space with Manorama, who’s a star in her own right. Can’t you imagine the riot of laughs and shenanigans already?

Available On YouTube


Michael Madana Kama Rajan (1990)

Director: Singeetam Srinivasa Rao

We all know that Kamal Haasan likes to experiment a lot. But when he experiments even a little in the comedy genre, you get a week’s worth of laughs in a single movie. Michael Madana Kama Rajan is one such gem that keeps pumping chuckles without looking for an alternative way to narrate the story of quadruplets.

Available On Amazon Prime Video (With Subtitles)

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